If your marriage breaks down to the point that you and your spouse believe a divorce is necessary, you should first attempt to negotiate and agree on a fair and acceptable separation agreement. A separation agreement could help limit the expenses required in an otherwise contentious divorce battle and speed up the process of ending the marriage. Still, there are many issues that must be resolved in a separation agreement.
If you are struggling to come to an agreement on the issues that need to be resolved, working with a local legal professional could be the answer. An experienced Ottawa separation agreements lawyer could help resolve your outstanding marital issues to try to avoid a contentious divorce proceeding.
A separation agreement is created when two spouses agree to resolve certain issues at the time they choose to separate or seek a divorce and is legally binding on both parties. The common issues resolved in this type of agreement include parenting time, property division, child support, and spousal support if one party is in need of such support based on their circumstances.
This type of agreement is governed by contract law and must meet the general elements of a valid contract to be enforceable upon separation. Specifically, the agreement must be in writing, signed by both parties and a witness, and free from any duress or coercion. As such, it is typically advisable for a local lawyer to assist in drafting a separation contract.
If a separation agreement is not adequately drafted or unclear in any way, a court could choose to void the contract in full or in part. A seasoned lawyer serving the Ottawa area could help ensure through proper drafting techniques and sound legal judgement that a separation contract complies with the legal requirements of a valid agreement.
There are some common misconceptions in Ottawa about separation agreements and the requirements for a divorce. For starters, parties are considered legally separated when they begin living apart.
Furthermore, while a separation agreement does not have to be followed by a divorce, many divorcing spouses use them in preparation for divorce. This is because separation agreement could be used to expedite the marriage dissolution process if the separation requirements are met for a divorce. Otherwise, the parties can remain separated indefinitely without a formal divorce being obtained.
A separation agreement works like most other marital agreements and must comply with the legal requirements of a valid contract. If a separation agreement does not comply with provincial contractual requirements, an Ottawa court can choose to disregard or strike down all or part of the contract.
A knowledgeable Ottawa separation agreements lawyer could help ensure all the technical requirements are met and that the contract is fair and reasonable for all parties involved. Call 24 hours a day to schedule your case consultation with Family Lawyer Paul Riley.
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