Protect Your Interests By Making Your Separation Legal

Posted on: 23 July 2018

When it looks as though things are not getting any better between you and your spouse the word 'divorce' may rear its head. In most cases, divorce can take some time to be final and lingering issues could mean that you won't get the final decree for many months. This means that there is a transition period between the spouse moving out and the divorce being final. Read on to learn how to make the most of the separation period by making moves to protect you and your children's financial situation.

Protect your children

If you have minor-aged children, you undoubtedly want to protect them from the negative effects of divorce as much as possible. One of the main ways that children get harmed when their parents part ways is financially, but it doesn't have to be that way. Speak to your divorce lawyer about getting an order of support for your children, particularly if your spouse has been the primary income-producer during the marriage. This order will be temporary, covering your separation up to the final decree which will contain a permanent order of financial support.

Protect your debt responsibility

You may never think much about how your spouse is spending money but you certainly should. If you share joint credit card debt or live in a community property state, you might end up being 50% responsible for the marital debt load, regardless of how much of that debt is actually your own. Once you separate, it's in your best interest to put a stop to this shared debt liability issue by making your separation legal. A legal document will specify a date after which you are no longer responsible for your spouse's debts. Don't furnish your spouse's new apartment, get an agreement in place.

Protect your income

You can also gain another important financial benefit without waiting for your divorce to be final. Spousal support (or alimony) is far from dead and is still a useful means of ensuring that you don't suffer financial ramifications as a result of an upcoming divorce. Support can be ordered on a temporary basis, and it can later be made permanent. You will need to show a need for this form of support, but it is available and getting it depends on:

1. Your age, level of education, and job experience

2. The age of any minor children of which you have primary temporary custody.

3. How long it's been since you've held a job and brought in income.

4. The income of your spouse.

You can wrap all of the above into a handy legal document known as a legal separation agreement. Speak to a family law attorney about getting your own today.