Legal Separation Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale
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Legal separation contains all of the practical elements of a divorce without the permanent dissolution of the marriage. The court rules on elements like child custody, support, and alimony, but the two individuals remain legally married. In some troubled marriages, it makes sense to separate but remain legally married for insurance or tax reasons, to qualify for certain social security benefits, or even for religious reasons. Other times, a legal separation gives a couple time apart to reflect on their issues and either resolve them and reunite, or opt for the finality of dissolving their marriage.
While legal separation may complicate the process of divorce, there may still be benefits to the process worth exploring. For more than a decade, Arcaro Law Group has focused solely on family law, so we have the experience and resources to help you obtain your goals.
What Does Legal Separation Mean in Florida?
Florida does not formally recognize legal separation. Both parties can still settle on terms, as if they had undergone legal separation however. These might include seeking a postnuptial agreement, or settling custody visitation, and any orders for child support. Couples are free to separate on their own terms at any time without going through the courts and divide their lives voluntarily.
When couples separate, they agree to:
- Maintain separate residences
- Discontinue joint bank accounts
- Divide property and assets
- Pay separate household expenses
If the couple has children, they may decide the children will live with one parent and visit the other according to a set schedule. It is important to remember that this is not legally binding in any way. As far as the state is concerned, nothing has changed in the marriage.
Legal Recourse & Options for Voluntary Separation
In the absence of providing for legal separation, state laws in Florida do discuss the provision of child support outside the bounds of a divorce decree. A parent may petition the court to order the other parent to pay child support. In the same way, alimony may be requested outside of a divorce, but has very rarely been granted by the Florida courts. At Arcaro Law Group, our Fort Lauderdale divorce lawyers understand that, while you wish to live separate lives, divorce is not always the best option. Our Fort Lauderdale divorce lawyers have more than 35 years of combined legal experience in this area, and we take pride in helping our clients find solutions that work for them.