It’s always wise to settle your divorce out of court as it’s cheaper, faster, reduces stress, and you and your ex have more control of the divorce outcome.

Since you are solving your case out of court, you should have a divorce agreement which is a document that covers all the issues and agreements involved in your divorce. Besides having the agreement made and filed by experienced family lawyers, you should ensure that it contains all the relevant details.

Some of the details that should be in the document include:

A detailed parenting schedule

Since you won’t be living together, you need to develop a detailed schedule on who will be having custody of the children at any given time.

Even with a detailed schedule in place, it’s common for parents to have disputes, so you should ensure that the schedule is what is good for the children.

As you are coming up with the schedule, include everything, including who will be responsible for the children during the school holidays, when one parent is sick, and any other time.

Specifics about spousal and child support

In most cases, there will be alimony and child support exchanged between the divorcing parties. To avoid disputes later down the road, have specific provisions so that everyone knows their obligations.

Include all the details, including the current incomes of each party and how much the contributing parent will be contributing every month.

You also should specify the dates when each payment will be made and its duration.

Life changes are inevitable, so you should have a clause that specifies what will happen should one of the parents lose their job, remarry, or die.

A detailed plan for selling the house

There are two ways of settling the house issue: selling the house to other people or one couple buying out the house from the other.

If both of you are no longer living in the house and you have decided to sell it, then share the money, you should come up with a detailed plan on how you will undertake the selling. Most couples will list the house 30 days after completing the divorce process and then leave it on the market until it sells.

To avoid problems in the future, go to details and specify the orders that you will accept and those you won’t.

If one of the spouses is retaining the house after a buyout, the chances are high that they will need to refinance the home. You should include the timeframe at which the refinancing will happen and specify the type of deed you will exchange.

Life insurance

If you or your spouse will be paying child support or alimony, have a provision in your divorce agreement that requires the spouse paying child support to maintain the life insurance in the amount sufficient to secure their obligation.

To secure the alimony and/or child support, the policy should name the other spouse as the beneficiary.

This is vital as it ensures that the receiving parent continues to provide the necessary support to the children and themselves in the event the paying parent passes on after divorce.

Division of the retirement accounts

If you have retirement assets, list all of them and detail how you will divide them and who will keep what. If you have a pension and 401k, you will need a qualified domestic relations order (QDRO) to authorize the division of the account.

In the agreement you prepare with your divorce lawyers Fairfax VA, have a provision about who will complete the QDRO and who will be responsible for its preparation. If you will be dividing the IRA, you can do so by rollover, but ensure that you specify the timeframe at which you will undertake it.