Regardless of who you are, getting a divorce can be complicated. Of course, for some couples, divorce is more complex than it is for others. For gay couples who are separating, this may be the case, as gay couples may encounter unique issues in the divorce.
Family law attorneys, counselors, and psychologists all do their best to minimize trauma for the children in situations where the parents are separating or going through a divorce. One new method of coping with the trauma is called “birdnesting, “ which is a means of keeping the family home intact and providing stability for the children during this very stressful time.
Gay, or same-sex divorce, is a relatively new phenomenon since the historic passage of Obergefell v. Hodges in 2015 in which the U.S. Supreme court legitimized same-sex marriage in every state. Massachusetts had been ahead of the curve since it legalized same-sex marriage in 2004 in the case of Goodridge v. Department of Public Health, declaring that it was a violation of our state’s constitution to allow only heterosexual marriages. But of course, most of the problems that plague heterosexual couples also impact gay couples with some distinctions since 13 states had banned same-sex marriage before Obergefell.
If you know someone who has gone through a contentious child custody dispute or have read about the travails of other couples, then you are aware that this can create emotional issues that can poison your future relationship with your spouse and have a profound impact on your children. Should you find that you are battling with your spouse or ex over who will be the primary custodian, here are 7 tips to consider that may help to resolve these issues.
Alimony, or spousal support, is available in a divorce or separation where the needy spouse can demonstrate that there is a pressing financial need, and the paying spouse has the ability to pay. These payments are in addition to a child support order that may affect the decision whether to award spousal support.
The decision as to whether you are entitled to alimony in Massachusetts is determined by Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 208 Section 34 and the Alimony Reform Act of 2011. The combined incomes of the parties are considered in this determination. If you and your spouse have unemancipated children and your combined incomes are less than $250,000, alimony will likely not be awarded. If your combined incomes exceed $250,000, then child support calculations are based on the first $250,000.
One of the joys of parenthood is seeing your children grow to be adults and have their own children. Reveling in and spoiling your grandchildren is considered a prerogative for many. However, there are circumstances when grandparents are denied visitation by one or both parents, or where one or both parents are deemed unfit. If…
When we think of prenuptial agreements, we usually imagine millionaires or billionaires asking or requiring their prospective spouses to sign an agreement that would limit their share of their estate in the event of a divorce. But prenuptials can also make sense for you if this is a second or subsequent marriage and you have children from another marriage or relationship, and/or you have substantial assets, even if it is not in the millions. However, a prenuptial must be drafted carefully and be reasonable in its terms or a Massachusetts court may void it if it is challenged.
Few issues in a divorce case are more contentious than those involving child custody. Courts generally assume and prefer a joint custody arrangement regarding legal and physical custody. This is intended to minimize the disruption in the child’s life and provide some continuity and normalcy in the relationship with both parents. Even though physical custody may be joint, one parent will usually be the primary caretaker while the other has liberal visitation rights. This arrangement may not work where the parents live in separate communities or out of state, or where one parent is not prepared mentally or emotionally to be a capable parent. In determining custody, the court will use the standard of what is in the best interests of the child.
Going through a divorce can be emotionally wrenching for most people, especially if there are children involved. Property division can be just as heated as can the question of alimony or spousal maintenance. Divorcing couples are always encouraged to compromise or come to some agreement over these matters since legal fees add up quickly.
When it comes to child custody and parenting time, Father’s Rights is a topic that has been generating much discussion. There are law firms and attorneys who present themselves exclusively as a lawyer for men though you may be better off with an attorney who understands the perspectives of both parties because he or she has been representing either party in property, custody and parenting disputes.