How and when should I start negotiating a separation agreement with my husband. He is moving out of the house tomorrow.
He has agreed to pay half of our bills for at least a year and made a few other promises. Do I just take these verbal statements to a lawyer and have him/her draft the agreement.
I really don’t understand how to start and proceed with this process.
Also, I’ve heard that I should get photocopies of financial statements, paycheck, etc. But I don’t know where he keeps much of this stuff. Plus he will probably be taking these records with him tomorrow.
You need to make copies of all of this info before it leaves the house even if you have to wait til he goes to bed and go to an ofc. supply place to make copies. You need to know what you have as far as life ins., medical ins., outstanding debts, bank accts., any investment accts., WILL and tax return from last year. Don’t mean to sound paranoid but you don’t divorce the same man you marry…took awhile for that to sink in for me. When my husband of 28 yrs. screamed at me that if I hired a lawyer things would get very ugly…I finally got the message. He became verbally abusive once I refused to give him his way and after I ended up in the E.R. due to major stress he finally moved out. He was hoping I would leave but I was and still am a dependent spouse because I have a manor health issue.
I am sorry to say that often once they leave they change their tune about what they are willing to do and if they are getting free advice from friends or relatives it can make it worse. If you have been married a long time, have children, need spousal support, and have any assets that should be divided you really need to see about hiring an attorney UNLESS you really think he will sit down at the table and meet you half way on a separation agreement. I don’t have a lot of confidence in that but since I don’t know him only you can make that decision. Just be alert and watch your back. . Remember whatever you have not asked for before your divorce becomes final you can kiss goodbye. Good luck.
If your husband is leaving tomorrow, create a document stating exactly what he said he was willing to do for the year. Put in anything else that you feel you need to put in (preliminary custody, child support) and see if he will sign it. If he intends to keep his ‘word’, he should have no problem. If he balks…then he probably wouldn’t have abided by it originally. He can’t just up and leave without giving you financial support. He is responsible for at least 1/2 the mortgage and existing marital debts.
YOU are entitled to 1/2 marital assets and are responsible for 1/2 debt too.
You MUST be in protection mode. Open your own band account if you dont already have one. Make a list of your property and bills. Check all joint bank accounts for any unusual deposits or withdrawals. If he refuses to sign anything, or starts getting defensive…then you need to immediately find yourself a lawyer. Period. Do not share a lawyer…get your own.