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Legal Separation

Please note that the legal information presented on this page is written for those living in the state of Illinois.

What Does it Mean?

Legal separation is the process through which a couple becomes separated without ending their marriage or civil union.

How Does it Work?

While a couple is legally separated, each person has the right to ask for:

Either spouse or partner can start a divorce or dissolve a civil union case while legally separated.

Things You Should Know

  • In order to get a divorce or dissolve a civil union, you and your spouse or partner must have lived separately for at least six (6) months
  • Temporary fees, evictions, or restraining orders can potentially be changed (modified) after they're ordered
  • Once ordered, a property settlement CANNOT be modified
  • If you have retirement savings, you will need to get a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) before you can separate

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