The end of a marriage can be a difficult journey, and there are significant economic and personal issues that you will need to address before the divorce is final. Such as how to handle shared property, finances, debts, and custody. While you make your way through this challenging time, our compassionate team of Agoura Hills separation agreements lawyers could offer support and guidance.
Whether it is a trial separation before a divorce or a “legal separation” without divorce, a settlement agreement may govern your financial and parental rights. An attorney specializing in separation agreements could advocate for your best interests during this process.
A separation agreement is a legal contract governing the rights and responsibilities of spouses when they divorce. A valid agreement must be in writing, signed, and notarized, and there must be evidence of full disclosure of assets and liabilities by both parties. Additionally, each party must enter the agreement without coercion or duress. These agreements are generally incorporated into the final judgment of divorce. A lawyer in Agoura Hills who focuses on separation agreements could explain these legal requirements and help someone draft a fair contract.
Sometimes when couples decide to divorce, they often separate before the final judgment. Once parties file the formal request for divorce, they must wait at least six months before the final judgment. During this mandatory waiting period, spouses may want to settle the many issues involving the dissolution of a marriage. Some provisions that a separation contract may cover include:
Marriages can have a complex array of joint finances, and debt and courts are always vigilant about protecting the rights of children. Therefore, the transition into life after separation can be made easier with a thorough agreement, drafted with the help of an Agoura Hills lawyer.
State law allows couples to file for a “legal separation.” This means that they remain married but have agreed to terms while living separately. Couples address all issues as if they were getting a divorce, but they remain legally married. People may do this for religious reasons or to maintain health insurance coverage. A legal separation agreement would cover the same issues as a marital property settlement contract in a divorce.
Especially where children are involved, a couple may stay connected for decades. Over many years, circumstances and needs may change, and no matter how thorough the original agreement, modifications may be necessary. Even many years after separation, if a party proves a “material change in circumstances,” they may be able to amend their financial obligations, for instance, or even request a change in custody arrangements.
The court will look first at the original agreement for guidance on making a final decision. A lawyer Agoura Hills could help someone through the process of a requesting a modification to their separation agreement
The separation process can be long and frustrating without the proper legal guidance. Fortunately, our team of Agoura Hills separation agreement lawyers could help you through this process. While separation can be painful, a thorough contract can help protect your rights and future.
Hoffer Family Law Firm
As you know, we are now living in uncertain times. Our society has shifted in ways that were completely unexpected 3-6 months ago. As a result, our priorities and actions need to shift as well. Remember, we cannot control the wind, but we can always adjust our sails. The Courts here in Southern California are closed for the foreseeable future. The Los Angeles County courts are taking filings and are hearing emergency matters. The Ventura County Courts are hearing emergency matters but are not taking filings at all. Currently, both court systems are scheduled to re-open in mid-May; however, given the current state of affairs, it is likely that the closures will be extended.
So, how do we adjust our sails? We set you up for success for when the Courts re-open, your case will be ready to go.
1. Video Consultations: All you need is a phone, an iPad, or a computer with a webcam and a microphone and we can have a video consultation. Please click here to schedule.
2. For Divorce Cases: For existing cases in Ventura County, we can prepare your disclosures, create a discovery plan and ready your case for when the court opens again. For Los Angeles County, we can file your Petition and related documents, prepare your disclosures, create a discovery plan and ready your case for when the court opens again.
My Advice to you!
3. Be physically and emotionally healthy! There is a lot of humor circulating about how people are gaining weight and getting drunk during this period. Don’t give in to that. This is the time to take stock and improve on those things you always wanted. It means reading that book you wanted to read. It means taking that online course you always meant to take. It means gaining that skill that you didn’t have time for. It also means not letting your divorce case sit unattended. There is always work to be done. Let us handle it for you. Take this period of time to be proactive!
Thanks for taking the time to drop by.
Jeffrey L. Hoffer
Certified Family Law Specialist – located in Agoura Hills, CA.