Legal Separation Attorney in Commack, New York
A legal separation does not put an end to the marriage. During a legal separation, you have a court order that outlines the rights and responsibilities of each spouse while they are living apart.
You remain legally married while choosing to live separate lives. Issues that can be addressed in a legal separation agreement are a division of assets and debts, child custody and child support, visitation schedules, and spousal support.
A legal separation can protect your interests until the decision is made to file for divorce. The separation agreement also sets precedence for the divorce that may follow. If you divorce after a separation and your case goes to court, a judge is likely to assume that since you were satisfied with the legal separation agreement, the agreement should carry over to the divorce separation agreement. For that reason, it is important that you come to a separation agreement you can live with long term.
Here in New York the moment a legal separation is filed a clock starts counting down and at the end of a year the legal separation automatically converts to a divorce action. In the meantime some advantages are:
It allows couples time apart, away from the conflict of the marriage to decide if divorce is what they truly want.
It allows for the retention of medical benefits and certain other benefits that divorce would bring to an end.
If you are a military spouse, you may wish to remain married for 10 years so that you can take advantage of benefits set up by the Uniformed Services Former Spouse Protection Act. Remaining married for 11 years or more may also mean being able to take advantage of certain social security benefits for a spouse.