Probably any divorcing Massachusetts couple will attest to the fact that once the decision to split has been made, everyone involved begins a process that is often lengthy, stressful and fraught with challenges. During this difficult period, with all the issues that must be considered, people sometimes overlook important areas that will change with the divorce, such as insurance coverage. Divorcing individuals should be sure to review all insurance policies and prepare for any changes that will happen with the change in their marital status.
Couples who have decided to end their marriage face various important decisions in the upcoming months, depending on their life circumstances. However, for many people, child support and/or spousal support negotiations demand a significant portion of time during the divorce process. Laws regarding how courts determine each person's level of obligation vary from state to state, but divorcing Massachusetts individuals can benefit from knowing the following general guidelines.
For many, having to end a marriage brings their dreams crashing down. It is not unusual for one party to want a divorce more than the other, and as a result, it is also not uncommon for at least one person to feel some emotional turmoil. However, letting these emotions play an important part in decision-making during legal proceedings is not wise.
In the event of divorce, each party must make important decisions in various aspects of their lives: living arrangements, financial support, children, etc. Typically, if spousal support is to be determined, the divorcing couple will discuss it later in the proceedings, as the plan for division of property and other assets should be in place first. Massachusetts divorcing couples would be wise to know some points about spousal support, including how it is calculated and what can be done if the payor fails to follow through or either party's circumstances change.
Most Massachusetts couples will likely agree that trust is one of the most important components of a healthy relationship. When two people decide to divorce, no matter the reason, in most cases, either prior to or during the divorce process, trust is eroded to some degree. When trust is depleted or absent, one party in a divorce may attempt to hide assets from the other. A financial expert offers advice for uncovering such hidden assets, since doing so will increase the likelihood that both parties will be treated fairly in the divorce.
Many Massachusetts residents know about the changes to the tax treatment of alimony payments under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. As of Jan. 1, 2019, alimony payments are no longer considered tax deductible for the payer nor taxable for the recipient. However, the new law applies only to new agreements signed on or after the first of this year or older agreements that have been modified after Jan. 1, 2019. For all others, for tax purposes, it is important to know exactly what is considered alimony, otherwise known as spousal support.
Although many people think of the typical divorcing couple as young to perhaps middle-aged, in recent years, more older people are deciding to end their marriage. According to statistics, the rate of older adults divorcing has increased significantly, prompting a special term for this situation: "gray divorce." The trend may be due to greater financial independence of women in recent generations, empty-nest syndrome or other factors, but whatever the reason, Massachusetts couples making this decision later in life need to be aware of the potential effects of the divorce on their retirement plans.
Massachusetts couples who have decided to split have a great deal to think about from the moment they make that crucial decision to end their marriage to the day they receive their final papers stating their union has been legally dissolved. Many individuals would likely say that child support is one of the more challenging issues to negotiate during the divorce process. For some people, alimony can be an equally contentious topic, particularly if the split is less than amicable. Divorcing individuals who need to visit this topic are smart to know the facts before the discussion begins.
During a separation, or even when a couple is contemplating a split, both individuals tend to experience higher than normal levels of stress. People may be concerned about future living arrangements, effects on children and many other aspects. Many individuals have particular concerns about the effect of the divorce on their financial well-being, now and in future. Massachusetts residents who are considering or going through a divorce are wise to be sure they are well-informed in several different areas of their financial situation in order to make smart decisions throughout the divorce process and into their future. One financial expert explains several categories to evaluate: assets, liabilities, income and expenses.
Ideally, a couple who decides to end their marriage will agree on all necessary decisions and will part amicably. Unfortunately, as many Massachusetts residents going through or about to begin the divorce process know, this scenario does not often ring true. Divorcing parents often experience difficulty during and following a divorce when trying to raise their children in a happy, healthy environment. However, while co-parenting is likely the optimum solution for most, one expert suggests parallel parenting as a viable alternative toward this goal.