What is a Divorce “from Bed and board?”

There really is no formal proceeding to have a legal separation in New Jersey. There is an outdated legal proceeding called a “divorce from bed and board” that is similar to a legal separation. Basically, a divorce from bed and board is a legal proceeding that is not really a divorce, but it is more than a legal separation. A divorce from bed and board was very popular in the 50’s and 60’s. Many people believed that getting a divorce was a mortal sin. These kinds of beliefs were especially prevalent for people of the Catholic faith.

To address these concerns the courts developed a legal proceeding called a “divorce from bed and board.” In this type of proceeding, the parties are economically divorced but are still legally married. The parties receive a judgment that equitably distributes the assets, support awards are issued, and debts are apportioned. In these types of cases alimony is usually not awarded.

These proceedings are helpful in limited legal circumstances, such as if one spouse has a health condition and cannot get affordable health insurance. However, the parties are still legally married to one another, and that can cause all sorts of problems, especially if the parties are not civil to one another, and/or if they intend to remarry at some point in the future.

Comments are closed.