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Divorce Bullet Points Part 2: Settlement Agreements and Trials

Simplifying Equitable Distribution Through Mediation

As a divorce attorney, collaborative lawyer, and trained mediator, Mr. Shapiro can offer his clients advice and guidance from various parts of the legal world when it comes to dealing with the end of a relationship. However, it can be helpful to find some of the answers to your most pressing questions online, before you begin your initial consultation. That’s why Mr. Shapiro has put together not just a series of blog posts, but a full bullet-point guide for those who want to learn more about divorce.

This particular section of the litigation bullet point series deals with things like settlement agreements, separation, and trials. If you’re concerned about things like child custody agreements and how separation agreements can help with no-fault divorce, read on.

Relocation Clauses and Divorce

Most professionals agree that the most complicated aspect of family law will always be dealing with things like child custody and parenting times. Ultimately, it’s always within the court’s discretion to decide what to do about child agreements based on the best interests of that child. This means that even when settlement agreements are ironed out before a marriage comes to an end, those agreements may not hold over the years if they are not in the best interests of the child or children.

  • Mr Shapiro always reminds his clients that the courts of New York are required to follow the best interests standards when deciding how to address an issue of family law dealing with child custody and visitation. Usually, court orders on things like parenting time and visitation will not be altered by a modification case, unless a significant change in circumstances has taken place. When these changes occur, it’s also important for parents to prove that the change merits a reconsideration of the best interests of the child.
  • In some cases, couples working with Mr Shapiro might create an agreement before their divorce that helps to guide decisions made about visitation and custody. However, this won’t always be the case. In one specific matter, two parties within a case created a relocation clause that allowed the mother to move within 55 miles of the partner. However, the father believed that several years after the agreement was made, a reassessment was required to see if relocation was in the best interest of the children.
  • Significant changes can take place between the time when a parenting time or custody order is established, and when parents decide to take advantage of that agreement. In the case above, the courts did decide that moving away from home, years later, was a substantial change of circumstances and may or may not be in the best interests of the children, despite the fact that it was pre-agreed that this distance move would be fine. The appellate court sent that case back to the lower court for further proceedings to decide it. Each case must be decided on its own merits.
How do Separation Agreements Impact Divorce Cases?

Just as agreements about custody and parenting time can help to guide decisions made in a divorce, couples can also use other strategies to outline what they want to happen if their marriage comes to an end. Separation agreements are very helpful in these cases. If you’re not sure whether you’re ready for a divorce yet, for instance, your separation gives you a chance to test the waters.

  • Darren Shapiro and other divorce attorneys may recommend a separation agreement to people who aren’t sure about divorce yet. These agreements can give people more options to work with once they’ve tested the waters of the divorce. For instance, you can decide to continue with your marriage, or you could consider applying for an uncontested divorce.
  • While separation agreements can assist with uncontested divorce cases, they’re not the right option for everyone. If your biggest dispute with your partner is focused on child custody and parenting time, then we can see in the case above that the decisions you make could be subject to judicial review. The court will need to agree that your choices are in the best interests of your children.
  • If speed is an issue, then you may also find that you can come to terms on your divorce a lot faster if you choose to serve papers to your partner immediately, rather than using a settlement agreement first. This means that some people will go straight into divorce, just so that they can carry on with their lives as quickly as possible.
Stipulations of Settlement for Divorce Litigation

Stipulations of settlement for ongoing cases, otherwise known as “settlement agreements,” are great when partners need to figure out things like, how they are going to manage their finances for two individual parties. During these discussions, you can discuss things like child and spouse maintenance, and who might need some extra help after the marriage comes to an end.

Learning more about what each side of the couple needs from the end of their divorce is a great way to move things along quickly and conveniently for both parties. However, there are different options available. As with most aspects of divorce, there’s not always a one-size-fits-all solution.

  • Creating a settlement agreement can help Darren Shapiro’s clients to answer any questions that they may have about their future after divorce. For instance, you can arrange who is going to continue living in a family home and discuss how debts and assets will be split going forward. You can also decide things like what is going to happen to modify things as time moves on.
  • A divorce lawyer like Mr. Shapiro can sometimes help with simplifying the separation process for you. For instance, they can draft your stipulation of settlement or agreement on your behalf. Mr Shapiro has a lot of litigation experience to draw on when negotiating for a settlement agreement in court.
  • In settlement agreements, you can highlight some of the decisions that you have made about what’s going to take place after your divorce is final. Knowing exactly who will have access to joint and shared savings and who will be responsible for certain debts can offer a lot of crucial peace of mind for parties in a divorce.

If you want to learn more about any of the issues addressed above, you can find additional advice on this blog, or contact Mr. Darren Shapiro. There’s an easy contact form to use, and you can get in touch over the phone at (516) 333-6555.

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