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Fairfax Virginia Family Law Blog

Debt can be a major source of arguments for couples

Debt has a major presence in many marriages. It is very common for people to go into relationships with outstanding financial obligations, and there are many ways a couple might incur debt during a marriage.

Debt can also be a conflict-point within marriages.

For one, disagreements could arise over who is responsible for payments. A recent study by Fidelity found that nearly half (49 percent) of couples that went into their relationship with debt aren't on the same page on who is responsible. The financial implications of the debt that a married couple has, and the stress connected to it, could lead to arguments.

What income is counted in Virginia child support calculations?

The income of the two spouses has impacts in many different key issues in Virginia divorces, including child support issues. Under the state's child support guidelines, among the main figures courts use in calculating child support obligations are the gross incomes of the two parents.

What if your spouse is wasting assets?

There are many things that individuals might do in preparation for a divorce. Unfortunately, some spouses cross the line and engage in activity aimed at trying to unfairly lower what their soon-to-be ex would receive in property division in the divorce. One of the actions that sometimes comes up is a spouse wasting assets. This is referred to as asset dissipation. Generally, this is when a person spends or wastes marital assets in order to keep these assets out of the hands of his or her spouse in a divorce.

Who makes big decisions regarding the children after a divorce?

A lot of major decisions come in connection to raising children. This includes making choices about what school a child will attend, what activities he or she will be allowed to participate in and how his or her health care needs will be met. What is chosen can have lasting implications for a child and a family. When parents divorce, one important issue that needs to be addressed is how such decisions will be made in the future.

Who will be allowed to make such determinations moving forward depends on what arrangement for legal custody is reached in a divorce. Legal custody covers decision-making authority regarding a child.

What can couples do to reduce financial fighting?

Finances have the potential to be a major source of argument within a marriage. And fights over money can have major impacts on a married couple’s relationship. Research has pointed to it not being at all uncommon for divorced couples to cite financial issues as being a factor in their divorce.

Today, we’ll go over some of the steps couples can take to try to keep financial issues from being a source of contention within their relationship. For couples planning on getting married, there are measures they can take prior to tying the knot towards this goal. Examples include:

Financial issues for blended families

There are a great many blended families here in the United States. A 2015 Pew Research Center report estimated that around one-sixth of children reside with a stepparent, half-sibling or step-sibling.

When parents with children from a prior marriage decide to remarry and form a blended family, there can be complex issues to navigate. This includes complicated financial issues.

What can stay-at-home parents expect to get during divorce?

Among all the concerns swimming in your head when considering or going through divorce, one of the most frightening is finances, especially if your spouse is the breadwinner of the household. What will you be left with? Will your quality of life drop significantly?

Luckily, even if you are a stay-at-home parent without an income, you can still receive a share of your spouse's assets. Virginia courts operate under equitable distribution, which means they divide property based on what is fair for each spouse's circumstance.

In today’s world, many children have lots of grandparents

Grandparents can play key roles in their grandchildren’s lives. And these days, it is pretty typical for children to have a high number of grandparent figures. Instances in which children have six, seven or eight grandparents and similar people in their lives are not uncommon in today’s world.

There are many things that have been suggested as playing a role in this trend of children having a higher number of grandparents these days. This includes:

Do a child’s special needs have impacts on child support orders?

Many things can impact what kinds of financial concerns parents have regarding their children. One such thing is if their child has special needs. Children with disabilities can have many care needs that carry added expenses. Meeting these added costs is critical for parents in ensuring their children gets the care and support they need.

So, these costs are among the issues it is important for parents of children with special needs to address when getting divorced. Given this, such costs may be at the front of such parents’ minds when it comes to child support proceedings.

Setting a good example for the children following a divorce

When parents get divorced, many things can have long-term impacts on their children. One is what happens with the children’s living arrangements moving forward. There are a range of possible living arrangements that could come out of a divorce. Some examples include:

  • The children primarily living with one parent
  • The children splitting time living with each of the two parents
  • Bird-nesting, which involves children living in one house full-time, with the parents regularly “trading off” living with them
  • The divorced parents continuing to live together with the children under one roof

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