Understanding Legal Separation Agreements

legal separation agreements

Legal separation agreements are precursors to the ultimate divorce. The agreements is actually a contract which declares how the couple that is legally married may go on to live individual lives while they’re in the process of the divorce process. Both people remain husband and wife. Yet, they often want to live individually as if they weren’t a wife or husband. One person typically files for the separation agreement after filing an original application for divorce proceedings.

Things involved in legal agreements

The agreements involve a number of the very same matters that the courts go into in a divorce court hearing. The separation contract may define child support installments, visitation plans, alimony, custody, asset distribution, and so forth. It is critical for both sides to reach realistic agreements. To help you reach logical agreements, you should work with a reputable family lawyer.

The courts use the agreements as the first step toward its judgment in the divorce hearing. For example, whenever a couple defines a particular quantity regarding child support throughout the separation, the actual judge will most likely order the significant other to pay the very same total amount after the divorce case. The same thing applies with child custody and visiting rights.

Legal Separation Contracts Vs divorce proceedings

The greatest difference between legal separation and divorce proceedings is the fact that two people continue to be married. There are several benefits to working with a legal separation arrangement established.

One benefit is health related benefits. A spouse’s health benefits would not terminate during the period of legal separation. A divorce judgment may end that person’s protection plan. Throughout legal separation, both parties have an entitlement to the other’s monetary resources unless stated to the contrary within the original agreement.

Acceptable Behavior during the agreement

A legal separation will allow both partners to work through the difficult areas to their contract before a divorce process. During this time, you should behave respectably while also respecting one another. Mainly because separation contracts take place well before divorce actions, each person is accountable to conduct himself or herself reasonably.

Neither husband or wife ought to defame the other spouse’s character. This kind of behavior may well hurt the children or even destroy the other ‘s livelihood and/or their personal life. Furthermore, the spouses will not wish to demonstrate infidelity during this period as it can certainly hurt the outcome of the divorce case.


If planning on going the legal separation way, you should consult a divorce lawyer. The professional will not only help you with drafting the agreements, he/she will also help you make the decision whether the accords are right or not.

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Mistakes to Avoid When Drafting And Reviewing Prenuptial Agreements

drafting and reviewing prenuptial agreements

A prenup is a legally binding agreement that is created by a couple who are about to get married. It contains obligations and certain rules that both of you should abide by during a divorce. It mainly addresses the financial aspects of the couple. Creating a prenup is a perfect idea for a newly-engaged couple. For ideal results with the prenup, you should avoid making certain mistakes. These mistakes include:

Not Having Legal Representatives

For your prenuptial agreement to be valid, both of you should have your own attorneys. It is important to note that you cannot make use of your partner’s divorce attorney and vice versa. This basically means you cannot have the same lawyer. Each attorney will make sure that their client fully understands the prenuptial agreement before the signing is done voluntarily. To save money, some couples draft the document alone and go ahead and sign it. Without the lawyer’s signature, the document is void, and it will be thrown out of the courthouse.

Waiting Until The Last Minute Before The Wedding

A prenup must be done in a calm state of mind and way before the marriage ceremony is formally held. The prenuptial agreement could be termed invalid if it’s done shortly before the marriage or under duress. It’s therefore advised to do it at least six months before the wedding or 3 months minimum in advance so it could give both parties ample time to think and talk through the issues. This will also give your family lawyer to go through it and make any necessary adjustments.

Being Shy About it

The document is not the most unromantic thing you can do for your soon-to-be spouse, it can also be an awkward topic to talk about. But later, as the marriage life goes, the union might come to a dead end. Therefore, if a divorce is in the cards, then the prenup will go a long way in helping you understand some of the issues it covers.

Hiding Information

When creating a prenup, one needs to be as honest and as open as possible and divulge every kind of information that may be resourceful in the event of fallout in the union or other eventualities covered in it. If you or your spouse hides some important information, the prenuptial agreement might, later on, be invalid if a divorce occurs. To ensure that you don’t leave anything, ask your lawyer to help you with the drafting and reviewing prenuptial agreements.

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Child Support Lawyer: What You Need To Know About Child Support

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Every child demands a decent care and upbringing. What about the child of a divorced couple? The federal law assures that such kids get their share as well. So in simple terms, child support is a part of the non-custodial parent’s wages that goes to the custodial parent for supporting the needs of their child post their divorce.

Fixations and taxes of child support

In Virginia, the amount you give as child support depends upon the payer’s incomes, the available support in case of no separation, or a base support determined from the gross earnings of the parents. The judge of the court also has the right to vary from established norms as the situation demands. In the event, the judge rules that you pay an amount that you are uncomfortable with, visit a child support lawyer who will help you in convincing the judge that the amount is too much for you.

