Many Maryland residents are currently facing serious marital problems. Some will wind up divorcing; others are undecided but know they wish to take up residence apart from their spouses, at least for now. The problem is married people, especially those with children, may run into several challenges if they all the sudden start to live apart from their legal spouses, such as how to provide financial support to their kids. This is where legal separation comes in; it’s an option many people choose to explore when they’re unsure whether they’ll eventually file for divorce.

Much the same issues addressed in divorce are also covered in a legal separation. For instance, where children will live, whether a parent will pay child support, as well as all matters concerning visitation and property division will need to be addressed. Those considering this option should be aware it is meant to be permanent, not temporary.

The main difference between a divorce and legal separation is that a legal marriage still exists where the latter is concerned. This means neither spouse is free to marry another. Legal separation also makes it easier for couples to get back together if they determine their problems are resolvable after all.

Some Maryland couples enter trial separations before discerning whether legal separation or divorce is a better choice in their particular circumstances. Many consult family law attorneys for clarification on the laws that govern such matters. If a minor problem escalates into a contentious situation, an attorney can act in a client’s best interests to litigate the issue in court.

Source: FindLaw, ” Legal Separation“, Accessed on June 21, 2017