Archive for the ‘ Divorce ’ Category

Filing For Divorce Pro Se: 5 Things You Should Know

Posted on: September 8, 2018 by in Divorce
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filing for divorce pro se

Filing for divorce can be a complicated process. It can become even more complicated with confusing legalese or unfamiliar Latin terms such as “pro se”. It’s not only important to know what filing for divorce pro se means, but you must also understand the pros and cons of taking this approach. Pro se translates to “for oneself”. This means that you plan on filing for divorce without the assistance or representation of an attorney. You’ll be filing for a divorce yourself as well as representing yourself throughout the divorce proceedings. In theory, this can sound like a rather simple process. However, handling a divorce from beginning to end without the help of an attorney can be much more complex than you think. There are both advantages and disadvantages to filing for divorce pro se. Here are five things you need to know about this process.

 

  1. Save Money

It’s no surprise that saving money is the first thing that comes to mind when people consider filing for a divorce pro se. A do-it-yourself divorce ranges from $500-$1,500 depending on the documents you need and how you file. There’s a lot of different elements that determine the cost of a divorce. It can depend on the intricacies of the case, if the couple is coming to an agreement, or the number of assets they share. With the help of a lawyer, complex divorce cases that go to trial can cost anywhere from $20,000-$200,000. Your first instinct may be to attempt a divorce process alone to avoid losing that much cash. However, sometimes the disadvantages of going at a divorce alone will greatly outweigh how much you can save.

 

  1. Potentially Ease Tensions

Even though attorneys are there to assist people through the toughest times of their lives, people often become nervous when they get involved. If both parties are in agreement on the terms of the divorce, filing for divorce pro se can make sense. Involving a lawyer could potentially create tension. There’s no reason to make the process more stressful than it needs to be. However, when tensions are already high and both parties are having a difficult time communicating, filing for divorce pro se is not recommended.

 

  1. Time Consuming

There’s a reason why attorneys are paid well to practice law and file for a divorce on your behalf. It’s because a divorce can be very confusing and it takes a lot of time to complete the required documents. Unfortunately, a divorce is not as easy as filling out a form online and then just waiting for it to end. It’s incredibly time consuming and very difficult. Filing for divorce pro se is an exhausting process that will take up much of your time for weeks to possibly months.

 

  1. Inexperience Leads to Complications

If you don’t have a legal background, filing for divorce pro se can be a very complex procedure. Filing the documents wrong or not meeting court-ordered deadlines can create more problems for you  in the future. Attorneys understand how to present the information and defend their clients in the appropriate way. Poor self-representation will not only be a problem for you, but it can also become a hardship on the courts. Overall, it’s not a good idea to represent yourself if you have no experience in litigation.

 

  1. Emotionally Taxing

It’s obvious that a divorce in and of itself is an emotionally taxing process. For most people, it’s difficult to keep up with their normal tasks. If children are involved, it can be even more overwhelming. Being on time for work, showing up to soccer games, or being present for important meetings can be stressful during times of divorce. This is one of the reasons why people pay attorneys to handle divorces for them. Normally, a divorce means moving, reassessing assets and finances, or even deciphering custody terms. Transitions like this can be traumatic for many couples and families. Filing for divorce pro se adds an immense amount of pressure onto an already existing dilemma. It’s important to keep this in mind if you’re considering representing yourself.

If You’re Considering Filing For Divorce Pro Se

There are many factors that go into a decision to represent yourself during a divorce. There are clear advantages and disadvantages. Saving money is important and avoiding tensions by involving lawyers can make sense in some cases. However, not everyone has the luxury of an easy separation. There are a lot more complexities to a divorce than most people can imagine. Lack of experience or emotionally taxing obligations can take its toll on you and your family. If you’re considering filing for a divorce pro se, it’s recommended to speak with a divorce attorney first to know if it’s the right path for you.

 

Serving Divorce Papers Through Facebook Messenger

Posted on: June 18, 2018 by in Divorce
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divorce papers

Divorce and the repercussions are a topic that most people want to avoid. Some people will go so far to go out of their way to prevent divorce papers or other legal documents. They may not be ready to throw the towel in or don’t want change. Even if the other person is ready for a clean break. The same is true if the person is avoiding a court ruling when it comes to child support. Technology is changing the world around us. It has impacted many different things when it comes to divorce and court proceedings. A recent ruling is ruffling the feathers of how procedures happen. Now, people want to know about the repercussions of divorce papers served through Facebook Messenger along with other court documents.

