Legal Agreements For Living Apart While Staying Married
What a marriage is sometimes redefined in order for couples to meet the needs of their individual circumstances. For example, some couples make the decision to live apart while maintaining their legal marital status. This is an attractive option for some people for a range of reasons, from personal goals and financial well-being.
If you and your spouse are considering a permanent separation, talk to a Tampa family lawyer about what legal agreements you should have in place. Doing so will provide you and your spouse with structure and clarity throughout your separation.
Reasons to Pursue a Permanent Separation
The decision to live apart while remaining married is a personal one. Some of the various reasons couples have chosen this path include the following.
- Financial benefits. Tax advantages and retirement benefits are easily shared by married couples, and some of these financial benefits are no longer accessible should a couple divorce.
- Parental concerns. Some couples believe that staying legally married is an important part of prioritizing their children’s well-being and stability, so they choose to be married and maintain a united front as parents while living separately.
- Emotional space. For individuals who are seeking individual growth, they may find that a physical separation gives them the breathing room they need to focus on their own personal goals.
- Healthcare access. Many in Florida and throughout the US access their healthcare coverage through workplace benefit plans, and if one spouse’s plan is crucial for the other spouse, particularly if they have pre-existing medical conditions or are currently being treated for a health issue, it may make sense to stay legally married.
- Religious and cultural beliefs. A couple’s decision to remain married, even while living in their own households rather than together, could be connected to their belief system.
Whatever your reason for choosing to live apart while remaining married, it is important for you and your spouse to have a thoughtful plan in place, including drafting legal documents to address possible areas of dispute.
Discuss Separation Agreements with Your Attorney
While different from a divorce agreement, a separation agreement is similar in that it covers financial concerns, property division, child custody, and visitation schedules. It is important to have a clear outline of the rights and responsibilities of both spouses during the separation period so that both parties are on the same page regarding key issues.
While living apart while married may be an attractive option for you and your spouse, it’s important you understand the legal implications of doing so. To ensure that all necessary agreements are properly drafted and executed, connect with a Tampa family lawyer.
What questions do you have about separation agreements? Simply staying married and living apart without the proper legal documentation could lead to a lot of disputes later. Taking the time to draw up a separation agreement today may save you time, stress, and money in the future. Talk to the legal team at Blair H. Chan, III to learn more. Call 813-280-5301 to schedule a consultation.