The Types of Alimony and The Mistakes to Avoid During Alimony Negotiations

Not all divorce cases result in court-ordered spousal support, also known as alimony. If you believe alimony will come up during your divorce, there are a number of things to bear in mind. Individuals who are divorcing or are divorced can request and receive spousal support payments. Alimony is paid by the spouse with higher means to supplement a spouse who needs support. 4 Types of Alimony There are 4 different types of alimony that the Court can award: General term alimony payments depend partly on the length of the marriage. Support is paid regularly to a financially dependent ex-spouse. Rehabilitative alimony is provided for a predicted time to an ex-spouse who’s expected to be able to support themselves. Reimbursement alimony support can be paid to an ex-spouse who helped cover expenses enabling the paying spouse to complete an education or job training. Payments can be made regularly or one time, but only applied to marriages lasting no more than 5 years. Transitional alimony may be paid regularly or one time to help the spouse receiving the alimony to settle into a new lifestyle or location as a result of the divorce. This type of alimony only applies to marriages lasting no more than 5 years. Whether contemplating or filing for divorce, both parties should be familiar with common pitfalls to avoid during alimony negotiations. Mistake #1 Hiding Money It’s a mistake to spend a lot of money prior to going to court in an attempt to pay less in

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It’s Tax Time—Make Sure You Understand Child Support and Taxes With These FAQs

To help you better understand child support and taxes, we’ve compiled frequently asked questions to shed some light on this complex situation. Q: Do I have to pay child support with 50/50 custody? A: Parents with a shared custody arrangement may still be responsible for child support payments. A calculation assuming each parent as the primary caretaker is the first step to determine if child support is necessary. Next, the difference in parental earnings will be calculated (the income from the lower-earning parent is subtracted from the higher earnings). Finally, the difference is the presumptive child support amount the higher-earning parent will pay the other. For more information about how child support calculations are made, you can refer to mas.gov. Q: What is the average child support paid per child? A: Each case is determined according to the families involved. The parental earned income is used to determine payments awarded; therefore, no predetermined average indicates child support per child. Q: Can child support take your whole paycheck? A: Child support payments deducted from wages are based on a percentage. Calculations are used to ensure the payor can still meet personal living expenses. As a payor, you are not expected to lose your whole paycheck. Q: Can your child support be reduced if you have another child? A: Having another child is not grounds for decreasing existing child support. Q: Is child support based on gross or net income? A: Child support in MA is based on gross income from all

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Hiring The Best Divorce Lawyer To Represent You Through Your Divorce

Accepting that your marriage is over isn’t easy, but finding the right divorce lawyer should be! Just because their website includes divorce does not mean a particular attorney is right for you. There are many considerations when selecting the best divorce attorney for your case and the fact they practice family law is simply not enough. This article will outline essential questions you should ask when consulting or interviewing a divorce lawyer for the first time. Attorneys aren’t one-size-fits-all and it’s important to have a connection with your attorney, feel comfortable and confident when working with them, and of course be assured they know the law, the process, and the court. Before diving into your search, be aware that divorce attorneys cannot guarantee outcomes or predict the total cost of a case. However, an experienced divorce lawyer should be able to walk you through options, establish a roadmap, and set appropriate expectations that help you prepare for the length, expense, and potential results of your case. Start your search by identifying several divorce lawyers in your area. After doing your due diligence such as researching their experience and reading client reviews, make contact with your top choices. You should ask for a case evaluation which is often offered by phone at no cost and is an opportunity for the attorney to better understand your situation as well as for you to ask questions to help determine your comfort level in working with this attorney. Make a list of questions to

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Can my 14-year-old decide to live with my ex?

As a divorcing parent battling over custody, there is always the fear that your child will decide they would rather live with the other parent. Even once custody has been determined, parents worry as children get older, they will want to move in with the other parent. Rest assured that minor children can’t make legal decisions, such as where they want to live. It is a common misconception that once a child reaches a certain age, they can decide which parent to live with. In truth, those responsible for determining custody are the parents or a judge if the parents can’t agree. Any child under the age of 18 does not have the final say in where they will live. While a judge may consider an older child’s wishes, a child’s opinion is only one factor. Ultimately a judge will be guided by what is in the best interest of the children involved. Some factors considered may include: each parent’s preference each parent’s ability to provide the child with food, clothing, and a safe home the health and mental wellness of each parent and the child adverse effects a child’s present or past living conditions may have had on the child’s physical, mental, moral, or emotional health When determining custody, neither parent begins with any greater right to custody than the other. The final decision is guided by the children’s welfare and happiness. Minor children cannot override an agreement made between parents or by a judge.

