If you are getting ready to go through a divorce, you'll need to create a separation agreement with your spouse. This is the document that contains all of the decisions about key things that will be resolved after your divorce is finalized. Here are some items that you and your separation agreement lawyer should include in this document.
All joint marital assets need to be divided in order for your divorce to be finalized. If the physical assets are not given to a specific person, then you need to decide what items will be sold and have the cash value split between the two of you. For instance, a house is an expensive item that may be sold off and have the profits split.
In addition to assets, you must decide on how to divide the debts. You may have existing loans that are not paid off, such as student loans, a vehicle loan, or credit card debt. You need to decide how these debts will be paid off and who will be responsible for managing them. Keep in mind that joint debts, even if they are assigned to one person, can still affect everyone's credit reports after a divorce. That's why you need to make sure that these debts have been discussed and agreed to.
Your spouse may be requesting spousal support after the divorce, which is common when one spouse makes less money than the other. The request can be made so that they have a similar standard of living while on their own. Spousal support can continue indefinitely, but it can end by having it reevaluated by a judge or if the spouse receiving support gets married again.
When children are involved in a divorce, child support will be awarded so that the children have the financial support that they need. Child support is not always owed to the custodial parent by the non-custodial parent, and it is determined based on the child's needs and how the custodial parent is able to provide for them.
If you are unable to come to an agreement in all terms of your separation agreement, know that you can still have your case heard by a judge and have those partial agreements taken into consideration. The judge will combine their decisions with your separation agreement to create an official divorce judgement. This will be the binding decision that determines what happens after your divorce is finalized.