couples may decide to separate for a number of reasons.
include religious restrictions, as a way to continue marital tax
or government benefits, or simply as an alternative for couples
to ease into the idea of living apart until they decide on an
eventual divorce, or reconciliation.
While it may
seem to be a softer approach, the legal ramifications of a separation
agreement may eventually become binding in a divorce court.
If your intention
is to provide for child
support, or to equitably split assets or insurance costs,
experts advise that you carefully map those points out in the
initial separation agreement.
& child support
for spouse and children during separation are commonly called
temporary maintenance or alimony pendente lite ("pending
the litigation."). If your spouse fails to make agreed-upon
payments, a court order is usually available to enforce the agreement
and, in most cases, you can file the necessary papers yourself
or with help from a local family court.
do it yourself separation
agreements are available for download around the Web and, once
notarized, may (or may not) be viewed in court as legal documentation.
However, an attorney can better advise you on how to protect your
property and financial interests, especially if a separation eventually
leads to divorce.
strapped for cash, look into personal legal insurance that may
be provided by your employer (many companies now offer this policy
for their employees) or seek out free
or pro bono legal aid.