Should I Separate From My Partner Before I Divorce?
When their relationships begin to fall apart, married couples may wish to start divorce proceedings as quickly as possible. Sometimes though, a planned separation can provide the time and space needed to look at things more objectively. Though every situation is different, a separation could also pave the way toward reconciliation.
What Are the Benefits of a Separation?
Married couples who separate can still benefit from filing joint taxes, shared health insurance coverage, and Social Security until they are legally divorced. While these financial situations are temporary until a divorce, it makes sense to hold onto those benefits as long as possible.
A sudden, acrimonious divorce can be hard on both parties and any shared children. It can be better to wait until emotions have cooled a bit; this way, it can be easier to sort out the details of custody, child support, property division, and alimony. The extra time can make it easier for children to get used to the new lifestyle.
How Should Married Couples Handle Their Separations?
Being separated is not like being in a happy marriage, nor is it the same as being single. As an in-between state of married and single, there can be less pressure without the worry of a rapidly approaching court date.
Separation is more about being apart from your spouse. Even though it can be difficult, is best to avoid dating other people during this time because that can complicate things. It is also wise to avoid questionable behaviors like hanging out at bars every night. Posting photos of yourself “behaving badly” on social media during a separation (or divorce) can come back to haunt you if your spouse sees what you have been up to.
Giving your spouse the silent treatment can also cause problems, so do your best to maintain honest, open communications. Avoid saying bad things about your spouse to others (especially your children) and do not make major financial decisions during this time. If an important decision must be made during a separation, agreements should be made beforehand.
How Else Can I Make My Separation Less Stressful?
How can spouses make separation easier for everyone involved? Agree on boundaries at the outset, create a temporary child custody and visitation arrangement, and seek joint or individual counseling. The main purpose of the conversation in counseling can be to discuss goals and a timeline. Try to set realistic expectations and maintain open communications and use the time to really think about whether a permanent split is the best option. You might end up realizing that divorce is the best path or end up trying to make things work.
A Marlton Divorce Lawyer at Goldstein & Mignogna, P.A. Can Help You Navigate Through a Separation or Divorce
It is hard to be objective about separations and divorces but an experienced Marlton divorce lawyer at Goldstein & Mignogna, P.A. can provide compassionate, skilled legal counsel to guide you through the process. For a confidential consultation, call our Marlton, New Jersey at 856-890-9400 or complete our online form. We serve clients throughout South Jersey in Marlton, Burlington County, Camden County, and Gloucester County.