When is Filing for a Legal Separation More Appropriate vs. a Divorce?
In situations where a party wants to obtain orders for child custody, visitation, and/or other issues but has not lived in the same county for the past three months or in California for the past six months to meet the time requirements for filing for a divorce, that party can file for Legal Separation and amend his or her Petition to a divorce after 6 months have passed.
Legal Separation is also appropriate for some parties for religious and/or insurance coverage issues. Medical insurance companies who had previously insured a spouse under the other spouse’s medical insurance during the marriage generally would terminate such coverage options when a divorce is finalized.
Therefore, for spouses who would have difficulty in obtaining their own medical insurance coverage after termination of their marriage due to pre-existing medical conditions, a legal separation can make sense because it enables such medical insurance coverage to continue. The Court can make orders relating to child custody, visitation, child and spousal support and divide property in a legal separation case, but the parties otherwise remain married to each other.
For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio of The Maggio Law Firm, by visiting www.maggiolawfirm.com or calling (949) 553-0304.