The Challenges Associated with Legal Separations
By its very nature, separation is a much more vague relationship status than a marriage or divorce. A lot of the lines are blurred when you are separated, which poses some unique challenges. If you are considering a legal separation with your spouse, the following are some logistical issues you may expect to encounter:
- Children: Your children might not necessarily understand exactly what a separation is. It can be difficult to explain the status of your relationship, and it might also be challenging to give them an idea of what the future looks like, especially if you are unsure yourself. You will need to continue to co-parent effectively while separated, and will have to determine exactly what you tell your kids about your relationship with your spouse.
- Dating: You should come to a mutual agreement with your spouse about whether your separation means you can date other people.
- Legal issues: If you opt for a legal separation, there are a variety of processes and costs you will have to deal with as a couple, very similar to those involved in a divorce. And it is important to know that if you go through the legal separation process and then later choose to get divorced, you essentially will go through a similar process two times.
- Conflict resolution: Many couples who separate do so with the hope of reuniting at some point in the future. This means that you must, at some point, address the conflict that caused you to separate. Consider working with each other to determine how you can re-establish trust in each other and repair your relationship over time.
- Moving back in: Bringing the separation to an official end can be an awkward experience if you have not properly prepared yourselves. Communicate and discuss steps you will take even after you are living together to ensure you continue to work on repairing and strengthening your relationship.
If you require legal guidance related to a divorce or separation, consult a knowledgeable Minneapolis family law attorney with Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.