The Service of Divorce Papers Over the Years

In the past, no one would have considered divorce papers served through Facebook Messenger. The more traditional way for service of divorce papers and other court documents is through a process server or certified mail. In both of these instances, it would have witnesses. This event guarantees that the person needs to receive the papers actually receives them. This action provides the court with assurance that the person that is on the receiving end, in fact, has the documentation in hand so that the court proceedings can continue to move forward. This due diligence is necessary to prevent someone from claiming they never received a notice. In addition to preventing them from moving forward without actually notifying the person.   

Divorce Papers Served Through Facebook Messenger?

A recent event has many speculating that divorce papers will be served through the Facebook Messenger service in the future. Under a court ruling, a man was able to notify his ex-wife about a child support order in Staten Island. The court official allowed the usage of Facebook to serve the papers as the more traditional efforts of serving her papers were unsuccessful. The order to Anna Maria Antiqua was regarding the child support order in place. The man was seeking to stop the 440 dollars a month child support as the child in question is now 21.

The man, Noel Biscocho tried to contact his ex-wife at the address he had for her, but she had moved without leaving a forwarding address. He continued to try to search for where she was living. He attempted to Google where she lived and contacted their two children without any results. However, he found that his ex-wife was very active with her Facebook social media account. His ex-wife had even recently liked some of the posts that his second wife had posted to Facebook.

Staten Island Support Magistrate Gregory Gliedman made the judgment that it would be impractical for the ex-wife to personally be given the paperwork at her work or personal address since they were not known. It was also not possible to have the copy put on her door with an additional copy sent in the mail. This lack of address then led to the ruling of allowing Facebook Messenger to be the method of serving her the papers stopping the child support order on their 21-year-old child.

Historical Significance

As technology continues to change the way that the world works, it makes sense that it will have far-reaching consequences in the legal realm. This circumstance was the first time the state of New York gave permission to use this method. Also, in the United States, it’s a first for a person that’s located in the states. There had been some cases involving using Facebook to contact someone regarding legal proceedings when they reside overseas. Effectively, this action may eliminate the loophole of someone hiding to get away from being served legal papers considering the statistics of people that use social media today.  

How Likely Is It That This Ruling Will Spread Across Jurisdictions and States?

Technology is ever changing the landscape of the world we live in. As this was a one-off case in a situation where the person was not found through traditional means, the judge ruled that social media would be a useful tool. It stopped this from continuing to waste the court’s time in trying to bring this matter to a close. Consequently, it is very possible that in similar situations, other court officials may use social media as a method to reach individuals with essential court decisions and documents. This situation is just one more way that the court can embrace the possibilities of technology.  

Every case is different, and some situations can often be tricky when it comes to family law. There are many reasons why someone would not want to get papers by the courts. This ruling could have farther reaching implications down the line. Are you in a situation that requires experience in family and divorce law? Contact Lewert Law, LLC today to discuss your case. Get an experienced lawyer on your side to fight for your situation.  

A New Way To Pay For Divorce

Posted on: May 18, 2018 by in Divorce
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Boca Raton divorce attorney

There’s a new type of lender on the financial scene. Instead of mortgages, car loans, or payday loans, these lenders finance divorces. They claim to help with everything from living expenses to attorney’s fees to the costs associated with “expert” witnesses. In return – you guessed it – the lender then grabs a slice right off the top of your divorce settlement or court award. Borrowing money that your ex-spouse has to repay has a certain appeal for some, but taking out a divorce loan probably isn’t a good idea – or even necessary – for most people involved in divorce proceedings. Before you take a divorce loan in south Florida – and before you take any other action regarding a divorce – arrange to speak first with an experienced Boca Raton divorce attorney.

Divorce financing may be a great option for a very few, when substantial assets are at stake and the testimony of financial experts may be required. But if your divorce is uncontested, or if you haven’t compiled substantial property and assets, you probably don’t even need to consider a divorce loan. You certainly want to talk to your attorney first. In most cases, you should be able to find another way to finance your divorce and cover your expenses while it’s pending.

It’s true that complex divorces can be expensive. But if you can settle most of your differences out of court, and if you and your spouse aren’t on some magazine’s list of billionaires, it’s very likely that you and your attorney can find a way to cover your divorce without involving a divorce lender. If you must take a divorce loan, make sure that the company you work with fully discloses the terms of the loan and that you thoroughly understand what you are signing. For help with a divorce or any family law matter in the south Florida area, contact an experienced Boca Raton divorce attorney for legal advice and representation as quickly as possible.

