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What issues arise when drafting divorce settlement agreements?

Sometimes, Florida residents may choose to do business through a simple handshake and exchanging of one's word. While individuals may make these types of agreements on a daily basis in their personal and professional lives, it is important that agreements involving divorce be committed to writing, in order to account for any number of issues that can arise.

Last week, this blog discussed the use of settlement agreements in divorce matters. While divorces can involve a number of hotly contested issues, the parties often reach agreement on many, if not all, of these issues in the case.

Given the importance of the issues decided in the divorce, it is vital that the settlement agreement be drafted properly to avoid a future dispute, or to protect oneself in the event a dispute arises. For example, if property interests are divided between the spouses in a divorce, a simple oversight in drafting can cause major headaches later on. The agreement should cover all assets the parties are agreeing to divide, and the manner in which division is taking place, so that a dispute does not later arise with respect to a valuable asset that was not included in the agreement.

Likewise, if future steps are needed to carry out the division of property interests, such as future conveyances that must be made between the parties, these steps should be specified. As such, it is important to anticipate future issues that may arise, in order to include provisions in the agreement that protect the person and advance their interests.

Source: The Florida Bar, "Divorce in Florida," accessed on Jan. 23, 2016

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