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Tips for Drafting a Successful MSA


If you and your spouse have agreed that it is time to dissolve the marriage there are legal documents that will need to be created, even if the two of you generally agree on the terms of the divorce. For example, if you are unfamiliar with what a Marital Settlement Agreement (MSA) is, know that an MSA serves as the blueprint for life after divorce, outlining the conditions that both parties agree upon.

When you talk to an Orlando family lawyer, they can provide you with practical advice on creating a solid MSA. Deciding on key components now will provide you with clarity for years to come.

Cornerstones of a Robust Agreement

Ambiguity in an MSA can lead to disputes and legal battles, so it is important to prioritize being explicit and specific in all provisions. Avoid vague language that could be interpreted differently by each party. A good agreement will allow you to sidestep future misunderstandings, reducing the likelihood of returning to court for clarification.

Essentials you will want to include:

  • Division of assets. The equitable distribution of assets is crucial, both parties should have a firm financial footing when exciting a marriage, when possible. List all marital property, including real estate, bank accounts, investments, and personal possessions. Then specify how these assets will be divided, whether through sale, transfer of ownership, or other agreed-upon means.
  • Child custody arrangements. When children are involved, their well-being requires detailed child custody arrangements, including visitation schedules, holidays, and decision-making responsibilities. Be specific about how major decisions regarding education, healthcare, and religious upbringing will be made.
  • Spousal support. Depending on the financial specifics, alimony or spousal support may be part of an agreement. Defining the amount, duration, and method of payment will rely on a review of the length of the marriage, financial contributions, and the earning capacity of each spouse.
  • Debt allocation. Beyond asset review, there may also be the need for debt allocation, assessing who is responsible for mortgages, loans, or credit card balances. A thorough analysis of debt ensures accountability.
  • Insurance and benefits. Address health, life, and other insurance policies, as well as any benefits such as retirement accounts. Specify how these will be managed post-divorce, ensuring both parties are aware of their obligations and entitlements.

There also needs to be language within the agreement that outlines the consequences for non-compliance. This provides a level of enforcement and discourages any attempts to deviate from the agreed-upon terms.

Building a Solid Foundation for the Future

Crafting a successful Florida MSA is pivotal. Talk to an Orlando family lawyer about how you can build a legal document that provides you with peace of mind and allows you to navigate the challenging terrain of divorce with greater confidence.

How will you build the next chapter in your life? Taking time to create a thoughtful and comprehensive divorce agreement sets the stage for a smoother transition and a more secure future for all parties involved. Share where you are today and your hopes for the future with the attorneys at Donna Hung Law. Call 407-999-0099 or contact us online.