When The Divorce Isn't Amicable, Knowing What You Are Entitled To Is The Key

When you are in the middle of a divorce where every aspect is contentious, keeping yourself focused on what you are entitled to will help alleviate your stress. With the help of a qualified attorney, you will get what you deserve as far as custody, marital assets, and division of debt is concerned. If your former spouse won't agree to anything, you will have to fight for what is rightfully yours.

Child Custody Guidelines

As a married couple with children in the middle of a divorce, it's important to understand what the child custody guidelines are. If both parents have suitable housing, and there are no concerns about their parenting ability, both parents have the right to share joint legal and physical custody. While historically children were placed with their mother to live, this is no longer the case. Both parents have the right and legal obligation to parent their children. 

If one party is incarcerated or deemed unsuitable, then the other parent will have physical custody. Legal custody may still be shared, but the children will live with the parent who can provide for their needs in a safe manner.

Marital Property Division

States are either equitable property division states, or community property states when it comes to dividing marital property. In an equitable property division state, the marital property is divided up by what is fair to both parties. The earning power of both parties, current financial status of both parties and potential for getting a better job are all taken into consideration when thinking about what is fair to each member of the couple. In a community property state, all marital assets are divided equally, regardless of the earning potential of each person.

Marital property is property that is either earned during the marriage, or shared by the couple. For example, if one party gets a $100,000 inheritance and puts the total amount in a separate bank account, this is separate property. If the party that inherits this money puts $10,000 into a joint bank account, the $10,000 becomes marital property. The $90,000 left is still considered separate property and is kept by the person who inherited it in the first place.

When One Person Has a Retirement Account

If you don't have a retirement account, but your spouse does, you are entitled to a share of this money. If you live in a community property state, you will be entitled to half of the retirement account. This money will be transferred to you at the time of your divorce, and you will not have to wait until your ex retires.

To learn more about what you're entitled to during a divorce, contact a lawyer like Joanna Cobleigh Esq.