3 Ways AI Can Help Divorce

Posted on: May 9, 2018 by in Divorce
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AI Helps Divorce

Artificial Intelligence, also known as AI, has a major impact on life in general. There are many industries that can benefit from the advances in AI. Family law is one of those industries. With AI technology, family law could change for the better. Find out how AI helps divorces and other family law issues.

What is AI?

When most people think of AI, they imagine a futuristic world. However, AI is alive and present today. By definition, AI is any task done by a machine or a program that requires human intelligence.

People use programs and machines to perform a long list of tasks that require human intelligence. In fact, artificial intelligence has been prevalent for years. Today, you might recognize the technology in Siri or Alexa. Other applications include identifying spam emails, detecting fraud on your credit card, and recognizing faces in photos.

AI Helps Divorces and Family Law

In addition to making your life at home better, AI helps divorces as well. It has several applications in family law, all of which can make your life easier. Law firms can and do use AI for accounting and data processing. When they have thousands of documents to examine, AI saves them from doing it by hand.

Artificial Intelligence doesn’t only make the process of examining documents quicker. In addition to going through documents quicker, AI can use predictive coding to analyze the data. It’s much more accurate than human guesswork. After analyzing large amounts of data, AI can predict outcomes and give lawyers more insight.

A History of Success in Law

If you’re looking for a specific example of AI in law, then you don’t need to look far. In the UK, a law firm used predictive coding in a prejudice action case. The coding was tested in trial, and a court deemed that the process was accurate. If predictive coding can stand up in court, then the applications of AI in family law are almost limitless.

At first, AI was used to assist in research efforts. IBM Ross was a research tool that helped law firms with legal research. The technology used natural language processing as well as machine learning to effectively research.

In a more recent application, Duthie & Co is a law firm that uses AI in a different way. The firm uses a robot lawyer known as LISA. When the firm needs a non-disclosure agreement, LISA takes care of it. In an interview, the firm stated that they believe this technology could be used in family law. In the future, they think that a similar robot can draft prenuptial agreements.

How Can AI Change Family Law?

Family law could change for the better with artificial intelligence. Here are a few ways that AI helps divorces and family law:

  1. Reduce the Cost of Divorces

In some divorces, there are mountains of paperwork. Asset division is a time-consuming process. This means that lawyers need to waste hours and hours digging through the mountain of paperwork. Considering that good lawyers don’t come cheap, the cost adds up.

If family law uses AI, then the lawyers don’t need to waste their time on sifting through papers. Instead, technology can do the process quicker. Predictive coding means that a program can look at a set of data and come up with a general review of the whole data set. In family law, this technology can save clients thousands of dollars.

  1. Reduce Error

Artificial Intelligence can help reduce errors in your case. As much as lawyers might aim for perfection, they are human. As such, they are capable of mistakes. When there is a great deal of paperwork to go through, there is a chance of human error. Boring and repetitive work, like data entry, is far from flawless. However, AI is flawless.

Relying on artificial intelligence means that there is a reduced chance of error and more accurate results. When it comes to family court cases, this can be the difference between a good and a bad outcome.

  1. Keep Lawyers Passionate

When a lawyer needs to waste time on menial tasks, he often loses motivation. This can affect his performance in court. After spending much of his time doing research or data entry, a lawyer could lose his passion for the case.

AI helps divorces by allowing lawyers to focus on the issues that matter. Instead of wasting time on simple tasks, they can focus on the complexities of their cases. As a result, the lawyers remain passionate. This is good news for you and your case.

 

The Future of AI in Family Law

Currently, AI doesn’t play a major role in family law. However, that could change soon. With recent developments, AI is playing a greater role in law firms. It might not be long before family law uses AI to improve the industry.

Here at Lewert Law, we know that technology is changing things. We’re moving forward with technology and always working to get you the best outcomes. Contact us and find out how we can help you.

5 Different People You Need in a High Stakes Divorce

Posted on: April 18, 2018 by in Divorce
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High Stakes Divorce

Going through a high stakes divorce can be one of the rockiest periods of your life. There are so many different aspects of life pre and post-divorce to think about, and this can require help. There are several professionals that can be on your side during your divorce besides your divorce attorney. Each of them offers a specific skill that’ll help move your complex divorce forward.

Why Are High Stakes Divorce So Volatile?

