New York Legal Separation Attorney

Not Ready to File for Divorce? Learn About Legal Separation.

Some couples choose to legally separate instead of directly pursuing a divorce. If you and your spouse are having trouble staying together, you may want to consider this option. If religious prohibitions against divorce are preventing you from taking that course of action, a legal separation will allow you and your spouse to carry on separate lives.

Another reason to separate is if you and your partner are considering divorce, but aren't ready to make a final decision. A legal separation is a binding contract between you and your spouse, and if you choose this path, it would be in your best interest to work with a New York divorce lawyer who can help ensure that it works to your mutual advantage.


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The Difference Between Divorce & Legal Separation

A separation agreement is similar to a divorce settlement in regard to the fact that it determines the conditions for dividing the marital responsibilities between the two parties.

The separation agreement will often include provisions for:

Whether you choose separation as a long-term arrangement or a trial to see if you really want a divorce, you should ensure that the agreement is legally binding and that it anticipates any disputes that could arise.

Are Divorce Agreements & Separation Agreements the Same?

A separation agreement is not the same thing as a legal separation; it is the legally binding document that accompanies a legal separation. A separation agreement has many similarities to a divorce agreement, because issues such as asset division and child custody are covered. Separation agreements are not permanent, unlike divorce agreements, because a separation is intended to either lead to divorce or see the couple reconcile their differences. If you are contemplating divorce but are not quite ready to make that final step, then a legal separation may be the right choice for you.

What Are the Benefits of a Legal Separation?

Couples choose to separate for a number of different reasons, but one thing always remains the same: they are still married for the time being. Unlike a divorce, which is final and permanent, a legal separation gives a couple time to decide whether or not they really want to finalize the end of their marriage. Each case, and every couple, is different.

Some of the reasons why people choose to legally separate include:

  • They do not want to divorce for religious reasons
  • One spouse wishes to remain on the other’s medical plan
  • The couple believes that their marriage can be salvaged
  • One spouse need to seek help for a substance abuse problem
  • One spouse denies that the marriage is irretrievably broken

How to Obtain a Legal Separation in New York

In New York, a couple can become legally separated in one of two ways: entering into a legal separation agreement or seeking a judgment of separation from the court. The first is by far the most common. When entering into a legal separation agreement, both parties must sort out all of the same issues that would be decided in a divorce, including where each party is going to live, how all of their property will be divided, who will get custody of the children, etc.

If a separated couple decides to move forward with a divorce at any point, the terms of their legal separation agreement can be filed with the divorce petition, so it is important to keep the future in mind when sorting out the terms of your separation. The terms of a separation agreement will be legally binding for as long as the separation lasts, so both parties should seek counsel from a qualified family law attorney during this process.

Considering Separation? Involve an NYC Divorce Lawyer.

One of the leading reasons that couples choose a separation over divorce is because both partners really want to make the marriage work, but are having difficulty resolving their issues while living together. Separating often allows the situation to cool down, and the couple can work on the relationship without the pressure of constant contact. When you come to Eiges & Orgel, PLLC for help, we will help you find the best option to meet your goals. We work to provide clear solutions to our clients, and you will be working directly with your divorce attorney throughout the case.

Contact a New York City divorce attorney to explore the option of legal separation as a solution to your marital difficulties. Eiges & Orgel, PLLC offers a no-cost, comprehensive case evaluation.

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