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Los Angeles legal separation lawyerLegal separation is an alternative to divorce. Married couples may prefer this option for many reasons, such as not wanting to divorce due their religious beliefs.

For the past 20 years, the divorce lawyers at Berenji & Associates has helped families navigate the complex family court system. If you need assistance, our Los Angeles legal separation lawyers offer a free consultation for your convenience.

Legal Separation Overview

During a legal separation proceeding, the court decides the issues it would during a divorce hearing. For example, the court determines property, child custody, and child support matters. The big exception is that a legal separation does not terminate the marital status. Therefore, neither spouse is free to remarry.

The consent of both parties is required for the court to render a judgment of legal separation, unless “one party has not made a general appearance…” (CA Family Code § 2345.) The grounds for a legal separation are the same as for divorce, (1) irreconcilable differences, or (2) permanent legal incapacity to make decisions. (CA Family Code § 2310.)

As previously stated, a married couple may choose legal separation because a divorce violates their religious principles. Other reasons for choosing legal separation are:

  • Residency: The parties have not reached requisite six-month residency requirement to file for divorce in California
    • But note that a legal separation petition can be amended to a dissolution petition after the residency requirement has been met (Family Code §2321)
  • Financial: To quickly separate finances before the end of tax year
  • Benefits: To separate finances without terminating spousal status for the purposes of medical insurance or other benefits
  • Expediency: While a divorce takes six months or longer to take effect, legal separations take effect immediately

Please note that many insurance polices have a provision disqualifying a spouse after legal separation. Therefore, you should review your health insurance policy prior to opting for legal separation.

Speak to our experienced Los Angeles Legal Separation Attorney Today

If you are considering a legal separation, contact Berenji & Associates today. Our qualified Los Angeles legal separation lawyers can help you through the entire process. Although the legal separation process is straightforward, you may benefit from legal assistance regarding the surrounding issues of support, custody, and division of property.