WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DIVORCE AND LEGAL SEPARATION IN CALIFORNIA?

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DIVORCE AND LEGAL SEPARATION IN CALIFORNIA?

Getting married is often one of the most exciting times in someone’s life. Being able to keep a relationship strong while supporting a happy and healthy family can be a struggle, but many couples work to keep their relationship intact through difficult times. However, if one person does not agree with the other person on certain matters, or if arguments are an everyday occurrence, then the couple may decide to file for divorce. However, in some cases, a couple may decide to pursue legal separation while they determine whether their marriage can be saved.

Divorce and Irreconcilable Differences

Divorce is when either spouse makes the difficult decision to legally end their marriage. When one spouse decides to file for divorce, then the other spouse cannot stop the divorce process by refusing to participate in the case, even if he or she does not want to get a divorce. Since California is considered a “no-fault” state, no one filing for divorce is required to prove that the other spouse did anything wrong. Only one spouse needs to indicate that the relationship is not working out, and each spouse is simply not getting along well with the other spouse; the legal term is “irreconcilable differences.”

What is Legal Separation?

The biggest difference between a divorce and a legal separation is that when a couple is legally separated, the marriage has not been ended. If a divorce has not been finalized, then neither member of the couple can marry someone else or enter a legal domestic partnership. During legal separation, a judgment will be made to settle all issues, but the couple will still be married once the legal separation case has been declared final.

What Issues Are Considered During Legal Separation and Divorce?

Child support, child custody, and visitation rights will need to be considered in both divorce and legal separation. Until one spouse moves out of the living space, the married couple is not considered legally separated. This is called the “bright-line rule,” where individual residences for a married couple have been established, meeting the minimum requirements in which property and income are no longer shared.

Contact a San Jose Divorce Attorney

Separating from the person you love and share a partnership with can be one of the hardest feats to accomplish in one’s life. Filing for divorce can be even more difficult. No matter how challenging your situation is, you are never alone in this battle. When you choose Dominion Law Group, LLP, you will be guaranteed the most effective case representation possible. For further assistance, call an experienced Santa Clara County divorce lawyer at 408-288-5592 for a free consultation.

Sources:

http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/State-Supreme-Court-defines-legal-separation-in-6395912.php

http://www.courts.ca.gov/1032.htm

http://sfsuperiorcourt.org/self-help/legal-separation

http://www.scscourt.org/self_help/family/divorce.shtml

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