Why doesn't the marriage tribunal encourage investigation of validity with a legal Separation?

Why doesn’t the marriage tribunal encourage investigation of validity with a legal Separation?

Please offer sound responses.

In my life and circle of acquaintances, I’ve known one couple who filed for legal separation. They held significant financial assets. It is my POV that the average person does not even consider legal separation.

A quick, informative article

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Because they want to ensure the relationship has irrevocably broken before starting the process.


Thanks. I agree 100%

That’s why I ask… why doesnt the Church make a step in the right direction for combating so many divorces? This would be one step towards upholding justice, in my opinion.

Instead, it encourages divorce, however.

It also leads to grossly applying impediments to any case.

We should encourage healing the relationship.

When a Catholic understands that an annulment is a high probability (and realistically a sure thing), and divorce is a means to achieve that, then efforts towards healing the relationship are less appealing to finding another lover.

What about people that who have reason to believe that they are in an invalid marriage but can live peaceably with their spouse if the Church rules their marriage is legitimate. Why can’t the process go annulment first and then legal separation if required?

Marriage mirrors our relationship with Jesus.

Our relationship with Jesus can never be irrevocably broken.

The tribunal is “ensuring” divorce and then placing themselves in a spot to try their best to find an impediment. When a lawyer wants to apply an impediment, there isnt much preventing that from happening.

In my opinion, to require a couple to go through the expense of legal separation before the Tribunal reviews validity places an unnecessary financial burden on people.

I wonder, how many people even know legal separation is a “thing”? Divorce is as common as shoestrings.

Perhaps because people would see that as a loophole. Have a legal separation and check validity. Valid marriage, they end up not going for the divorce.

Many times on CAF we have seen one spouse inquiring about annulments asking if they can contact the Tribunal to see if their marriage is valid. They are testing the water to see if they have a case, and if not, will remain married. I don’t think that is what the Church intends the Tribunal to be doing.


You just described a sincere couple and pitted the Church against sincerity.

I don’t know what you are trying to say there. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:


The couple you described would be sincere. And you said the Church doesnt want that.

I did not say that. I said the Church does not intend for the Tribunal to be used to see if people have a case to get divorced so they can then get married to someone else down th3 road.


The tribunal should be concerned with the truth, and encouraging couples to reconcile differences and forgive one another.

It should use the canon of separation as a guide.

I don’t see why not. That’s closer to how annulments would work in the past. Argue your case in front of a tribunal first and then either separate or reconcile based on the outcome. Why shouldn’t the starting point for legal separation be whether or not there exists a valid marriage to save?

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I guarantee that you would see a drastic reduction in declarations of nulity if that happened.

@Ammi, you asked the same question in a previous thread. I’m curious to know if you’ve ever spoken to a Priest about this question? Because posters offered answers in your other thread but you seemed to disagree with them.


Oh my gosh—I thought this seemed familiar!
1Ke’s answers in that thread covered it. Why are we doing this again??


No, they are ensuring that the civil contract of marriage has ended before they get themselves caught in the middle of that. Also, in some states, including mine, child support is not possible until you get divorce proceedings started.

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I have spoken to several priests. Even a so called defender of the bond. He affirmed my impression of the way they approach investigation and canon application/interpretation.

My pastor agreed with me that that priest was not being sincere.

Other pastors have told me they understand less about the tribunal than myself.

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