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If you are a resident of Staten Island and would like to legally separate from your spouse, it is imperative that you speak with an experienced legal separation lawyer to ensure that your legal separation is established and that your rights and interests are protected.
What is a legal separation?
A legal separation is a formal designation by a family law judge acknowledging that the parties marital status has changed to “legally separated.” The terms and conditions of a legal separation are typically set forth in a legal separation agreement, which is signed by a judge and filed with the court.
How is a legal separation different than a divorce?
A legal separation is similar to a divorce in many ways. However, the primary difference is in the marital status designation. Although, spouses legally separate, they are still a married couple and maintain fiduciary duties to one another.
What will a legal separation accomplish?
A legal separation will divide the marital estate, making a full divorce less time consuming since the property issues have already been resolved. A legal separation gives spouses room to work on their marriage, while separating their estate.
What assets or debts are divided during a legal separation?
All assets and debts can be divided during the legal separation process. In fact, the goal during a legal separation is to divide as much or all of the marital estate, including debts. Having experienced legal counsel is imperative to protect your rights and interests in the estates, as the separation agreement will be a legally binding documents once it has been signed and filed with the court.
Is child custody and visitation addressed during a legal separation?
Yes. If the parties have children they may wish to establish a custody and visitation schedule and incorporate this into their separation agreement. Parties can also agree to the payment of child support.
Can I receive alimony during a legal separation?
Yes. If you and your spouse are legally separated and not living together, alimony can be awarded and/or agreed to in the separation agreement.
Do I have to appear in court to obtain a legal separation?
No. One of the benefits of having a legal separation lawyer represent you, is experienced counsel advise you on your rights as it relates to the issues addressed during the legal separation process. In fact, in many cases, the attorney will draft the agreement and negotiate its terms with your spouse or their attorney. If the parties can come to an agreement, than nether party will be required to attend a court hearing.
How can a Staten Island legal separation lawyer help me?
Based on jurisdictional issues, it is important to know the proper venue or courthouse to process your separation agreement. An experienced Staten Island separation lawyer is not only familiar with the proper courts to file your agreement with, but he or she will also have advanced knowledge of local rules and procedures for properly drafting a separation agreementhttp://www.nycourts.gov/courts/9jd/Westchester/family/pdfs/Jurisdiction.pdf .
A legal separation can have many legal ramifications, so it is very important that you consult with an experienced legal separation lawyer if you would like to establish a legal separation agreement.