Married couples can go through rough patches, and not all of those issues will necessarily lead to divorce. Sometimes, a separation can help individuals work through their differences and reconcile. Other times, a separation will lead to the end of the marriage. In either case, creating legally binding terms related to a separation might help avoid certain conflicts later down the road.
If you and your spouse are considering the benefits of separating, speak to an Anderson separation agreements lawyer about your legal options. Our family law attorney is experienced in helping couples avoid the costs and contention often associated with divorce through the use of well-crafted and comprehensive separation agreements.
Does State Law Recognize Legal Separation?
While state law does not recognize legal separations, it is possible to set court orders related to critical financial issues when parties separate. To set support awards, for example, the spouses must actually live separately.
Separated couples are still considered legally married in the form of stalemate. This gives couples a chance to reconcile and avoid a costly divorce. Other times, the terms of a separation might be included in a final divorce agreement if the couple does decide to end their marriage. Anyone with questions about matters related to separation should speak to an attorney in Anderson.
Maintenance and Support Orders during Separation
Support orders during a separation are similar to those that are awarded in a divorce. When a judge enters a separation maintenance order, the court will decide an appropriate amount of child support and spousal support as well as order a custody or visitation schedule if the couple has children. Sometimes, the parties can work together or with a mediator to reach an agreement on the terms of their separation.
Drafting a separation agreement outside of court can save couples time and money. This allows them to create an agreement that meets their exact needs and bring it to the court where a judge can approve the document. If, however, the judge decides that the agreement is unfair to either party or their children, they will void it.
When it comes to setting spousal and/or child support, the court will look at many factors, including the income levels, wealth, work history, and earning capacities of both parties, as well as their children’s needs. There are many important issues that a maintenance order can resolve, but it is crucial to speak to an Anderson attorney before reaching a separation agreement to ensure you document is legally enforceable.
From Separation to Divorce
A separation agreement is not an official divorce, and the parties remain legally married while they are separated. This means that neither party can remarry, and the individuals can remain on one another’s health insurance. Maintenance orders as part of a separation might influence the terms of a future divorce decree.
If circumstances change significantly between when the judge issued a maintenance order and the date of the couple’s divorce, Anderson courts are more likely to review the new facts and create an updated order. Anyone with questions regarding the impact of separation on their divorce should speak to a lawyer in our area.
Hiring an Anderson Lawyer for a Separation Agreement
Separation agreement terms can influence a person’s time with their children and their financial circumstances. The agreement may also impact a later divorce settlement or order.
There is a lot at stake for families in these situations. If you and your spouse plan to separate, you should speak to an experienced Anderson separations agreements lawyer first.