We offer a “Marital Settlement Agreement” template for $20. If you elect to purchase this template, you start with the framework or template of a Marital Settlement Agreement consisting of introductory provisions, then the “body” of the agreement, and concluding with a host of concluding “boilerplate” legal paragraphs that lawyers frequently include in Marital Settlement Agreements. The “body” of the Marital Settlement Agreement includes various topics that parties typically want to include in their settlement agreement. The topics include the following: 1) Spousal Support; 2) Child Custody; 3) Child Support; 4) Division of Assets; 5) Division of Debts; 6) Division of Retirement Assets; 7) Division of Bank Accounts; 8) Division of Motor Vehicles; 9); Disposition of the Family Home; 10) Life Insurance provisions; 11) College Education Provisions; 12) Income Tax Provisions; 13) Attorney Fees Provisions; 14) Equalizing Payment Provisions; and 15) A collection of additional provisions on topics you may want to include in your settlement agreement.
The topics contained in the “body” of the Marital Settlement Agreement framework come with various options. For example, the “body” of the Marital Settlement Agreement starts with the topic of spousal support. You can click on the spousal support link and it will take you to pages with 8 different types of spousal support agreements (i.e., mutual waiver; reservation of jurisdiction; buy out; non-modifiable as to amount; non-modifiable as to duration; etc.). You can review the various spousal support options, select the spousal support option you want in your settlement agreement, make any edits you may want, and then “copy and paste” that option into your Marital Settlement Agreement template. The next topic in the “body” of the Marital Settlement Agreement template is child custody. You can click on the child custody link and it will take you to a page with various types of child custody options (i.e., sole legal custody; joint legal custody; plus various examples of different types of physical custody arrangements). The custody link also provides you with pages of numerous child custody provisions that you may or may not want included in your agreement. You can select the custody provisions you want and then “copy and paste” those provisions into your Marital Settlement Agreement framework. It is very easy to do.
You can edit our sample Marital Settlement Agreement provisions. Delete topics you don’t want or need. You can add your own provisions to the agreement if you want the Marital Settlement Agreement to cover a topic or issue we did not address in our template. When you are finished, you will have a unique, detailed Marital Settlement Agreement that says exactly what you want it to say. You can then print that agreement and attach it to your Judgment (FL-180) form and submit it to the court for a judge to sign.
There are advantages to using the Marital Settlement Agreement template. As one example, in the optional spousal support paragraphs we include with our Marital Settlement Agreement template, we have a “Gavron Warning”. A Gavron warning is language that can be included in a divorce judgment. A Gavron warning advises the recipient of spousal support that he or she should make reasonable efforts to assist in providing for his or her support needs and if they fail to make reasonable efforts, this failure may be one of the factors the court takes into consideration when modifying or terminating spousal support down the road. If the divorce judgment contains a Gavron warning and some years after the divorce, the recipient of support has failed to make reasonable efforts to become self-supporting, then the payor of support can file a motion to reduce or terminate spousal support, including a request that the court impute income to the recipient equal to the amount the recipient would have been earning had reasonable efforts been made. If your divorce judgment does not include a Gavron Warning, the court can decline to modify or terminate support on the theory that nobody warned the recipient that he or she is required to make reasonable efforts to become self-supporting. The spousal support Judicial Council form (FL-343) does not include a Gavron Warning. If you were using the Judicial Council forms approach to your divorce judgment, you would not even realize that a Gavron Warning was something you may want to include in your judgment.
If you want to use the Marital Settlement Agreement approach, click the “Templates Database” button on our homepage to purchase the “Marital Settlement Agreement” template.