The very nature of a high stakes divorce leads to volatility. Often, there are complications that make this type of divorce that much more difficult to face. Usually, this has to do with assets and children. There are many different working parts that need to be figured out at the same time to balance what was happening before the divorce and after the marriage is over. These working parts can cause conflict, especially when the parties aren’t in complete agreement about the divorce.

What Are the 5 Professionals You Should Have on Your Team during Your Divorce?

It may sound like overkill to have five different professionals on your team during your high stakes divorce, but each of these team members offers a specific skill that can help you through this circumstance. They each work to reduce the amount of friction that can happen in a high stakes divorce.

The first is probably the only profession you’ve thought of hiring when you realized a divorce was in your future: a lawyer. Your lawyer is the base of your team. They are a great starting place and may be able to help you to find the other four professionals to assist you. A parenting coordinator, financial neutral, mediator, and divorce coach round out your team.

Divorce Lawyer

A divorce lawyer is your first defense in ending your marriage and can be beneficial to advise you on these matters even if you go through mediation.

Parenting Coordinator

Think of a parenting coordinator as an impartial party that helps to be the decision maker when it comes to any children from the marriage. They can help you to determine who does what with the kids while going through a high stakes divorce. Their rates are less expensive than having your lawyers handling this task. Plus, it can help to make the divorce a less stressful for the children going through it with you both.

Financial Neutral

A financial neutral works for both sides of the divorce. They handle the financial matters at the heart of a high stakes divorce. This professional comes in and evaluates all of the financials, such as current income, assets, the expenses that exist. As they are a neutral party, they aren’t on anyone’s side. Using this professional can help both parties get an equitable share. For instance, when determining alimony or child support, the figures obtained here can give a more accurate value of what’s appropriate or not.

Mediator

A mediator is another unbiased professional that’s not taking sides in your high stakes divorce. They can be beneficial in helping you to resolve many of the issues that often crop up in a complicated divorce scenario. Not resolving these issues through mediation often means that a judge will resolve them for you. A mediator is better able to guide you both to agree on the different decisions being made. At least by sitting with a mediator, you’ll have some say in what is agreed upon.

Divorce Coach

A divorce coach is one professional that you may not be very familiar with compared to the other professionals on your team. Your divorce coach may help just you or both you and your spouse through your high stakes divorce. While a divorce coach isn’t a therapist per say, they are able to help you through this tough time. They will help you analyze your feelings, determine what you want out of the divorce, and get ready for the different proceedings that you’ll be going through during the process. They are there to help keep you calm and collected through this process. While some people are able to tackle a high stakes divorce relatively easy, others panic and have a hard time going through it. A divorce coach helps them to keep it together to get to the other side of the divorce.

Are you contemplating getting divorced? Are you in the middle of a high stakes divorce, and feel you need additional help? Contact Lewert Law today to discuss your circumstances. Your high stakes divorce may seem like an endless scenario, but you’ll be glad to see it’s behind. Utilizing these different professionals can make the transition from married life to being single again easier for you.     

Uncontested Divorce: What Is It?

Posted on: March 9, 2018 by in Divorce
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uncontested divorce

When a marriage begins, there’s a ceremony where vows are given by each person joining their lives together. Many of those vows include a phrase about until death do us part, but in many relationships, circumstances come up that make it impossible to keep that promise. Like many things in life, marriages can go bad and result in the couple wanting to go their separate ways. It happens. The question that many have is what do you do next? There is this vision of having a messy divorce that drags on forever, but that’s not the only type of separation that exists. There’s also an uncontested divorce. This kind of divorce is an excellent option because it can be more comfortable for all parties.

What Is an Uncontested Divorce?

An uncontested divorce is when both people in the marriage agree to the divorce. In addition, they often agree on most of the significant issues of a divorce. These problems often include custody of their children, child support, distribution of the property, and spousal support. Using this method of separation can help to make it easier for both parties in the long run. This condition is because there are no additional disagreements to be settled by the court. The couple themselves make the decisions and agree with them. In fact, some uncontested divorces may only require a hearing.

How Does It Differ From a Contested Divorce?

The main difference between a contested divorce and uncontested divorce is the amount of intervention by the courts in making decisions. A more complex divorce where both parties cannot come to an agreement about how to split their lives takes more time and money. An uncontested divorce doesn’t require the same amount of time in the courts.

How Can an Uncontested Divorce Be More Beneficial to the Family?

An uncontested divorce can be more accessible for everyone in the family. It offers a lot of benefits. The couple gets the benefit of a smoother process. They won’t have to spend as much money on the proceedings. It also takes less time to go through an uncontested divorce. In all, it can be much easier to have it over and done with to move on with your life after divorce. That’s not to say that there won’t be any issues, but typically, it’s a more straightforward process in most ways.

