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Dayton Divorce Law Blog

High-asset divorce can benefit from expert financial input

It may sometimes be appropriate and helpful for the person seeking a divorce to use the services of a certified divorce financial analyst (CDFA). Such an expert would work with one's divorce attorney to provide specialized expertise where the financial assets are substantial and complicated enough to warrant it. For an Ohio divorce, it would be best to seek an expert that is certified here and not in some other state.

The CDFA is a certified financial planner who has received special training in the issues that come up in high-asset divorces. In particular, such divorces often raise tax issues that can be important to the divorcing parties. It is especially helpful to know when to offer a tax benefit to the other side under circumstances where it will actually benefit both spouses.

Divorce negotiations could promote realistic property division

While undergoing a divorce in Ohio, some people are shocked to learn that they are not worth as much financially as they thought. Where the other spouse controlled accounts and was somewhat secretive, the person could easily function for years on mistaken perceptions of financial security. The divorce process brings all of that out in the open, encouraging a more realistic perspective on one's property and a more complex consideration of property division negotiations.

A spouse's ignorance of marital finances is not always bad, especially where the divorce represents a path to independence. It becomes a learning process, and the individual may find a sense of empowerment for the first time. Of course, it is not always a smooth transition, and learning the ugly facts by dribs and drabs can lead to an emotional challenge or two.

Child custody goes to mother after battle with grandparents

A fairly common family law problem in Ohio and elsewhere is a dispute between a natural parent and the grandparents for custody of children. This happens when the grandparents must step in to raise children whose parents cannot take care of them. When one or both of the parents are rehabilitated or recuperated, they may intensify their involvement with the children and demand child custody from the grandparents.

If the grandparents do not agree, the case will likely head to a family law court for a child custody determination. This happened in a recently reported case in another state. After a custody trial, the judge issued a decision giving custody of two children to the mother as opposed to the grandparents who essentially helped significantly to raise the children.

Divorce can be easier on the children when teachers are informed

Divorce between Ohio residents is generally more demanding when there are minor children involved. Young children who are in school will be affected by divorce in a variety of ways that may be unpredictable for the parents. Much of this may depend on the age, maturity level and temperament of the child.

Some of it may have to do with how long the divorce process has been lingering and, critically, how the parents are presenting the situation to the child or children. One important step that conscientious parents can take is to meet with the teacher to give him or her the background and general information regarding the child's situation. The parents can do this separately or together and they may also take advantage of the psychology and counseling resources made available by the school district.

Ohio property division may take some advanced preparation

One of the biggest fears in a divorce is how one will manage in the future. After property division, a person in Ohio needs to be sure he or she can survive. While a divorce settlement is meant to provide as much security as possible for both spouses, having a good understanding of one's financial status beforehand may alleviate some of the uncertainty.

An important thing to determine before the divorce process begins is the amount of money one will need to meet expenses. Most people understand that their standard of living may not be the same after the divorce, and they should also account for inflation as they calculate their needs. It may be necessary for some people to reevaluate their income or perhaps find ways to increase that income.

Preparing for divorce can have an ongoing beneficial impact

For Ohio residents entering into the sometimes difficult divorce process there are certain steps to initially take that could ease the burden considerably as the case progresses. The first thing is to collect all paperwork regarding assets and finances that are available. It is recommended that several years of documents be collected to give one's divorce lawyer an in-depth picture of the total situation.

These items can include tax returns, deeds, mortgages, payroll records, bank records, investment accounts, certificates of deposit, retirement accounts, contracts, leases, any business interests and essentially anything that shows one's financial status. It may be that some of these are jointly owned with the other spouse, and it is fair enough for both parties to cooperate in making and sharing copies so that each will be able to go to their respective attorneys with a full package to discuss. It is essential to move the case along that a comprehensive set of financial records be accumulated upfront and provided early to counsel.

Noncustodial parent must pay recommended child support amount

When two people in a divorce action have minor children, the complexity and focus of the case takes on an extra dimension of seriousness. The focus must always be on what is in the best interest of the children. Generally, child custody determinations in Ohio will dictate which parent pays child support for the children.

There are generally two kinds of child custody: physical custody and legal custody. Despite a gradual trend toward shared physical and legal custody, courts often order that one parent shall have primary physical custody, which means that the parent shall primarily have the children most of the time, with of course visitation rights to the other parent. Even though the court awards primary physical custody to one parent, it can order that legal custody be equally shared.

Parents give up child custody when vital services not affordable

When parents in Ohio are abusive or neglectful, the state may step in and child protective services may assert custody, at least for a temporary period. However, the system of health care services in general today is so deficient that many parents cannot get health care for children with serious health problems. When the health problem is debilitating and the parents cannot care for the child, some of them today are turning child custody over to child protective services.

This happened with a family that had a severely autistic child. The health insurance company that insured the family refused to cover the $100,000 per year for residential autism care. However, when the child reached 14, the safety of the family became problematic. Consequently, the mother made a decision to turn her son over to child protective services.

Divorce puts a tight clamp on social media communications

"Better safe than sorry" is a saying that is overused and clichéd; that does not mean, however, that it should be ignored. When it comes to divorce proceedings, whether here in Ohio or elsewhere, one should be safe by staying away from virtually all social media communications. Expressing opinions and facts on these public sites can make a person quite sorry with the resulting impact.

Today, a given fact that applies to divorce and other legal proceedings is that attorneys, officials and others will almost automatically check to see what a litigant is talking about on his or her social media pages. With respect to divorce proceedings, a person's statements on social media can be used against the person in court proceedings respecting alimony, support, child custody, asset division and other issues. It is best to always remember that email and text messages are generally admissible as evidence.

People facing divorce in Ohio can assist their attorneys

The process of ending a marriage can be painful and frustrating. Many want them to end quickly with the results in their favor. After hiring lawyers for divorce, some may think they can simply sit back and let things happen. However, people in Ohio who work closely with their attorneys usually get the best results.

Divorces each have a unique dynamic, and the parties involved are the ones who know each other best. Clients who advise their lawyers about the opponents with whom they are dealing may give the attorneys some insight into the best way to deal with their spouses. They may also summarize the history of the marriages so their attorneys have written resources to refer to before meeting with the other parties. In most cases, it is well advised that clients keep their priorities in mind and not derail proceedings by refusing to compromise.