Navigating Divorce – Key Questions Answered
Family Law Lawyer
When parties decide to file for divorce, our family law lawyer will share that chances are they are well aware of how difficult it may be to move through the process. While the process can be complex, emotions often run high and divorcing couples will be left to navigate legal intricacies that can be both challenging and overwhelming. In the course of ending a marriage, several questions often surface, reflecting the anxieties and uncertainties individuals face. Sometimes, despite efforts to keep the process as benevolent as possible, making difficult decisions can often result in conflict. Our team from Robinson & Hadeed offers the answers to five frequently asked questions about divorce and the process to follow.
How Long Does a Divorce Typically Take?
The length of the divorce process can vary greatly, depending on the complexity of the case and the jurisdiction’s laws. An uncontested divorce, where all parties agree to the terms, typically takes a few short months to dissolve. However, a contested divorce involving disputes over issues like child custody or property division can take a year or more. It is essential to consult a local divorce lawyer for a more accurate timeline based on a person’s specific situation.
How Is Property Divided in a Divorce?
Property division in divorce is typically guided by the principles of either community property or equitable distribution, depending on the state. Community property states divide marital assets equally, while equitable distribution states divide property fairly, though not necessarily equally. It’s important to note that “marital property” usually includes assets acquired during the marriage, irrespective of who purchased them. However, inheritances, gifts, and pre-marital assets are typically considered separate property.
How Is Child Custody Determined?
Child custody is determined based on what the court deems to be in the “best interest of the child.” Factors considered include:
The child’s age.
The parents’ living situations.
The child’s relationship with each parent.
Each parent’s ability to provide for the child’s needs.
Custody can be sole (one parent has primary responsibility) or joint (both parents share responsibility). However, it’s essential to be aware that couples have the opportunity to develop child custody arrangements together through the negotiation process.
Do I Need a Lawyer for a Divorce?
While it is technically possible to get a divorce without a lawyer, it’s generally not recommended, especially if your divorce involves significant assets or contentious issues like child custody. A lawyer can provide legal advice, help you understand your rights, negotiate on your behalf, and guide you through the complex legal processes involved in divorce.
Can Spousal Support Be Changed After a Divorce?
Spousal support, also known as alimony, can potentially be changed after a divorce, but it generally depends on the specific terms of the divorce agreement and the laws of your state. Circumstances such as a significant change in income for either party, remarriage, or cohabitation can often prompt a review and possible modification of spousal support.
Divorce is an arduous process involving many complexities; not only will parties face the legal challenges of negotiating agreements, they will also experience a rollercoaster of emotions. It is essential to seek personalized advice from a qualified legal professional to ensure you make informed decisions during this difficult time. Remember, knowledge is power, and a firm grasp on what to expect during a divorce can make this life transition more manageable.