When a marriage begins to falter, the last thing anyone wants is to go through contentious courtroom litigation. The prospect of arguing over assets, spousal support, and child issues should be considered a last resort.
At George, Murray, Shipley, Bell, LLP, our Sarnia family lawyers work diligently to negotiate and craft separation agreements that help reduce stress, hard feelings, and expensive litigation. Although couples may have strong differences pulling them apart, our experienced attorneys seek common ground on crucial issues.
What Makes Separation Agreements Valuable?
Separation agreements can prove highly valuable when a marriage starts to break down. In Ontario, these legally-binding agreements can be negotiated out of court between the spouses’ attorneys or through a mediator. The goal is not necessarily to create an all-encompassing divorce order, but rather to reach agreement on as many salient issues as possible. These are items that can be negotiated and incorporated into separation agreements.
- Child Custody and Parenting Time
- Spousal Support
- Division of Marital Assets
- Agreement on Non-Marital Assets
- Pensions and Retirement Resources
Do You Need a Separation Agreement Before Filing for Divorce in Ontario?
Although spouses are not required to work out a separation agreement before filing for divorce in Ontario, the document can provide stability as the process unfolds. It’s not uncommon for couples to draft a temporary separation agreement while they live apart and seek marriage counselling to resolve their differences. These agreements apply to equally to common law and traditional marriages.
Applicable to Formal Divorces
For those who decide to move forward with a formal divorce, the items detailed in the separation agreement can be incorporated into the divorce settlement. Having taken this initial step generally reduces the cost of divorce by reducing much of the otherwise contentious litigation.
Contact Our Experienced Sarnia Family Lawyers
When a marriage begins to stumble, separation agreements are a crucial step toward resolving the legal issues of a potential divorce. Separations may offer couples time and space apart to resolve deeply personal matters. At George, Murray, Shipley, Bell, LLP, we work closely with everyday people to negotiate and craft cost-effective separation agreements that protect your rights and interests. Contact our Sarnia family law office and schedule a consultation today.