The Divorce settlement
In Its essence, the divorce settlement is an agreement that legally arranges the separation of the couple.
Is it identical to a financial agreement? No, while a financial agreement is intended to regulate the couple’s financial issues when they live together, a divorce agreement regulates the couple’s legal relationship at the time of separation.
What should be included in a divorce agreement?
. In principle, consent to divorce and / or separate.1
- 2. The issue of child custody, i.e., the identity of the custodial parent at the time of separation.
- 3. The issue of child support, i.e., the amount the non-custodial parent will pay to the custodial parent after separation for the costs of living of the couple’s children.
- 4. Arrangement of visitation and connection with the children of the couple after separation. .
- 5. The matter of the property, i.e., the manner in which the property accumulated by the couple during the marriage shall be distributed (the apartment, the social benefits of the couple, the savings, the joint vehicle, etc.) and the distribution of the debts accrued by the couple if such exists.
- 6. The matter of spouse Alimony and the providing for her/his living after the divorce: when in general in Israel in most cases Alimony is wavered and the spouse is “compensated in other ways and arrangements.
Important to emphasize , contrary to the matter of custody, property, arrangements for visits and child support (components 2-6), for which an approved agreement binds both spouses, the divorce itself is the exclusive authority of the Rabbinical Court and cannot be enforced by the family court even though this matter is mentioned in the agreement.
What are the causes of litigation in family and rabbinical courts which often occur between spouses?
The arguments and the need for judicial decisions, derive from the fact that the spouses disagree in one or more issues of the separation, such as the sum of the child support that has to be allotted, the manner in which the property is shared, the right parent to be the custodian, etc. In these cases when the spouses and / or their attorney’s do not reach agreement between them, the court will decide the disputed issues
Is signature of the couple sufficient for validation of the agreement?
No, a divorce agreement is not valid until it is approved by a family court judge or a judge in the Rabbinical court in the presence of the couple.
Can spouses make an agreement themselves without representation?
Yes, an agreement can be made independently, but in the absence of proper advise and proper legal counsel and without knowing their rights and the proper legal way to secure them in the agreement, the couple may make an agreement that will be “disastrous” for either spouse or both. Therefore it is always recommended to be represented, especially concerning the issue of divorce which is extremely complex and sensitive.