Date of separation has legal consequences. There are instances where you and your spouse may have made the decision to live under the same roof for financial or family reasons. In these situations, proving you are actually separated can be a challenge. Here are some do’s and don’ts to help prove that you are living together but are truly separate:
- Make sure you both are clear and maintain the intent of the separation indefinitely and permanently.
- Do not use the same bedroom if practical.
- Do not engage in romantic or sexual intimacy with your spouse.
- Do not wear your wedding rings.
- Do not shop for your spouse. If practical, do not prepare meals for your spouse and eat together, except for holidays and children’s events or birthdays.
- Do not let your spouse shop for you. Make your own purchases.
- Do your own laundry.
- Privatize your computer, do not let your spouse have access to your passwords or information.
- Privatize your phone for business and personal calls and messages.
- Use and maintain individual checking and credit accounts.
- Do not socialize together, do not attend parties, dates, movies, church, and other social gatherings together.
- Interact as parents only when needed with clear boundaries and for the sake of the well-being of children alone. If you need to attend school meetings and games, do not sit together.
- Do not give gifts to each other at any event, especially during birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, Valentine’s Day, etc.
- Inform your family, friends, acquaintances, and other close associates of your arrangement living under the same roof separately and not as spouses.
- Invite an observer or third party over from time to time to witness the spouse’s distinct and separate living quarters.
- Explain why you are living separately under the same roof, that is, because of economic reasons, inaccessibility or unavailability of separate residences, and/or managing the children’s transition to a new family status or parental separation.
If you have any questions about legal separation or are considering divorce, get the conversation started today. The team at Petrelli Previtera specialize in family law and are here to help you take the first step towards your new life. Give us a call today at 215-977-4396.