It’s also beneficial for the children involved. The impact of any divorce can be hard on children. As most divorces can be messy because the different parties don’t agree on the separation, it makes it hard on the children. The arguments and the uncertainty in a contested divorce can be hard for everyone. Often, the children of the couple can feel the brunt of this uneasiness. An uncontested divorce is still hard on them, but they don’t have to listen to their parents disagree over and over.

What Is the Process for an Uncontested Divorce?

The process for an uncontested divorce is much more comfortable than a contested divorce. It typically begins by filing a petition for divorce with the court. This request will commonly include the decisions in how the marriage will be split and other agreements the two negotiated between themselves. There will also be a sheet about the couple’s finances. This sheet will identify their assets, liabilities, incomes, and other information.

After the petition, there is often a divorce hearing, but in some cases, an uncontested divorce doesn’t need to be heard by the courts. At the hearing, the judgment is given that dissolves the marriage. This is then filed with the courts.

This whole process can be as short as three weeks from the time of the filing to the dissolution of the marriage. However, if during this process, issues come up where both parties are no longer in agreement about everything, a contested divorce may be necessary. This event does at times happen when a couple was in agreement, but one partner changes their mind about something.

How Can a Lawyer Help?

In this age of the internet, there are plenty of resources online about how to go through the process of a divorce. The problem is that while an uncontested divorce can be more accessible, it’s still a complicated matter. It’s often beneficial for all involved to speak with a legal representative to guide them through this process. A lawyer can make sure that everything is written up as it should be. They can also assist in cases where an uncontested divorce becomes a trickier contested divorce.

If you are considering a divorce, you should have a lawyer on your side. A lawyer will protect your rights through this process. You may not be thinking clearly because of the emotional nature of divorce. Contact Lewert Law today to discuss your potential uncontested divorce. We can go over your personal situation, and whether or not this type of separation is right for you.

Gray Divorce: A Growing Trend

Posted on: February 8, 2018 by in Divorce
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gray divorce

The first few years of any marriage can be quite difficult. However, so can the last few years of a marriage. In the US, divorce is becoming common among the baby boomer generation. Even after decades of marriage, some couples from this generation resort to divorce. It’s become so common that people now refer to a late-in-life divorce as a gray divorce. Find out why this type of divorce is the current trend.

Understanding Gray Divorce

In the past, gray divorce referred to any divorce that happened after 40 years of marriage. However, the term evolved over time. Now, gray divorce refers to a marriage of baby boomers that ended in divorce. Whether or not the marriage lasted 40 years is irrelevant. A marriage could last two years and be a gray divorce. As long as the divorce involves baby boomers, it is one of the many gray divorces. In general, most of the baby boomers who divorce had marriages that lasted between 20 and 30 years. However, there is no limit.

Over the past decade, the divorce rate in the US has dropped. However, gray divorce did not follow that trend. More and more individuals from the baby boomer generation seek out divorces. In 2009, 25% of the individuals to get a divorce was over the age of 49.

The Reasons for Late-in-Life Divorce

There is no simple explanation for the common occurrence of this type of divorce. Rather, there are several possible explanations.

1. An Empty Nest

When children are young and demanding, many parents yearn for an empty nest. However, an empty nest could be what it takes to ruin your marriage. While there are children around, a couple dedicates their life to those children. Every decision revolves around them, and there is little room for you to focus on your marriage. Time alone is a rare occurrence. Often, couples discuss their children during that time alone.

When your children move out, you have time to focus on your relationship. However, it might be too late. You might find out that you and your partner no longer have any common ground. In an empty nest, the silence can be deafening. You might opt for a divorce.

2. The Impact of Aging

Unfortunately, age isn’t just a number. As you get older, you might find that your marriage suffers. Sometimes, this is a result of poor health. If you or your partner have any health issues, then you might lose your sex drive. One partner could be unhappy with the lack of romance in the marriage. Without seeking treatment for those medical issues, the lack of romance could become a large enough problem to cause a divorce.

Even a lack of self-confidence can hurt your relationship. If you don’t like the way you look, then you might obsess about it. Constant complaining could cause your partner to feel uncomfortable. Additionally, it could make him feel older. It could also make it less likely to preserve the romance in your relationship.