Enforcement of support and failure to pay

The state settles the child support primarily through wage withholding. Here the employer of the payee needs is made to deduct a fixed sum from his salary and send to the state’s collection agency. The body then delivers it to the custodial parent for support. If you fail to pay the maintenance, you suffer the charges of contempt-of-court and civil penalties. In extreme conditions, you may be arrested. The child support debt can’t be discharged even by filing for bankruptcy.

Modification in child support

The child support may turn out to fall short of the child’s needs. Also, the sum may even burden to the payor. In those cases, any of the parents can demand a review of the support. The support is altered when a child’s needs or the payor’s sources change.

The automatic revision of support can also happen when the income of the paying parent increases. The clause of cost-of-living-adjustment enhances the support without any hearing in the case of appraisals coupled with inflation. Support doesn’t get any automatic modification in the event of fixed income of the payor.

If you have had changes in your life and you are unable to pay the amount set out by the court you should work with your divorce lawyer and present the issue in court.

End of support

In most of the cases, the child support ends after the child turns 18 or can take care of him/herself. It’s common for some parents to want to be receiving the amount even when the child no longer needs it. When you find yourself in such a case, visit your family attorney for advice.

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Divorce Lawyer: Tips On How To Go About The Divorce Process

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It is an open secret that every partner enters a marriage fully aware that the marriage may never last the test of time. In most areas around the world, it is no longer a question of if but when, so it is only fair that couples prepare for this eventuality. If your marriage has come to an end, here are tips you should consider:

 Before Filing For Divorce, Have A Plan

One of the biggest mistakes you can ever make is going through the divorce without a plan. If you are unsure of how to go about the process, hire a divorce lawyer to help you out. The professional has skills to ensure the divorce is handled in an amicable manner and the plan you initially drafted is followed through. In the event the other partner threatens not to follow your plan, the lawyer will come up with measures meant to mitigate any harm they may cause to your overall financial structure.

Keep Close To Your Kids

Once you have reached a settlement on how much support you will give to your now estranged spouse, you may think that it is now time to keep your distance. However, that may not be such a brilliant idea if you have your kids living with your partner.

Visiting your children is an important thing to keep in mind, and aside from fostering good family bonds, you may also use it to leverage the courts to reduce the amount of support you have to pay. According to child support lawyer the mere act of visiting you kids already shows a great willingness on your part to keep the family together and that by doing so, you are already in some way contributing to their welfare. The court may take that as a measure of good will and reduce the amount of alimony [or palimony] you have to pay.

Check Up On Your Ex-spouse To Ensure They Are Support Your Money To Good Use

Cases abound where support has been used for purposes other than those envisaged by the law. There are cases, for instance, where an ex-wife may avoid making mortgage payments despite receiving support for the same.

In such cases, the partner giving support is mandated to file a suit demanding that the support is reviewed. This is seen as a protest suit to compel the other couple to meet all the responsibilities for which the support is given. To ensure that your money is put to good use, you check up on your spouse. If the money is going to wrong use, work with your family lawyer and ask the court to reduce your contribution or make your contribution directly in charge of certain obligations for which the support was abused.

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Spousal Support Lawyer: Everything You Need To Know About Spousal Support

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When you are going through divorce, you have to give your partner spousal support. if you the low earning partner, you will receive the support. If this is the first time you are going through divorce you need to hire a spousal support lawyer to guide you through the process. In addition to hiring a lawyer, you need to know about many other things related to spousal support. These things include:

There are many types of spousal support

You have three options of spousal support: rehabilitative, lump-sum and permanent. You will be given rehabilitative spousal support for a given period. During this time you should get a job, learn a skill, or go back to school. Most of the rehabilitative spousal supports have a specified duration but you can always review them at the end of the set period. This is if you aren’t self reliant by the time the period is over. For the adjustment to be effected, you should show effort in becoming independent.

Lump-sum alimony is often given in lieu of property settlement. The court will give you a fixed amount regardless of your situation. The cool thing with this type of alimony is that you receive it as a lump-sum thus you can invest it in any area of your interest.

Finally, permanent alimony is paid permanently. You will receive the alimony regardless of whether you remarry or the payor dies. While it’s meant to be permanent, you can always adjust it depending on the situation that you or your former partner is going through.

You can increase or decrease spousal support

If you are the one receiving the alimony, you can always increase it if you are in a situation where you need more money. All you need to do is work with your divorce lawyer and present the issue in court. You can request an upward adjustment of the alimony if your expenses have increased. You should note that your former spouse should afford the amount that you are asking for.

Just as you can increase alimony, you can also request the court to review it downward. This is after you have got a better job or your business is doing better. You can also request a reduction if your ex is sick or has lost job or demoted.


