Why would I want to choose a legal separation over a dissolution of marriage?

Although there are probably many reasons why the legal separation is a preferred method, typically, there are four primary reasons why individuals want a legal separation.

1) Possible reconciliation - the parties are in marriage counseling, and need the time to try to work things out, but want to resolve the other issues now.

2) Religious reasons - the parties have religious beliefs which prohibit divorce and face possible adverse ramifications and/or excommunication from the church.

3) Health - one or both of the parties have significant health issues which may not be covered by the existing health care coverage once the divorce is finalized.

4) Liability - if the parties have any community obligations or other liability, the legal separation may limit the amount of liability one party may have for the obligations of the other party. There are specific requirements about how to stop the liability, and you should consult an attorney regarding this if you have concerns.

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