Separation Agreements are formal, legal documents setting out final or temporary (interim) agreement by the parties as to all legal issues arising from their separation, including arrangements relating to the children, financial support, settlement of spouses’ property claims, and possession of the parties’ matrimonial home. Final separation agreements also typically include additional provisions whereby the parties agree that they will not advance further claims against each other in the future with the exception of particular issues which are specifically referred to in the agreement as being subject to change in the future.
Both married couples and common law spouses should enter into separation agreements when their spousal relationship ends. A Separation Agreement may be negotiated and completed some time after the parties’ actual marital separation. The absence of a Separation Agreement does not mean the parties have not separated. The determination of the actual date of separation may be of importance in determining division of property and the date upon which a Divorce Judgement may be finalized.
Marla Gilsig negotiates and drafts separation agreements that include provisions dealing with:
- custody, guardianship, access and contact
- parenting arrangements
- child support
- spousal support
- interim occupancy of the family home
- division and reapportionment of the property
- parental mobility, and
- variation of existing separation agreements.
Common law spouses do not obtain a divorce because the Divorce Act of Canada only applies to married couples. According to the Divorce Act of Canada, married couples can obtain a divorce after a one year separation.