If you are considering divorcing your spouse, it can be beneficial to address certain marital issues with a separation agreement. This type of contract can help you and your spouse plan out what will happen to your property and other assets during the divorce. However, separation agreements are not only for spouses who are on the verge of divorce.
These contracts can be helpful for engaged or happily married couples, as it ensures you and your partner are on the same page about matters such as equitable distribution and alimony obligations. Forming a legally binding agreement to address these issues can be difficult without the help of a qualified marital agreements attorney. Consider reaching out to a Miramar separation agreements lawyer who could give you the tools and resources to draft an enforceable agreement.
Drafting a separation agreement does not mean legal separation is on the horizon. Florida is one of the only states that does not recognize legal separations as a valid alternative to divorce.
The term “separation” refers to the fact that the parties no longer live together and an agreement may address what will happen if a couple later chooses to get a divorce. Anyone who is thinking about leaving their spouse or is interested in preparing for a potential divorce could benefit from speaking with a separation agreements attorney in the area.
A separation agreement formed in Miramar can cover various marital issues, most notably the equitable distribution of marital assets and each spouse’s right to modify or sell marital property. Additionally, spouses can decide who would owe spousal support following a divorce and set the payment amount and schedule. A separation agreement can also establish trusts and determine how life insurance proceeds would be paid out if one spouse dies before the other.
Separation agreements cannot establish legally binding directives for timesharing or child support. These matters fall solely within the jurisdiction of state courts in order to ensure that children get adequate support. A seasoned lawyer familiar with separation agreements could help spouses determine what terms to include in their contract.
Because legal separation is not recognized in Florida, the laws governing separation agreements are the same as those set out for prenuptial and postnuptial agreements in Florida Statutes §61.079. Whether spouses establish a plan for a potential divorce before or after marriage, the contract must be established in writing and signed by both parties.
Additionally, the agreement should be formed without duress, coercion, or fraud inflicted by either party on the other. If a judge later determines that a separation agreement came to be under any of those conditions, they may invalidate the contract and all the terms therein. It is generally best to consult with a lawyer who understands the requirements for separation agreements.
Forming an agreement with your partner about complex and sensitive marital issues can be a challenging process. However, once executed, a separation agreement could give you both peace of mind and minimize future conflict.
A Miramar separation agreements lawyer could guide you through the drafting process or help you determine the validity of an existing contract. Call us today to set up your initial meeting.