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The Trouble With Lengthy Separations

Posted by J. Benjamin Stevens | Oct 07, 2013 | 0 Comments

Many people who notice serious trouble in their marriage are inclined to try a separation instead of moving towards a complete divorce. While may be understandable as a bridge towards eventual change in the relationship, lengthy separations can become problematic if they linger on without end.

A recent article in Forbes discussed some of the issues that can arise during long-term separations that can cause trouble, financially and otherwise, for both parties. One of the first issues that the Forbes author discusses is how during long-term separations neither party has control over how the other manages the marital assets. This means you have no way to police or control what your partner spends or saves and this can mean that you might end up on the hook if your spouse decides to rack up serious debt.

Another problem with long-term separations are that they provide your spouse a perfect opportunity to hide assets. If your spouse has a devious mind and the relationship remains hostile, he or she could be using this long time apart to squirrel away money that you then lose track of in an eventual divorce. A long separation can make it difficult if not impossible to monitor the financial lifestyle of your partner and thus makes it easy to miss important signs that assets are being hidden.

Another problem that many people may not think of in long-term separations is that you may be forced to deal with a reduced standard of living that could end up making it harder to get alimony based on your marital lifestyle. The trouble is that if you spend years accepting a reduced standard of living, it can be harder to argue that you are entitled to the same standard of living you enjoyed during your marriage.

A final problem associated with a lengthy separation is that both parties are prevented from moving on with their lives. A South Carolina divorce can hard and is emotionally draining for almost everyone. However, despite its difficulty, it at least does have a silver lining and that is you are out of your miserable relationship. As much as a divorce represents a painful ending, it also represents a powerful new beginning and a chance for both you and your former spouse to start newer and happier lives.

Source: “Putting Off Divorce? Ten Ways Long-term Separations Can Do Women More Harm Than Good,” by Jeff Landers, published at

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J. Benjamin Stevens

Senior Partner


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