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Greenville Family Law Blog

A legal separation may benefit you before divorce

If you and your spouse do not want to get a divorce but do want to live apart, you may wish to consider a legal separation. This process has the potential to be helpful if someone wants to consider reconciliation in the future but needs to be separate, financially and legally, from his or her spouse right now.

A legal separation can be the first step toward divorce, or it can be a solution for separating legally on its own. This does not end a marriage, so if you decide to get a legal separation instead of a divorce, understand that you will not be able to get married to someone else until you complete the divorce process.

You can cope with divorce by taking these 3 steps

Separation and divorce are hard on individuals. It's not just the financial expense of divorce that makes it so frustrating. There is emotional turmoil and physical strain. A lack of sleep, depression or other factors can make dealing with divorce very difficult.

How can you take your divorce in stride? There are many different ways to handle the stress you feel. Here are a few things to consider.

A parenting plan for babies must consider their needs first

When a child is very young, it can be hard to separate him or her from the mother. Despite that being true, both mothers and fathers deserve time with their babies, even if the decide to get a divorce. To make that work out, it's important to create a parenting plan that takes into consideration the age and needs of the child.

One thing that babies need is a consistent schedule. It's a good idea to work together to determine a schedule that works for your little one. For example, if your baby is very young, it may be advisable to have the father at the mother's home for visitation time during certain hours of the day. Night might be a good time for some, since the mother can feed the baby and the father can put the baby down for sleep after reading bedtime stories or spending time with his child.

Gray divorce between same-sex couples draw unique concerns

Getting a gray divorce as a gay couple is something that is relatively new. Since same-sex marriages have only been legal for around two years, traversing a divorce as an older same-sex couple may be new territory for many.

Around 1.1 percent of same-sex couples end up getting a divorce. However, the number of people getting a divorce as they age is growing. In 1990, for instance, only five couples out of 1,000 between the ages of 51 and 69 got a divorce. In 2015, that number jumped to 10 per 1,000.

Why would you want a legal separation?

Legal separations and divorces are not the same. While it's often you hear about people ending their marriages through a divorce, a legal separation can be a better option depending on the circumstances. For example, if getting a divorce will hurt you financially, a legal separation may be a better choice.

When you choose to pursue a legal separation, you and your spouse will still be married. The difference between your marriage now and after the separation is that anything you acquire or do is separate from your spouse and not considered a marital asset following the separation. You can live completely separate lives but still benefit from some of the perks of a marriage.

How can you get child support from a nonpaying parent?

There is never a guarantee that a person ordered to pay child support will do so. Even with a court order, some people do not follow through on their responsibilities. If you find yourself in a position where you aren't receiving the compensation you need for your child, don't worry. There are steps that can help you get what you need.

When a parent isn't paying child support or isn't paying all he or she owes, the Child Support Enforcement Program (CSE) can step in to help. This program helps collect payments and then deposits them onto a debit card or by direct deposit into your accounts.

To divorce or not to divorce: What divorce can't do for you

While a divorce can help you end a marriage that is not working and get you on the path to a life on your own, there are many things a divorce cannot do for you. Usually, when you decide you want a divorce, you've already focused on the numerous reasons why it's a good idea. However, it's good to take a second to think about the reasons you may not want to choose a divorce.

First, a divorce can't guarantee that you'll get everything you want out of your assets. In fact, there is no guarantee at all that your assets will be split 50/50 or even equitably. No two marriages are alike, so if you and your spouse can't agree on a separation agreement that is fair to both of you, a judge will need to listen to both sides' arguments and determine a fair split of your assets.

Social media has the potential to damage parenting reputations

Social media can reflect well or poorly on you, and if you share custody of your children with your ex-spouse, what you do on camera can come back to haunt you. That happened recently to a couple on YouTube, a social media platform where users share videos. They played pranks on their children, but many believe they went too far.

The courts agreed, and the children were placed in their biological mother's custody. How does that apply to your case? It shows just how important it is to be good to your children and to do things in their best interests. While a silly prank here or there won't have Child Protective Services at your door, going too far and tormenting your children with these acts can.

Domestic violence: You can get out and get the divorce you need

Domestic violence is extremely difficult to deal with. For those victimized by their spouses, divorce may be what they want but are too scared to ask for. When domestic violence is a major part of a marriage, it is vital that the victim becomes aware of the steps he or she can take to get out of the situation.

The first thing to know is that there are multiple kinds of domestic violence. They are not all physical or even violent. Emotional, financial, sexual and other forms of abuse are all considered to be types of domestic violence.

Child welfare may be reformed in North Carolina

Child welfare services are utilized by many people. Parents wishing to adopt may need to have the consultants approve them and their homes for children's safety before adoption. If there are allegations of abuse, the same services are supposed to follow up to make sure children are kept safe.

As a parent, your primary concern is your child's welfare, so knowing that this system could be reformed soon is positive news. There is new legislation being proposed that would change the current system from a county-based system to one with regional offices and more state oversight.

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