Legal Separation Agreement
Home » Legal Separation Agreement
Legal separation agreement is also known as marital separation agreement, separation agreement, property settlement agreement or marital settlement agreement or settlement agreement. Some states recognize documentation for legal separation and some don't. The couple reaches a settlement regarding the marital issues such as property division, responsibilities, duties, assets and liabilities along with debts, child custody, child support and alimony as well as the visitation schedule for the payment of the support amounts. All the arrangements are documented and notarized. The couple signs this document and it is legally binding for them to abide by the arrangements they have set for all the marital issues.
A separation agreement protects both the husband and wife for the period from separation until the couple divorces or reunites. It also influences the divorce settlement agreement at the time of granting of the divorce. Thus, it is very important to chalk out an agreement where both the spouses are benefited. Do not sign the agreement if there is a conflict regarding any issue. In case of conflict, the matter is taken to the court and the judge decides taking into consideration other factors affecting the particular issue.
Hiring an attorney each is necessary so that you can prepare a settlement agreement which is beneficial to both the partners. Besides, you also have to be careful that you don't violate the state laws in any provision when you sign the agreement.
Getting a legal separation agreement in writing, it helps in avoiding conflicts and disagreements when you proceed to divorce eventually. It also helps avoid taking the trivial issues to court for settlement. Many state courts encourage the spouses to reach a settlement through mutual discussions with the help of a professional attorney or a court mediator.
Make sure that the legal separation agreement is thoroughly drafted and is fair to both the parties. None of you should end up getting less or paying more. The agreement processed by a professional attorney, signed by both the parties and notarized by an authorized notary is legally enforceable in any state. This contract divides the assets and debts, determines the custody and visitation and decides the support arrangements.
The legal separation agreement is different in every state. Everything right from the forms you have to fill to the residency requirement is different. In some states, legal separation is a prerequisite for the divorce to be granted. However, the settlement agreement does not have to be filed with the court in every state. When it is signed by both the parties and notarized, it becomes automatically legal and enforceable.
The couple has to decide about retaining of benefits such as health insurance, other insurance coverages and financial settlements. The decision about the family home, mortgage payments, home utility bills and maintenance, real estate decisions and divisions, joint bank accounts also has to be taken.
In case of property division, you need to consider whether the state is equitable distribution or community property state. You need to determine the property division accordingly. In an equitable distribution state, the state divides the property equitable between both the spouses regardless of who has acquired the property. Only the individual property is not divided and remains with its owner. In case where the state is a community property state, the property division is 50 – 50.
A separation agreement covers the following topics:
Divorce PapersHow To File For Divorce
No Fault Divorce
Children And Divorce
Do It Yourself Divorce
Marriage And Divorce
Divorce Legal Advice
Divorce In America
Divorce Child Support