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What is Separation?

A legal separation allows a married couple to live apart or if necessary in the same home. A legal separation creates a filing with the court protecting finances, property and parenting plan until a decision is made about the finality of divorce.

Mediation can help with all aspects ofSseparation by creating a smoother and less contentious untying of the family unit. Mediation helps to discuss financial issues, division of property, living arrangements, and parenting plans. These issues can be some of the costliest and most antagonistic aspects of litigation; mediation seeks to make these issues more collaborative.

How is Separation different from Divorce? Why might someone use Separation differently than Divorce?

Separation is different from Divorce because Separation is less final. Separation still means that people are legally married, perhaps sharing health insurance, claiming tax benefits, and living environments; whereas, Divorce finalizes all of these martial connections.

A legal Separation, still being legally married, keeps financial obligations under the marriage agreement in tact. Additionally, in Connecticut, a legal Separation protects you from being held responsible for any debt, liabilities or taxes your spouse incurs after the date of the Separation agreement. A Separation allows for couples to cool off and consider either how to unbundle their marriage or to repair their relationship.

Separation can also be effective for those individuals who may not be quite ready for the finality of divorce and who wish to secure their financial situation, parenting access, and living situations. Divorce does not always have to be the answer when couples are having challenges.

How could Mediation and Beyond facilitate a Separation?

Mediation opens up the conversation regarding the separation process. It helps couples agree as to what might be good options, such as beginning to separate finances, develop parenting plans, and explore new places to live and much more.

A legal separation may allow couples some time to rethink their marriage, to seek coaching or counseling to see if the marriage can stay together. If a couple seeks a legal separation, they can file paperwork with the court without having to divorce.

Could Mediation help guide a couple from separation into the divorce process?

Mediation through the separation process can be used as a prelude to divorce. By using mediation to create a legal separation (separating finances, developing a parenting plan, new living arrangements), the divorce process can be more streamlined and amicable. The beautiful way you tied yourself together is as important as the way you untie yourselves. Create a legacy you both are proud of and your family too.

Could Mediation help guide a couple from Separation back to Reconciliation?

Couples who seek a legal separation rather than divorce may utilize that time to work on their marriage, their individual selves, and navigate the issues they may currently have with the goal toward reconciliation.

Mediation is a powerful tool when utilized effectively. Couples can benefit from marital mediation to understand their individual impact in the relationship, to steer clear of blame and lean in to understanding of what has led them to this point in their relationship and to use the time to listen and to speak to their individual concerns regarding their relationship. Mediation during separation can be a key turning point towards re-establishing a relationship.