86 – Online Separation Agreements Can Have Many Critical Legal Errors


Certified Specialist in Family Law, John Schuman, looked at separation agreements sold online and found they were full of basic errors in law.  People buy these agreements looking for a quick and easy way to bring finality and certainty to their separation.  But instead, these agreements contain many serious legal errors that can render the agreement useless and put the separated spouses, and their children, in jeopardy.

In this edition of the Ontario Family Law Podcast, John Schuman, goes over an online separation agreement from a Canadian company and explains some of the largest legal errors contained in it.  He shows how the agreement gets basic legal concepts wrong with respect to:

  • Parenting/child custody
  • Child support
  • Financial Disclosure
  • Spousal support
  • Pension division
  • Tax implications of separation

Do not use an online separation agreement, and certainly do not pay for one, until after viewing this episode.   This episode could also be the next installment in the “Things Everyone Gets Wrong About Divorce Law” series and is a useful refresher on several basic Ontario Family Law concepts, even for people who would not use an online separation agreement.  As John points out, using these online separation agreements may be the same, or worse, than having no written agreement at all.

If you found this episode helpful or informative, check out these previous episodes:

The Ontario Family Law Podcast is a companion to the book, Guide to the Basics of Ontario Family Law, which is available as a $9.99 Kindle eBook, Kobo eBook, or iBook for your iPad or iPhone and as a paperback from Amazon and better bookstores. Get it here: https://schumanlaw.ca/family-law-guide.html


00:00 Introduction/Opening

02:17 Parenting (Child Custody) errors

04:08 Child Support – basic concepts are wrong

07:28 Financial Disclosure – what the agreement missed

08:24 Spousal Support – serious legal errors

10:18 Pension Division – the agreement leaves the member in jeopardy.

11:21 Tax Implications of Separation – not addressed at all in agreement.

12:20 Closing

Contact Us

To contact John Schuman, Certified Specialist in Family Law, call 416-446-5847, email him at john.schuman@devrylaw.ca, or use the form on this page.

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