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EXPLANATORY NOTES FOR UNCONTESTED DIVORCE SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT
This divorce settlement agreement is for use where the divorce is uncontested and where there is no pension interest to be split. It may be used where there is immovable property to be split and where there are minor children. It contains detailed drafting notes to assist with the conclusion thereof. It also contains a substantive disclosure clause and further information as to how a financially-dependent spouse may protect themselves.
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From the outset, please note that it is extremely important that a qualified legal practitioner draws up the clause dealing with how pension fund interests are to be split. Google this issue and you will understand how many legal practitioners get this clause wrong, let alone lay-people, resulting in unenforceable claims. Use this agreement where the division of assets is relatively straightforward as we mention above. Where there are pension interests to be split and you will be proceeding with a DIY uncontested divorce, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for a substantive quote in drafting such settlement agreement for you and assisting you in the DIY process.
We reiterate that where the divorce is relatively straightforward and there is no claim to the pension interest, then use this agreement.
REMEMBER: If there are issues with how the pension interest clause is drafted and such are unenforceable against funds, then a court application (which is costly) will be required to be made to rectify such. Avoid this if possible and have a custom agreement drawn up to properly deal with the pension interest.
Again, purchase this agreement, where there is no pension interest to be divvied up.
You can go to certain Regional Magistrate’s Courts (and NOT the High Court as this will be more expensive as you may require an advocate and may take longer to be heard) and do your divorce for just the costs of the sheriff and the settlement agreement purchased here. We reiterate that this is solely for UNCONTESTED DIVORCES. Typically, you will be assisted with the following at the Divorce Courts:
With enough preparation and research, this should not be a daunting exercise. In fact it can be cost-efficient and expeditious. Do your homework however and have a lot of patience as attending at court can be wearisome for even lawyers!
However, PLEASE NOTE, if there are pension interests to be divided up, such can get complicated in terms of calculations and following statute. Our settlement agreement has detailed drafting notes, but a cursory search on Google will show you that even legal practitioners get clauses in settlement agreements dealing with pension interests wrong, meaning that it becomes difficult to enforce such orders.
We strongly recommend that a bespoke (custom) agreement be drawn up by SITL Legal for you to enable us to do the necessary investigations on your behalf with the various funds and to ensure that such agreement is legally compliant IF THERE ARE PENSION INTERESTS TO BE SPLIT.
To be able to make use of the DIY divorce service at a Regional Magistrate’s Court, the divorce in question must be uncontested. This means that the divorcing parties must basically agree to the divorce and there must be no dissent around the divorce, the division of property, parenting and such like.
Previously divorces could ONLY be obtained in the High Court. Recent changes to SA law mean that one may now obtain an uncontested divorce in an applicable Regional Magistrate’s Court.
NOTE: You could apply for a divorce in a High Court if need be, however, it should be quicker, faster and easier to do a DIY divorce in a Regional Magistrates Court than in the High Court.
Where the ex-wife-to-be is pregnant, or where the couple have minor children, then the involvement of the Family Advocate is required. The Family Advocate must always endorse the Settlement Agreement between the divorcing parties to ensure that parental arrangements regarding minor children are in the best interests of such minor child or minor children, as the case may be.
We have a substantive divorce settlement agreement for sale here that encapsulates a detailed parental plan. There are explanatory and drafting notes within this agreement to guide you in terms of concluding it. This agreement deals with the following: division of marital assets (EXCLUDING PENSION INTERESTS), spousal maintenance, child maintenance, detailed parenting provisions regulating residence of the children, what is to happen in the event of the death of the primary care-taker, religious faith that children are to be brought up under, schooling, transport, mediation, breach, cists, good faith, full disclosure, etc. We reiterate the complexities with regard to dividing pension interests and advise that if the parties are divorcing on an uncontested basis, are doing a DIY divorce, but wish to have a customised (bespoke) settlement agreement and parenting plan drawn up due to complexities around, for example, pension interests, then please email email@example.com for a quote.
How does one proceed with obtaining an uncontested do-it-yourself divorce at a Regional Magistrate’s Court?
After the divorce has been granted, you must submit your identity document and a certified copy of the divorce order to Home Affairs. This is required to evidence the change in marital status and to prove that you are now divorced.