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Confronting issues in divorce cases

Clients are always overwhelmed as they contemplate a divorce. After all, divorce affects the most important aspects of the person's life. Most importantly it affects their children, their homes, their money and all of the relationships they have established during the marriage. When a client seeks out a divorce attorney they need guidance and the assurance that the attorney will guide them through the quagmire. The attorney should try to demystify the process by explaining the issues which need to be decided before a final order of divorce can be entered by the court.

What are the issues to be resolved? 

Clients are always overwhelmed as they contemplate a divorce. After all, divorce affects the most important aspects of the person's life. Most importantly it affects their children, their homes, their money and all of the relationships they have established during the marriage. When a client seeks out a divorce attorney they need guidance and the assurance that the attorney will guide them through the quagmire. The attorney should try to demystify the process by explaining the issues which need to be decided before a final order of divorce can be entered by the court.


What are the issues to be resolved?

CHILD CUSTODY:

If you have children, child custody must take center stage. Children need to be protected as much as possible from the process and be reassured that both parents love them and even though their parents may be in separate homes they will continue to have the love and support of both parents and extended family.

SUPPORT:

Child Support:

Child support is based on the incomes of both parents and can be affected by the number of days each parent has the children. Three are statutorily mandated guidelines. Day care costs and health insurance are factored into the formula. The guidelines are presumed to be the appropriate amount needed to support the children based on the income levels of both parents.

SPOUSAL SUPPORT/ALIMONY:

Spousal support: Spousal support may be appropriate if there is a significant disparity between the incomes of the parties. Spousal support/alimony is based on the spouse's need, the other spouse's ability to pay and based on the standard of living established in the marriage. The support can be awarded for an indefinite period of time or be limited to a term of years depending of the circumstances of the marriage including the number of years of marriage and the decisions made during the marriage which has affected both parties' career choices and income levels.

PROPERTY DIVISION:

Property division: The property acquired in the marriage will need to be divided prior to the entry of the Divorce Order. There is no presumption in Virginia that the property acquired during the marriage should be divided equally. If a court is requested to divide eh property several factors are considered. The contributions of each party are considered and this includes both monetary and non-monetary contributions. The ages of the parties and the length of the marriage are also considered. 

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