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Broward County Family Law Blog

Will your spouse's bad behavior impact custody in your divorce?

Everyone has a reason for seeking divorce, but some people experience more serious issues than others in their marriage. If one spouse has become physically or sexually abusive or developed addiction issues during the marriage, it can put everyone in the family at risk. These kinds of situations can lead to dramatic divorces and serious concerns.

If you hope to divorce a spouse who is abusive or an addict, you likely also worry about how he or she would treat your kids during parenting time or visitation. In fact, the likely outcome of the custody case could determine whether or not you decide to divorce your spouse. While it's impossible to predict with certainty the outcome of a custody case, you can look at the factors courts use to determine child custody to predict the likely outcome.

Understanding how Florida divides assets during a divorce

Getting a divorce generally means a lot of social and financial uncertainty. You may not know where you will live, what days of the week you can see your children or how much you'll still have of your retirement savings. Unless you have an ironclad prenuptial agreement on record for your marriage, it can be quite difficult to predict the likely outcome to the asset division process.

The more assets a couple has and the longer they've been married, the more complicated the asset division process becomes. Even separate assets may have ended up co-mingled with marital assets over the years. Understanding how Florida courts handle the asset division process can help you better understand the likely outcome of the process.

Your guide to co-parenting

Managing a shared custody situation can produce an enormous amount of stress, not just on you, but your children as well. For example, if you are parenting in a successful and healthy manner, but your future ex-husband is not, then your children could suffer the negative effects. Furthermore, your children could be at risk for developmental problems along the way. The same holds true if there are vast differences in disciplinary techniques, for instance, if you are more lenient and your ex is strict.

In order to co-parent successfully, the two of you must operate on the same page. You each have to practice patience, communication and flexibility. This can be extremely difficult for parents that are separated or divorced. One of the key ways to keep your co-parenting on track is to keep your children as the focus. For some tips to help make co-parenting successful, read below.

5 tips to help you navigate your divorce

Divorce is not just about ending your marriage. It is about securing sufficient support for yourself and your children. It is about deciding who gets to keep the house in Pembroke Pines, how to divide retirement accounts and what property you should fight for. It is also about avoiding some common mistakes than can cost you both emotionally and financially.

During the divorce process, it can be very difficult to keep things in proper perspective. You may be dealing with anger, hurt and even depression while at the same time trying to make decisions about your future. By following the tips below, you can make your divorce easier.

Understanding how your divorce could impact your retirement

When people think of divorces, typically young couples come to mind. However, it is increasingly common for couples over the age of 50 to decide that it's time to call it quits. Sometimes, these divorces are the result of simply growing apart over the years. Other times, it's the result of restlessness due to empty nest syndrome. One spouse may have had an affair. There are many different reasons why couples who have been together for decades decide to divorce.

Getting divorced when you're approaching retirement can have serious consequences. That doesn't mean that you should stay in an unhappy marriage, but you absolutely need to plan carefully. Especially in cases where spouses cannot agree to terms for a divorce, the potential for major expenses ahead could have a negative impact on your ability to retire.

Is it time to consider stepparent adoption?

You fell in love with and married someone who already had a child from previous marriage or relationship. Maybe the biological parent died unexpectedly or perhaps that parent has never claimed his or her rights, choosing instead to eschew having a relationship with the child in question. Over time, you've come to love your stepchild, and you want to make that bond something permanent and legally recognized.

Unless you legally adopt your stepchild, you probably won't have custody or visitation rights if your marriage ends in divorce. That could be heartbreaking for both you and the child in question. There are also issues of custody if your spouse were to die suddenly or become unfit to provide for the child due to physical or mental incapacitation. Adoption of a stepchild can offer protection and security for everyone in your family.

Child support modification: It's possible

Paying child support is not always preferable, but at least you know that the money is going towards providing your child with the best possible life.

If you find that you are unable to make your payments in full, you don't have any time to waste. You need to learn more about requesting a child support modification.

Beware when divorcing a narcissist

You obviously didn't discern the signs of your soon-to-be ex's narcissism prior to your marriage — or there wouldn't have been a marriage. However, since then, you have had many opportunities to see of what he or she is capable.

But be forewarned — "you ain't seen nothing yet."

No prenup? Consider a postnup

You had a whirlwind romance that seemed too good to be true, but when you said your vows, you knew you had finally found "The One." Now, after several years of a rocky marriage, you have concerns that he only married you for your money. You were so swept up in the passion and the romance, you did not even consider a prenuptial agreement. Fortunately, it is not too late. You still have time to put a postnuptial agreement in place to protect your assets.

If you are worried that your relationship will not last and you have high-value assets that need protection, it may be time to contact an attorney with family law experience in the Pembroke Pines area. An experienced lawyer can help you put the protections in place to guard your assets if your marriage ends.

What rights do you, as a grandparent, have during a divorce?

Watching your child go through a divorce is difficult. It's even worse when you have to worry about whether your ex in-law will allow you to spend time with your grandchildren. In some cases, the right to visitation is an issue even if your child has full or partial custody of your grandchildren.

Although the state of Florida has a law on record allowing for grandparent visitation rights, the state Supreme Court has declared the law unconstitutional. Since that ruling, no new law has been adopted by the state legislature. That means that grandparents and their rights are currently in legal limbo in Florida.

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