How to Legally Separate from a Marriage or Civil Partnership

How to Legally Separate from a Marriage or Civil Partnership

For people considering divorce or dissolution of a civil partnership but who haven’t yet made up their minds, they can get a legal separation. It is essentially a written agreement to settle financial matters while they’re not together. If at some point the separation becomes permanent and a divorce or dissolution is in order, the written agreement can be used to help settle financial matters in the dissolution of the relationship.

Getting Separated

As in a marriage, people can ask for legal separations for the same reasons as they can ask for divorces; for example, if one of the partners committed adultery or the behaviour of a partner is unreasonable. However, there is no requirement to show that the relationship is broken beyond repair. In fact, one of the reasons for separating is to try to work on the relationship.

Other reasons for separating and not divorcing include:

  • Being against the couple’s religion.
  • Being married for less than a year.
  • Giving the parties time to work out a suitable divorce or dissolution agreement.

Financial Matters Resolved

When a separation agreement is written, some of the financial matters that it helps to settle include:

  • The party responsible for paying the rent or mortgage.
  • Who lives in the family home or how the money will be divided if it is sold.
  • How financial assets and debts are split.
  • Who gets which property, such as cars, furniture, art, etc.
  • Arrangements for paying maintenance, if necessary.

If the couple have children together, the agreement will also include who they live with, how much support they would get, and visitation arrangements. Since the separation is legal, you need to hire a family law specialist in Yorkshire to help negotiate and finalise the agreement.

Types of Separation

It is important to specify what you wish to accomplish with the separation when hiring a family law solicitor as there is more than one type of separation. A legal separation allows you and your partner to work out the agreement among yourselves and then decide whether to make the separation permanent. A judicial separation gives the court the powers to divide the marital assets instead of the couple.

Then there is the separation of two years before getting a divorce. This is one of the five reasons for getting a divorce and, most of the time, it ends in an amicable divorce since the couple has been living apart for two years. However, one of the parties can always withhold consent for the divorce, which can create legal problems for both of them.

When contemplating a separation or divorce, you should consult with a family law solicitor to get his or her advice. In some cases, there is no reason to wait to dissolve the relationship, unless each party wants to work on the marriage or civil partnership before making the decision to part permanently. However, for many couples, a separation is only postponing the inevitable, so it is better to get together with the other party and his or her lawyer to dissolve the union.

Categories: Legal Services

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