In some cases, aging causes one partner to look for a younger one. For example, a man might believe that he would feel younger if he was with a younger woman. To test out his theory, he might cheat on his wife. If he is faithful, then he might opt for a divorce before finding a younger partner. In either case, the result is the end of your marriage and the need for a lawyer.

3. Financial Disputes

Generally, the baby boomer generation did well for themselves. Most baby boomers had lucrative careers. Therefore, money was never an issue to stress their relationships. For many couples, that changed as they aged. There are two main reasons for this.

First, many children stayed home or moved back home at an older age. Instead of moving out and staying out at 18, children are staying with their parents into their 30s. As a result, the parents have a greater financial strain. Many baby boomers struggle to support themselves and their children. Paying their bills and their children’s bills is not easy, especially during retirement.

Then, there’s the issue of retirement. A high cost of living makes it difficult for people to survive on retirement. Since people are living longer, that retirement money also needs to stretch out longer. For many baby boomers, retirement causes financial troubles. The newfound financial stress can cause trouble in relationships. As a result, some baby boomers might resort to divorce.

4. Different Life Goals

When people get older, they sometimes change their goals. For example, one individual might realize that he never lived the life he wanted. He might realize that he never moved to paradise and lived in isolation. But his partner might have very different goals. She might realize that she never lived in a big city.

While some couples can meet their goals together, they can’t always do so. If goals don’t meet up or one individual is unwilling to help the other accomplish her goals, then a relationship could end. This could be a reason for divorce, even after decades of marriage.

No Fault Divorce vs Fault Divorce

Posted on: January 29, 2018 by in Divorce
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no fault divorce

There are two main types of divorces. First, you have the no fault divorce. This is one of the most common types of divorce. However, there is also a fault divorce. Not all states accept this type of divorce. However, it could be a good option for you. Learn everything that you need to know about the differences between fault and no fault divorce.

Understanding No Fault Divorce

When you want to divorce your spouse without proving that he was to blame, you file for a no fault divorce. In the proceedings, you don’t need to prove any type of fault. You do need to give the court a legitimate reason for your divorce. As long as the state recognizes your reason, then there it will honor your divorce.

There are two main reasons for a no fault divorce. The first reason is “irreconcilable differences.” Secondly, there is the “irreparable breakdown” of your marriage. If you list either reason, then you are telling the court that your relationship cannot work. You and your spouse tried to fix the relationship. However, you were unable to do so. The court takes you at your word. In court, you don’t need to prove why you need a divorce.

For some, the allure of a no fault divorce is the inability to object to the divorce. If your partner objects, then the court won’t change things. Whether or not your partner agrees, the divorce process will continue.

What States Offer No Fault Divorce?

For decades, most states have recognized no fault divorce. Since the 1980s, all states got on board with no fault divorces. If you live in the US, then you can get a no fault divorce.

There are a few differences between state laws and no fault divorce. Specifically, some states require you and your partner to have a period of separation before you file for divorce. Some states only require a short time, while others require a longer time. It all depends on your state’s specific requirements. After the separation, you and your partner can file for divorce.

Understanding Fault Divorce

Although no fault divorces are quite common, fault divorces are not very frequent. Depending on where you live, you might not even be able to file for a fault divorce. Some states only allow no fault divorces. States that do allow fault divorces require that you can prove that your spouse did something that warranted a divorce. For example, you need to prove that he cheated on you or abandoned you. Other reasons for a fault divorce include imprisonment, emotional or physical pain, and the inability to have sex. If you can’t prove that your spouse acted in a way that meets the fault divorce requirements, then you cannot file for a fault divorce.

The Benefits of Fault Divorce

There are several benefits to filing this type of divorce. Here are a few of them;

1. No separation requirement

If you file for this type of divorce, then you and your spouse do not need to live separately. Instead of waiting several months to file for divorce, you can do so immediately. Every state that honors fault divorces allows an immediate filing.

2. A better outcome

If you can prove that your spouse is to blame for your failed marriage, then a fault divorce could get you a better outcome. For example, a judge might give you more property or more alimony. Often, one spouse does better than the other in this type of divorce.

Is One Option Better Than Another?

If your spouse acted in a way that made you want a divorce, then a fault divorce could be a better option. The results of your divorce could be more in your favor. However, your state might only offer a no fault divorce. In this case, you might want to see if you qualify for a divorce in a state that does recognize fault divorces.

Filing in Another State

If you have residency in multiple states, then you can choose where you file. However, the residency requirements vary. Some states require that you live in the state for a certain amount of time before you file. In Alaska, Washington, and South Dakota, you can file once you have residency. You can choose to file in a state that recognizes the type of divorce that you want.

