Most Common Types of Family Law Agreements

November 3, 2020 Blog No Comments »

When partners go their separate ways, it can often lead to messy legal situations that are stressful and costly for both parties. If there is a family law agreement in place, however, it can help settle things more quickly and easily. Family law agreements are contracts that couples enter into which spell out how a relationship will be managed and what will happen if the relationship ends.

The most common types of family law agreements are marriage contracts or prenuptial agreements, cohabitation agreements, and separation agreements.

Marriage contracts or prenuptial agreements

Prenuptial agreements are usually put in place before a couple gets married. These contracts deal primarily with how property is to be divided in the event of a separation or divorce. They can sometimes also deal with issues concerning alimony or spousal support payments. In some cases, they may also include details as to how property and finances are to be managed during the marriage.

Prenuptial agreements do not usually include details concerning child custody, guardianship, or child support as family courts generally do not uphold such clauses in prenuptial agreements.

Cohabitation agreement

A cohabitation agreement is usually entered into when a couple decides to live together. It works in a way that is similar to a prenuptial agreement.

Separation agreement

A separation agreement is entered into when a married or common-law couple decides to separate. Separation agreements deal with the division of property and debt. They can also deal with matters of spousal support and how legal matters that arise out of the separation will be resolved.

If there are children, the separation agreement can also deal with issues of custody and child support and how parental decisions will be made. The agreement will spell out the obligation of each of the parties toward the other.

The goal of such an agreement is to as much as possible satisfy both parties and it is legally binding. In some cases, there may be certain issues that are left out of the agreement in which case the court may have to decide.

What are the benefits of having a family law agreement?

There are numerous benefits to having a family law agreement including:

  • Family law agreements are much less expensive than court litigation.
  • The court process can be lengthy whereas it is usually possible to come up with a family law agreement much more quickly.
  • Family law agreements give partners more control over the decisions rather than leaving it up to a judge.
  • Parties in a family law agreement are more likely to adhere to such an agreement than they are to adhere to a decision imposed by the court.
  • Family law agreements offer flexibility in determining solutions for issues or potential issues.
  • Family law agreements can be customized to the parties’ specific situation.
  • In most cases, family law agreements are non-adversarial. This means they are less stressed and that there is a greater chance of preserving a relationship.

Contact Marcy Segal today

Marcy Segal is a professional family lawyer with experience drafting prenuptial, cohabitation, and separation agreements. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

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