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Checklist for Living Separate Under The Same Roof

  • Establishment and maintenance of intent to separate permanently or indefinitely.
  • Separate bedrooms.
  • No romantic or sexual intimacy.
  • Stop wearing wedding rings.
  • Each spouse shops for own food, prepares own meals; neither shops for the other as to any categories of items ( clothing, other necessities, etc.).
  • Do not use the other spouse’s food or other purchases.
  • Do not eat meals together ( exception: holidays or children’s birthdays).
  • Each spouse is responsible for caring for his or her own space within the home, such as bedroom.
  • Each does own laundry.
  • Establish separate checking accounts.
  • Cease socializing (e.g., do not attend parties, movies, theater, etc., together).
  • Do not attend church together.
  • Where there are minor children, interact as parents only where strictly necessary from the children’s perspective and their well-being; e.g., it would be acceptable for the parents to go together to a meeting with a school official relative to problems confronting a particular child, but less appropriate for the parents to ride together and sit together at a child’s school play or soccer game.
  • Cease gift-giving between spouses for such occasions as birthdays, Christmas, anniversary, Valentine’s Day, etc.
  • Make known to close associates, relatives, etc., that the parties are separated within the residence, though continuing to reside under the same roof.
  • Have a third party come to the home from time to time to personally observe the two spouses’ separate and distinct living quarters ( bedrooms, bathrooms, etc.).
  • Utilize sparate entrances to residence if feasible.
  • Be prepared to explain reason(s) for effecting separation under same roof (e.g., financial considerations; unavailability of successor residence; to ease children’s transition to parental separation; etc.)

Download a copy of the checklist here.

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