Would it be in my best interest to file a legal separation? 3 Answers as of July 11, 2013

I have been married for 10 yrs. My spouse and I have agreed to separate in a matter of 6 months. In the event I want to move out before that time. Would I be affected in any way at the time our divorce is finalized? I did file a report on spousal abuse but neither party pressed charges. Would it be in my best interest to file a legal separation?

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Law Office of Joseph A. Katz
Law Office of Joseph A. Katz | Joseph A. Katz
So, you agreed to wait to separate until you were clearly past the time frame for a 'long-term marriage', so that one party would almost surely be on the hook for long-term spousal support? I am not following you, here. Is there animosity in this separation? I do not usually recommend a legal separation. Unless you have financial or religious reasons not to divorce, or unless you think you might reunite, it usually makes more sense to just file for the dissolution. By all means, if you are the one who would receive spousal support, wait to file.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/11/2013
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
Given that you address divorce in your question, it appears that youmay beconfused about Legal Separation. It would be in your best interest to file for a Dissolution of your Marriage (Divorce), not a Legal Separation. You would remain married to your husband after a Legal Separation, which would divide assets and award support if appropriate, but it would not dissolve your marriage.Separation is different from Legal Separation. You can "Separate" from your husband at any time, by moving out or otherwise telling him that your marriage is over. If you want to get out of your marriage, file for a Divorce. You can do that without moving out, if you so wish, although you might be more comfortable living separately from your husband during the divorce proceedings.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/6/2011
Law Office of Patricia Van Haren
Law Office of Patricia Van Haren | Patricia Van Haren
There is no reason why you should file a legal separation as opposed to a petition for dissolution. You may file and serve a dissolution while you are residing in the same home as your spouse. There are no significant advantages in filing for a legal separation. In the State of California the date of separation is the date in which one spouse communicates to the other that they do not intend to remain in the marriage. If you file a petition for legal separation and later wish to be divorced, you will still need to file a divorce later on or you would need to file an amended petition to change from a separation to a dissolution. You should contact an attorney to discuss your particular case as you may have other reasons for filing a legal separation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 7/5/2011
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