When a couple decides to end their marriage, there are many issues that must be resolved. Dummit Fradin has a team of Charlotte family law attorneys to help you resolve these matters quickly and amicably. A separation agreement is a contract between a husband and wife and is used to resolve issues involved with the breakdown of a couples' marriage.
The following issues can be resolved without the necessity of litigation:
Separation agreements can be done in contemplation of a couples' separation or after the parties are living separate and apart. The actual "separation" occurs once the couple decides to end their marital relationship and begins living separately. This "date of separation" is the date the court later references for the one-year separation that entitles couples to divorce.
Separation agreements have many advantages, as they avoid litigation and having a judge make the decisions, and put the power into the hands of the couple, who can reach an agreement on the terms of their separation and make the major decisions for their families and property. Separation agreements are enforceable by the courts through breach of contract claims. This can occur in various forms, including a claim for damages or specific performance for the other party to comply with the terms of the agreement.
Once a couple has been legally separated for at least one year, they are entitled under N.C.G.S. § 50-6 to a divorce. A separation agreement can be incorporated into the divorce decree, upon request of one of the parties in the divorce complaint. Once a divorce decree is entered incorporating a separation agreement, the agreement then becomes part of the court order and is enforceable as such by the courts.
It is important to have an experienced and competent family law attorney to draft and review your separation agreement to ensure that all of your rights involving your family and property are protected. If you are considering a separation or have already separated from your spouse, please contact Dummit Fradin to help you in this process.