Separation Agreements

Hagerstown Separation Agreement Lawyer Serving Clients Throughout Maryland

Whether you are considering a separation agreement because you are trying to temporarily work things out with your estranged spouse or partner, or in preparation for a pending divorce, it is important that the document is well-written, concise and covers contingencies, which are often difficult to foresee.

'Legal separation' in Maryland is something of a misnomer. Maryland courts are authorized to grant either a 'limited divorce' or an 'absolute divorce', but there is no legal course of action for filing for "legal separation".

Likewise, there isn't truly an 'illegal' separation – just either a formal separation with terms set out in writing, signed by both parties, or instead, an informal separation arrangement without any accompanying document. While an informal separation may work in some very limited situations, it is an unwise course for the overwhelming majority of separating couples.

Instead a well-written agreement, drafted by a trained and experienced professional is the best alternative for most separating couples. A formal separation that includes a properly executed agreement allows spouses to cover many important marital property and other issues, including:

  • Critical issues regarding child custody
  • Additional child support above state mandatory obligations
  • Use of the family residence
  • Timing/manner of the sale of a home
  • Division of future retirement rights
  • Alimony

Getting It Right Now Is Money Well Spent

When drafted correctly by a trained, competent legal professional, a well-written separation agreement can help the spouses work through disputes now, rather than facing the high cost of litigating those matters later. Without the guidance of a trained professional, a poorly drawn agreement prepared by the parties themselves can frequently result in more disputes, costs and delays down the road. Using my years of experience and legal training in the preparation of your separation agreement can save a significant amount of money and frustration later.

By drafting an accurate, workable and valid separation agreement now, you will save a substantial amount of time and legal fees in the event of divorce.

There Are Informal Agreements — Why Is It So Important To Get Them Right?

Because we live in a do-it-yourself world, people often think they can save money by simply typing up their agreed-upon list of parenting schedules, support payments, who pays which bills and other day-to-day components of family life. While both spouses may enter into the separation period fully expecting to comply, time and circumstances have a way of getting in the way. The courts will not accept best intentions and halfway measures when enforcing agreements in the event of a later dispute over what unclear language was intended to mean. And what about the things you failed to include or consider in the document and later wish had been included? Or what if language you thought was clear, is later deemed unclear and ambiguous? Doesn't it just make sense that such an important document for your future needs and concerns be crafted and customized by an experienced professional?

By making sure your separation agreement is carefully considered, well-written and drafted in legal language acceptable to the court now, you will have the foundation of a fair divorce settlement you can draw upon later. Spending some additional time and money with an experienced Maryland family law attorney at the beginning of the process is the better alternative to the risk of substantial additional time, emotional energy and attorneys' fees later.

A Neutral Party Works For No One. I Work For You.

If you and your spouse are considering going to a neutral attorney to have a separation agreement written, consider this question: Who will represent you to make sure the terms and provisions are in your interests?

I invite you to schedule a low-cost consultation at my office in Hagerstown to discuss your separation agreement. Together, you and I will walk through your objectives, discuss reasons for signing the agreement and what you hope and expect to get out of the separation period. I will clarify issues you may not understand and help you see some problem areas you may not have thought of. I will also give you a realistic estimate of the cost of drafting a solid agreement that may save you thousands of dollars in litigation costs later. I am confident that you will walk away knowing why it is important to have an attorney like myself representing your interests.

Legal Separation Agreement Lawyer Serving Washington County And Frederick County

Call the law office of Carl W. Disque, P.C., Attorney at Law, in Hagerstown toll free at 866-478-4826 or contact me by email to arrange a low-cost initial consultation. I will answer your questions and give you an honest assessment of your legal circumstances, time frame for drafting your agreement and approximate legal expenses.