How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask LawTalk Your Own Question
LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 37855
Experience:  30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
15277592
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
LawTalk is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I am contemplating divorce. What are the first steps when

This answer was rated:

I am contemplating divorce. What are the first steps when there is a child, house, my business, dogs, bank accounts, and 19 years involved? We are clearly miserable together but the last thing I want is to put my son through it too. I don't want any custody involved, I want him to go where he feels he wants to go. My husband has said that he's "keeping the house" in past divorce arguments we've had. Honestly I would like it to go very smooth but I know deep down that it rarely does. I'm also hoping this will be completely confidential.

Good afternoon,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. I have been a licensed attorney for more than 3 decades.

In order to force your spouse to relocate from the marital home, or to pay support either for yourself or your children, it will be necessary for you to file for divorce. After doing that, you will want to ask the court to set what is known as a Temporary Hearing. A temporary hearing is a court proceeding held soon after the filing of a divorce action and allows the parties to ask the court to issue orders affecting the other party that will remain in effect, typically until at least the time of the divorce decree.

At that hearing you may ask the judge to order your spouse to move from the marital home, to grant you primary residential custody of the children if there are any of your marriage that are minors, as well as for an order that your spouse pay you both child support, and spousal support/alimony, until at least the entry of the divorce decree.

This is a very critical hearing to ask for. This hearing is not automatic, and if you do not request it, it may never be held. Another important thing to consider is having a local Family Law attorney assist you at this hearing. What occurs at the Temporary Hearing often signals what will happen after the divorce, both in terms of child custody and child support as well as spousal support. It is important for your future that you do well at the Temporary Hearing.

Presuming that you are the primary caretaker of your children, you can expect that the judge will make the temporary order such that you and the children will remain in the home and your husband moves out---this is pretty common and is really in the best interests of the children.

In terms of child support, with 2 children, you can expect the court to award you approximately 25% of your spouse's monthly income.

Based on the number of years you have been married, and based on the presumed difference in your respective incomes, it is likely that you will qualify for spousal support, for at least a number of years.

Issues the court will generally look at in determining spousal support include:

1. The present respective incomes of the parties;

2. The education levels and earning capacities of the parties;

3. The ages and the physical, mental and emotional conditions of the parties;

4. The duration of the marriage;

5. Whether either party will be caring for children of the marriage;

6. The standard of living established during the marriage.

While the amount of spousal support you might be awarded can be virtually impossible to determine based on the facts you have provided, when spousal support is awarded in similar situations it generally amounts to 15% to 25% of the higher earning spouse's income. The duration of spousal support often runs approximately 50% the number of years of the marriage. In long term marriages of 10 years and longer, spousal support can be made permanent by the court---terminating usually on the remarriage of the receiving party or upon their cohabitation with a new partner.

You may reply to me again if you have additional questions, and I will be happy to continue to assist you.

I am not an employee of this site and I am only paid for helping you when you rate my service to you. Please remember to rate my service to you by clicking on the rating stars on your screen (preferably 5-Stars) so that I can be compensated for helping you. Thank you in advance.

I wish you and yours well in 2017,

Doug

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I don't want to force him to leave, nor do I want spousal support. I want my son to go with his father or myself freely. If all that I want is what is rightfully mine, like the fair splitting of assets, how do I go about this?

I just provided you with the rights that you could have. You do not have to ask for them all. You just work it all out with the father---as regards ***** ***** support, the ownership of the home and the division of assets and debts and and set that out in the Marital Settlement Agreement that you will need to prepare for your divorce decree.

You may reply to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I can address your concerns, to your satisfaction.

Please remember to rate my service to you by clicking on the rating stars on your screen so that I can be compensated for helping you. I am not an employee of the site and I am only paid when you rate my service to you. There is no cost to you related to your rating my service to you. Thank you in advance.

I wish you and yours well in 2017,

Doug

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
What if i tell him before filing and he clears our savings/checking accounts? Does he have a right to do that?

Hi,

Yes, he does and I would suggest that in preparation for the battle you take at least half of all cash out of the joint accounts and place it in a personal acco8unt of yours, that you cancel all joint credit cards and that you terminate any open loan such as an open Home Equity Line of Credit.

Please rate me. Thanks in advance,

Doug

Good evening,

Is there anything else I can assist you with tonight? It is possible that your questions and issues might be better served by an in-depth conversation with me. If you are interested, for a very nominal charge I can offer you a private phone conference.

Please know that I answered your question in good faith, providing you with the information that you asked for, and I did that with the expectation that you would act likewise and rate my service to you. If I have already provided you with the information you asked for and you have no additional questions, would you please now rate my service to you by clicking on the rating stars so that I can be compensated for assisting you? Rating me costs you nothing as you have already paid the deposit for my help. All rating does is ensure that I am paid for my time in working with you.

Thanks in advance for your rating of my service. It is greatly appreciated.

I wish you the best in 2017,

Doug

LawTalk and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you