The time between when you file for divorce and when a judge makes that divorce official can feel endless, even if it takes less than a year. Your ex-spouse might take every opportunity to mention that you and your current partner moved in together before your divorce officially becomes final; your ex might even try to use this fact to discredit you as a parent. Paying alimony to your spouse while the official divorce is pending is painful, especially because the amount is almost always more than the alimony you will have to pay after your divorce is officially over. Once you get the part of the process where you and your spouse sign a divorce agreement, though, you are into the home stretch. Agreeing about property division when you and your spouse disagree about almost everything else can be a challenge, but it is possible to conclude a marital settlement agreement without hiring a lawyer. The most practical choice is to hire a California legal document assistant to prepare your marital settlement agreement and other official divorce documents.
What is a Marital Settlement Agreement?
A marital settlement agreement is an official divorce document in which two spouses who are about to make their divorce official specify how they will divide their marital property and debts. It is one of the key documents that makes the terms of your divorce official. If the couple has children together, the marital settlement agreement also addresses issues of parenting schedules and child support. After you and your spouse sign a marital settlement agreement, you are ready to request a final judgment of divorce. Even if one of you requested certain things in your divorce petition and the other one made different requests in a response to the petition, the marital settlement agreement is your chance to specify the terms that are acceptable to both of you. If you have a marital settlement agreement, the court will simply apply the terms that you set out in your marital settlement agreement. Your divorce judgment will simply restate what you already decided in your marital settlement agreement, except that it will also declare you legally divorced and will contain a judge’s signature. If you have a marital settlement agreement, you do not even need to go to a hearing to finalize your divorce.
Even if the marital settlement agreement does not enable you to walk away with every single thing you requested in your divorce petition or response, filing a marital settlement agreement is much better than not filing one. If you and your spouse do not reach an official divorce agreement, then the judge will decide; in other words, you have more control over the outcome if you and your spouse agree on the terms of your divorce cooperatively. Besides, signing a marital settlement agreement with your spouse is much less expensive than hiring a lawyer to convince the judge to grant your requests about the terms of your divorce.
Having Your Official Divorce Agreement Prepared Professionally Is the Best Option
You do not need a lawyer to make your divorce official if you and your spouse plan to file a marital settlement agreement. Contact A People’s Choice to have a certified legal document assistant prepare and file your marital settlement agreement.
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