There are many ways that couples can reach a divorce settlement agreement. In some cases, a court hearing is necessary in order for couples to reach a divorce settlement agreement. In fact, court intervention generally requires temporary orders on issues such as child support, because a final order can take years to come to a resolution.
Court ordered divorce settlements, and even temporary court orders, are very difficult to amend, except in extreme circumstance such as long term illness for either a parent or a child. Many couples also enter into a divorce settlement agreement in the absence of court intervention. Couples sometimes handle the process entirely on their own, while others utilize the services of a collaborative divorce attorney.
However, those couples are still generally required to have the courts approve their divorce settlements, especially when children are involved. In fact, all divorce settlements are legally binding and will be enforced equally by the courts and law enforcement should it become necessary.
Divorce settlements include a final court order for distribution of marital property and assets. In some cases, couples split the assets according to a percentage. In other cases, the judge will list specific ownership of all property and assets. In addition, the judge will determine which spouse is responsible for any shared debt. Divorce settlements also contain clauses that pertain to an spousal support payments.
Those requirements will include the amount of support awarded, on what day the payment is due and for what length of time payments must be made. Divorce settlement agreements will also contain all rulings made on child related issues. Those issues include child support, child custody and visitation rights. In fact, those clauses will be extremely specific in order to avoid any confusion. It will in fact, state specific times for pick up of children, and exact times that they must be returned to the other parent.
In addition, parents may only be allowed to travel a certain distance with their children unless they obtain court approval. For example, parents may not be able to leave the state with their children unless the courts have decided they are allowed to do so.
Some couples are able to come to an agreement on all of these issues, in the absence of court intervention. While it appears overwhelming at first glance, many couples find that they can avoid litigation by taking part in collaborative family law. However, their divorce settlement agreement will still contain all of the same clauses and must be approved by the court.
Divorce agreements help individuals to be very clear about issues and court decisions that pertain to divorce. In fact, the agreements can help couples to avoid any questions as to distribution of property and assets. In fact, divorce settlement agreements are likely to remain unchanged and can be referenced if any questions should arise while the agreement remains valid.
In some cases, the agreement becomes null and void at a certain pint. For example, when children graduate high school, or on their 18th birthday, they may be allowed to visit either parent at will. In any case, divorce settlement agreements are legally binding and will be legally upheld should either spouse act in opposition of the agreement.