In the event of a breakdown in the relationship and the partners wish to end their marriage or relationship, they may choose to solely separate and not divorce. This simply means that you both decided to end the relationship without applying to the court for approval. A separation agreement is an informal agreement where two parties choose to divide their assets and decide on custody, access and support issues, which can be resolved through a lawyer, mediator or arbitrator who can aid in drafting a more formal agreement.
A formal agreement may not be necessary until one of you decides to remarry, in which case, a formal divorce order is required. Once the order is obtained, it is possible that all arrangements made at the time of separation will continue.
What does a Separation Agreement entail?
Typically, separation agreements can include specific arrangements, such as:
- Child custody
- Child access
- Child support
- Spousal support
- Division of property and assets
If you have never entered into a legally valid marriage, there is no formal process that has to be followed when the relationship breaks down. However, if you have, it is recommended that you contact a legal professional to help you draft a separation agreement to help you deal with all matters relating to the separation.