Divorce Newsletters

Community Property in Divorce

In a pure community property system, property acquired during marriage other than by gift or inheritance from a third party is presumed to be community property and will be divided equally between the parties in divorce. Property that a spouse brings into the marriage or acquires during marriage by gift or inheritance from a third party is presumed to be separate property. Community property states generally consider a gift from one spouse to the other to be the recipient’s separate property.

Property Division in Divorce: Equitable Distribution

As the name implies, “equitable distribution” seeks to give the divorce court some discretion to distribute property equitably in divorce. Many common-law states and some community property states use equitable distribution for dividing marital assets and debts between divorcing spouses. Many equitable distribution states also apply the scheme to divisible property, and some so-called “all property” states may apply it to all of the spouses’ property.

Temporary Counsel Fees in Divorce

Courts may grant interim attorney fees, while a divorce case is pending, to the spouse who lacks control over the marital assets that will be used to pay the fees. Granting interim relief in a divorce proceeding serves to promote fairness and impartiality by enabling the dependent spouse to maintain or defend the divorce action without being placed at a financial disadvantage. The dependent spouse often can secure attorney fees for appeals as well. Temporary counsel fees often can be estimated by using “rule of thumb” or local custom.

Vacatur of Divorce Judgments

“Vacatur” is an order of a court which sets aside or annuls a proceeding. When a judgment of divorce is vacated, the marital rights and status of the parties are restored, and the parties are placed in the position in which they were before the divorce.

Role of Mediation in Divorce

The divorce process can be a very emotional and trying time in one’s life. Often the process involves confrontations and complicated legal disputes. In recent years, divorce mediation has become more popular because it can be more effective, less costly, and yet a successful method for settling divorce disputes. Mediation is an alternative method of resolving matrimonial issues that are involved in divorce. It is a process in which couples can amicably work out marital, financial, and property-related disputes with the help of a neutral third party known as a mediator.

LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbel

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