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Is legal separation an option in Kentucky?

On Behalf of | Feb 23, 2023 | Divorce

Sometimes marriages hit roadblocks along the way and some situations may leave spouses feeling uncertain about the relationship. When this happens, couples may need some time off to reassess their values and priorities. With this in mind, spouses might consider legal separation to see if the marriage can still work or if it has reached the end of the road.

Kentucky allows legal separation

While not all states allow legal separation, this option is available in Kentucky. Spouses may petition for legal separation in the county family court where either spouse has lived for at least 180 days. The petition should include the reason for the separation and show that it is no longer viable for the two to live together. However, even if legally separated, spouses cannot marry other people unless they obtain a divorce.

Furthermore, if assets and children are involved, the court will oversee the division of marital assets and decide on child custody and support. It is good to note that the court determines child custody the same way as in divorce cases.

What happens afterward?

Once the court grants the legal separation, it is up to the spouses to decide how long it will last. Depending on the circumstances of each case, it may take only a few months for some while others ultimately decide on filing for a divorce.

If the spouses decide to reconcile and resume their marital relationship, they can inform the court and ask to lift the separation.

On the other hand, if they decide to end their spousal relationship, they can petition the court to convert the legal separation into a divorce after a year. Moreover, they have to show that they lived separately for at least 60 days to demonstrate that the marriage is unrecoverable.

Whether the marriage ends in reconciliation or divorce, having legal separation as an option may help spouses find the right solution.