Clients may choose to negotiate their family law matter instead of litigating. There are many types of Agreements, including Prenuptial Agreements, Postnuptial Agreements, Parenting Plans, and Separation/Marital Settlement Agreements.
A Prenuptial Agreement can resolve property and financial issues that may arise in the event of death or divorce before the marriage ceremony takes place. These issues include, but are not limited to, alimony, division of property, inheritance, and protection of assets, including a home or a business. If, after getting married, you and your spouse want to resolve issues similar to those in a Prenuptial Agreement, a Postnuptial Agreement can be prepared. Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements cannot address custody and visitation of children.
For unmarried parents, a Parenting Plan can document agreements on custody, child support, payment of expenses, and other issues regarding their child(ren). Parenting Plan can also address issues that the Court may not otherwise resolve, such as the introduction of new romantic partners, and how to exchange the children's items between households. A signed Parenting Plan can be incorporated into a Consent Order or Separation Agreement and used to resolve custody or child support litigation.
SEPARATION/MARITAL SETTLEMENT AGREEMENTS
During a divorce, negotiations can result in the creation of a Separation Agreement (also referred to as a Marital Settlement Agreement or MSA). This Agreement can resolve issues including grounds for divorce, child custody, child support, alimony, division of property, insurance, debts, and other financial issues. With a signed Agreement resolving all issues arising out of the marriage, parties can get divorced without having to wait out a one-year physical separation. You can even get divorced while living together.
Marital Settlement Agreements have several benefits, which is why many families prefer them over going to court. Here are just some of the advantages:
You can finalize your divorce without a judge having to resolve the dispute.
You can save time AND money by avoiding a lengthy court battle.
You can bypass the sometimes legally required one-year physical separation.
You can settle issues privately and without having to involve friends and family.
You and your spouse decide on the resolutions together, with the advice of your attorneys.
The most important piece to a Marital Settlement Agreement is that you and your spouse need to agree on the terms. Therefore, we recommend this option for spouses that are motivated to resolve the issues and are willing to make compromises.
If assistance is needed to resolve any issues, your attorney can negotiate on your behalf, or you can engage the services of a third party, such as a mediator. Even if you use a mediator, it is very important to have your own lawyer because a mediator cannot give legal advice.
For a lawyer to draft, negotiate, and review agreements in Baltimore, Towson, and Maryland, and to protect the client's rights and obligations, contact Wasserman Family Law to receive the experience, expertise, and compassion clients need to navigate through their legal matter.
We also can serve as a mediator for family law disputes.