LEGAL SEPARATION WITHOUT GOING TO COURT?
A legal separation agreement is a binding contract between two married persons who want to part ways. It shapes the couple’s concerns about how they should handle their assets, debts, and other matrimonial responsibilities. The legal separation agreement provides the settlement details of vital matters. The matters include spouse support, custody, and support for minor children (if any). The legal separation agreement may adopt as part of divorce proceedings under the law. The legal separation agreement template shall contain the following items:
- Parties and marriage information,
- Information about spouse support,
- Information about child care and custody,
- Property-related matters,
- Division of finance,
Parties and marriage information
The legal separation agreement must be filled by putting up the information of spouses and other relevant persons. A petitioner is a person filing for separation. The information that both parties should consist of are the following:
- Former name (optional)
- Marriage date
- Location of marriage
- Current status
If either party would like to return to using their former name, they can request this in the legal separation document.
Information about spouse support
The legal separation document needs to specify which party will receive it. The legal separation document also depicts how much they will receive and when payments will begin. Legal separation agreement also provides the details for the termination of the spouse support program.
Information about child care and custody
The spouses must be cleared with children if they have any or are expecting. They must include their names and birthdays. Upon separation, the spouses must decide on guardianship arrangements for their kids. They will exercise the following options:
- Sole legal and physical custody
- Shared legal custody and primary physical custody
- Shared legal and physical custody
The spouses should incur the details of the existing court order (if any). The legal separation agreement also contains the following arrangement:
The spouses must decide which party will be responsible for the children’s medical insurance. Spouses also need to determine who will be responsible for expenses not covered in the insurance policy.
The spouses may include terms about child support in the legal separation agreement. However, the spouses must also specify who will pay child support and the monthly amount. In addition, the legal separation document should contain when the payments begin.
If the child support amount doesn’t follow the guidelines set by the court, then the spouses will have to explain how they determined their amount.
The spouses may include terms in the legal separation agreement for the tuition expenses of their children. The term will depict that one or both parties will afford tuition expenses for school and college for any of their children.
Special rights and responsibilities
Special rights and responsibilities must be included in the legal separation agreements between the spouses. These rights and obligations shall state the following:
- The care of the child or children, and
- Any actions to be taken or not to be taken while the child or children is in the care of the other spouse.
Property related matters
When the spouses decide to part ways, they must agree on how to distribute their real property (if there is any). For example, the spouses may agree in the following ways:
- One of the spouses may keep the marital home. However, they will be assumed to be the sole owner of the house.
- The spouses may sell or lease the home and split the profits.
- The spouses may continue to own the home jointly, and one among them may continue to reside there.
Division of Finance
The spouses must provide the account details if they jointly own a bank account. The spouses also need to decide how it will be split. Likewise, joint debts can be divided among spouses. However, these joint debts may be the sole responsibility of one spouse, depending on what the spouses agree.