There are many reasons why you and your spouse may not wish to move forward with a divorce at this time. From the many tax benefits of remaining married to religious concerns, a legal separation may be the most beneficial option for you at this time. Like other Colorado couples who make this choice, you would be wise to seek a formal separation agreement, not just a verbal agreement.
A legal separation agreement provides the many protections of divorce without actually getting divorced. Simply moving out is not a beneficial choice, and making an effort to draft a plan can be smart, as it protects both spouses as well as any minor children affected by the separation.
Why do I need a separation agreement?
If you and your spouse commit to a trial separation, a legal separation agreement may not be necessary for you. However, if you have no plans to divorce in the near future, yet want to live apart on a permanent basis, filing for and preparing a formal separation agreement would be beneficial for you. Like a divorce agreement, you can tailor yours to address issues specific to your family. Some of the things you may need to address include:
- Child custody
- Child support
- Spousal support
- Property division
- Who will remain in the family home
- Financial matters
The choices you make through the drafting of a legal separation agreement will affect you and your family for the entire duration of the separation. Whether you move forward with divorce in the future or choose to remain separated, you would be wise to be thoughtful and careful regarding the details and provisions of your agreement.
Once complete and approved as an order of the court, the rights and obligations outlined in the agreement will be legally enforceable. A verbal agreement or informal plan drafted without legal support is not enforceable, nor is it in the best interests of any member of your family.
Strong agreement, strong future
It is wise to have the help of a lawyer when drafting a legal separation agreement. It is a plan that will have an impact on your future, and it should be appropriate and thoughtfully worded. Before you decide to separate, you may find it beneficial to seek the opinion of a lawyer who can help you decide what is best for your individual situation.
Sometimes, divorce is not the best option. When you are unsure of what you should do or want to know more about the benefits of a legal separation, you can do this by scheduling a case evaluation with an experienced attorney.