A separation agreement is a document drawn up and signed by the parties to a marriage, where that marriage has broken down, and where they do not wish to apply to the courts for the purpose of determining the terms of the breakdown.
The deed of separation will contain a clause whereby the parties agree to live apart and it can also make provision for custody and access where there are children, maintenance, division of property and reference to Succession Act rights. The terms are put in writing and signed by both parties.
Cunningham Gilbourne Solicitors can advise you on the terms of your separation agreement. We can also draft a separation agreement based on the agreed terms where the parties have attended mediation.
In the event that the parties cannot agree the terms of a separation the Family Law Reform Act 1989 specifies 6 grounds upon which the court may grant a decree of Judicial Separation. This must be granted on one or more of the said grounds which must be proved on the balance of probabilities. The six grounds are:
- The respondent has committed adultery.
- The respondent has behaved in such a way that the applicant cannot reasonably be expected to live with the respondent.
- There has been desertion by the respondent of the applicant for a continuous period of a least one year immediately preceding the date of the application.
- The spouses have lived apart from one another for a continuous period of at least one year immediately preceding the date of the application and the respondent consents to a decree being granted.
- The spouses have lived apart from one another for a continuous period of at least three years immediately preceding the date of the application.
- The marriage has broken down to the extent that the court is satisfied in all the circumstances that a normal marital relationship has not existed between the spouses for a period of at least one year immediately preceding the date of the application.
If you require advice in relation to any of the services listed above please contact us on 06977583 for a consultation.