This is everything you need to know about spousal support. When looking to increase or reduce it, work with reputable alimony attorneys who will not only represent you in court, but also provide you with professional legal advice.

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Tips On How To Go Through A High-Asset Divorce

high asset divorce

Many marriages that don’t function suffer the damaging blow of divorce. Whether you think of it as a blessing or curse, you have to agree that it creates a hole in your pocket. Before you run into it as the only option to escape your nagging wife or a cheating husband, consider your present status.
If you share assets and want to divorce, you will have to equally split them. This is what high-asset divorce is all about. If you try solving it alone, you will both disagree, and things will be worse. Okay, so you want to undergo this type of divorce. What do you do? The following are simple, practical steps on how to go about the whole process:

1. Find a divorce lawyer to assist you

Having a divorce lawyer will enable you to be aware of all the assets and what belongs to you if there are many assets of different kinds. Your own counsel who has a history of your family is best placed to handle it. You can still hire the services of one. They will advise you on how it should be done. Don’t be so naive so as to let your spouse trick you, make use of the law to get what’s rightfully yours.

2. Make a list of all your property

It doesn’t have to be houses, cars, or property alone. Jewelry and others that aren’t typically considered count as well. Next, find out if they are personal property, communal or marital. Note that if your spouse inherited or owned assets before the marriage, they get to keep them after.

3. Maintain a hush-hush as the proceeding goes on

You may not want your information exposed to the nosy public. You have the option of requesting the court to grant this. Some of them seal important documents such that it’s only you, your spouse and the court itself that are aware of the proceedings. Keep it that way for your own good. Remember you have tremendous assets, a target to many.


These are the tips to consider when you are going through a high-value asset. As mentioned above, the type of divorce you are going through is a target to many; therefore, you should be cautious when going through it. To have an easy time, work with a reputable family lawyer who is experienced in these types of cases.

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Facts About Legal Separation Agreements


A legal separation agreement is a legally binding contract which sets out the individual party’s rights and responsibilities regarding their assets, debts, and children. Under normal circumstances, a separation agreement does not actually mean that the separated couples must stay apart physically.

They may continue living in the same area or even under the same roof. The only difference is that each individual will have their own responsibilities which they do at different times to avoid meeting each other. Usually, legal separation agreements are confused for divorce. to shed some light, here are facts about the agreements that you should know about.


In separation agreements, mediation is not about marriage counseling. Instead, it is to help couples who have decided to separate, resolve any disputes they may have concerning maintenance and property rights, custody, and access to children. It is important to seek legal and financial advice before attending mediation so that you are wary of your rights. The advice will also help you make informed decisions.

Collaborative practice

Normally, you will work with collaborative lawyers throughout the separation agreement. But when it comes to resolving your issues about property and children in court, they should not meddle. As a result, you and your partner must sign agreement disqualifying your collaborative lawyers. Even if things get out of hand, you divorce lawyer should not act for you in any contested court proceeding.

Deed of separation

This is the final drawn document after you have reached an agreement. It clearly outlines all the terms and conditions of the separation. Some of the things entailed in the agreement include:

  • Indemnity from the debts of the other spouse
  • Taxation
  • An agreement to live apart
  • Succession rights
  • Agreed arrangements in relation to custody and access to children
  • The occupation and ownership of the family home and any other shared property

Separation agreements and divorce proceedings

Having a legal separation agreement does not bar one from proceeding to divorce. Divorce and separation agreement are different in the sense that the former is permanent separation while the latter can be temporary. Usually, the separation agreement comes before divorce proceeding for convenience when it comes to children custody and property distribution and maintenance.


If you decide to separate with your partner and you don’t want to continue with the divorce immediately, it is crucial to have a separation agreement in place to protect yourself. To have an easy time going about the issue, you should arm yourself with an experienced family lawyer.

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Spousal Support Lawyer: 4 Mistakes To Avoid When Seeking Spousal Support

Spousal support refers to a regular sum of money paid to one spouse as part of a post-divorce arrangement. It may also be referred to as alimony, and from time immemorial, this has been a bone of contention, and despite the fact that the law is quite clear on how the matter should be dispensed with, there are numerous pitfalls that the couples still do find themselves in. To help you out, here are 4 common mistakes to avoid when seeking spousal support.

Choosing the Wrong Attorney

In the height of divorce, the emotions that fill our hearts may be so strong as to blind us when choosing the correct attorney. It is general knowledge that despite how qualified a divorce attorney is, you only stand better chances with alimony if the attorney is specifically trained in the area of divorce. Therefore, do not let your emotions get the better of you and instead settle with a divorce lawyer who is duly trained, certified and experienced in this line of work.

