Absolute Divorce and Divorce Agreement

My spouse has filed for an absolute divorce. We have worked to create a divorce agreement that we have both approved. He said that he filed the divorce agreement with the absolute divorce paperwork and was told at the court house that he did not need to send the divorce agreement did with the absolute divorce. I only recieved paperwork in the mail for an absolute divorce. We have not signed the divorce agreement yet. My spouse stated that the judge will rule on the divorce agreement during our hearing. I am confused as to why he was told to not send the divorce agreement if it will be discussed during the hearing because I could not respond to it. I believe that the judge will only rule on the absolute divorce and not the divorce agreement. Should I get him to sign our divorce agreement separately, before we have a hearing or will the judge actually discuss the divorce agreement? My spouse and I actually do get along and was able to work this out. He can not afford an attorney and wanted to do things on his own. I just think he doesn’t know what he is doing.

The divorce agreement, assuming it is a separation agreement and property settlement, is not part of the absolute divorce proceeding and will not be part of the absolute divorce court date. A separation agreement is completely separate from any court proceeding and it is never filed with the courts unless a fully signed and executed separation agreement will be incorporated into an absolute divorce judgment (not typical).

You will need to ensure that your separation agreement fully resolving equitable distribution (the division of the marital property and debts) is signed and fully executed prior to the absolute divorce judgment being entered. If it is not, you will be forever barred from asking the courts to divide the marital property once the absolute divorce judgment is entered.

Anna Ayscue

Attorney with Rosen Law Firm Cary • Chapel Hill • Durham • Raleigh • Wake Forest

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