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What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of a Separation Agreement?

A Virginia Beach separation agreements attorney can help you review your marital situation and determine whether to work out a separation agreement or even use separation as grounds for divorce when divorce is your objective.

Under Virginia statute § 20-91, when you live separately with no co-habitation continuously for one year or for six months when you have children together, you can petition for divorce. Often during this time, couples form a separation agreement to deal with issues such as child custody, child support, spousal support, property division and financial and tax issues. The advantages of a separation agreement are that you can iron out any disagreements and avoid having to take matters to court. Litigation is costly and time-consuming. You also have time to experience living apart and decide whether this arrangement works better than cohabitation as a married couple. Neither party can re-marry unless you obtain a divorce, so the arrangement is not final. In some cases where couples adhere to certain religious practices, divorce violates their principles, whereas a separation agreement addresses the issues without actually having to divorce. For Social Security purposes, you can still meet time qualifications for a 10-year marriage through a separation agreement because you remain legally married. This arrangement may also allow you to have insurance advantages as a married couple. The main disadvantage is that you cannot legally begin an intimate relationship with another person or remarry unless you obtain a divorce.

By working with separation agreements lawyers in Virginia Beach, you can address the important issues involved with separation. 

Darrell M. Harding works with clients to devise favorable separation agreements and help them avoid expenses involved with litigation.

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