Free Montana Marital Separation Agreement

What Does Legal Separation Mean in Montana?

What happens when you can no longer stand one another or stay in one house, but you don’t want a divorce? At first, it may seem peculiar, but when you understand where the two individuals are coming from, then, it makes total sense. Does this happen in Montana, and does the law allow it?

Well, yes. In Montana, many couples want to stay married although they don’t want a full divorce/ dissolution of marriage. For these couples, the solution available is a legal separation.

Legal separation is almost similar to dissolution save for the fact that the couple remains married after they sign the Montana Marital Separation Agreement.

Legal separations in Montana

Section 40-4-104(2) of the family laws govern legal separations in Montana. For the separation to be official the requirements of Section 40-4-104(2) allow the District Court to enter a decree of legal separation, instead of a decree of marriage dissolution, if both parties request for it and if neither party objects the decree.

Requirements for legal separation in Montana

  • The requirements for getting a legal separation are similar to those of getting a divorce. Legal separation is available if:

    • The court finds that at the time the action commenced, one of the parties was domiciled in the state. This is according to what the court provides in 25-2-118. Also, if one of the parties was stationed in the state as a member of the armed services. The domicile and the military presence must have been maintained for ninety (90) days preceding the filing of the legal separation.

    • The court determines that the conciliatory provisions of the Montana Conciliation Law and 40-4-107 have been met, or they don’t apply.

    • If within the court’s jurisdiction the court has considered, approved, or even made provisions for parenting, child support, alimony, and disposition of marital property.

    • The court determines that the marriage is irretrievably broken. For this, there should be evidence. The evidence sought include:

      • The parties have been living separately and apart from each other for more than 180 days preceding the commencement of the proceedings

      • There exists a serious marital discord which adversely affects the attitude of one or both parties towards the marriage.

The aftermath

What happens after the legal separation? After the parties live separately and apart for six months, and one party wants a divorce, the concerned party may ask the court to convert the legal separation into a divorce. The conversion of a legal separation into a divorce is automatic upon its request.

  • Reasons for getting legal separation

    • Legal separation helps when you are unsure of the legal divorce process

    • Religious reasons may prompt parties to go for legal separation especially when both parties don’t want to remarry and if they don’t want the stigma associated with divorce.

    • Children make parents consider legal separation when the children are minors, and both parties don’t want to stress their children.

It is important to note that legal separation means that you are still married in the eyes of the law. You cannot remarry after separation. If you want to remarry, then you have to get a divorce.

Unfortunately, most marriage issues will not be resolved within six months and the couple has to divorce eventually. If you are convinced that your marriage is better off with a legal separation, fill the Montana marital separation agreement form here.

Whether you live in Billings, Missoula, Great Falls, Bozeman or any other city of Montana, you can use our legal forms easily.