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Can I Get a Legal Separation in Texas?

 Posted on April 19, 2023 in Family Law

Collin County Divorce LawyerAlmost every couple goes through periods in their marriage where things get so difficult between the two of them, one or both of them begin considering divorce. The couple will either work through these issues, decide to end their marriage or continue living contentiously with each other without dealing with the problems.

One option that some couples decide is to separate before they make the final decision to divorce. This allows them each to have their space and gives them the time they need to decide if they really do want to end their marriage or work toward reconciliation. If this is something you and your spouse are considering, there are some important facts you should be aware of when it comes to legal separations in Texas.

A Legal Separation

When a couple decides to separate, even though they are no longer physically living together, they are still considered legally married. This means that if one spouse is on the other spouse’s health insurance plan, they can remain on the plan. This is different than a divorce where a person’s benefits are terminated after a certain period of time.

In some marriages, the couple may wish to divorce, but their religion prohibits it. A legal separation can provide the mechanism to live separate lives, but without violating the rules of their religion.

Regardless of the reason why a couple decides to get a legal separation, couples who live in Texas need to be aware that the state does not grant legal separations the way many other states in the country do. However, there are some options that can provide you with legal protections until you either reconcile or decide to divorce and end the marriage permanently.

One choice is a separation contract that addresses assets, debts, spousal support, and more. Many couples create a Partition and Exchange Agreement which addresses the division of marital assets, basically eliminating any “joint” assets and turning them all “separate.” If the couple does reconcile, they will need to file the appropriate documentation to dissolve the agreement otherwise all their assets would legally remain separate.

Another choice for couples who feel a Partition and Exchange Agreement is too extreme is a temporary separation agreement. This agreement can address how debts will be paid, assets handled, spousal support, and any other needed issues.

If the couple has children and is separating, they will want to address parenting time and child support in a Suit Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship (SAPCR).

Contact a Frisco, TX Divorce Attorney

If you would like to learn more about a separation or divorce, contact a Collin County divorce lawyer to find out what legal options you may have. Call Pfister Family Law at 972-954-6455 to schedule a confidential consultation.



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