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Legal separation can often be a term which causes confusion. Whilst divorce or dissolution of a civil partnership will often be the most obvious and suitable way of dealing with marriage breakdown, a separation agreement can be a useful document which provides some degree of security for those who do not wish to get divorced or cannot do so immediately.
What is involved?
A separation agreement is essentially a private contract entered into voluntarily between spouses or civil partners. It can record an agreement to live apart, obligations to maintain one another, financial support for children and distribution of assets. The agreement can also deal arrangements for children on separation.
Unlike court orders, because a separation agreement is a private voluntary arrangement it enables couples to be more flexible and creative about what goes into it, this can assist the negotiating process. An agreement might be used to define interim or ‘holding’ financial arrangements, allowing time to reflect on the future of the relationship, record what has been agreed in relation to the sale of a particular asset, or it can be used to provide for a final settlement for the longer term.
In order for a separation agreement to be enforceable, it is advisable for both parties to have separate legal advice and provide disclosure of their personal and financial circumstances.
A separation agreement is not suitable in every case, for example, cases where, despite every effort, reaching agreement voluntarily is simply not possible, or where a pension splitting arrangement needs to be implemented, a divorce or civil partnership dissolution may be the best option. A separation agreement does not provide the same level of finality as divorce by preventing a financial claim in subsequent divorce or dissolution proceedings however a sensible, well drafted document which has been freely and fairly negotiated will usually be capable of enforcement in the event of a dispute.
Why we are different
We will listen to your concerns and provide decisive and objective advice to give you clarity about the options for your future. We are Resolution accredited specialists in complex financial provision and children matters and will combine firm negotiation with a sensible attitude to compromise to achieve the outcome best suited to you and your family. We will draft any necessary documents, swiftly and with the utmost care and attention.
Your case is important to us because it is important to you.
Download our useful guide 15 Tips To Help Avoid A Messy Separation or Divorce free of charge for practical jargon free guidance and support.
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For more information, call us today on 0208 882 9850