If you are in the process of getting a divorce, you will need to prove that you and your spouse have been separated for a certain period of time. However, what if you are still living under the same roof? How do you prove that you have been separated during this time? It may seem like a difficult task, but it is possible to prove separation even in these circumstances. What do you need to know?

Separation vs Living Together

First, it's important to understand the difference between separation and living together under one roof. Being separated means that there has been an intentional break in your marital relationship with no intention of resuming it. This typically includes sleeping separately and having different lives — meaning you have separate hobbies, interests, friends, etc. Even though you may still be living in the same house, if there is an intention to live separately, this may be considered legal separation.

Collecting Evidence of Separation

It's important to note that while being legally separated means there must be an intention to permanently end the marriage, merely being physically apart from your spouse is not enough to prove legal separation. For your separation to be valid by law, you need evidence proving that both parties agreed to separate and were acting as two individuals who were not married but living in the same house. This can include keeping separate bank accounts or filing separate tax returns, for example. You should also keep track of any communication between yourself and your spouse, such as emails or text messages where either party expresses intent to end their marriage or acknowledges a permanent break in the marital relationship.

You can also bring in witnesses who can attest that you are both pursuing separate lives while still living in the same property. For example, you have different bedrooms or eat meals separately. You pursue different activities outside of the home, such as going out with friends without each other. Witnesses should be able to provide written statements about what they have seen so this can act as proof when needed later on during court proceedings. The more evidence you collect, the stronger your case can be when you present before a court.

Want If You Are in Business Together?

You may wonder what happens if you are involved in operating any kind of business together. After your separation, this type of activity may require you to spend a lot of time in each other's presence, which could add complexity in certain circumstances. Here, it's important to get good legal advice.

Contact a family law firm to learn more.