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Get a Grip on Legal Jargon: Divorce Terms Explained

When facing divorce, you may find yourself overwhelmed with the legal jargon used throughout the process. Add this frustration to the mounting stress and heightened emotion, and you may be left making poor decisions. While our firm is here to help guide you through the process and answer any questions you have, this guide can help clarify some of the legal jargon you may encounter. Types of Divorce Irretrievable Breakdown of the Marriage This cause for divorce stipulates that neither party is at fault and that both spouses agree that their marriage is broken. No-Fault Divorce vs. Fault In Massachusetts, a spouse can seek a “no-fault” divorce or a “fault” divorce. A no-fault divorce is filed when there is an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. This type of divorce is generally a more straightforward process. A fault divorce, on the other hand, can be filed when one party feels the other is to blame for the breakdown of the marriage. Massachusetts law recognizes several reasons for an at-fault divorce, such as adultery, desertion, and cruel and abusive treatment, to name a few. Common Forms Used in Divorce Proceedings Complaint for Divorce The first form filed to begin a civil case through the court is called a complaint. This form indicates the reason for starting a claim, and the person filing is referred to as the plaintiff. Answer Following the filing of a complaint, the other spouse becomes the defendant. The defendant-spouse can file a response to the divorce complaint, which

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Out of State Child Support Modification

Child Support and Out-of-State Issues Whether one parent is living just over the Massachusetts border in New Hampshire but still commutes to Boston every day, or whether the one parent is living on the West Coast while the children live with the other on the South Shore, issues of state jurisdiction may come into play when seeking to modify a Massachusetts child support agreement. Changing Circumstances, Modifying Orders In Massachusetts, child support is governed either by temporary orders or by final judgments. Temporary orders govern the terms of child support while there is still open legal action in process to establish a final judgement. The term “final judgment” is something of a misnomer. “Final” does not mean that the judgement can never be altered again. A child support final judgment may be renegotiated in the future. This can be done with the agreement of both parents, or one parent may file a complaint for modification if certain conditions are met. The conditions under which one parent can file a complaint for modification to a child support final judgement include: • Changes to the gross income of either or both parents • Unavailability of previously ordered health coverage, either because of job loss or unduly burdensome cost increases • New availability of health care coverage through a parent • Any other material and substantial change in circumstances What to Do When One Parent Lives in a Different State When one parent lives out of state, modifying and enforcing a child support judgment

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Divorce When Only One Partner Lives in Massachusetts

Many married couples live separately, even across state lines, for reasons which have nothing to do with the health of their marriage. However, when living across state lines from each other, couples may find their marriage at a crossroads and begin considering divorce. Perhaps distance has created serious problem in the relationship or laid bare preexisting problems. Perhaps one partner has moved away, even across state lines, as part of a trial separation. Or perhaps a history of domestic violence and a need for safety has compelled one spouse to put considerable distance between his or her person and the other spouse. As the coronavirus pandemic continues to disrupt life, some people may find themselves stymied by closed courts, recommendations against travel, and derailed moving plans. Many are wondering how to file for divorce in Massachusetts. Whatever the circumstances that have led to divorce, if one member of a couple lives in Massachusetts and the other does not, there are certain requirements that need to be met before filing for divorce. Divorce in Massachusetts: An Overview First, it is helpful to review the types of divorce available in Massachusetts, as these rules can have an impact on whether a spouse is able to file for divorce in Massachusetts. In Massachusetts, divorce may be either uncontested or contested: In an uncontested divorce, both spouses agree to a divorce and work out the terms before filing for divorce. This type of divorce is always no-fault (See below for the discussion of fault)

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How to Land on Your Feet After Divorce

Divorce takes a toll emotionally, physically, and mentally on everyone involved. It’s not uncommon for individuals going through a divorce to want to curl up in bed all day and abandon all responsibilities. As tempting as this sounds, it’s not practical. In fact, doing so can even make things worse. The first step to landing on your feet after divorce is finding acceptance. Just because you’re making the right decision to split up with your partner, doesn’t mean it’s easy, but accepting your post-divorce life means finding new normals. This will look different for everyone. However, there are several steps you can take to make your new normal as seamless as possible. For starters, get clear on the unknowns. You’ll need to answer questions such as where you will live, what your child custody arrangements will look like, and what your financial needs will be. Answering questions to unknowns will help ease anxiety and allow you to gain a new perspective on your future. To answer these unknowns, you’ll need to create a financial plan with a post-divorce budget. If your ex was in charge of handling finances in the past, this might be daunting; however, managing a budget can be empowering. To start, be realistic about your living situation. The basics of creating a budget involve gathering all of your financial statements. Make a list of all sources of income, including alimony and child support. Make a second list of all outgoing expenses starting with the necessities, such as

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