Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and television correspondent Maria Shriver may have always seemed like an odd couple. He is a Republican and former bodybuilder, while she's a journalist and member of the Kennedy family. Yet many people would say that separating after 25 years of marriage was at the very least, unexpected.
The celebrity couple announced their plans to separate, reports The Los Angeles Times, earlier this week. In a joint statement, they wrote to the Times stating that, "After a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer, we came to this decision together. At this time, we are living apart while we work on the future of our relationship."
The Boston Herald reported that Shriver had thought about leaving her husband for quite some time. Apparently, she was thinking of splitting from Schwarzenegger in 2009, but that she put the separation off when her mother Eunice Kennedy Shriver passed away. Earlier this year, she had also reportedly contemplated separation, but postponed the split for a bit longer when her father Sargent Shriver died after a long battle of Alzheimer’s disease.
Perhaps more than anything else, the split between Schwarzenegger and Shriver will shed light on legal separation proceedings throughout the country. The state of Texas does not currently have any specific provisions regarding legal separation, but individuals can ask a judge for a court order that deals with property division even before a divorce is finalized in the state. After a divorce petition is filed, courts can also order temporary child custody and visitation.
To learn more about legal separation, divorce, or to talk to a family law attorney, take a look at the Related Resources links below.