Legal document

First of all, is a typed,notarized document a legal,binding separation agreement if it has been signed by two individuals and witnessed? Does it need to be filed thru the Court to be considered “legally separated”? If is has custody agreements, etc are they also “legal and binding” or does an attorney need to be involved?

A contract is valid as a separation agreement if it is signed by both parties before a Notary Public. It need not be filed, in fact the courts do not file separation agreements, though it may be recorded with the register of deeds, and should be if one party plans to buy real property prior to divorce ( and the agreement contains the proper language required to release one another’s property rights). Custody arrangement by contract are also valid, and though I always recommend folks have an attorney review an agreement before it is signed it is not necessary for the agreement to be a legal and binding document.