One advantage is that the residency requirement is shorter for a legal separation and allows a spouse to start a legal separation more quickly than a divorce. For a legal separation, you must be a residence of the county for at least 30 days. But to file a divorce, you must be a resident of the county for 30 days and a resident of the State for at least 6 months.
Additionally, some health insurance plans, by their contractual language, only terminate coverage for “divorced” spouses, but not for “legally separated” spouses. Therefore, the non-employee spouse may continue health care coverage on his/her legally separated employed spouse’s insurance. In order to save money on obtaining new health care coverage, a non-employee spouse may pursue a legal separation instead of a divorce.