Read these 9 Divorce Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Legal tips and hundreds of other topics.
This depends largely upon which state you live in. There are some states that have adopted a no-fault divorce where no grounds or reason have to be given in order to file for divorce.
However, in states that do still require a reason or grounds for the cause having been filed, these can be things such as cruelty, adultery or desertion. There may be others such as imprisonment after committing a felony that, while rare, may be applicable.
Any grounds that are claimed must be present when you file for divorce. Any distribution of property and assets may be affected in those states that require a declaration of fault. To make sure you're protected in such a case, it is encouraged that you consult with a reputable divorce lawyer familiar with the existing laws governing divorce in your state.
While the temptation to purchase divorce forms from your local office supply store does exist, especially if it seems that all issues have been resolved between the parties and agreed upon, there is an inherent danger in not seeking the advice of a reputable divorce attorney familiar with divorce laws in your state.
You are to be commended if agreements have been reached with regard to all issues, however, there may be issues lurking in the future that will not come to light until much later down the road and could easily be avoided by consulting with a divorce lawyer. Oftentimes people give up rights or the rights of their children by not ensuring that every issue has been broached and covered between the parties.
Because attorneys can only legally and ethically represent one party or the other, it is also advisable that both parties seek independent counsel, again, to ensure all issues have been addressed fairly and properly. While divorce advice can be sought in numerous places, it is still encouraged for both parties to seek their own counsel's advice.
The laws of the federal government prevail over most retirement plans. There are usually laws set up which allow the plans to receive special tax treatment, allowing contributions to go to the plan to be made before taxes are paid and also allowing the income on the money in the plan to build up without current tax consequences.
Upon a divorce, these types of retirement plans must be divided by a special order called a “Qualified Domestic Relations Order” or QDRO. This order will determine how much of each payment should go to the spouse.
Be sure your divorce attorney is aware of how contributions are made to the plan so that he/she can adequately protect your rights with regard to what share of his retirement you're entitled to.
While there may not be anything that evokes a “pit of the stomach” feeling than being served with divorce papers, inaction could result in a loss of rights, property and other entitlements gained during the marriage.
Obviously because a divorce is a lawsuit that is initiated by the filing of a petition, the party being filed against, or respondent, is then obligated to file an answer within a prescribed amount of time, usually a time frame of 20 days from the date of the service of the petition. Regardless of the respondent's desire to work the issues of the marriage out, in most states containing no-fault divorce laws, the petitioner can obtain a divorce with or without an answer by the respondent.
In order to maintain and preserve all rights, especially if there are children and marital property involved, it is imperative that divorce lawyer be consulted, especially before entering into any type of agreement with the petitioner.
Often word of mouth recommendations are used when contemplating a divorce lawyer to contact. Your local bar association can also provide names of attorneys specializing in family and divorce law.
Website companies exist as well, to assist in placing attorney with client by simply filling out an online form and letting the staff review your case. These companies will then quickly provide you with a list of attorneys in your area that you can choose from to seek advice on the issues relating to your particular situation.
These services are fast, free, and confidential search for those seeking to be paired with divorce lawyers in their area. Because divorce laws vary from state to state, it is highly encouraged that you seek such an attorney to protect your rights and the rights of your family.
There are actually two types of divorce, absolute and limited.
* An absolute divorce is just what it says, an absolute termination of marriage rights and obligations by a court of law.
* A limited divorce, which is not offered in all states, is a termination of the right for the parties to live together, but keeps in tact, the obligations and the other rights of the marriage.
Many states have adopted and may grant what is termed a “no-fault” divorce, which is a type of absolute divorce. Under the “no-fault” statute, a divorce may be granted without the party seeking the divorce having to prove any allegations of fault.
Some argue that because the divorce laws have loosened in this area, especially by the granting of no-fault divorces, that the divorce rate has risen. In attempt to restore the tradition of life-long marriage to the American culture, some states are now granting covenant marriages, which entail pre-marital counseling and other various additions to the traditional “I do.”
While every action that is filed with a court of law is public information and most every divorce record that is filed is public information, there may be occasions for a case to be sealed if, and only if, it can be proven that there will be serious harm done to minors involved, and only then it may only be a portion of the record sealed.
Most often, even if the divorce has ended in a settlement agreement, the court will most likely require that the details be carefully detailed in a document by that name and filed as a matter of record in the divorce case.
In most states and most counties, public records, including divorce records, can even be found via Internet, but oftentimes the sensitive details will be contained only in the hard records found in the court file, which is housed in the clerk's office at the county courthouse.
Should there be issues that you do not want to become of public record, it is encouraged that you seek divorce advice from a reputable family attorney or divorce lawyer who can address all your questions and concerns.
In this age of inexpensive DIY divorce kits and "expert" Internet advice, it's tempting to think about bypassing the knowledge and expertise of a divorce laywer. However, even the most amicable divorce should have the final papers reviewed and signed by a divorce lawyer. Remember, what you and your ex agree upon today may not be valid a year from now. Things change and when they do, having a divorce lawyer on your side can prevent a lot of additional expense and grief down the road.
Divorce can take an emotional and financial toll, which is why a divorce lawyer is so important. Dividing assets, ensuring the fair division of debts, and providing protection against future liabilities are some of the services a good divorce lawyer can provide.
Remember, a good divorce lawyer is someone you can feel confident and comfortable talking to. Sensitive issues will come up and it's important to feel that your concerns are being heard. Don't be afraid to shop around, ask about lawyer fees, and ask for the advice of other people who've gone through a similar situation.
A good divorce lawyer can help you make sure you get a fair shake at a time when you're most vulnerable.
Making decision to get a divorce is a difficult one. In all likelihood, you are probably feeling emotional, and at times, unable to cope or make the best choices for yourself without the help of a trained professonal. You might need someone to help you make legal decisions that are in your best interest, research divorce law specific to your case, and speak on your behalf in the court of law. This is why you need to seek the services of a divorce lawyer when the time is right.
There are many complex factors that come into play when you seek a divorce, especially if there are children involved. A divorce lawyer will be able to guide you through these and help you file your paperwork so that you have everything that is coming to you once the divorce is complete. These include the handling of debts and retirement funds, distribution of assets, as well as child custody. You’ll also want your divorce lawyer to handle issues of spousal alimony.
Seeking a divorce lawyer is never a pleasant task, but it can help you navigate your way through the complicated court system during a difficult time in your life.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|