Can a separated couple cohabit before divorce?

March 2020

Legal Moment on FRESH RADIO

Transcript

[phone ringing]
Receptionist: Cohen Highley
Announcer: And now the Cohen Highley Legal Moment on Fresh Radio.
Announcer: I’m here with Ken Fraser from the Family Law Department of Cohen Highley Lawyers.  Can a couple live in the same house and be considered separated if they are getting divorced?
Ken Fraser: In most cases a couple must be separated for a year before a divorce can be granted.  While many couples live separately during this time, some people may choose to live ‘separate and apart’ in the same home for financial reasons or for the children.  The courts will still consider them as separated when addressing the divorce claim provided that certain criteria are met.
Announcer: Such as?
Ken Fraser: The court must look at the circumstances objectively to determine if the parties are living apart or not.  These circumstances can include the parties conduct towards each other, the parties intentions and how they refer to each other and interact in public.
Announcer: Anything else?
Ken Fraser: It’s best to address these issues sooner rather than later so that there is no confusion as to when the separation actually occurred.
Announcer: Thanks Ken. This has been the Cohen Highley Legal Moment.
[Music]
Singers: Cohen Highley, we’re listening.  cohenhighley.com

Author

Ken practises family law and estate litigation. He attended Laurentian University where he obtained his Bachelor of Arts (Hon.), with distinction, in 2006. Ken attended the University of Western Ontario and obtained his Bachelor of Laws in 2009. While in law school, he was on the Dean’s Honour List. More →