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Salem Family Law Blog

A prenup now can avoid conflict later

People in Oregon considering marriage may not want to think about divorce when they are preoccupied with romantic plans for the future. In addition, many people think of prenuptial agreements as solely a matter for extremely wealthy people or celebrities. However, a growing number of people across the country are choosing prenups for themselves before they marry. There are many reasons why more people are considering prenuptial agreements and why they may be a good idea for people of all financial backgrounds. In particular, many people today marry after they have established careers or bought real estate of their own, a change from people marrying as they just start off in life.

In addition, people may come to the marriage with existing children from a former relationship that they may want to ensure are properly protected. All of these - and more - are good reasons why people may want to agree among themselves about how their property is to be treated later on in case of a divorce. Family courts make a distinction between separate property, that belongs to one party, and marital property, subject to property division. In general, the things that people bring to the marriage are considered separate property, while assets obtained during the marriage are considered marital.

Long-distance parenting after divorce

Long-distance parenting after a divorce can present some challenges for parents in Oregon. However, parents can focus on quality of time together over quantity and still maintain a bond with their children. There are many things they can do to bolster a sense of connection even though they are far away.

Regular postcards, text messages, emails or messages on social media let children know that their parents are thinking about all the time. Parents should ask questions that let their children know they are engaged with their lives, such as how a specific event went. Parents can also call their children outside of the scheduled hours. Children may have their own ideas about how they prefer to stay in touch, and parents should talk to them about what those ideas are.

Business owners and divorce

When couples living in Oregon decide to divorce, financial issues often take center stage. A couple must decide how to divide their debts and assets and make decisions regarding ongoing financial support. If the couple owns a business together, or either spouse is a business owner, these negotiations can quickly become complex.

When a marriage ends, there are few aspects of a couple's life that do not come under scrutiny. Business ownership, in particular, can create significant tension as spouses seek to value the business and determine who retains ownership of the company.

Red flags that indicate a future divorce

Some spouses in Oregon are unhappy in their relationships but have doubts about separating. The decision to split up would be easier if there was one major sign that pointed toward divorce. However, the truth is that divorce is usually much more complicated, and there are several factors at play that drive couples apart.

Some couples have unhealthy, disrespectful, and combative relationships but stay together because they think it's best for the children. If these couples are not able to work on their marriage as the children grow up, they will likely divorce when their kids leave home. In many cases, it does not do the couple any good to stay together simply because the children are their only tie.

How a parents' breakup affects young children

Divorce is stressful for the couple separating, but it also has a profound effect on children in Oregon. The specific impact typically varies based on the child's age, and it can be very confusing for young ones.

According to Parents.com, toddlers have an especially hard time when it comes to divorce because they have a very strong bond with their parents. Any disruption at home can be hard to understand, and they think it is their fault. Some issues parents may notice include:

  • Toilet training regression
  • Excessive crying
  • Attention seeking
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Thumb sucking

Recognizing signs of parental alienation

Unfortunately, it is not at all uncommon for Oregon divorces to turn ugly and acrimonious, and if you find yourself embroiled in such a divorce, you may have concerns about how it could potentially impact your children. Sometimes, parents navigating their way through divorces have particularly hard feelings toward one another, and in some instances, they may try to pass those hard feelings on to any children they share with their exes. Attorney Daniel J. Lounsbury recognizes that doing so can hinder not only the co-parenting relationship, but the shared child’s well-being, and he has helped many clients navigating these and similar circumstances pursue solutions that meet their needs.

Per Psychology Today, the process of one parent attempting to turn a child against the other parent is known as “parental alienation.” This type of behavior essentially involves one parent making repeated efforts to make it appear as if the other parent is inept, insufficient, uncaring or even dangerous.

How do you modify child custody in Oregon?

It is true that there could be situations in which you could modify a child custody decision in Oregon. However, most attorneys would probably tell you to try and be as thorough as possible in your initial negotiations during divorce. Facing everything at once has the potential to be exhausting, but it is often worth it in the long run.

Of course, nobody can plan for every eventuality. If your situation has changed and you believe that you need a different agreement, you may be able to change your child custody order. This typically would involve renegotiating terms with your co-parent and completing forms for a court to approve.

Setting children up for educational success despite divorce

Divorce can be difficult for every family member of a couple, but especially the children they have shared together. If proper measures are not taken to reduce the effect that a divorce has on children, they may experience difficult emotional turmoil that could interfere with many areas of their life including their education. If two parents are getting a divorce in Oregon, it is imperative that they begin looking at their children's education endeavors immediately to reduce the negative effects that their separation will have on their children's future. 

If possible, parents should turn their focus to their children despite their disagreements in regards to their own relationship. If amicable efforts to agree upon educational goals is not doable, each parent should do their best individually to pursue what is best for their children from an educational standpoint. 

What happens if your ex fails to pay child support in Oregon?

When you have a child support order in place in Oregon, you probably expect that your child’s other parent will do his or her duty and pay the child support on time and as ordered. Regrettably, however, this is not always the way things work, and in some situations, you may need the state to intervene if you are not getting the amount your child support order dictates. Just what might the state be able to do to help you get your hands on the child support owed to you?

According to the Oregon Department of Justice, the state may step in and collect child support in a number of different ways when someone with an existing child support order fails to uphold its terms. One such method might involve withholding any state or federal tax refunds intended for the nonpaying parent until you receive the total amount owed to you.

What matters can you address in a co-parenting plan?

When you split from your Oregon spouse, you will undoubtedly need to untangle your lives from one another’s, and if you share children you both plan to parent moving forward, you will need to figure out how to effectively co-parent. Co-parenting almost always involves a significant adjustment, but the more you and your child’s other parent can agree to when it comes to raising your shared child, the better off that child will likely be.

According to Psychology Today, a co-parenting plan is a written document that prioritizes your child’s needs, and it can outline any number of different guidelines you and your ex agree to abide by while you parent your child moving forward. Co-parenting plans can contain information about any number of areas of your child’s life, and as you can probably imagine, the contents of such a plan may need updating as your child grows older.

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