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MAIN Arrow to Home LifeHome Life Arrow to Legal AdvisorHome Legal Guide Arrow to SeparationSeparation

Collaborative law
also see in the Legal Blog:

Avoiding Divorce Court:
Collaborative Law

Rather than divorce, couples may decide to separate for a number of reasons.

These may include religious restrictions, as a way to continue marital tax or government benefits, or simply as an alternative for couples to ease into the idea of living apart until they decide on an eventual divorce, or reconciliation.

While it may seem to be a softer approach, the legal ramifications of a separation agreement may eventually become binding in a divorce court.

If your intention is to provide for child support, or to equitably split assets or insurance costs, experts advise that you carefully map those points out in the initial separation agreement.

Separation & child support

Support payments for spouse and children during separation are commonly called temporary maintenance or alimony pendente lite ("pending the litigation."). If your spouse fails to make agreed-upon payments, a court order is usually available to enforce the agreement and, in most cases, you can file the necessary papers yourself or with help from a local family court.

Legal vs. do it yourself separation

Sample separation agreements are available for download around the Web and, once notarized, may (or may not) be viewed in court as legal documentation. However, an attorney can better advise you on how to protect your property and financial interests, especially if a separation eventually leads to divorce.

If you're strapped for cash, look into personal legal insurance that may be provided by your employer (many companies now offer this policy for their employees) or seek out free or pro bono legal aid.

also in Home Legal Advisor -> Divorce | Child Support

More about separation around the Web:


Legal Separation vs Divorce - FindLaw guide to the legal process with advice on child support, a discussion on separation vs. divorce, FAQ on the advantages of separation, a sample separation agreement and legal forms available for purchase.

Legal Separation Agreement Forms - Downloadable separation and property settlement forms available for purchase in all 50 U.S. states with free shipping for paper copies.

Legal Introduction to Divorce and Separation - UK guide to the topic with specific do's and don'ts, average costs of solicitor fees, and more about divorce processing, financial and children orders, related resources.

also see in Family Relationships -> Marriage Counseling


The information provided on these pages is intended as reference
only and does not constitute professional legal advice.


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