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Fort Mitchell Family Law Blog

Living together but unmarried? Here's how to protect your assets

It is common for couples to live together outside of marriage. Although this is a normal circumstance, what happens if you split up? Chances are your finances and assets are intermingled, and you may have concerns about safeguarding your finances and assets if you break up. Because you are not in a marital relationship, you cannot enact a prenuptial agreement for this purpose.

However, you have an option. You can sign a cohabitation agreement or living-together contract to protect your interests.

Amicable attitudes may help with property division proceedings

Divorce can present emotional turmoil, feelings of shock and the potential for conflict. Of course, the more conflict a case has, the longer and more difficult it may be to come to terms. For Kentucky residents who want to move through the proceedings more quickly, they may want to consider the best way to address property division and other aspects of divorce.

When one person broaches the topic of divorce, the other individual may feel completely caught off guard. As a result, he or she may face more emotional difficulties than the person who instigated the divorce, because the instigator has likely been thinking about ending the marriage for some time. If parties want to move forward with less conflict, they may want to take the time to let the other party adjust as best as possible.

Child custody research suggests co-parenting remains beneficial

Kids are often the highlight of many Kentucky residents' lives. Along with the joy and love that having children can bring, parents typically also worry about their children's well-being and whether the choices the parents make will have negative impacts. This latter concern may make itself particularly prominent when individuals go through divorce and must come to child custody decisions.

The best arrangement for each family when it comes to custody can differ. However, more people are considering co-parenting when it comes to their arrangements in hopes of allowing both parents to remain in the kids' lives. In a recent study, 1,500 families were examined to determine how the quality of co-parenting relationships affected the behavior and stress levels for children.

Debt may be concern during property division process in Kentucky

When many people think about the areas of divorce that concern them most, they may immediately think of their assets. Property division is a significant part of the divorce process, and many Kentucky residents facing these proceedings often hope that they will not lose everything. Of course, when it comes to debt, most people would rather not get stuck with payment obligations.

Just like with assets, debt also gets divided during divorce. However, the manner in which the debt was accrued could impact who ends up with what liabilities. For instance, due to equitable division laws, if both individuals had a joint credit account, then both parties would have some responsibility to address that debt. On the other hand, if one person created an account in his or her name only, the other party would not hold liability. 

Financial protection may be concern during high asset divorce

Being financially secure or even wealthy is a goal in life most people hope to reach. Many Kentucky residents may have reached and went beyond this goal until they accrued a considerable amount of assets. Though they may have married in hopes of sharing their wealth and happiness, their hopes may now focus on protecting as much of their wealth as possible during a high asset divorce.

Fortunately, there are many steps that individuals can take to address their finances before and during divorce proceedings. First of all, if individuals know that the idea of divorce will set their soon-to-be exes off and conflict may be immediate, it may prove wise to take action to protect tangible assets. Certain valuables may need to be taken and put in safe place until legal proceedings. However, parties should make sure to disclose to the court where the items are located, or they may be accused of hiding assets.

Child custody: Parents may mourn pre-divorce arrangements

Divorce can take a serious toll on a person. Though ending the marriage may have been for the best, it can still cause individuals to feel as if they have encountered a serious loss. In particular, Kentucky parents may find themselves yearning for the days before child custody arrangements and the times when they could see their children whenever they wanted.

Though many people may not immediately associate the feeling of grief with divorce, it is not an uncommon feeling during this type of situation. Of course, some parties may not feel entirely certain of what they are grieving, especially if the relationship was not great. There are various types of small scenarios that parents may find themselves understandably grieving even after the divorce is finalized.

4 tips for writing a cohabitation agreement

More couples are living together before marriage. According to recent research, 70 percent of women between ages 30 and 34 cohabit with male partners. If you live and share property with your partner, you may want to legally protect your interests.

The best way to protect your assets if the two of you break up is to draft a cohabitation agreement. This is simply a nonmarital contract that provides similar protections as a prenuptial agreement for married couples. Here are some guidelines you should follow while creating a cohabitation agreement.

Discussing property division before marriage can be eye opening

When most people talk about divorce, they are either discussing a recent friend or family member who went through the process or their own pending proceedings. However, Kentucky couples do not have to wait until it is on their doorstep to begin thinking about divorce. In fact, right after deciding to marry may be a good time to discuss the possibility and come to terms on property division, alimony and other subjects.

Creating a prenuptial agreement can be a useful way to get divorce affairs in order before they are needed. However, talking about divorce does not necessarily have to stick to coming to terms on various divorce-related issues. In fact, talking about divorce before getting married could even help keep divorce at bay.

Fathers often still feel the need to fight for child custody

Being a loving parent can come with many challenges. When Kentucky couples are no longer married, dealing with child custody issues can be one of the biggest challenges that a parent may need to handle. In particular, some fathers may feel that they need to fight harder in order to get the time with their children and custody arrangements they desire.

Though many people may believe the old notion that children should remain with their mothers, that is not necessarily an idea that most people hold today. However, many fathers may still feel that they need to assert their parental rights in order to ensure that they receive their fair consideration when it comes time to reach custody terms. As of 2013, it was reported that 17 percent of single parents who have custody of their kids are dads.

Retirement funds not off limits during divorce property division

During divorce, most people know that there are many steps that need taking. For property division in particular, it may be important to obtain forms, records and other documents that could prove ownership or help divide assets. When it comes to retirement funds, Kentucky residents may need to obtain qualified domestic relations orders if they hope to split 401(k) accounts.

Retirement funds can prove tricky to distribute during divorce because there are often penalties for early withdrawal and regulations in place to protect the funds for the retiree. However, these issues do not mean that the funds are off limits during divorce. The QDRO allows the receiving party to become an alternate payee and obtain his or her share of the funds as decided in the settlement or judge ruling.

Divorce Information Center

Contemplating divorce is difficult. Whether or not you are sure you want to end your marriage, it helps to learn the basics of divorce law.

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