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Tampa Family Law Law Blog

Fathers struggle with child support, custody

Florida parents often struggle with adjusting to the new norms laid out by their child custody agreements. However, some fathers say it is not a matter of getting used to a new life, but that of getting the short end of the stick when it comes to child support and custody. Even as parenting expectations change, many dads feel that their ability to parent is not respected after divorce.

A recent CNN report featured several fathers who say their stories are not at all unique. One man spoke of the limited access he currently has to his child. He was not married to his child's mother, and at the time of birth, his name was left off the birth certificate. Although he wants to play an active role in his son's life, he only sees him four nights per month.

Avoiding financial mistakes is smart for your post-divorce future

No matter now amicable a couple may be during the divorce process, it is still a difficult and often emotionally challenging process. The stress of ending a marriage can often lead to decisions that are not always wise or sustainable for the future. If you are facing divorce, it is beneficial to learn about common financial mistakes people make in divorce and how to avoid them.

The choices you make during the divorce process can impact you for years to come. Of course, this includes decisions regarding your divorce order, but also other choices you may be tempted to make, such as impulse purchases. It is in your interests to think clearly and act cautiously during this time of change and transition.

Anna Faris and Chris Pratt settle child custody, support issues

Celebrities who choose to utilize prenuptial agreements are often criticized, but is that criticism justified? In the case of Chris Pratt and Anna Faris, probably not. The couple recently finalized their divorce in what was a seemingly agreeable process, addressing tough topics such as child custody and spousal support. Their prenuptial agreement may have had a helping hand in concluding things as amicably as possible.

Florida movie fans may already know that Pratt and Faris were married for eight years before they separated in Aug. 2017, filing for divorce only months later. Their divorce was recently finalized, during which both waived their rights to spousal support not just now, but also for in the future. Neither parent will pay child support at this time either, although that could change. For now, they have agreed to fund a joint bank account, which will be used for their 6-year-old son.

A big paycheck doesn't always mean big alimony payments

Worried about spousal support? You are certainly not alone, and your concerns are valid. While receiving alimony can indeed be important for your ex, you also have your own personal finances to look out for. In Florida, maintaining your own financial stability after your divorce is just as important.

A number of factors will influence whether you pay alimony and, if so, how much. While some of these are relatively straightforward, such as the length of your marriage and both of your incomes, others are more nuanced. A judge may consider the type of lifestyle you enjoyed as married couple, your educational backgrounds and both of your future earning potentials.

Moving with your child after divorce may be harder than you think

Divorce will bring many significant changes in your life. These changes can continue to affect your life for years to come, including any future moves you may make. If you have minor children, the impact of a potential move and what it means for your custody arrangement could have a significant impact on your ability to relocate as you wish.

If your move will require you to move your children to a new school, city, state or even country, there are specific steps you will have to take before you start packing. If a custody order is in place, the other parent has a say in what happens to his or her children, and certain permissions are necessary. It may be beneficial for you to learn more about how child relocation works.

Will I get half of everything during property division?

Most people tend to view splitting up property in a divorce as a 50/50 practice. While a couple's division of marital property might end up coming out to something that resembles a 50 percent split, this will not be the case for everyone. In Florida, property division falls under equitable distribution, which does not necessarily translate to equal. 

In the case of equitable distribution, individuals can expect to receive a fair portion of marital assets. A fair distribution will look different for each couple. It depends on a variety of factors, including the length of the marriage and how much each person earned during that time. 

You can protect your interests in a gray divorce

When heading for divorce, Florida couples understand the importance of seeking final resolutions that allow them to have financial stability in the future. This may be particularly important for older couples who are closer to retirement. If you are facing the prospect of a gray divorce, it may be beneficial to learn more about how you can protect your financial interests.

In a gray divorce, parties are over the age of 50, which means they have less time to financially rebound after divorce. The rate of baby boomer and gray divorces has increased dramatically over the last few years. The end of a marriage will likely impact retirement plans, and it is prudent to make choices that will allow you to have security and stability well into the future. 

Are you prepared for a military divorce?

As an active duty member of the military you already have enough to worry about without adding family law issues into the mix. However, if you are going through a divorce, you probably have some serious concerns that need to be addressed. Will your military benefits be affected? What will you do about child custody? With the right help, you can come out on the other side of a divorce with an agreeable solution to these issues and more. 

Although the end goal of a military divorce is the same as that of a civilian divorce in Florida, getting there requires a skilled understanding of the laws, regulations and what is at stake. For example, rather than having a custody order from the state of Florida, military parents will usually defer to their respective branch's regulations. Each individual branch determines what an active duty must pay for a dependent child if he or she is physically separated from them. 

Is alimony always paid on a monthly basis?

Most people in Florida are familiar with spousal support in the form of monthly payments. Few realize that there is another approach to dealing with alimony. For those who feel uncomfortable signing a check to their ex-spouse every month, a lump sum payment could be a good option. 

There are multiple benefits to paying off alimony through a single payment after divorce. Not only do some people find it more comfortable than sending off money to their ex on a monthly basis, but it is also helpful for those who struggle with keeping track of their finances and which bills are due when. Missing an alimony payment could potentially land a person in legal trouble, so a lump sum erases that worry. However, payers do not get a discount for this method, and must still pay the appropriate amount.

Are millennials better prepared for divorce?

Asking for a prenuptial agreement is not exactly the most romantic thing in the world, but the negative stigma attached to these documents appears to be fading. More and more young couples in Florida are saying "I do" to the prenup. Although it does not appear as if millennials are going into marriage with the intention of getting divorced, it does indicate that they have more worth protecting. 

A survey from the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers found that over half of respondents had noticed an increase in the number of millennial couples using prenups. Prenups are often associated with individuals who have significant family wealth or who are heading down the aisle for the second or even third time, but that does not appear to be the case for this increase. Instead, it could be linked to the rising age of marriage. 

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