Sometimes you feel inclined to stop a separation, and at other times, you begin to regret getting separated in the first place. These feelings are often normal, especially if you’ve spent some time away from your significant other and the rose colored glasses have come out in full force. However, sometimes your intentions are good, but the reasons for getting back together are not in the best interests of one or both parties. Here are a couple of things to consider before even attempting to get back together.

Why Do You Want to Reunite?

For the purpose of this article, we’re going to assume that you are separated and not actually divorced as of yet. For separation, the rules are different. In many cases, no paperwork is needed to start a separation, and a couple simply begins to live apart. This is the beginning of being recognized as separated by the court.

However, separation in California does not require paperwork up front because often, this breathing room gives couples the time they need to reevaluate how they feel about one another. Sometimes this means reconciliation before any legal proceedings begin to happen, and sometimes it cements the feeling that divorce is the next step.

While coming back together from a separation that has not had any paperwork attached to it doesn’t have any repercussions in court, it can have repercussions in the lives of the people coming back together. Often, a therapist or some type of couples’ counseling is helpful. If you have already started paperwork, however, this is a good time to talk to a good family law attorney in Bakersfield to make sure you void your separation correctly.

The Six Month Rule

In the state of California, as in many states, a couple that has chosen to be separated must live apart for six months. Occasionally, a year is required. The clock begins once the couple lives in separate places, and the separation is voided if the couple begins to live together again. This means that the clock will reset, and if you choose to become separated again later on, whatever time you spent apart (even if it was five months) is completely void. You must start from scratch.

Always Consult a Lawyer

While you’re an adult and have every right to make your own decisions, sometimes getting someone on your side that knows the facts can help you decide what to do. In the case of reuniting, they can help you with paperwork; in the case that you decide to remain separated, a lawyer can help you figure out what you’d like to ask for and how to get it in court.

Separation should not be taken lightly, and it’s very important to consider the consequences of your actions carefully before taking them. This is for your ex, your kids, and most importantly, yourself. Take care to consult a lawyer if you have any questions.