The uncertainty of your future after a divorce may be compounded if you are married to your business partner. Not only does such a divorce raise concerns about coping emotionally, deciding where to live and wondering about your financial resources, but it may cut to the heart of your life goals and livelihood.
For a lot of unhappily married people in California, divorce is the end of an error. In most endings, there is always a touch of sadness, but if your marriage has been a source of drastic discomfort for some time, you will more likely be sighing from relief than crying from heartbreak.
Separating you and your soon-to-be ex's finances during divorce can be tricky. This is especially true if you have been together many years or if there are some high-value assets that the two of you share. When divorce seems inevitable, there are steps that you can take to make the division of your finances easier. Staying ahead of the process will smooth the transition and keep the division fair and equitable.
As moody and uninterested as teens can be, they thrive in their daily routines. Your teen might act like they don't want to talk about their feelings. They might spend their day glued to their phone. Going to the beach with friends is a priority. Don't forget that their interactions with you are important, too.
When one or both spouses in a divorce have ownership in a professional practice, things can become complicated. Spouses who are partners, shareholders, or sole owners of a professional practice have likely invested a great deal of time meeting with attorneys and accountants to limit personal liability and taxes that arise from their practice. In these discussions, the possibility of divorce may have been contemplated and a prenuptial agreement or other pre-divorce plan was put into place to protect their business. Many, however, do not have any pre-divorce safeguards, which can put their professional practice at risk during a divorce.
In any divorce where children are involved, child support is a very serious issue. Whether you are the parent paying or receiving child support, you want to ensure that your child will be provided for and receive all the support and benefits necessary for them to live a healthy and happy life. While the paying parent may feel like they get the raw end of the deal, it's important to remember that this money is not for the benefit of your ex-spouse; it's wholly for the benefit of your children.
While the best way to protect your investments in divorce starts long before the divorce ever becomes an issue, i.e., through a prenuptial agreement, trust, estate planning, or other pre-divorce strategy; many people do not have such plans in place. In the absence of a pre-divorce plan, the burden is on you to prove that your investments are separate property not subject to division.
Depending on the state you live in, there are generally two basic methods of dividing assets in a divorce: equitable distribution and community property. California is a community property state, which means the court will divide the couple's community assets equally. Any asset obtained or income earned during the course of the marriage is considered community property unless other agreements have been made, such as a prenuptial agreement, or some particular exception to that characterization exists in the law.
Here's a nightmare scenario. Imagine divorcing from a spouse and then being diagnosed as HIV positive. Such a scenario would be a nightmare because of both the disease and the fact that it was transmitted by someone you loved and someone with whom you might have believed yourself to be in a monogamous relationship. Fortunately, should this kind of event occur, there is something you can do about it. Legally, you can seek restitution against your partner by filing a claim known as a domestic tort.
In the thick of a divorce, tensions often run high. Each spouse may wish nothing but pain and misery for the other. Such feelings, though unfortunate, may be unavoidable. Even the most agreeable people can become petty and mean in the midst of divorce.