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Legal Separation or Divorce – Which One is Right for Your Case?

McHenry County family law attorneyEvery marriage is unique. Every couple’s beliefs, goals, and concerns are different. So, really, it only makes sense that, when suffering from irreconcilable differences, some will choose legal separation over the traditional divorce. This is not a “wrong” path. It is just different than divorce. Unfortunately, many couples are confused about those differences and are uncertain when it comes to deciding which option is most appropriate for their situation. The following information can help clarify the difference between legal separation and divorce, and may even give you some insight as to which path is right for you.

Legal Separation

Less extreme, and ultimately less permanent, a legal separation does not dissolve the marriage. It does offer certain benefits, however. For example, during a legal separation, couples can pursue a court order for child support, spousal support, and a determination of parenting time and allocation of parental responsibilities. In addition, legal separation can give couples time apart to decide whether or not they truly want to proceed with a divorce. Some find, after time apart, that their differences were merely situational. Others do eventually decide to move forward with a legal divorce. In either case, the parties are able to walk away, certain that they did everything they could to resolve the issues in their marriage.

Illinois Divorce

Unlike legal separation, divorce is a complete and legal end of the marriage. Generally, couples who pursue this option are fairly confident that they no longer wish to salvage their marriage. Some have tried legal separation. Others have pursued therapy or counseling. The rest simply know that the marriage is over. Whatever the case, they are ready to move forward with their lives, separately, with no legal ties between them (save for those that may exist through their children). Property, assets, and debt are divided equitably, and a determination of child-related matters are made. If spousal support and/or child support are necessary, these, too, will be factored into the divorce.

Still Not Sure Which Path is Right for You? Our Attorneys Can Help You Decide

Divorce and legal separation, though very different from one another, have their own set of nuances and complexities. It is important that you understand them before making any final decisions about how to proceed. An experienced attorney can serve as your guide, your sounding board, and your advocate, no matter which path you choose.

At the Thomas Law Office, we recognize that each marriage, divorce, and separation is different. We will give your case the personalized care it deserves and ensure you are well-informed about your options. Schedule a consultation with our McHenry County family law attorneys and get skilled assistance with your case. Call us at 847-426-7990 today.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=3700000&SeqEnd=5200000

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=6000000&SeqEnd=8300000

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