DISSOLUTION OF MARRIAGE (DIVORCE) A LEGAL PERSONAL FRESH START
The vast majority of couples who enter into matrimony do so with a great deal of optimism for the future of the relationship. After all, very few of us can claim to see into the future and be able to know in advance what unseen problems will arise in the course of the marriage. Unfortunately, we know that a very large number of marriages end in divorce. For many years, divorce rates in the United States had been increasing.
However, in the last 10 years there appears to be a reduction in the percentage of marriages that end in divorce. In 2006 there were 1,021,720 divorce cases filed. That number was 47% of the marriages performed that year. Ten years later, in 2016, there were only 872,720 divorces filed, which was only 37% of the marriages filed that year. This is really good news for those of us who are really big fans of the institution of marriage.
Nevertheless, when married couples face relationship issues such as infidelity, physical or emotional abuse, alcohol or other substance abuse issues, major financial problems, or the couple has just grown apart and they are no longer happy together, divorce may be the only answer. However, even when saving the marriage seems hopeless, I still highly recommend getting marriage counseling before calling it quits and hiring a lawyer, if it is feasible to do so.
ISSUES THAT WILL BE DECIDED BY THE COURT IN DIVORCE CASES
Regarding marriages that have no children under the age of 18 years, the only real issues involve the distribution of marital assets and liabilities to each spouse. This is generally a very straightforward issue, if both spouses are reasonable. There is one other very major issue that can arise in marriages with or without dependent children. The Court has the authority to award spousal maintenance (alimony) to one of the spouses. There is a list of indicators that the Court uses to determine this.
Regarding marriages that have children under the age of 18 years, there are several other major issues the Court must rule on. Issues of custody, parenting time, child support, and are decided in cases with dependent children. These are usually the most contentious cases that come before the Court. The Court has a very simple, yet strict, guideline to follow regarding issues involving dependent children. The Court is asked to rule on these child related issues based on what is in the best interest of each child.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?
Anyone who decides that divorce is inevitable should immediately seek legal representation in order to successfully navigate this complex and stressful legal process. I do not charge my clients by the hour. I charge my clients a flat, fixed fee. My clients know what my representation will cost when they retain me to represent them. During the representation, communicating with me will never cost you more. I firmly believe that you should be able to contact your attorney as often as needed, without hearing the sound of a cash register each time and every time you do.
After reading this, I hope that you will reach out to see if you may want to hire me to guide you through this difficult, complicated, but necessary process. Simply send a request for a free, confidential, no obligation case evaluation. I will be able to assess your situation and advise you regarding moving forward with the process, what to expect, and what this will cost for me to represent you.