For a variety of reasons you may not want to take the step of getting divorced when you separate from your spouse. You may however want to formalise any agreements you reach in relation to the Children and property explains Family Law Solicitor Lorraine Harvey...........
If you are able to reach a voluntary agreement then this can be incorporated into a deed of separation, also called a Separation Agreement. The advantage of doing so is that it can help to keep the separation as amicable as possible.
In a recent reported case known as T v T (2013) EWHC, the couple entered in to a separation agreement and divorced a few years later. Some 22 years after separating, however, it transpired that the agreement had never been converted into a court order following their divorce. The husband had remarried and had been very successful in his business life. The wife issued an application for a financial order. The husband pleaded that even though there hadn’t been a court Order at the time they divorced, they had both acted upon the separation agreement and lived their lives independently. The wife’s application was dismissed, she was ordered to pay the husbands costs and the original agreement was made into an Order of the Court.
Whilst a separation agreement does not achieve the finality of a Court order, it does clearly set out the parties intentions. The important point is to ensure that once your divorce petition is issued, you have the terms of the separation agreement reflected in a court order.
At Slater and Gordon, we offer expert family advice and fixed fees for separation agreements.
By Family Law Solicitor Lorraine Harvey.
For more information about Separation and Divorce, please email one of our Family Law Solicitors at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0800 916 9055.