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The Difference Between Divorce & Legal Separation April 12, 2019

Boston, Suffolk
The Difference Between Divorce & Legal Separation, Boston, Massachusetts

If you are considering a divorce, it’s important to be confident in your decision. Waffling back and forth can create resentment and cause confusion if children are involved. Couples who are not yet ready to go to a divorce attorney but are having trouble may opt for a legal separation instead. Read on to learn more about this option.

Divorce vs. Legal Separation

In a legal separation, you and your spouse will technically remain married. However, you will live under separate roofs and lead independent lives. A court order will specify the rights and duties of each individual in the relationship.

divorce attorneyPart of this court order will address so-called “separation maintenance.” This can encompass elements from alimony and property division to child support and visitation. It’s important to note separation maintenance agreements filed with the courts can impact a divorce if you pursue this option down the line.

Who Is Legal Separation For?

A legal separation can be a helpful step if you and your spouse are having problems but are not yet prepared to get a divorce attorney. If one person is having personal or financial difficulties, for instance, a temporary break can give both parties space to figure out their needs. Some couples are happy to reunite after this breathing period.

Other couples, however, may choose to make the separation permanent. At this point, divorce attorneys will have to file new documents. Issues like child support and alimony will have to be hashed out anew, although, as noted, former court orders will impact the outcomes of these discussions.


Consider a legal separation? Bellotti Law Group, P.C. will answer your questions. Located in Boston, MA, divorce attorney Peter Bellotti and his team are known for the compassionate attention they provide their clients. You can expect reliable legal counsel as you go through the emotional difficulties of a separation or divorce. Find out more about the law firm’s other practice areas, from criminal law defense to wrongful death suits, online. For an appointment, call (617) 778-1000.

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