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Northern Kentucky Family Law Blog

Dealing with finances during a divorce

When a couple decides to divorce in Kentucky, both partners may be concerned about protecting their assets. Going from a shared to a single lifestyle can place a major strain on everyday finances. This may be exacerbated when there are higher levels of conflict during the divorce. While divorce is an emotional time, it's important to remain as clear-headed as possible when negotiating financial settlements. This can help to protect a person's future financial stability and well-being.

Divorce can often put a major dent in a retirement savings account, especially in the case of a long-term marriage. Since the majority of those savings could be divided in half, an ex may need a new financial plan to boost their future funds. After all, it's more costly to fund two retirements than one. The process can also be very difficult for people who have worked in the home or raised children for most of their lives. While they will receive a divorce settlement and potentially spousal support, there is generally an expectation of a transition to the workplace moving forward. This can be challenging without updated skills and work experience.

Lack of trust and intimacy contribute to divorce

The results of a survey consisting of 2,371 individuals who were recently divorced was published in the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy. It found that there were four common reasons why Kentucky residents and others were most likely to end their marriages. One of these four reasons was a lack of communication in the relationship. If couples don't talk to each other on a regular basis, it can cause stress that weakens the bond they once had.

Another typical reason why people get divorced is that they lose trust or respect for their spouses. Research has found that respect can matter just as much as love when predicting whether a couple will stay together. In some cases, people found that they had simply grown apart from their partners. Upon discovering that they wanted different things than their significant others, they chose to end the relationship.

Successfully managing finances while co-parenting

In the United States, about 40 to 50% of married couples divorce. This means that many Kentucky parents are co-parenting. While many co-parents deal with difficulties surrounding decisions that need to be made while co-parenting, financial stress can be minimized when the following steps are taken.

The divorce decree usually outlines the responsibilities that each parent has regarding expenses related to raising the children. It will guide the parents since it breaks down specific financial responsibilities like spousal support, health care, extracurricular activities and education. The details should be fine-tuned in court in order to save the divorced couple from many problems.

Considering your circumstances when going through divorce

Getting a divorce is a complex process. Though you and many other Kentucky residents may wish you could just decide to no longer be married and end the situation there that is not the case. Over the years, you and your spouse have entwined your lives, and now, you will need to work to separate the many facets of your lives to once again live as single individuals.

The exact details of your marriage and your family dynamic could indicate how difficult your legal proceedings could be. For instance, if you do not have children, you do not have to worry about child custody proceedings like divorcing parents would. Therefore, you want to begin your process by gaining information and helping yourself understand what you may face.

Handling social media before, during and after a divorce

There's nothing wrong with staying connected socially online. However, there is compelling research suggesting a correlation between divorce rates and the use of certain popular social networks. While social media alone isn't likely to be the sole reason for the end of a marriage, there are some commonly recommended guidelines individuals in Kentucky are encouraged to keep in mind before, during and after a divorce.

For instance, if divorce seems likely, spouses are advised not to post disparaging comments about one another on social media accounts. Such material could be used during divorce proceedings. It may also be helpful for a soon-to-be ex-spouse to use privacy settings and delete past posts that may be questionable. Reviewing friends lists could also minimize issues with mutual acquaintances who may take the other spouse's side by acting as a "spy" for online social activity.

Child support and the military

Military veterans and service members in Kentucky who have to pay child support should understand the federal regulations governing child support. Military members are required by federal regulations to pay support for their custodial and non-custodial children.

The state regulations for child support are not superseded by the federal regulations for military personnel. Instead, the federal regulations are not only used to ensure that military personnel comply with payment, but they serve as a short-term guideline for determining financial responsibilities when there are currently no legal agreements in place.

Parents should try to raise their children together

Kentucky parents who get divorced may find it easier on themselves and their children when they work together to raise their kids. The primary benefit for a child is knowing that he or she can count on both parents being in their lives no matter what happens. Parents benefit because they don't have to pay the full financial and emotional cost that comes with helping their kids transition into adults.

This means that each parent has time to live their own lives and the resources to chase their dreams as well. Generally speaking, parents who are able to work together to raise their children develop a strong bond. This bond may have benefits beyond just raising a child in an amicable manner. For example, if one parent encounters an emergency situation, the other may be willing to help by providing money or a place to stay for a day or two.

How to prepare for a divorce

While many Kentucky residents, summer is a favorite season. The kids are out of school, the weather is perfect for spending time outdoors, and it is often a great time to take vacations. For some families, however, summer may also be the time to start planning for divorce.

According to a study, there tend to be more divorce filings in August and March. This may be due to the fact that marriages can become more stressed when couples spend more time with each other. Any problems that the couples have can become more exacerbated, potentially reaching a breaking point.

Student loan debt in a divorce

When people in Kentucky get a divorce, debts that they brought into the marriage, such as student loan debt, are usually considered individual property, and the person will be solely responsible for them after divorce. However, if a person takes out student loans during the marriage, both spouses may be responsible for part of them.

In an equitable distribution state like Kentucky, a judge will consider a number of elements when deciding how much each person should pay on student loan debts. If the spouse with the debt earns significantly more than the other spouse, the lower-income spouse may owe less. A spouse who has made substantial efforts to support the other spouse while in school, including setting aside a career to do so, may also be expected to pay less or even none. On the other hand, if the student loans were used toward rent and other shared expenses instead of primarily for tuition, books and other education costs, a spouse could be held partly responsible.

Shifting gender roles can lead to divorce

In marriages where the husband and wife assume traditional gender roles, the risk of divorce can rise significantly when those roles change. A common example of this in Kentucky and around the country is when the woman earns less than her husband at the start of a marriage but experiences a sudden surge in income as her career improves. This often means the wife has less time to take care of household chores and care for the children, shifting the burden of these activities onto the man.

Husbands can be threatened by their wives earning more money because they see themselves as the traditional breadwinners in a relationship. Unfortunately, some men try to compensate by being more controlling over all aspects of the relationship. Other men responded by working less because they felt the extra income wasn't needed. According to one attorney that represented wives in divorce, however, the husbands rarely responded by taking on more chores.

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