First, make sure that the Settlement Agreement covers all of the necessary issues and that the provisions are fair for YOU. If you have not conferred with an attorney yet, please do that and make sure that the Agreement is reviewed in detail by your attorney. Only then should you ask him to sign the Agreement. The Agreement should address the bills to make sure that he is paying a fair share and that you can afford to live after the divorce.
No you should not ask your husband to sign an agreement without consulting with an attorney first. Where did you get this "agreement?" What issues does it address? You don't mention children. So, I'll assume there are none. Is his name on the deed to the house? the mortgage? does he have a 401k? do you? do either or both of you have retirement plans to divide? joint accounts? CDs? IRAs? are you keeping the house? any equity? negative equity? are the cars in both your names? one? the other? paid off? etc. Do you have life insurance? do the policies have value? is there any other real property? whose name are the utilities in? etc etc etc . . . . . . .. .see a lawyer - for heaven's sake
I have no idea where you got the agreement, but unless a lawyer wrote it, it is worthless. From what you posted, you don't even have an uncontested divorce (an uncontested one is one where you and he have fully agreed on all issues). With a home, debt and likely other issues, you want a lawyer to draw up proper papers. If he agrees it can be very inexpensive. If he does not agree, you'll spend more for a contested case.
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You will need to re-evaluate your living arrangements if you are going to get a divorce, especially if you are going to keep the property you mention. You need to take a true look at your needs and your income. You probably need to go and sit down with an attorney so that the entire picture can be looked at.
Without knowing the terms and provisions of the "agreement" as well as things such as the length of the marriage, the assets and obligations of the marriage, whether or not there are children of the marriage, the financial status, health and financial capabilities of you and your spouse, there is only one logical and appropriate response to your inquiry: retain competent legal counsel ASAP.
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I may have self interest at heart, but I would never enter into the most important agreement of your life without an attorney. There are a multitude of issues that could come back to haunt you and ones that you should be indemnified against especially in a case such as yours where there is debt and the transfer of titles and deeds necessary. Some counties still require testimony in an uncontested divorce and all counties will require the divorce to be filed correctly with all necessary documents provided by statute. Most attorneys will handle an uncontested matter rather inexpensively and it is well worth the money to get it done correctly.
You refer to an agreement you want your husband to sign. Who prepared it and does it include everything you need to cover in an agreement, i.e. alimony, division of property, division of debts, taxes paid together in prior years, etc. This agreement is going to be a binding contract between you and your husband and once it is signed by both of you and filed into Court with a divorce complaint, will become the final order of the Court. I strongly suggest that you have an attorney who specializes in divorce law to review it an advise you. In a divorce, all assets and debts accumulated during the divorce are to be split equitably. Since he has had an affair and left the home, he could be held responsible for the majority of the debts.
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