Separation Agreement is Legally Binding or Not ?

Is a Separation Agreement Legally Binding?

Yes, A Separation Agreement is Legally Binding in Ontario as long as Family Law Act 1990 requirements are satisfied.

A Separation Agreement is legally Binding in Ontario. In fact Judges as well as the Legislature encourages parties to settle their disputes by way of a Separation Agreement. Since it gives the parties sufficient opportunity to properly negotiate the terms of the agreement.  The Family Law Act, R.S.O. 1990 specifically states that a separation agreement would prevail over the provision so the Law passed by the Parliament.  It is stated under 2(10)of the Family Law Act, R.S.O. 1990 “A domestic contract dealing with a matter that is also dealt with in this Act prevails unless this Act provides otherwise.  R.S.O. 1990”.

In a number of court decisions, Judges have shown their inclination to upload the terms of the Separation Agreement. It would be safe to say that as a General Rule a Separation Agreement is Legally binding in Ontario. In some situations, a Judge can set aside terms of a Legally Bind Separation Agreement if the Judge is satisfied that either;

  1. The Parties to the Separation Agreement did not make a full and frank financial disclosure. One of the parties did not provide ca complete list and value of all asset and liabilities, including complete details of the expenses and support received from the Government, Or
  2. The terms of the Agreement is not in the best interest of the Child, Or;
  3. The terms of the Agreement is plainly unfair in the eyes of Law, such as a situation where one spouses gives up on her lawful right for spousal support without any compensation whatsoever causing her to face hardship.

Separation Agreement List of Cases

This follow list of cases Dealing with Separation Agreement are frequently relied upon in Ontario and this is list of  cases are supplied to judges hearing family law cases in the Superior Court of Justice.

  1. Rick v. Brandsema2009 SCC 10
  2. Marinangeli v. Marinangeli (2003), 66 O.R. (3d) 40 (C.A.)
  3. Virc v. Blair, 2017 ONCA 394(inherent in the duty to disclose is duty to fairly value the asset)

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