That said, you should be cautious. If you file in one state, then you need to travel to that state for all your court appearances. This includes traveling there to make any changes to your divorce agreement.

Making the Most of Your Divorce

If you need a divorce, then you should speak to a lawyer. He can give you advice on which type of divorce would benefit you the most. Additionally, he can explain how your state’s laws will impact your divorce. With his help, you can get the results that you want.

US Divorce Rate: 2017 Statistics

Posted on: December 19, 2017 by in Divorce
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US divorce rate

Today, divorce is more socially acceptable than ever. However, that doesn’t mean that the US divorce rate is higher than ever. In fact, the divorce rate is lower than it has been in years. Divorce might be acceptable, but it’s not as common as it once was. Find out why the US divorce rate is changing and how people now view divorce.

The US Divorce Rate Declines

The national divorce rate in the US is lower than it has been in decades. In fact, it’s lower than it has been in about 40 years. For the third year in a row, the divorce rate dropped. The trend of fewer divorces became evident in 2015. In 2014, there were about 17.6 divorces for every 1,000 married women. Meanwhile, in 1980, there were 23 divorces for every married woman. That number dropped to 16.9 in 2015.

When you look at the US divorce rate over time, you can see that the divorce rate peaked in 1980. That year, the US divorce rate was about 40% of all marriages. After that year, the divorce rate dropped. Between 2006 and 2010, there was a 68% chance of a woman’s first marriage lasting ten years or more. For men, that percentage was 70%.

Past the ten year mark, the chance of a successful marriage is less impressive. For a marriage to last 20 years or more, the percentage dropped to 52% for women and 56% for men. However, the US divorce rate statistics are still better than they were in the 80’s.

Acceptability is on the Rise

If you were a logical thinker, then you might argue that the divorce rate dropped because the acceptability of divorce rose. However, that’s not the case. In fact, the opposite is true. The US divorce rate dropped, but acceptability rose. Back in the 80’s, divorce was not socially acceptable. If people heard about divorce, they would often whisper about it in the hallways. Many women were ostracized for divorce.

Now, things are different. People tend to be much more accepting of divorce. For example, the moral acceptability of divorce is up 14% since 2001. About 73% of US adults feel that divorce is a morally acceptable act. Divorce does not have the same stigma that it once did. Instead of hiding your divorce, you can speak openly about it without judgment.

Interestingly enough, the different generations seem to share the same beliefs on the morality of divorce, Between 2015 and 2017, 76% of US individuals between the ages of 18 to 34 accepted divorce. With a similar rate of acceptance, about seven out of every ten Americans between the ages of 35 to 54 accepted divorce. Regardless of age, people seem to accept divorce.

Religion Accepts Divorce

In the past, religion was the biggest obstacle to divorce. Most religions frowned upon divorce. Nevertheless, it didn’t keep people from doing it. There were more divorces then than there is today. However, religious groups now accept divorce much more than they did in the past. In a recent poll, about 51% of very religious Americans felt that divorce was morally acceptable. That poll included individuals who went to a place of worship once a week or more. In the past, such a religious group was more divided on the issue. The majority of religious individuals felt that divorce was not acceptable in any way.

It’s impossible to understand why the religious community now accepts divorce more. However, it doesn’t seem to matter. Before it was acceptable, people still sought divorces. Now that it is acceptable, people don’t get divorces as frequently. There does not seem to be a strong link between religious acceptance and divorce. There must be other factors that directly affect the divorce rate.

Why is the Divorce Rate on the Decline?

If less acceptance is not the reason for the reduction in the US divorce rate, then what is? There is one main theory that could explain the decline. Today, society thinks of marriage differently. Instead of marrying at 21 years-old, people tend to wait. Young adults put off marriage and decide to live together first. Doing so allows individuals to learn more about one another before they decide to marry. With cohabitation, people may be less likely to divorce. They don’t need to rush into a marriage without knowing what it’s like to live with their partner. If there’s a problem, they end the relationship before marriage.

There is another theory. In the past, people thought of marriage as a moral issue. However, today it is more of a legal issue. As such, they might put more thought into it and less emotion. This could prevent rash decisions that once led to quick divorces. When people analyze the legal benefits and drawbacks of marriage, they might consider the ramifications of divorce more seriously.

It’s impossible to say if the divorce rate will continue to decline. However, it is a possibility. It seems as if marriages in the US are strengthening. And that’s good news for new couples.

