What is a Separation Agreement?

When a couple – or one of the spouses – decides the marriage is over, it is smart to work out a separation agreement if the parties can agree on the terms.

It can include issues such as child custody and support, division of property and spousal support. The contract can include anything so long as it is not illegal. It can facilitate the eventual divorce proceedings and limit the need for lengthy litigation of divorce issues.

If the couple decides to reconcile before the divorce becomes final, the executed provisions generally stay in effect and the unexecuted provisions are void. However, if desired, a separation agreement can be drafted which provides that all financial provisions in the agreement remain in effect if a reconciliation happens.