Sometimes due to financial reasons, you have to live with your ex-spouse while your divorce is proceeding. You’re wondering if this is a good option for you, and in truth the answer simply varies from couple to couple. Much of the time, courts do not look at in-home separations kindly, but in some cases this has been allowed.

In the state of California, your divorce cannot proceed for less than 6 months, meaning that you will need to be separated for that long before the divorce can be finalized. Sometimes the process can take longer, but it will never take less than six months. Normally, this means having separate addresses and residences. However, in some special cases, the court may accept an in-home separation as long as some basic guidelines are followed.

Basically, you need to prove to the court that even though you are living in the same household, you’re living your lives as two different people and not as a unit. This means that you will need to:

1. Cease sexual relations
2. Get separate bank accounts at different banks
3. No longer share meals and/or food costs
4. Sleep in different bedrooms

There are other stipulations as well, such as presenting yourselves to friends and strangers as a separated couple and not a married one. You will need to be very upfront about your marriage status with anyone that crosses your path. Most importantly, be upfront and honest with your lawyer. They are on your side, and can help you figure out all of the stipulations you must consider if you are trying an in-home separation.