Most people who get married never imagine that their marriage will end in divorce. Despite being close at the beginning of the relationship, people can grow apart of the years and eventually find it impossible to remain together. However, because marriage vows are intended to be forever, most people are not sure what to do once they know they are getting divorced.
It’s all too common for a couple that is going through a divorce to retain a lawyer and then become uncertain about the next steps that are required to navigate the divorce process. Your lawyer can help you to a certain degree, but it is better to go into the divorce with a good idea of the most important items that you need to have sorted out with your lawyer before the divorce is in the final stages.
If you or someone you know if going through a divorce, here are the four most important things to remember to discuss with your lawyer.
The Four Most Important Topics to Discuss with Your Divorce Lawyer
- Property: Chances are, you and your spouse own many things together. Some of the things that you own together will be property items. Things like your home, investment properties or vacation houses are all major assets that will often become bones of contention during a divorce. Many people are not aware that property will also include jewelry, furniture, cars and even things like furs. If you have items that you are particularly attached to, you should assert this to your divorce attorney so that the divorce settlement takes this into consideration.
- Child Support: The rules for child support vary from state to state, but all divorce proceedings which include children will require the planning of parenting time, child support payments and various other details. Child support payments take into consideration more than just the cost to feed and clothe the child but also housing costs for the primary parent. If you believe that you need a specific amount of money to support your child or if you know that you want to have certain visiting days that you can spend with your child, you will need to make your local divorce lawyers aware of these demands.
- Child Custody: As with child support, custody laws vary from state to state. In some states, the children always reside with their mother as the primary parent, but in other states the children can decide or the court can decide who the primary parent will be. Custody can also be split 50/50 between the parents. The age of the children can also be a factor and judges do try and make sure they are aware of the desires of the children. If you believe that your children should reside with you, you will want your divorce lawyer to demand this in the divorce settlement.
- Spousal Support: Alimony is one of the most rapidly evolving areas of divorce law. As more and more women work outside of the home and support themselves, spousal support makes less and less sense. While some divorce settlements take into account that the female member of the relationship may not be able to support herself, many other divorce proceedings include a desire for spousal support to be eliminated from the settlement. Your divorce lawyer can advise you about the laws in your state and help you to make the right demands for your settlement depending on your preference.
The ideal divorce will be mostly amicable and will meet the needs of both parties. While tension and strife is normal during the divorce process, being able to set forth a cohesive plan with your divorce lawyer can smooth the process and help you to get the settlement that you desire.