3 Types Of Separation: Best Things To Note Now

What does separation in marriage mean? Why would people want to separate after many years of marriage? And what are the different types of separation?

Get ready, I’ll answers to all your questions a minute from now. Before I tell you the types of separation, it is necessary you understand the difference between divorce vs separation. There is a big difference between the two.

For example, separation means that couples are still legally married even though they are living separately. And couples can get back together after separation. However, divorced couples have legally dissolved their marriage, and only a miracle can bring them back together again.

Many couples prefer to be separated rather than legally divorced because they still have so much more to gain from the marriage when they are just separated than when they are divorced.

In this post, I will show youyou will also learn why couples choose separation over divorce.

Let’s dive in.

Three Types of Separation to Note Now.

There are 3 different types of separation. As we go further in this post, you will see all the effects of separation on couples and how only legal separation affects your legal status. Let’s dive in.

3 Types of Separation: Number 1 Trial Separation:

There are times you will need to take a break in your relationship so you can think and make a proper plan to make things work again.

Choosing trial separation presents an opportunity for you as a couple to decide whether to continue to divorce or find a way to settle your scores and get back together again.

Legally, you are still married in a trial separation, all the couple’s rules still apply, and the marital property laws are still intact. Also, if there is any accrued debt or financial gain during this period of separation, we are likely to share it with you.

However, this depends largely on your state’s rules concerning property ownership.

It is true that in some states no other legal action is required, but it is still necessary to follow some rules of separation (informal agreements), especially when you share children with your spouse.

Below are a few things that will be contained in your separation agreement.

  • How do you share your expenses?
  • Are you retaining credit cards or joint accounts?
  • Who parks out, and who stays in the family apartment or house?
  • If kids are involved, decide how to take care of them.

You can also take a look at this separation agreement template to craft your own.

Benefits Of A Trial Separation:

There are so many benefits to choosing trial separation over divorce, and one of them is that it allows you to decide if divorce is the next and best option for you.

It is, however, a good option for you if you and your partner are not willing to legally be divorced.

By being separated for some time, you and your partner will be able to taste what divorce looks like and then decide if you will carry on with the divorce or reconcile.

The experiences you’ll have when separated are almost the same as those you’ll have if you choose divorce, so when you are separated for a while, you will be clear on what to do next.

Secondly, the experiences can make you either cool down and reconcile with your spouse or move on with your divorce process. But many couples got back together and became better spouses after this experience.

3 Types of Separation: Number 2: Permanent Separation:-

Permanent separation is one type of separation where the couples involved are separated without any plan of coming back together again, but they haven’t divorced either.

Note that these couples remain legally married for whatever years they remain separated until they are divorced.

Permanent separation sometimes acts as an interim for couples to adjust to the coming situation. And depending on your state law, permanent separation can alter the property rights of you and your partner.

The truth is that when you are permanently separated, each of you will be individually responsible for any other debt that arises. And you will no longer have the right to partake in sharing any income or assets that come during the separation.

3 Types of Separation: Number 3: Legal Separation:-

Legal separation is a type of separation where the couple gets a court order to separate from each other and live their lives separately.

Note that legal separation is not a divorce but a big alternative to divorce, especially when the couples are not so sure of their marriage but are eager to be sure that their assets, children, and properties are properly shared.

When you are legally separated, either of you has the right to remarry. In some states, legal separation starts when you or your partner file a petition in a family court.

Follow these steps if you want to file a petition for a legal separation.

  • Know the residency requirements for your state.
  • Your second step should be to go ahead and file the separation paper.
  • Next, is to serve you better half the separation paper issued to you by the court.
  • Wait for your partner’s response. Your spouse will be given some time to respond to your petition.
  • Settlement of issues.”
  • Next is the time for negotiations.
  • The final judgment by the judge.

The judge who authorized the petition will also stipulate how the alimony, child custody, and other assets should be shared.


Why Couples Choose Legal Separation instead Of Divorce:

People have different reasons for choosing legal separation, but the commonest reason is because of their beliefs. To them, God does not want a divorce. So people prefer legal separation because it does not go against people’s beliefs.

Another reason couples choose legal separation out of the other two types of separation when they don’t want a divorce is because of their children.

They believe that it is important to keep the family legally together so the children won’t suffer in the future.

Another reason is that legal separation is an easier and simpler version of divorce that doesn’t remove any rights from the couple or violate any religious beliefs.

Finally, people choose this type of separation because there is a need to enjoy some health insurance benefits that you wouldn’t get when you are divorced.

However, if you are choosing legal divorce, please contact your insurance company to know if it is included in their plan. It may shock you that your insurance sees legal separation as divorce.

Legal Separation vs Divorce:

Nobody wants to marry and divorce, but if you have seen your marriage irreparable and you are considering legal separation vs divorce

There are many differences between the two, and in this section, we will look at those differences now. If you are considering the best of these types of separation, you will know after reading this section.

  • Marital Status Remains the Same: Separation keeps your marital status intact, which means you are not free to marry again. Divorce makes you free and ready to be remarried.
  • Opportunity to Reconcile: When you are divorced, there is no room for reconciliation unless you remarry. But you have ample opportunity to reconcile when you are separated.
  • Rights To Properties And Assets: When you are divorced, your right to all the assets and properties that you had together will stop. Separation doesn’t affect that.
  • Decision Making: Separated couples can make decisions about medical, financial, and other important issues. Divorce cuts you out of the family immediately, and your decisions become useless to the marriage.
  • Entitled to Benefits: Separation allows you to enjoy some benefits like health, insurance, and other social security benefits. Once you are divorced, that ceases to be.

Benefits Of Separation:

No matter which type of separation you choose out of the three types I mentioned here, they are better than divorce; however, there are so many other benefits of separation you should note.

Here it is:

It allows you and your partner to work on your marriage. The separation will ease the tension and itches of marriage that would have caused big damage, and as you stay apart, everyone will realize the mistakes and make amends.

Marriage can be extended to a 10-year mark in legal separation; this helps the low-income spouse enjoy the other spouse’s social security.

The stages of separation in marriage can vary for each couple, but here’s a general outline:

1. Denial or Discontent:

One or both partners may start to feel dissatisfied or unhappy in the marriage but may initially deny or suppress these feelings.

2. Communication Breakdown:

As discontent grows, communication between partners may start to break down. They may avoid discussing important issues or have increasingly frequent arguments.

3. Emotional Detachment:

Partners may emotionally detach from each other, feeling disconnected or indifferent towards each other’s needs and feelings.

4. Contemplation of Separation:

During this stage, one or both partners may seriously consider the possibility of separation or divorce. They may weigh the pros and cons of staying together versus ending the marriage.

5. Decision to Separate:

At this point, a decision is made to formally separate or divorce. This decision can be mutual or initiated by one partner.

6.Transition Period:

The period immediately following the decision to separate involves practical matters such as living arrangements, dividing assets, and informing family and friends.

7. Adjustment and Moving Forward:

This stage involves adapting to life post-separation. It may include emotional healing, adjusting to single life, co-parenting arrangements (if applicable), and potentially starting new relationships.


You have seen the three types of separation, their benefits, and their demerits. I also described why couples choose separation over divorce.

That is because once you are divorced, you will stop enjoying the benefits of the marriage, the opportunity for reconciliation becomes zero, and your marital status changes too.

There is so much you can get from reading this post, so take your time to read and digest it.

See you at the top.

I am still the in-house counselor, Murphyaik.

Aik: AIK UCHEGBU is a writer and an authority in anything that matters about marriage and how to build it successfully. His followers have been greatly enhanced by his findings. You will not be disappointed by coming to this site.