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Can I get temporary support while we’re separated?

October 3, 2017

When couples decide to divorce, they don’t always decide all at once. The decision may takes weeks to reach and be done during a series of conversations, not just one long conversation where both parties reach the conclusion that a divorce is the right thing to do. Before a decision is reached, both parties are living together. In fact, even during a separation, both parties may live together for a time or find their lives closely related due to shared financial investments and property. It’s perfectly normal to ask whether or not you can get support before the divorce is final and during the separation period.

Can you get support during a legal separation?

The short answer to this questions is YES. You absolutely may qualify to get child support or spousal support before the divorce is final and perhaps even if you’re seeing a lot of your significant other or share parenting duties. That’s just the short answer though, and it leads into a much more important question: HOW do you get temporary support during the separation? For the non-primary earner, this is the question they need to answer.

In some instances, the custodial parent can begin a child support case even before they begin a case for divorce. This is because living arrangements during a separation and divorce can be very jumbled, and this confusion doesn’t negate the need for good child support or spousal support during the separation period. Children still have needs, even if both parents haven’t quite worked out the details of their divorce yet.

To get this type of support, you’ll likely need to hire a good lawyer. Divorce lawyers are there to handle such matters and ensure that your children, and you, are well taken care of even during the separation. And if your spouse is willing, it may be a matter of agreeing to the terms and signing the legal documents necessary to put the court ordered support payments in motion. Sometimes you’ll have disagreements and this is when you’ll need a lawyer the most.

Lawyers will sit down and mediate between both parties and try to reach a common goal that is in the best interests of children, the non-custodial parent, and the spouse that might need the support in order to continue living in the condition they were in when they were married. While this can be a very confusing time and there might be some disagreements, when you have a great lawyer on your side you’re going to find that you’re happier with the arrangement. Don’t leave anything off the table and let both parties fully vent to one another and let everyone involved know how things are going to be from then on.

Separation is temporary. It may end in reconciliation or it may end in a divorce. Either way, the children involved and the non-primary earner will need to have some type of support from the person leaving the marriage that makes the most money. This is in the interest of the entire family. Don’t try to undertake filing these types of document yourself. If you get a lawyer, you’re always going to get a better outcome than if you had gone the entire situation on your own with no legal advice or help.

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