When your marriage is no longer a happy, healthy one, divorce can be the best option for you, your spouse, and your children. Getting divorced is a big, life-changing step and in many cases, it changes an individual’s life for the better because it gets him or her out of an unhealthy marriage.
If you are considering filing for divorce or if you have already done so, start working with an experienced divorce lawyer to ensure that your rights are protected and your interests are promoted. Your family law attorney in Greenville, WI is your advocate, and the sooner you start your relationship with him or her, the more effectively he or she can serve you.
Although the divorce process is fairly similar across the United States, each state has specific guidelines and restrictions on divorces. In Wisconsin, these guidelines and restrictions include:
For further information on any one of these points, speak with your divorce lawyer.
Every divorce involves the division of the couple’s marital property. Whether the couple has a large marital estate and a high net worth or just a few hundred dollars in savings, their marital property must be distributed between them. When a couple has a prenuptial agreement outlining how this property is to be divided, this process is straightforward. When there are conflicts surrounding the couple’s property division, it can be a drawn-out process.
If the couple has minor children, their divorce settlement must also include a child support order and a child custody order. Child support is the money one parent pays to the other to help offset the costs of raising their children, and it is determined using a specific formula. Child custody determinations are made at the court’s discretion based on what it determines to be in the children’s best interest. To make this determination, the court considers a variety of factors like:
A child custody order is comprised of two kinds of custody: physical custody, the responsibility to provide the children with a place to live, and legal custody, the responsibility to make decisions on the children’s behalves. The parents may have joint or sole custody in either or both areas, which the court determines using the factors outlined above and others included in Wisconsin law.
In some cases, spousal maintenance is also part of a divorce order. This is financial support paid from one partner to the other, either in installments or in a lump sum, to provide him or her with a safety net that will help him or her avoid financial hardship after the divorce. In the past, many spousal maintenance recipients received this support until they remarried. Those who did not remarry received this support for the rest of their lives. Today, it is more common for a spousal maintenance order to last for a limited duration while the recipient prepares to enter the workforce. However, permanent maintenance is awarded in some cases.
As mentioned above, your divorce lawyer is your advocate. His or her job is to protect your rights and help you promote your interests as you work through the divorce process. This may involve:
There are a variety of factors that play a role in determining how complex your divorce will be, like whether you have children and the size of your marital estate. Your lawyer can explain these factors to you in detail.
Sometimes, you simply know your marriage is over. If you are in this position, start working with an experienced divorce lawyer now to legally exit your marriage. Contact our team at Hammett, Bellin & Oswald, LLC today to schedule your initial legal consultation in our office, during which we will go over your rights, your legal options, and what you can expect from the divorce process.