Modifying a separation agreement, post divorce


#1

When I left my husband, I was in an emotionally weakened state, and wanted the process to be as peaceful as possible. We both agreed that we wanted an amicable separation and divorce, for ourselves and for the sake of our daughter. In retrospect, my decision to not seek legal coucil for myself was a mistake, and I also agreed to all the terms my husband set forth.
Now, because our agreement was vague in spots, and because of my state of mind at the time, I feel that the agreement needs to be revisited. How difficult is it to modify an agreement, post divorce? For example, we agreed to split all costs for my daughter (I am the primary physical custodial parent) but that has not happened, and I realize now that this puts a burden on me to determine exactly how much this is, rather than having a set amount that is paid monthly. We also agreed to alternate years that we claim her a dependant, which would have meant he would claim her this year; however, I don’t see how that is right, considering that I have paid all her expenses without aid from him - but that is what is in the agreement.


#2

Not an Attorney*

They are extremely hard to set aside, so I would encourage you to work things out with your ex instead of involving the courts…If you go the court route, you would have to convince the court that you were coerced under duress or incapable due to sanity of signing the contract. Regrets now about things you didn’t do or your emotional state are NOT going to fly. I was intimately involved in a prior case where the ex-wife tried to do the same thing for the same reasons, and after lengthy depositions, courts hearings and trials, the agreement was upheld AND the ex-wife ended up having to pay all court costs and partial legal fees. So tread carefully.

PS…Here’s a response for Rosen on the same question, and pretty much confirms the above:

http://www.rosen.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=13672&p=45655


#3

I am not an attorney.

I think it can be quite difficult to modify a separation agreement post divorce HOWEVER… Do you not have an order for child support? I think child support may be one of the issues in which you can’t just “sign away”.


#4

It is very difficult to get an agreement thrown out, but you can easily modify it if both parties are in agreement as to the terms. You should speak with an attorney about the problems with your agreement and get an idea of what can be modified and how it should be presented to the other party so he belives that it is in his best interest to modify.