Being Oblivious of Your Rights

The first mistake to avoid when seeking spousal support is not knowing your rights, and as the saying goes, ignorance is no defense. The first thing you need to know is that each state has its specific regulations on the amount of spousal support you are entitled to. This value may also be determined by the divorce decree or agreement. Therefore, know exactly what you are entitled to and at all costs, do not waive it to the next party as history has it that you may just regret doing so. If you are not sure of your rights, ask your spousal support lawyer for advice.

Thinking of the Support as a Primary Income Source

Many couples have been duped into thinking they just won another income stream which is usually not the case. As such, these couples either keep their homes as they are or even acquire greater responsibilities hoping the alimony would cater for all their expenses. However, legal experts advise that it is better to sell your original home and share the profits and then move to a smaller home. In real estate terms, this is referred to as downsizing, and it is crucial to helping a spouse plan for the alimony better.

Depending on a Mediator

Divorce is an emotional affair, and many spouses tend to consult a mediator in the event, preceding the competent hands of divorce attorneys. In rare occasions, the mediators may help you reach a common ground, but it is their very inexperienced in legal matters that makes them the less preferred choice. Instead, go for a family attorney who understands the dynamics of the law to increase your chances of getting awarded the spousal support.

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Divorce Lawyer: What You Need To Know About Prenuptial Agreements

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To protect your property, you should draft a prenuptial agreement. If you have never written the document before, you should hire a divorce lawyer to guide you through the process.

Other beneficial tips

In addition to hiring a lawyer, you also need to consider a number of other tips for the process to be a success. Some of these tips include:

Communicate with your partner: To avoid making your partner feel as if he/she is being left out, you should have a thorough discussion with him/her before you have a meeting with your lawyer. You should discuss what you want, what you want to protect, and how you feel the agreement will affect both of you.

Don’t put it off: It’s common for people to feel that a relationship will last forever while the love or marriage is in the early stages thus they put off signing the agreement. This shouldn’t be you. Remember that you can disagree anytime with your partner and start the divorce process. To avoid complications and ensure that you are safe, you should have a sitting with your attorney and partner at least six months before you tie the knot.

Hire the right attorney: The family lawyer is of great value in the drafting and signing of the prenuptial agreement. To have an easy time, you should hire an experienced professional.

Prenup checklist

When you are putting together the agreement, you should ensure that you address all the sensitive areas. These areas include:

Assets and debts: Here you need to be open with your partner on the assets and debts that you have. You should agree how you will share them in the event of a divorce.

Administration of the assets and income: People fall into two broad categories: savers and spenders. If you have dated long enough thus know each other very well, you should reach an agreement on who, and how you will be administering your assets.

Spousal support: It’s always good to prepare for the worst in life. To avoid complications in the future, you should address the amount that both of you are willing to spend on spousal support. Your spousal support lawyer will come in handy in helping you settle at an amount that both of you are comfortable with.


This is what you need to know about the prenup. The document is not only important when you are projecting a high-asset divorce, but it’s also necessary for all types of divorces. All you need to do is ensure that you work with a reputable attorney.

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Child Custody Attorney: Child Custody Mistakes You Should Avoid Making

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When you are going through a divorce, children are often involved. Since every person wants to have custody of the children, the child custody case is usually emotional. Due to this, many couples fail agreeing with the divorce lawyer and drag each other to court. To increase your chances of winning the case, there are a number of mistakes you should avoid making. Some of these errors include:

Making assumptions

Many people make assumptions that the judge will make a ruling that favors them based on their gender, financial stability, and other surface-related factors. You should note that winning a child custody case isn’t a matter of assumptions—the judge makes the decisions based on the evidence presented to the court on how each parent is capable of providing the children with the best environment to grow in.

To increase your chances of winning the case, you should work with your child support lawyer and compile evidence that shows you will be a better parent. You can do this by presenting reports of how you have present for the children, you are earning more thus providing better for the children, and many others. If you are a lady, you shouldn’t think that the court will give you child custody as women are deemed to be better parents. Nowadays, most men are winning custody cases thus you should also work with your lawyer to win the case.

Talking bad about your spouse

If you frequent the divorce courts, you must have heard some mates talking evil of their former partners. You shouldn’t do this. Remember that the court wants the best for the children and would want both of the parents to be present for the children. When you talk bad of your spouse and show that you aren’t willing to work with her/him, the court is less likely to give you custody as it will feel that you won’t allow the other parent access to the children, which is unhealthy for the children.

It’s often said that you should keep your friends close, and your enemies closer. To increase your chances of getting the custody, you should show the will to work with your former spouse and bring up your children as regularly as possible.


These are the pitfalls you should avoid when facing a child custody case. To have an easy time, work with a reputable child custody attorney who will not only represent you in court, but also provide you with professional legal advice.

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