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Rockville MD Divorce Law Blog

Permanent alimony, still a possibility for Marylanders

Imagine for a moment that you and your spouse are going through divorce proceedings. You didn't sign a premarital agreement so at this juncture, you and your spouse are hammering out financial details such as who will be responsible for making child support payments and who should pay alimony to the other spouse.

Because you make more than your spouse, a request is made to have you pay alimony. Initially, you're okay with the idea. After all, you understand that losing your portion of income could be financially devastating to your former spouse. But then, after being told that Maryland still allows permanent alimony judgments, you become less okay with the idea and more concerned about your protection under the law.

Watch your temper: Why destroying marital property is a bad idea

We've all seen it before: a television drama in which one spouse, hurt by the fact that they are going through a bitter divorce, takes revenge on their partner by destroying marital assets and frivolously spending money so that their partner gets less when property is divided. Despite the fact that the situation is made up, we often empathize with the characters because we know that divorce can turn ugly and emotional. That's why we don't question the fact that a scenario such as this could easily happen in real life.

When spouses allow their emotions to dictate their actions, contentious disputes are bound to occur. But as we have said time and again on this blog, keeping a cool head is more advantageous than flying off the handle. Our Gaithersburg readers should always keep this in mind, especially because heightened emotions and the act of wasting marital property can lead to serious legal consequences for anyone in Maryland.

How establishing paternity can help unmarried Maryland fathers

If you're an unmarried father living in Maryland, you probably have a lot of questions running through your head right now. But if you're like a lot of other new fathers, none of these questions probably have anything to do with establishing paternity. If this is the case for you, you're not alone.

For many new fathers, establishing paternity is the farthest thought from their minds when they welcome their child into the world. But did you know that establishing paternity early on is probably the most beneficial thing you can do for your child? If you didn't, then keep reading, because this is the conversation we're going to have in today's post.

Avoid any pitfalls regarding the distribution of your property

Even though Maryland is an equitable distribution state, property and assets are not necessarily divided equally during divorce proceedings. A lot of things are taken into consideration by a family law judge, all of which can play a major factor in what spouses get in the split and how much.

For both spouses, property division is perhaps the most frustrating step of the divorce process for this very reason. Many feel like they aren't getting a fair deal, especially if their marital assets are particularly complex and difficult to separate equitably. In many situations, retirement plans, business ownerships, second homes and investments can all affect how much each spouse gets. And in the end, it might not be the amount either spouse was considering.

Child support arrearages and Maryland's debt compromise program

As some of our Gaithersburg readers know from personal experience, child support enforcement in Maryland could be better. It's estimated by the Office of Child Support Enforcement that, nationwide, a total of roughly $100 billion in child support arrearages has accumulated since the creation of the nation child support enforcement program more than 40 years ago. Though arrearages here in Maryland only make up a fraction of this total, it's an amount that is felt by each and every family who is currently waiting for overdue support payments.

Many people believe that the best way to decrease arrearages is to enforce stricter penalties against noncustodial parents who fail to meet their court-ordered obligation. Others disagree, pointing out that stricter penalties insinuate that all delinquent parents are making a conscious decision to not pay child support when in fact their inability to pay may not be within their control.

Good to know: Indefinite alimony is still a thing in Maryland

Fifty years ago, alimony requests were a major part of divorce proceedings. This was due in part to the fact that there weren't as many women in the workforce as there are today. Many women stayed home with the kids, losing years of opportunities to further their careers and earn an income of their own. In those days, alimony payments were necessary for a woman to maintain financial stability after a divorce. The same is not true today.

Times have changed now. Women make up approximately half of the workforce. The phrase "stay-at-home dad" has entered our societal lexicon. And now, it's not just women who make alimony requests, men do as well. So what could any of our readers in Montgomery County expect during their divorce proceedings if their spouse asks for alimony payments?

Does bankruptcy discharge an alimony obligation?

Though you may think that you have a good understanding of the law in general, it oftentimes isn't enough to help you through all legal issues. This is part because of the extreme complexity of our state and federal laws as well as the fact that they are subject to change from time to time.

But as some of our more frequent readers know, what really throws most people out of their element is when two areas of law converge, creating a particularly challenging legal issue. It's in cases such as this that people need to remember their right to legal counsel and how to wield that right.

When is it a good idea to ask for alimony?

Imagine you have just learned that your spouse has been cheating on your for a number of months. Considered as fault and grounds for divorce, you file the necessary paperwork to begin the dissolution of your marriage. Because you hired an attorney, you are more aware of your rights under Maryland law, such as your right to ask for alimony payments.

But when is it a good idea to ask for alimony? That's a good question. Because every person's situation is a little different, we're going to look at three scenarios in which asking for alimony may be necessary. Let's take a look.

A look at third-party custody rights in Maryland

Here in Maryland, family law issues aren't always easy to sort out without legal representation. That's because our state's laws have been in existence for many, many years; and over the course of that time, statutes have been added, subtracted or amended, making our laws more complex and difficult to understand without the right legal background.

For many people in Maryland, the complexity of our laws leaves a lot of unanswered questions. In today's post, we'd like to look at how our state handles third-party custody, particularly whether grandparents or relatives have any rights, hopefully giving some of our Gaithersburg readers the information they need to take the next step and talk to an attorney.

I suspect my spouse is hiding assets, what should I do?

While any divorce can be challenging and even overwhelming at times, this can be even more so for high-asset couples. That's because considerable wealth, large investments and large caches of property and items can be tremendously challenging to sort out, particularly if the couple has been together for a long time or their assets are significantly entangled.

For couples in this situation, the fact that equitable distribution does not necessarily mean equal can become more noticeable, perhaps even making one spouse mistrustful of the other. This may cause them to hide assets in order to get what they believe to be a fair and equal distribution of marital property. Unfortunately, such a practice is frowned upon in our state, causing considerable legal issues for spouses who partake in such a surreptitious act.

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Gaithersburg Divorce Lawyers Video

http://www.mckeonlawfirm.com 202-742-1800 The McKeon Law Firm handles marital property issues in divorce. The attorneys are experienced in business valuation & tracing assets. Contact us in Gaithersburg, Maryland for property division matters.

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