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December 2014 Archives

How 401(k) accounts are handled in divorce

The amount of a 401(k) account that has accumulated during a marriage is considered to be marital property and thus subject to division in Massachusetts divorce cases. Although early withdrawals prior to the account holder's reaching the age of 59 1/2 would normally give rise to an early withdrawal penalty, the law provides an exception to this when a withdrawal is made pursuant to a court's order.

What is the legal significance of establishing paternity?

A man in Massachusetts cannot assert his legal fathers' rights unless paternity has been established. Although many people believe that putting a man's name on a birth certificate establishes paternity, this is not actually true. Unless a man and a woman were married at the time of a child's birth, there is no automatic assumption of paternity.

Fathers may object to adoption of their child

Massachusetts residents may know that parents may object to their child's adoption. This fundamental right might be complex when the father is not married to the mother. In such cases, the biological father may need to take steps to assure that his rights are protected.

Addressing complex property concerns during a divorce

While many Massachusetts divorces can be contentious as property division is discussed, some situations are more challenging because of the complex nature of marital and other assets. Business interests, stocks, real estate, and other issues may require particularly careful analysis to determine value and status as marital or separate assets. Those of you who hold executive positions, own your own companies or have a high net worth may find these issues to be particularly significant during divorce proceedings.