On behalf of Law Offices of Kathleen G. Alvarado posted in family law on Thursday, May 24, 2018.

For many reasons, some Riverside couples may want to live apart but may not want to go through the process of a divorce.

California couples in such circumstances may instead resort to a legal separation. A legal separation does not end a couple’s marriage, so they are not legally free to remarry.

Still, on account of moral or religious concerns, for financial reasons, or even because they simply aren’t ready to deal with the end of their marriage on an emotional level, some couples may prefer to keep their marriages intact even if they wish to live separately.

Other than the fact that it does not end a couple’s marriage, legal separation in most other respects works in a manner similar to that of a divorce. After filing for a separation, the parties will go to court. At their hearing, the judge will make orders regarding child custody and support.

The judge will also lay down ground rules regarding the rights and responsibilities of each party with respect to marital property and other financial matters. Of course, as with a divorce, the couple is also free to resolve these issues through an agreement with each other.

Whether a legal separation is a good option for an individual California resident depends heavily on their personal circumstances. In any event, though, it is important for these people to understand what the legal ramifications of a separation are.

Moreover, because a legal separation in many respects operates like a divorce, someone involved in a separation will likely need advice regarding things like child support, parenting time and custody and even their property rights. In some cases, a person may want a skilled family law attorney to advocate on their behalf before the court.