Separation Agreement Lawyers Cambridge

Separation Agreement Cambridge

Should you and your spouse decide to go separate ways, the first step should be to draft the terms of your separation. A separation agreement is a written contract that addresses the most important issues arising after a marriage breakdown. This legally binding contract is essential for married couples as well as common law partners who have decided to live separately and apart. While getting separated doesn’t mean filing for divorce, it can help ease the burden of divorce proceedings, especially when children are involved.

Is a Separation Agreement Legally Enforceable?

You don’t need to file for separation to be considered legally separated from your partner. There are various factors that the courts will use to determine if a couple was indeed legally separated. For instance, if you were living separate lives even though you still shared the same home, you can still be considered legally separated. What’s important is that one spouse communicates explicitly to the other regarding the decision to live separately. Proving the separation date is important because it may have some financial implications when dividing your assets and debts. That’s why we recommend speaking to a separation agreement lawyer in Cambridge regarding your decision to live separately and apart. Your lawyer will educate you on your rights and options, including the impact that the separation date will have.

What Does a Separation Agreement Entail?

Both married couples and common-law partners can draft a separation agreement to clarify each party’s rights and obligations when they make the decision to live separately and apart. In their separation agreement, every major decision is put in writing. This is a legally binding contract, so every party should understand all the provisions of the agreement before signing. Anything that you agree with your spouse must be in writing and signed by you together with witnesses. If you have any information that is verbally agreed upon, this will not be enforceable. In addition, the law requires that no party signs the agreement under duress or pressure and that any financial information exchanged is accurate and complete, failure to which the agreement may be set aside. With the help of a separation agreements lawyer in Cambridge, you can ensure the agreement is properly drafted and so you understand exactly what you’re signing.

The Main Contents of a Separation Agreement

Since every relationship is different, the details included in a separation agreement will vary from one couple to another. However, there are certain provisions which should be covered in this document.

  • Parent decision making
  • Parenting time
  • Child support amount and duration
  • Spousal support amount and duration
  • Waivers, e.g. if spousal support is waived
  • Property division should cover what happens to assets like pensions, investments as well as debts
  • Decisions regarding the family home, e.g. if it is to be sold, when this will happen and how to divide the proceeds from the sale

Do You Need a Separation Agreement?

Without a separation agreement, you risk giving up rights to property and even spousal support in some situations.  You will not have finality or a resolution of your separation.  Your spouse can come back and make a claim against you for property or support which will cost a considerable amount of time and money for you to defend. The separation agreement also acts as a guide on how to address issues like parenting time and child custody after divorce. Having a separation agreement helps to protect your rights and to educate you about your obligations after separation.