Top 5 Questions to Ask When Getting a Divorce
When getting a divorce certainly you will have many questions. This article will discuss the top 5 questions to ask when getting a divorce.
What will happen with my children?
Florida’s laws regarding parenting have an underlying principle that children should have a continuing relationship with both parents after divorce. Of course, there are exceptions to this such as when abuse, physical, mental or substance, is involved. In Florida in divorces where there are children a parenting plan is required to be filed detailing the overnights and holiday schedules. Presently there is no presumption for any one type of parenting plan. Florida Statute 61.13 details what the factors the court is supposed to consider when fashioning a parenting plan.
How will property be divided? Assuming there is no prenuptial or post nuptial agreements involved, Florida law has a presumption that all assets and debts should be divided fifty/fifty. This is called equitable distribution. Many times, there will be assets such as real estate that have a mortgage. If one spouse is keeping an asset, they will owe the other spouse the 50% of the equity of that asset. However, you will need a full picture of all assets and debts to know exactly what you will receive. In all divorces in Florida, full financial disclosures must be made on a voluntary basis. Once you have all the financial information then your lawyer can give you a prediction of what property you will receive.
What about alimony? Alimony in Florida presently is based upon one spouse’s need and the other spouse’s ability to pay. Florida law divides marriages into three categories: short (less than 7 years); moderate (7 years up to 17 years) and long term (17 plus years). There are different categories of alimony such as temporary, bridge the gap, rehabilitative, durational, permanent and lump sum alimony. The history of your marriage, including the standard of living will be taken into account in determining the amount and length of alimony. Each case is very different and very fact intensive.
What about child support? Child support is based upon a formula including net incomes of each parent, the number of overnights each parent has, who is paying health insurance for themselves and the children, childcare costs for work. Child support is completed after all disclosures and the determination of the parenting plan because all those facts go into a determination of child support.
What about attorney’s fees? Florida law regarding attorney’s fees is that each party is entitled to get legal representation. Therefore, there is a law that the court should award attorney’s fees after considering all financial resources order a party to pay the reasonable attorney’s fees of the other party. The court has to evaluate one spouses need vs. the other spouse’s ability to pay.