Eric S. Neumann, APLC
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Lafayette Divorce Blog

Calculating spousal support

Issues accompanying the end of a marriage in Louisiana may be more complex than others. For example, child support relies on guidelines that are based on the child's financial needs. But, other divorce legal issues, such as spousal support, may be more complicated and nebulous, making it easier for emotions to drive decision-making.

Mediation can help you end your marriage in uncontested divorce

For many families, divorce can have devastating social and financial consequences. The drawn-out and bitter process of fighting over the terms of your divorce can wreak havoc on the interpersonal relationship you share with your ex. This is of particular concern for spouses who have children. After all, they will likely be seeing one another several times a week for many years.

Doing everything in your power to make your divorce amicable and affordable is a good decision for everyone in your family. You may think that an uncontested divorce isn't an option because you and your spouse don't currently agree on the right way to end your marriage.

Safeguarding businesses in a divorce

A spouse who owns a business could lose it in a divorce. However, there are ways to protect business assets from property division when a marriage ends.

Any business started during marriage could be allocated among the spouses. Any growth in a pre-existing business that took place during marriage could also go to a former spouse. A business may be divided even if one spouse is the named owner of the business or put in most of the work or money in continuing its operation.

Divorce has surprises

Ending a marriage can be a lengthy and complicated process. Spouses are often surprised with parts of the divorce process that may become obstacles.

Divorce is not fast and takes time. Louisiana, like other states, has a waiting period after the filing of divorce papers. Six months must elapse before an even uncontested becomes final. This period may grow longer with contested divorce and court proceedings and related scheduling delays.

Money issues do not end with the divorce

Child support and alimony settlements or orders do not end financial issues. Spouses should be prepared to deal with divorce financial matters that arise after their divorce.

The settlement is a good start. Potential expenses and responsibility for their payment should be addressed. Costs can be allocated according to a spouse's resources.

Social media can boomerang

When ending a marriage, spouses need to file a complaint and undergo a legal action. They may try to get information to bolster their position in divorce settlement negotiations or court. Social media has proven to be an evidence bonanza for some spouses in these cases.

In 2015, 97 percent of surveyed members by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers reported an increase in evidence coming from smartphones and other wireless devices. Sixty-seven percent of respondents said that most evidence came from apps. Facebook was the highest at 41 percent. Twitter was second at 17 percent. Instagram was third followed by other apps like Find My iPhone, Snapchat, Google, WhatsApp and Tinder.

Proving child support payments

Compliance with child support orders are vital and important to both parents. But, proof of support is not always so clear after a divorce.

Compliance with support orders is not merely based on dollars and cents. How payments are made and for what purposes can be a vital legal issue.

Child custody modifications are sometimes needed as a child grows

As your child grows older, you might find that the parenting plan you set up during your divorce doesn't address their current needs. This realization may necessitate a change to your child custody plan.

Child custody plan modifications can help to ensure that your child is able to thrive in two homes. You might need to revamp the entire plan. However, most parents can change single points as necessary. Here are some considerations:

Louisiana's custody laws favor parental cooperation

Courts in different states share some similarities on determining custody issues. Louisiana courts, however, have different preferences on awarding child custody.

Usually, courts in this state prefer granting joint custody to both co-parents and believe this furthers the best interests of the child. Joint custody can apply to physical and legal custody.

Review of the divorce process

Ending a marriage may be a complicated, time-consuming process and involves certain legal procedures. Seeking qualified advice and being patient is important for getting through this process and obtaining a fair and reasonable divorce decree.

Divorce begins with the filing of paperwork. One spouse usually files these papers first and must serve them on the other party. In an uncontested divorce, both spouses may file these documents together.

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