If I want to separate from my husband, what are my rights?

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If I want to separate from my husband, what are my rights?

Asked on January 12, 2013 under Family Law, Virginia

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Until you are finally divorced, you continue to have the same "rights" as you did when you were married.  If you had access to the checking account, you can still write checks.  If you were on the credit card, you can still make purchases using your card.  With regard to children, until there is a court order in place which sets out a custody arrangement, both parents will have equal rights to the children.

Technically, parties remain married until they are divorced.  If there is a concern about one side increasing the marital debt or disposing of marital property, then one spouse can file for divorce and ask for temporary orders which address any concerns regarding property or children.  Virginia does have provisions for marital support.  However, to get marital support during a period of separation, the wife would need to file for temporary orders asking for the support during the period of separation.  The court can also extend marital support after the divorce is finalized if the wife otherwise qualifies for the support.


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