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Separation Agreement

Most efficient and cost effective way to start anew

Quick Facts

  • Separation Agreements can be the most cost effect legal process after separation

  • A strong agreement will save time and money in the future

  • If you have children, you can only obtain a divorce if you have a separation agreement dealing with custody, access and support or if there is a court order

  • If possible, try negotiating the terms of the agreement with your partner.  This will reduce legal fees used for negotiation.

The breakdown of a relationship can be emotionally draining, but it does not have to result in a long drawn out legal battle.  We help clients work with opposing party, and their counsel, to reach an agreement that will free them in order to start anew.  We do this with the use of a separation agreement. Separation agreements deal with all rights and obligations arising from the breakdown of a relationship, usually on a permanent basis. Parties may enter into an agreement which deals with all claims between them, including ownership in or division of property; spousal support; child support, child custody and access, and; any other matter in the settlement of their affairs. Married couples and common law partners may enter into a separation agreement once they are separated. Legally separation means the  parties are living "separate and apart".   Some factors the court will take into consideration when determining whether parties are living separate and apart are: sleeping arrangements, sexual relations, joint social ventures, activities as a family, meals together, communication and discussion of family problems, performance of wife/husband duties (ie. preparation of meals for entire family), communication of intention to live separate and apart to family and friends. Each case is different.  Some couples may reside under the same roof and still be considered as separated.

 

If there is a marriage contract or cohabitation agreement, the provisions in those will take precedents.  Where those documents are silent on a matter, such as access and custody of children, parties may resolve the issues in a separation agreement. 

Separation agreements are less expensive then going to court.  Especially where parties are amicable, it is a good idea to avoid legal costs by working together.

Once a separation agreement is entered into, it is very difficult to change it without the consent of both parties.  The court will interfere and alter provisions if there is a finding of dishonesty and failure to provide accurate financial, property or debt information when the agreement was made.

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