Pennsylvania law does not require spouses to gain court approval for a separation agreement. This means they can privately contract out the division of their estate. Many couples may decide to separate prior to or instead of going through a legal divorce. This can be to allow for an adjustment period for the family to settle into new living arrangements, amongst other reasons.
Under Chapter 23, Section 3103 of the Pennsylvania Code, separation begins when you no longer behave as spouses. This can include no longer living together–though this is not a requirement– or can be as simple as you no longer socializing and spending time with one another.
A separation agreement is a legally-bound civil contract between spouses to resolve their personal matters including division of property, debts, custody, and child and spousal support.
Elements of a Separation Agreement
Though not required in full, a separation agreement may include:
- Amount of child support to be paid and how often
- Custody schedule
- Responsibility of bill payments
- Who will remain at the marital residence
- How to split finances and tax deductions for children
- Health insurance
When creating the separation agreement, you’ll need the experience of a family law attorney to guide you through the process. Since a couple doesn’t need to legally separate to file for a divorce, the process of divorcing your spouse post-separation won’t take long.
Let a Scranton Family Lawyer Help You
Our Pennsylvania family law firm is committed to achieving the desired outcome of your case. Attorney Craig Kalinoski knows this is a difficult time for you and your family. That’s why he’ll help you negotiate outside of court before seeking legal action. For more information, contact our Scranton family law firm for a free initial consultation.