Judicial Separation

To qualify for a divorce, you must have been married for at least one year. However, if your relationship irreparably breaks down before the one year mark and you and your spouse want to split, or if you have a religious objection to divorce but still want to make your separation legally recognised and binding, you might want to make use of a judicial separation.

What is judicial separation?

You can apply to a court for judicial separation for the same reasons as you might apply for a divorce. To find out more about grounds for a separation, click here to visit our ‘Grounds for Divorce’ page. The only difference here is that judicial separations are also available for marriages less than a year old.

It is important to note that even if you get a judicial separation, you remain married and may want to apply for a divorce further down the line. The purpose of a judicial separation is not to end your marriage; rather, it means that you and your spouse no longer have to cohabit if you choose not to.

A judicial separation also means that if you were to die intestate, your estate will not pass to your spouse. It will not, however, have an effect on any will you have already made, so this is something you might need to consider as if your spouse is named in your current will and you die before the end of your marriage, they could still inherit.

Why consider judicial separation?

Judicial separations are relatively uncommon, but there are a few reasons why some people favour judicial separation over divorce:

• You can still have a judicial separation even if you’ve been married less than a year.

• It can be less stressful than divorce but still allows for the division of your assets.

• The court can rule on certain aspects of the separation, such as the sale of the matrimonial home.

• If one party objects to divorce on religious grounds, a judicial separation can be an alternative.

 If you have been married less than a year and want to separate from your partner, you should contact one of our divorce solicitors about the potential for a judicial separation and any other options that may be open to you.

Thinking about Judicial Separation? Call our Solicitors today

Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you would welcome an informal 30 minute meeting about judicial separation, divorce or any other family law issue at a time to suit you

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