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Rockville Maryland Family Law Blog

Understanding child support cases

Parents in Maryland may sometimes find themselves confused about the topic of child support payments. This is often because there are multiple ways the payment arrangements could be set up. While having different types of child support cases can be confusing, they are necessary so that the government is able to be aware of the families that require additional financial assistance.

IV-D child support cases are those in which custodial parents are assisted by the Office of Child Support Enforcement. The agency may help with establishing paternity, finding non-custodial parents or enforcing the terms of a child support order.

Educational debt factor in divorces

While finances are often a source of tension in marriages, Maryland couples might be surprised to learn that college loans have been identified by some people as the reason their marriages failed. As the costs of college continue to rise, it seems that the consequences resulting from the loans taken to pay for higher education are also rising.

In a study by website Study Loan Hero, 13 percent of responders blamed college loans specifically as the reason their marriage failed. Over a third of all responders said college loans and other financial matters were the reason for their divorce. College loans do have a significant weight on relationship matters as the average educational debt is around $34,144. Students who graduated in 2017 had an average debt of $39,400. Additionally, students owing $50,000 or more tripled over the last decade. Millennials seem to be the ones most affected by these changes since only 50 percent seem on track to eventually earn more than their parents.

Can a forensic accountant be helpful in your divorce?

In divorce cases that are financially complex, there are specialists who you can call upon for assistance. Your marital assets may be extensive, and your spouse may know more about them than you do.

If you suspect that he may not be entirely transparent in terms of property division, investigation by a forensic accountant might be in order.

After divorce, moving towards co-parenting

Maryland parents planning for a post-divorce future may be thinking about how best to accomplish their goals for successful co-parenting. While the two parents may no longer be interested in a romantic relationship with one another, their commitment to their children is in no way lessened by their decision to divorce. This means keeping some key guidelines in mind to help provide a supportive environment for the children in both parents' homes.

While the divorce may cause some hard feelings between the parents, it is important not to transfer those concerns to the children. Absent a situation of neglect or abuse, children are strongly bonded to both of their parents. It is the responsibility of each parent to encourage their children to interact and communicate with the other parent. In addition, it is important to be honest with the kids about the end of the marriage while sparing them painful and intimate details. Children should not be encouraged to take sides in the divorce between their parents, and they should be reassured that they did nothing to cause the marriage to end.

How will problems at work affect your divorce agreement?

A company that has been struggling has few options if management wants to keep the business afloat. One of those options is to trim staff.

You may be one of the employees the company has decided to let go. How will this business decision affect the divorce agreement you and your former spouse have in place?

Factors that go into deciding alimony 6payments

While alimony can be a tough subject for those getting divorced in Maryland to discuss, it will need to be addressed at some point. In some cases, an individual who may be entitled to support may choose to waive his or her right to it. However, this is generally a bad idea because the option to accept alimony in the future is generally off the table once it has been waived.

To gain leverage during alimony negotiations, it is important that a person has a good understanding of his or her financial situation. This means knowing how much it will take to live after the divorce is finalized. Creating a budget can help a person figure out their projected income and expenses as a single person. From there, it becomes easier to know whether it makes sense to accept an alimony offer.

Inherited IRAs can be split during a divorce

The federal tax code and various laws regulate how certain assets are divided during a divorce. However, there are no clear rules regarding inherited IRAs. Despite the absence of any legal guidelines, inherited IRAs are being divided up in family courts in Maryland and across America. With new alimony rules coming into place at the beginning of 2019, these retirement accounts may play an even bigger role during divorce in the future.

When an inherited IRA gets divided, it retains its inherited status and the minimum distribution schedule stays the same. The only significant change is the adding of the new beneficiary. Each spouse in this case will be responsible for future RMDs based on the percentage they keep. This commonly happens when the owner of the IRA decides to use their inherited account to satisfy the agreed property split.

Dealing with child support issues after divorce

When Maryland parents divorce over money issues, those matters might follow them after the separation. This is particularly true if there are support payments involved. Such was the case for one couple who split up over career goals and finances.

The father was ordered to pay child support to the mother. A few years later, he was struggling financially and trying to put together a bankruptcy payment plan that would allow him to keep his house. He went to his ex-wife and told her he would be late with the child support payments for a while. His ex-wife gave him a month in which to catch up on support, and when he did not, she turned to the legal system.

Many factors can impact how long the divorce process takes

Maryland residents who are considering getting divorced might wonder how long the process will take. The length of a divorce will depend on the individual spouses and specific circumstances.

Couples who do not share children and do not disagree about how to split their assets and debts can file the necessary paperwork on their own with the court. The process in a do-it-yourself divorce in which nothing is in dispute will last only for a couple of months.

Estate planning decisions during a divorce

Divorce involves many difficult emotional and financial factors. One of the most important, and one that's often forgotten in Maryland and elsewhere, is estate planning. No matter what type of assets or end-of-life wishes are involved, making updates that reflect each person's priorities post-divorce is crucial. Even relatively young couples who are in good health and nowhere near retirement need to make changes to their plans because the future is not certain.

One of the first things that may need to change is who will have power to act on each person's behalf. For most married couples, the spouse holds power of attorney and healthcare proxy power. Once divorced, however, they may want to change who gets to make these important decisions. An ex-spouse with power of attorney can access bank accounts and make financial decisions in their ex-partner's name. This power could be abused in disagreeable divorces.

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