Child Time-Sharing Custody in Florida FAQs

Posted on: December 11, 2017 by in Divorce, Family Law
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child time-sharing

Custody agreements are complicated. Before you and your partner make a child time-sharing agreement, there are a few things that you should know. Find out everything that you should know about child time-sharing custody in Florida.

1. What is the Goal of Child Time-Sharing Custody?

One of the most important things to understand is the purpose of this type of agreement. A time-sharing agreement refers to the amount of time a child spends with each parent. When you create a time share agreement, it specifies how much time the child will spend with each parent. The goal is to create a legal document that awards each parent (or only one parent) a certain amount of time.

Another goal is to create an agreement that has the child’s best interest at heart. When it comes to child custody, the court cares mostly about the child. They want to do whatever is best for the child.

2. What is the Difference Between Time-Sharing and Parental Responsibility?

While time sharing refers to the amount of time a parent spends with a child, parental responsibility is quite different. The term refers to decision-making for the child. For example, it could involve deciding which school a child attends, her medical care, or her religion. In some agreements, one parent could get equal time with a child but less parental responsibility. Like other issues in child custody cases, the decision depends on a variety of other factors.

3. What is the Most Common Result in a Child Time-Sharing Agreement?

Every custody court case varies. With so many factors affecting the outcome of the case, it is difficult to say how your case will turn out. However, there is a general trend in Florida of which you should be aware. The state tends to favor equal parenting and equal time share custody decisions. Therefore, you need to fight hard if you want another outcome.

4. Can a Parent Get Sole Custody?

Although the court does favor an equal time share, it is possible to seek and get sole custody. However, this can take some effort. Your lawyer needs to prove that being with you and you alone is in the best interest of the child. If he can prove this, then you still won’t be able to end the child’s relationship with the other parent. The only situation that warrants that is an extreme situation. For example, contact with that parent could be unsafe. In this situation, the court might agree that the child should have no contact with the father.

Often, the court will allow a non-custodial parent to visit his child. In fact, he can usually have overnight visits. However, the court could require supervised visitations. Under these circumstances, the parent can only visit the child when a third-party supervises the visit.

5. What Factors Affect the Time Share?

There are several factors that a judge considers before she decides on a time share agreement. Although there are other factors that she could consider, here are a few common ones:

  • The willingness of a parent to encourage a relationship between the child and the other parent
  • A parent’s willingness to honor the time sharing schedule
  • The ability of each parent to put their own needs after the child’s needs
  • Whether the home environment provides stability for the child
  • The physical, emotional, and mental health of each parent
  • Any past troubles, like child abuse, domestic violence, or child endangerment
  • The desire of the child, if the child is old enough to decide (usually at the age of 12)
  • A parent’s willingness and ability to participate in a child’s education and other activities

6. Can You Change Your Time Share Agreement?

When you create a time share agreement, it is a legal document. As such, you cannot change it without going back to court. If you want to make changes to it, then you need to go to court. In order to gain approval, you need to show that there has been a major change in the circumstances. Changing the agreement needs to be in the child’s best interest.

However, you and your ex-partner can change the agreement on your own. It won’t be legally binding, but you are free to make your own decisions. The agreement will only be enforced if you or your partner go to court and complain that the other parent violated the agreement. For this reason, you should be cautious about modifying the agreement. If possible, you should do it through the court.

7. Do You Need a Lawyer?

The court does not require you to have a lawyer in your child custody case. However, you leave a lot at risk without a lawyer. Your child time-sharing agreement tells you how much time you can spend with your child. If you don’t have a lawyer, you could end up with less time than you deserve. It’s best to prepare yourself and go to court with a lawyer who has experience.

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Kelley Ms. Lewert never lost sight of the practical realities of my divorce. Although she listened compassionately so that she understood what she needed to, she did not let me lose sight of my goals and what was acheivable within the system even when things got emotional. She protected my financial interests and my personal interests. Thanks to Ms. Lewert, I no longer have to deal with a difficult ex-. She didn't always tell me what I wanted to hear, but because of that, my case did not drag out longer than it should have. I never felt that she put her own interests ahead of mine. Her judgment was reasonable and her advice sound. She and her staff were good at dealing with difficult and unreasonable people in a professional and ethical way. Thanks to Ms. Lewert, I never got drawn into senseless battles, recovered as quickly as possible from my divorce and was able to move on and enjoy a better life. I have recommended her repeatedly to others who need an excellent family lawyer.

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