How the Separation Date Could Matter in Your Divorce
While you are likely most concerned about when your divorce decree becomes official, the date you and your spouse separated could also be a major factor in the dissolution of your marriage.
In general, the date of separation is the date when spouses stopped living together as a married couple. The most common scenario is when one spouse moves away from the family home with the intention of ending the marriage.
However, there are some situations in which a spouse might not immediately leave the home, even if he or she intend to seek divorce. In these cases, courts look at other factors to determine the separation date, such as the date on which a spouse hired a divorce attorney, the date on which a spouse moved into a separate room or the date on which one spouse communicated his or her intent to file for divorce.
An important decision
The date of separation becomes important in several parts of the divorce process. For example, any income spouses earn after their date of separation may be considered separate property, which means it would not be subject to the property division process. The word “earn” is important here, as income paid after the date of separation is not necessarily exempt from property division if that money was paid out for a pay period that took place at least in part before the separation. The same is true for any assets purchased or debts incurred after the date of separation.
The separation date could also affect child support and alimony. It would mark the date at which a spouse officially becomes responsible for paying this support.
For more information on how your separation date could impact your Maryland divorce case, contact a trusted La Plata family law attorney with Mudd, Mudd & Fitzgerald, P.A.