In Florida there is no cause of action for a legal separation; however, there is an alternative in a Separate Maintenance Agreement. A Separate Maintenance Agreement allows for temporary alimony, child support and the development of a Parenting Plan to ensure timesharing for both parents with the children. Additionally, you can seek an award for attorney’s fees.
There are benefits to a Separate Maintenance Agreement over a Divorce. A Separate Maintenance Agreement may give you and your spouse time for reconciliation, provide for support because of the absence of the other spouse or to uphold religious prohibitions against Divorce. You do not need to be a resident of Florida to obtain a Separate Maintenance Agreement from the Court. All other family issues such as the distribution of property, health insurance and life insurance remains unchanged because you and your spouse remain legally married.
A Separate Maintenance Agreement may often assist parties of a long term marriage where the marriage has failed but because of health insurance concerns or pension concerns they cannot Divorce.
For more information regarding separation or divorce in Jacksonville, please call our office to schedule a free no-hassle consultation at (904) 359-9060.