Deed of Separation
The Deed of Separation, also called a Separation Deed, can be defined as a legal agreement or document entered between the parties as a Deed (i.e. signed, sealed, and then delivered).
Sometimes a couple may wish to separate without filing for a divorce immediately. While such an agreement can be reached informally through mutual consent, there can be several uncomfortable decisions to make.
In the event that reconciliation is not possible in the future, the couple will need to decide how to deal with the common issues that arises during a legal separation.
If you wish to separate from your spouse, you might want to have a formal agreement to regulate the process of separation. You can use a Deed of Separation to enter into a legal agreement with your spouse to live separately and away from your spouse. You can also include specific terms of the separation in this document.
This deed includes the date on which the couple is separated, the terms related to the divorce, and any other ancillary issues related to the marriage.
The Deed should include mutually agreed arrangements for child custody, child care, and control of the child; maintenance of spouse and children; and an agreed outline of division of matrimonial assents in the event that the couple decides to file for divorce in the future.
A Deed of Separation is not a legally binding document. To obtain it, you don’t need to register the Deed with a government department or file it in Court. Thus, you can revoke it any time with the agreement of your spouse. However, you must remember that mutual consent is a prerequisite for revoking the Separation Document.
It is within the Family Court’s jurisdiction to set aside any term of the Deed that is considered to be unfair or improper. The only exception to this is when the parties have got the Deed sanctioned by a Court.
However, since the legal costs involved in getting a court sanction is very high most couples do not get this done.
You can keep the separation private if you want, as the document is not public knowledge. Even your relatives, colleagues, and friends will remain unaware of the separation.
It is essential that both parties have legal advice before they obtain a Separation Deed and a solicitor must be present when they sign the agreement.
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