Actors Chris Pratt and Anna Faris have decided to separate, according to a Facebook post on Pratt’s personal page. The couple, who were married in July 2009, have one son, 4-year-old Jack.
CHRIS PRATT AND ANNA FARIS ARE SEPARATING
“Anna and I are sad to announce we are legally separating,” the “Guardians of the Galaxy” actor wrote. “We tried hard for a long time, and we’re really disappointed. Our son has two parents who love him very much and for his sake we want to keep this situation as private as possible moving forward. We still have love for each other, will always cherish our time together and continue to have the deepest respect for one another.”
The couple met on the set of their 2007 film, Take Me Home Tonight. At the time of filming, Faris was still married to her first husband, actor Ben Indra**.** During a 2014 Esquire magazine interview, Pratt said that he did not to pursue Faris because he knew she was married. When Faris and Indra split in 2008, Pratt decided he was going to marry her, he said.
The couple unknowingly grew up 20 minutes apart from each other in Washington state, but as Pratt pointed out in the interview, he regarded Faris to be his “twin soul.”
Over the course of their marriage, Pratt and Faris often spoke openly about their marriage and parenthood. During an interview with Ellen DeGeneres in January 2015, Pratt said that he and Faris have a “remarkable kid.” In 2014, Faris told DeGeneres she was “proud of [herself]” for having “great taste” in choosing Pratt. “He’s a great family man. I am so proud of his success and everything. But he’s more importantly a great person, and he’s got a great heart.”
LEGAL SEPARATION AND DIVORCE
It’s important to understand the difference between legal separation and divorce. During a legal separation, couples live apart but are still technically married. A divorce ends the marriage, meaning that both spouse’s legal statuses are returned to “single.” Legal separation can serve as a cooling off period for spouses and does not always turn to divorce. During legal separation, a couple needs to negotiate how expenses will be divided and who will assume certain financial responsibilities, such as mortgage payments, car payments, debt payments. Additionally, if there are children involved, a couple will need to work out child visitation and custody arrangements. The decisions made during legal separation are typically the decisions that are kept should the marriage be officially dissolved via divorce. There’s a lot of “new territory” when it comes to legal separation and how to act. Whether the legal separation ends in reconciliation or divorce, there are some rules of engagement you should follow. Here are some tips to consider.
LEGAL SEPARATION BEHAVIORS “TO-DO”
- Use this time to reflect on your marriage and how you are feeling regarding the process.
- Consider the emotional needs of any children that are involved.
- Remember legal separation is not the time to jump into a new relationship.
- Keep all communication open with your spouse. Try to be respectful in all forms of communication. This will mean less stress for you and any children involved.
- Set up a parenting plan that outlines regular visitation schedules. This should follow along with your child’s daily activities, such as school and any extracurriculars.
- Follow every responsibility outlined in the legal separation agreement. This includes any child support payments or spousal support payments. Not doing so might mean court time or fines.
CONTAINED IN THE LEGAL SEPARATION AGREEMENT
If you and your spouse have decided to try legal separation instead of, or prior to getting a divorce, it’s important that you work with a divorce attorney to create a legal and binding separation agreement. This agreement will offer you legal protection should your spouse violate the agreement you have come to.
There are numerous things that should be contained in your separation agreement, including the following (if they apply): Spousal Support -Who will be paying whom? How does this impact taxes? Benefits – Legal separation allows you to retain certain benefits gained during a marriage, such as health insurance. Home – Outline who will pay for the home mortgage, as well as the maintenance of the home, such as utilities and lawn care. You should clearly define who is able to live in the home. Joint Accounts – This includes: joint checking, savings, and credit accounts. You might also choose to freeze these accounts or close them and open separate accounts. You should make it clear who pays what account. Protection from Acquired Debt – A legal separation agreement should also outline any debt in order to shield you from being held responsible for debt acquired during the separation.
DECIDING ON DIVORCE
If you do decide to go through with divorce following your legal separation, or if you just want to skip the separation and start the divorce process, a divorce attorney will be able to walk you through the process. This process includes some of the following: spousal support, child custody, and property division. Below we discuss these three aspects, and why working with a divorce attorney can help you arrive at a smoother outcome.
Spousal support, commonly known as alimony, is for people who were legally married and provides financial assistance to them. It recognizes the contributions a partner made to the marriage and is intenced to help the partner obtain financial independence. The rules regarding spousal support differs from one state to another.
HOW MUCH IS SPOUSAL SUPPORT?
When a court hears a case for spousal support, it considers a number of issues including how long the marriage lasted, what the needs are of each spouse, the standard of living the marriage created and maintained, assets, spousal age, and many other factors that are specific to different states. Based on these various circumstances and issues, your divorce attorney can help create a case for spousal support for you.
HOW LONG IS SPOUSAL SUPPORT?
The court sets the length of time spousal support payments are made based on the review of arguments made. Payments typically last about the length of the marriage if it’s less than 10 years. In other words, if the marriage lasted six years, the length of spousal supports payments to be paid is three years. For longer marriages, the court may not set a specific time for spousal support payments. In a case such as this, your divorce attorney must proved your side for the duration. Your attorney can help you establish your case for the amount of time you’re seeking for spousal support, whether you are receiving or paying the payments. Using common law, the court will listen to all arguments and then decide on the spousal support duration.
IS SPOUSAL SUPPORT PERMANENT OR LIFETIME?
If “Lifetime” or “Permanent” spousal support has been ordered by the court, it means the support must be paid to the receiving spouse until the paying spouse dies. Sometimes it is ordered to be paid until the receiving spouse remarries, however this isn’t always the case. Sometimes the court will rule that even if the receiving spouse remarries they must still be paid spousal support. Since women are becoming a stronger element in the workforce, “permanent” or “lifetime” spousal support is being awarded less often, if at all. An appellate court has stated:
As recognized by our Supreme Court, the public policy of this state has progressed from one which entitled some women to lifelong alimony as a condition of the marital contract of support, to one that entitles eithis spouse to post-dissolution support for only so long as is necessary to become self-supporting.
When determinig spousal support, the court usually requires the highis earner, whether they are the husband or the wife, to assist the lower earner in an effort to help maintain their standard of living for a specified period of time.
Family law courts favor awarding joint child custody to both parents, due to the fact that typically, it’s been shown that child’s respond best to both parents being in their lives.
JOINT CHILD CUSTODY
Joint custody is when two parents share decision making responsibilities and / or physical control of the child or children they share. Joint custody is able to be awarded to parents that are divorced, separated, no longer living together, or even if they never lived together.
FORMS OF JOINT CHILD CUSTODY
There are different forms of joint custody that can be awarded, including:
- joint legal custody. This means both parents are able to make decisions regarding the child, including religion, education, medical, and any legal matters.
- joint physical custody. This means a child spends equal time with each parent.
- joint legal and physical custody.
While it’s a common practice for parents to share physical custody and legal custody, it’s not always the case that parents that share legal custody also share physical custody.
JOINT CHILD CUSTODY – ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES
There are a number of advantages and disadvantages to joint child custody. Children are able to have contact with both parents. Additionally, parents are able to share some of the hardships that come with co-parenting. But children also often have to be shuttled between parents in joint physical custody situations. This can be difficult on a child, especially if parents are noncooperative. Because of some of the disadvantages, it’s important that parents work to create a harmonious co-parenting situation. Maintaining detailed agreements surround holidays, expenses for clothing and medical care, as well as creating a child’s own space in each household is crucial to creating a successful joint custody arrangement.
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