Going, going, gone. One of you has made the decision to bail, but before you run to the divorce court do yourself a major favour – do your preparation work. At this point, the marriage is done; it is now a time to divide the spoils. This can be a dangerous time. One partner may not accept facts and will attempt to circumvent the process. There is also a danger of one spouse assuming the role of “nice guy”. This partner hopes you will see how fair and reasonable they are and he or she will win you over. In the absence of a workable plan, it becomes a painful exercise.

Your separation is legal as soon as you are living apart and do not intend to continue cohabitation.
It is possible to be separated even if you still live in the same house as long as the elements of separation are present. The action of separating must involve an open and complete break from the marital relationship and may include:

Free legal separation agreement form
  • the ceasing of sexual activity
  • living in separate rooms
  • operating separate bank accounts
  • not sharing meals
  • not providing household services
  • not sharing mutual entertainment inside or outside the home
  • not representing to other people that the marriage is continuing

There are a number of legal rights and obligations which are triggered by separation so protect your rights with a written separation agreement. If you are separated now, or are considering separation, then this free separation agreement can be useful. This is our newest sample agreement, written with the legal jargon removed, and it includes provisions for child support.

Your separation agreement provides proof of the date of separation.

  • Settle various issues directly with your spouse using your free separation agreement, without going to court.
  • It is possible to settle your affairs without a lawyer. A lawyer does not need to create or sign your separation agreement to make it any more legal.
  • Your free separation agreement can clearly define your rights and obligations.
  • When signed, and witnessed by any adult, your separation agreement is legal and binding.
  • The separation agreement is a domestic contract which you keep for reference and does not need to be registered someplace unless required as evidence.

If you must go to a lawyer you can save a $3,000 legal bill by using the sample separation agreement form to do your homework.

Many people go to their lawyer for a separation agreement without any idea of what it should contain or what terms are agreeable to them. This situation is frustrating for the lawyer and costly for you because a great deal of billable time must spent gathering information and negotiating the terms of the agreement, negotiations that you and your spouse could do yourselves.