Should I get Legal Advice on my Separation Agreement in Ontario?

Divorce lawyer in Toronto

No matter how insignificant is may seem, any legal documents may have negative consequences in the future if not prepared well. If you have decided to come up with a separation agreement and later divorce, know that the information listed will be used as a basis for your divorce. Going through a legal separation requires legal counsel, the process may be overwhelming. Through legal representation, you can be assured that even if the other party comes up with arguments later, you will have a valid ground to prove that they never had any independent legal advice. Thus, their case could be invalid. It’s therefore a good idea to have a divorce lawyer in Toronto to ensure you manage any issue that may crop up.

Independent Legal Advice on Separation Agreement in Ontario

One of the main questions among a couple ending their relationship is whether the separation agreement should be taken to a family lawyer and whether legal advice on the agreement should be sought. The answer to this question is that it is always highly recommended to seek legal advice on the Agreement before signing, no matter how straightforward the agreement seems to you. While it may seem easy to agree on child custody or visitation when drafting a separation agreement, some spouse finds it hard to disclose all their assets. In such a case, having the assistance of a family lawyer may be the best idea. There is a wide range of reasons why one would seek independent legal advice on the separation agreement. The common ones include:

  • Avoid any legal dispute that may arise in the future:For instance, your spouse may claim that they never understood the Agreement when signing. Having each received legal advice, you are in a better position to defend that claim.
  • Elevation of the inherent value of the separation agreement
  • You can take action if your spouse fails to adhere to the terms contained in the contract
  • It can deter any fraud:A critical aspect of having your separation agreement witnessed by a lawyer is to ensure both parties disclose their financial information, and everyone is satisfied

Note that your separation agreement doesn’t constitute your divorce though it’s a binding contract. You will still be required to prepare divorce paperwork. Sometimes, one may miss essential issues that will be useful in the future; you may not meet your specific needs without the right advice. A good divorce lawyer can offer guidance on how your separation agreement may be notarized.

It’s strongly recommended to have legal counsel before coming up with a separation agreement. This eliminates any challenge you may come across during the signing of your contract. If you have made a separation agreement, and perhaps you do not feel the need to have your document notarized, you can have both of you sign the document in front of a notary. This will help refute any claim if there is a dispute that the separation agreement was signed under duress. Your ex-spouse may also argue that they never understood what they were signing. Having your separation agreement notarized will help you evade such legal issues. If you have any issues while drafting your separation agreement, you can speak with an experienced divorce lawyer. He/she will guide you on coming up with a separation agreement that favors everyone.


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