What is a separation agreement?
Separation agreements are legally binding contracts that resolve all of the legal issues arising out of a couple separating.
Do I need a separation agreement?
Yes. Even if you have no children and there is no property to divide, it is a good idea to get one, just to ensure finality between you and your spouse so that your spouse cannot raise legal issues later on.
What is in a separation agreement?
Separation Agreements deal with the major issues arising out of a separation – namely, child custody and access, child support, spousal support, and the division of property. They also deal with many ancillary issue you might not have thought about, such as insurance, future changes in financial circumstances or with the children, and dealing with future disputes between you and your current spouse.
Do I need a lawyer for a separation agreement?
Yes. There are many ways to reduce the cost of a legal fees in the divorce process, but drafting your own separation agreement is not one of them. Separation Agreements are quite complex contracts that require very precise wording and attention to detail for them to be held up in court. For instance, if you simply say something like “No spousal support is payable by either spouse” a court will not enforce this. To waive spousal support, you will need many complex clauses that can run for pages.
Do I need a separation agreement before my divorce?
Normally, yes, the court wants to make sure all of the legal issue are resolved prior to granting a divorce. It may be possible to separate the divorce from the remaining issues, but that is a complex procedure if your spouse does not agree to it.
How can we help?
If you and your spouse reach an agreement on the issues arising out of your separation, I can help you by preparing a separation agreement for you. This is the same quality separation agreement that I prepare for all my clients, whether their situation is amicable or high conflict. You can have the peace of mind of knowing that what you and your spouse have agreed to has been put into a proper legal document.
How Does It Work?
I’ll promptly send you a form for you to complete. The form makes it easy for you to set out what you and your spouse have agreed to – and also to double check that you and your spouse have reached an agreement on all the issues. Simply complete the form and return it to me, and I’ll do everything else.
Once I receive the form, I’ll prepare a separation agreement based on what you have told me. If I have any questions or concerns, I’ll let you know right away. Normally, I’m able to complete your separation agreement within a week of receiving your form – and often, much faster.
Once I complete your separation agreement, I send it back to you in draft form. You can review it at your leisure, and let me know if you have any questions or would like any changes. Once you’re satisfied, I make any changes necessary, and send you a final separation agreement with easy to follow instructions as to how to sign it properly.
What’s not included?
This is a special offer for couples who have resolved the issues arising from their divorce amicably, and is limited to preparing a high-quality separation agreement with the proper legal wording. I do not provide any legal advice or negotiate the agreement on your behalf.
As well, I’m only qualified to practice in Ontario, so you or your spouse must be ordinarily resident in Ontario.
How much does it cost?
Many law firms charge a flat rate for a separation agreement, regardless of how complicated it is to draft. This rate is often $1500 or more. My rate for preparing a separation agreement for you is $749 + HST. The reason I’m able to offer such a great price is that you’re getting the separation agreement without all the bells and whistles included. You get what you pay for – a well drafted separation agreement – and don’t pay for what you don’t need – consulting with a lawyer or negotiating with your spouse.
Often spouses reach an agreement, then afterwards, dissatisfaction sets in. People think: maybe I gave away too much, or maybe I could have gotten a better deal. Once an agreement in principle is reached, it’s important to finalize that agreement as quickly as possible, so that your spouse does not change his or her mind.
To get started, call me toll-free at 1-855-55-SPLIT or email me using this form.
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If you are considering divorce -- or have already made your decision -- you're invited to email me on my contact form. I'll explain how you can protect your legal rights, reduce the expense of divorce, and protect your children from undue emotional stress.