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Salem Family Law Blog

What constitutes a fair and equitable property settlement?

When you go through your Oregon divorce, you likely will discover that the property settlement negotiations between you and your about-to-be ex-spouse will consume a good amount of time. Even assuming that both you and (s)he are fair-minded adults, neither of whom wants to deprive the other of what rightfully belongs to him or her, coming up with a fair and equitable property settlement agreement can sometimes be tricky.

Unfortunately, no statute or case law defines precisely what “fair and equitable” means. As the Huffington Post reports, however, the term seldom means that you and your spouse must split your marital property right down the middle. In other words, a property settlement agreement that would be eminently fair and equitable for a couple in your approximate financial situation could easily be highly unfair and inequitable for you and your spouse.

What can you do if your ex-partner is behind on child support?

Oregon courts do not order child support to punish one parent or favor the other, but simply to ensure that children of divorce experience as little adverse effects of their parents' separation as possible. The recipient parent has the right to use child support as he or she sees fit, so long as he or she uses the funds to benefit the child. Common expenses for which a parent may use child support include food, shelter, clothing, entertainment, and recreational activities. If the recipient parent does not receive the support payments, it does not just hurt the parent financially, but also, it hurts the child. For this reason, Oregon takes child support enforcement very seriously. If your former partner is behind on support, the Oregon Department of Justice details what you can do to recover past-due funds.

When a parent fails to make child support payments of his or her own volition, the courts may have no choice but to take legal action. The Child Support Program has several tools and methods it uses to collect overdue support. One way in which it enforces support orders is by withholding federal and state tax refunds and using them to pay overdue support. However, this method often requires a six-month hold, which means you will go another half-year without the funds you need for your child. 

Severing ties with financial advisers can benefit divorcees

When people make the difficult decision to get divorced from their spouse in Oregon, the positives of their choice may be difficult to realize at first as many challenges loom in their immediate future. One of the most time-consuming aspects is the process of separating financial accounts and assets as people prepare to assume independence once again. 

During these difficult times, it is imperative that divorcees focus attention on maintaining finances that are organized and well-documented to regain traction in their efforts to stabilize their financial situation and their retirement future. What many people may not realize at first, is that continuing to use the same financial advisor as their soon-to-be-ex may complicate matters or prevent them from feeling completely independent from their former partner. 

What should you do if you plan to file for divorce?

If you are planning to file for divorce from your spouse in Oregon, you may have had feelings of uneasiness as you face an uncertain future. Despite the apprehension, you may be facing, your efforts to prepare the best you can to make a significant decision regarding your marital relationship may help lessen the difficulty of an often-challenging situation. 

Regardless of if you discuss divorce with your spouse or if it is something that you go about more secretive, it is imperative that you begin planning for your future immediately. One of the areas of your life that may require significant modification is your finances. Depending on your situation, you may need to separate years of shared banking accounts, retirement plans and pensions, and mutually owned investments and assets.

Remember your estate plan when divorcing

If you and your spouse in Oregon have made the decision to end your marriage, you know that there can seem to be no end to the number of decisions you must make and things that will change in your life. This transition includes a mindset shift in which you start assessing many decisions differently, including how you would like your assets handled or distributed after you die. Unless it is stipulated in your divorce agreement, you probably do not want your former spouse to inherit everything. 

It is for this reason that Forbes reminds people not to forget about their estate plans when they get divorced. Some documents and plans might not be able to be changed in any way until your divorce settlement is finalized. This is to protect you and your spouse from each other tampering with any marital assets during the proceedings. Once the ink is dry, however, your will or trust should be updated to reflect your current situation.

Can you relocate with your child during divorce?

You know that your marriage is coming to an end and that divorcing your spouse is inevitable. While you firmly believe that relocating to someplace else in Oregon is what is best for you and your children, you are unsure if your decision will be supported by other people including your family and friends. Ultimately, the courts will weigh in on your request and determine if your decision will be in the best interest of your children. 

While it may be difficult to separate your emotions during such a chaotic time, it is imperative that you do not allow the issues that you experienced in your marriage to taint the way you view your soon-to-be ex as a parent. Even though he or she was unable to maintain a healthy and happy relationship with you, chances are that your children still have a relationship with their other parent and that your spouse is a qualified parent. Understand that both of you want what is best for the children you have shared and that you will need to be flexible in coming up with a custody arrangement. 

Factors used to determine child custody applied to pets

As beloved as pets are by many couples in Oregon, they do not have the same status as children when it comes to divorce disputes. While pets do not have legal status in California either, a newly signed law allows California judges to apply the same criteria to pet ownership disagreements that they use to determine custody of a child.

In the past, disputes over pet ownership during divorce proceedings have gotten contentious, and without clear guidelines over how to handle the matter, judges have sometimes had to settle the disagreement by arbitrary means. The new law allows family court judges to weigh factors such as who plays with the pet or takes it on walks, feeds the pet, takes it to the groomers or the vet and so on. 

Custody disputes and social media

Child custody disputes can be extremely emotional, and parents may face a number of challenges while working through these matters. From concerns about legal issues to anxiety over one’s ability to spend an ideal amount of time with kids, custody battles can bring on many difficulties. Furthermore, some parents may feel the need to share their feelings and experiences on social media. Moreover, parents may share unrelated information online which could also affect their custody dispute, and this is important to keep in mind if you are active on social media and going through a dispute over child custody.

Some posts on social media can present a parent in a bad light, such as those which show a parent partying late into the night, drinking heavily or acting a way which could be negatively viewed by others. As a result, you should be very mindful of what you post, especially if you are going through a dispute over how custody will be arranged. Some parents may also be very angry during these disputes, which can lead to emotional posts that are regretted later on. Moreover, other parents may drink more than they normally would or exhibit other forms of uncharacteristic behavior because of the intense anxiety they have.

Going over examples of marital property

If you and your marital partner are splitting up, there may be various aspects of your divorce that bother you or cause you to worry. For example, if you are a parent you may be terrified of a dispute over child custody and how things will unfold. The financial side of divorce can be very tricky as well and property division is one area that can be especially challenging and complex for some couples. In this post, we will take a look at some of the different examples of marital property, which is subject to division.

Generally speaking, any property that a spouse acquires while they are married is viewed as marital property. This may include gifts that a spouse received while they were married, financial accounts, boats, automobiles and real estate. Some people do not realize that other types of property, such as artwork, coin collections and home furnishings may also be subject to division. There are many factors that the court will consider when trying to figure out how to divide your property and you may receive more or less property than you originally expected.

Developing a visitation schedule that is fair and functional

When a couple in Oregon chooses to get divorced, their decision may require that one or both parents relocate as the courts negotiate the details of the separation. For couples with children, this process could be critical as they negotiate where their children will live and who their guardians will be. They will also need to decide whether parenting responsibilities and decisions will be shared and how time will be split between both parents to allow their children to maintain a relationship with both their mom and dad. 

As parents begin the process of creating a visitation schedule and coordinating the details of their shared custody arrangement, it is critical that both parties acknowledge that they will not be able to have everything they want. According to verwellfamily.com, parents who are more concerned about "winning" the arrangement they wanted to keep current schedules convenient and easy will often be disappointed when they are required to compromise to some degree. The visitation schedule that people create is a valid effort at enabling children shared by the couple to have accessibility to both of their parents to enjoy the relationships and experiences that come from having both a mother and a father. It is not, however, a resource for people to get revenge on their ex. 

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