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Salem Family Law Blog

Child custody and seasonal affective disorder

For any parent, a child custody dispute can be difficult for a wide variety of reasons. Not only do these disagreements often result in courtroom stress and uncertainty about one’s future relationship with his or her child, but they can even lead to depression. For some people, such as those who suffer from seasonal affective disorder, this can be particularly difficult during the winter months. If you are preparing for a custody dispute or are already in the middle of one, it may be helpful to focus on reducing the emotional impact of the issues you are working through.

With cold weather and less sunlight, the winter can be a hard time of year for some people. Unfortunately, adding stress and emotional issues due to a dispute over custody can further complicate things for someone with this disorder. However, parents should always try to remain strong and do their best to prevent depression from interfering with their ability to secure healthy outcomes for their children. In the long run, custody rulings can have a major impact on an entire family, whereas seasonal affective disorder and depression may only be temporary, in some instances.

Divorce in the digital era

Technology has changed lives in a plethora of ways, many of which are positive. For example, people are able to gain access to information like never before. However, it is crucial to make sure that this information is accurate and relevant, especially with something as important as legal issues and divorce. Moreover, our law office knows that with increased communication and the sharing of information, certain problems may arise. For example, someone dealing with family law matters may face problems related to gossip and slander on social media.

If you are stressed out about your divorce or upset with your spouse, it is important to try to maintain your emotions and avoid sharing anything online that could be damaging. On the other hand, if your former partner has posted something about you that is damaging and untrue, you should look into your options and how this activity could potentially affect your case. Although technology can present some challenges, there are many reasons why it has made the divorce process easier. For example, certain forms can be accessed and completed online, while other facets of divorce can be simplified via the internet. Unfortunately, there is also misleading or false information across the web, so it is critical to be careful with divorce-related pages you may come across.

What will happen to my tax refund if I do not pay child support?

Finding yourself unable to pay child support might have become a problem for various reasons. Perhaps your position was terminated without warning or you are suffering from a serious medical condition that you had no way to see coming. Regardless, the consequences for falling behind can be harsh, from a mental, financial, and even social standpoint. You might be wondering how back child support could affect your tax refund, which is especially relevant with tax season around the corner.

The Office of Child Support Enforcement states that unpaid child support can result in the interception of a tax refund, if the criterion is satisfied. During the processing of tax refunds, people who have fallen behind on child support payments are pinpointed and their tax refund is withheld, either partially or entirely. Funds that are withheld are then transferred to state agencies to cover delinquent child support and those who owe payments receive a notice. This is yet another reason why people who are required to pay child support should strive to avoid delinquency, although some people may be experiencing financial hardships that make it incredibly difficult to pay on time.

Family law, stress, and the holidays

If you have decided to part ways with your spouse, the decision and the divorce process can be quite challenging from a number of standpoints. Moreover, family law matters can generate uncertainty and anxiety years after a divorce has been finalized. However, these hurdles can be even harder to work through during the holidays, especially for those who have children or have to answer family questions at a celebration. If you are struggling with these problems in Medford, or another Oregon city, it is essential to go over your circumstances carefully and strive for an outcome that is best for you and your children.

During the holidays, daily life in general can be stressful, let alone when a divorce is involved. This can create added uncertainty for children and parents alike, and relatives might ask probing questions during a family get-together. For example, your spouse may not attend a holiday party with you and questions might arise afterward. During the holidays, it can be difficult to send mail, reach people, or take care of certain responsibilities. With holiday shopping, winter weather, holiday-related travel, and other issues, this time of year can be tough for those splitting up with their marital partner.

When should dads get overnight visits with infants?

You want your baby's father to be involved, so joint custody may sound appealing. What may not sound appealing is letting your infant spend the night at his home--away from you. However, many psychiatrists say that it could be the best option.

According to atlantapsychconsultants.com, in the past, it was believed that infants only developed one primary attachment, so typically the mother was considered the primary caregiver and automatically had sole rights to overnight visits. However, now professionals understand that dads may also form this same bond. Not all of them do, though.

The link between identity theft and divorce

If your marriage has come to end, you may be facing all sorts of uncertainties. On the one hand, you could be worried about your financial future, whether you are unsure about child support payments or property division. Or, perhaps you have concerns about custody or visitation. We also know that people can run into problems with their former spouse. Although many people have encountered strong emotions and verbal disputes, some people have been hit with additional hardships, such as becoming an identity theft victim.

There are a variety of reasons why someone may face identity theft during or after a divorce. For starters, someone may have access to personal information such as their spouse’s social security number, credit card number, date of birth, and other critical details. With this information in hand, they may be able to open new accounts or empty an existing account. Moreover, the misuse of an identity may be even more likely during divorce because of the bitterness that some people experience. People can be very emotionally charged when it comes to the end of marriage and some become so upset that they are willing to break the law.

Modification of the original child support order

Either parent can request that a child support order be modified in Oregon. According to the Marion County District Attorney, a change in the amount of child support may be appropriate if it has been three years or more, or if either party has had a major change in circumstances since the original order. 

The Oregon Department of Justice explains that modification does not necessarily require parents to go back to court. The request is processed through the state's Child Support Program. The parent who requests the modification must provide proof that the new circumstances are different enough to warrant refiguring the payment amount. For example, if there has been an involuntary job loss for either parent, the child's needs have changed or the child no longer lives with the former custodial parent, the state's Child Support Program would probably approve the request for modification. 

Filing for divorce after decades of marriage

All sorts of issues can arise during the process of divorce, such as a disagreement over child custody or stress regarding the division of property. However, the emotional toll of divorce should not be overlooked and divorce can be particularly difficult for those who have been married for decades. Sometimes, people in this position may also be elderly, which can make the end of marriage especially hard. Our firm knows how tough splitting up with a spouse can be after so many years and we believe that you should do all you can to protect your future.

Before you file for divorce, or as soon as you find out that your marriage will be coming to an end, it is vital to start thinking ahead. You should be aware of the different ways that ending a marriage can affect your finances, whether you will be required to pay alimony or will lose access to property. If you are no longer able to work, it is particularly important to be prepared for the different challenges that could pop up in the months and years ahead.

What divorcing spouses should know about restraining orders

Divorce and emotional distress typically go hand in hand, and for some people in Oregon, that strain may lead to unacceptable behavior. If a spouse is experiencing threats of violence, or if the other spouse is physically abusive, the Oregon State Bar explains that there is a law in place to address the danger: the Oregon Family Abuse Prevention Act.

A spouse can receive protection from abuse that occurred within the past 180 days through a restraining order. The law defines abuse as one or more of the following:

  • Physical harm
  • An attempt at physical harm
  • A threat of physical harm
  • Unwanted sexual relations through force or threat of force

Important facts about dividing property in an Oregon divorce

Once you and your spouse have established that you cannot make your relationship work, it is time to begin the legal process of ending your Oregon marriage, a large part of which is dividing your marital property. At the office of Daniel J. Lounsbury Attorney at Law, we have assisted many divorcing clients with the division of assets and debts.

If you own some things that were never shared during your relationship, they might not be part of the process. For example, if you had a valuable necklace left to you by your grandmother, it may be separate property. You should still mention it when you are doing the inventory, but it might not affect the equitable division of your shared assets. However, as the Oregon Judicial Branch explains, assets such as retirement accounts that were contributed to during the marriage would be considered marital assets. 

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