There’s a strong possibility you’re in no rush to divorce if you and your spouse have been living apart in Buffalo or elsewhere. In fact, many couples whose relationships have ended choose to go their separate ways and avoid divorce.

However, not getting a divorce when it’s clear you and your current spouse are no longer interested in being together can cause problems. Not only does it give rise to financial complications, it can also have an impact on other aspects of your lives. Here are three reasons why a long separation may not be beneficial and a divorce may be the better decision.

1. It gives your spouse time to hide assets

Your spouse may be taking steps to gain an advantage in a divorce. They may be erasing financial foot trails to keep you from getting your fair share of the marital assets. You will not have ready (like the mail) access to financial information, and you are no longer around to keep tabs on financial activities to know if your spouse is hiding assets.

2. It could result in a lower alimony award

When couples separate and live in different households, the marital standard of living changes. You may have adjusted to living on a lower income than what you were accustomed to during the marriage. By the time you file for divorce, the courts may not only take your former standard of living into consideration when calculating maintenance or spousal support.

3. You could be on the hook for erroneous financial behavior

Until you are divorced, you are legally responsible for all joint debts of the marriage. Living apart does not erase that obligation. If your soon-to-be ex-spouse stops paying those debts, gets sued for them and or messes up on taxes, you may find yourself greatly inconvenienced and on the hook for their mistakes or fiscal irresponsibility.

Divorce may not be something you want to go through. However, if you know your marriage is over and want to move on with your life, it is a necessary process that will make it easier for you to achieve your goals and avoid many unexpected negative consequences. To find out more about whether divorce might be right for you, contact an experienced matrimonial and family law lawyer to help you live happily ever after.