Ways to Discover Hidden Assets During a Divorce

Despite complications to the marriage, most people enter the divorce process believing their soon to be ex-spouse is an honest person. However, this is not always the situation. The fact is, dishonesty is a common reason for seeking a divorce. Regardless, even if you have no reason to suspect your former partner is a liar, there is still good cause to be curious and concerned about their finances heading into a divorce. Once a divorce begins, many people will do whatever it takes to conceal and hold on to what they believe is their money. Moreover, some will even create secret accounts, or perform other financial actions, during the course of the whole marriage. Discovering these hidden assets, during a divorce, is the only way to ensure you receive a fair settlement. You should never rely entirely on your spouse’s financial affidavit. The good news is an experienced divorce attorney
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Massachusetts Family Law Regarding Separation

If you and your spouse are thinking it is time for a separation, there are some factors you should consider in order to make sure this is not only the right step for your family but also done in accordance of the law. Before any decisions are made, it would be beneficial to consult a divorce and family law attorney to help you fully understand the legal implications and consequences of filing any official documentation to separate assets. In the state of Massachusetts, there is no judgement for a true legal separation. However, if one spouse seeks support from another spouse and does not want to file for divorce, he or she can file for a judgement of separate support.  This would allow for child support payments to begin as well as alimony. Because Massachusetts does not provide a way for a legal separation, the process for filing for separate
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Massachusetts Small Business Owners Going Through Divorce: What You Need To Know

Divorce is never easy, and it gets more complicated when a couple begins a successful business after their marriage. Massachusetts is an equitable distribution state which means the business equity is held marital in nature even if only one person does the work. There are very few people who divorce and then are able to manage working together on a daily basis, so splitting the company or leaving it is generally best for one spouse. Using mediation rather than going to court is an effective way of ensuring both parties continue to profit from the successful business, and it is the best way to ensure future alimony payments through divorce and family law court. Splitting the Business Down the Middle There are some businesses where splitting a company is relatively easy, and each person has their own territory. Mediation helps to decide which partner gets a particular territory, and this
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Modifying Your Divorce Agreement in Massachusetts

Having the provisions of a divorce agreement modified under Massachusetts law is possible, based on how the separation agreement was written and the circumstances bringing about the request for a modification. Before bringing your modification request to the court, you need to consult with an experienced divorce attorney. The first thing to realize is that there must be a material change in circumstances to request a modification, such as an employment change, a significant change of residence, or change in income. These changes can affect custody agreements and spousal and child support. When drafting a separation agreement, there are two types of provisions addressed in the agreement: surviving and merging. Merging provisions are open to modification. Merging provisions are generally child specific issues like custody arrangements, support, and health insurance. Sometimes alimony can be a merging provision. Surviving provisions are generally not open to modification. An example of surviving provision
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Divorce and Separation Agreements

Divorce is a complicated and emotional endeavor. Naturally, divorcing parents of young children have additional considerations over childless couples. The many complexities involved in reaching a desired outcome during a divorce, are weighed according to a number of different factors. In some cases, it can be helpful to ask an attorney to draw up a Separation Agreement. A Separation Agreement is a written document that determines how the divorcing parties will handle matters relating to the end of the marriage. This Agreement can serve to clarify and simplify the overall divorce process. Normally, the agreement deals with child custody issues, parental visits, child support, alimony and division of assets and similar issues. The Agreement is only good if both parties agree to its terms and sign it voluntarily, without duress or intimidation. The Separation Agreement usually becomes part of the final divorce judgment.
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Divorce and The Length of Your Marriage

When considering divorce, there are many things to consider like property division, child custody, alimony and more, but one important consideration that many couples overlook is the date. In Massachusetts the amount of time you were married might matter in a variety of ways. Here are just a few examples: Dividing Assets Figuring out exactly when a marriage is over can be complicated as some states look at the date of separation, but Massachusetts courts generally refer to the date of divorce. Assets acquired during the marriage through the date of divorce are joint property, so a bonus one spouse receives at a job might be divisible between both parties if it was earned before the date of divorce. Joint Debts While dividing property is obviously important, many people do not give much thought to dividing debts. This can cause problems later as you can still be held responsible if
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An Intro To Filing For Divorce In Massachusetts

Many couples start out in marriage with great hopes and expectations, only to end up in a relationship that unfortunately does not work. There are many steps in the divorce process in Massachusetts and just as many avenues to take depending on your situation. Here is a brief introduction to filing for divorce in Massachusetts and some of what you may encounter. A divorce can be categorized as “no-fault” or “fault.” If both parties agree on the categorization, the divorce is called “uncontested.” If one of the two parties disagrees with it, though, it is then called “contested.” A fault divorce can be more costly and drawn out than a no-fault one. This is because of the process required to prove the fault of the accused spouse. There are seven categories of a fault divorce: adultery, impotency, desertion, cruel and abusive treatment, gross and confirmed habits of intoxication, a prison
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When Parents Are Separated, Who Has Child Custody?

Making the decision to separate from your spouse/partner is difficult and often occurs over a lengthy period of time. During that time, it’s common for spouses/partners to begin living in separate households. If the partners have children, this raises many questions about where and with whom the children should live. Massachusetts law has put in place some very distinct laws to handle this sort of child custody dispute. If the parents are not married, the mother automatically has sole legal and physical custody until a Court orders something else. However under Massachusetts law, if the parents are married to each other, both parents share legal and physical custody of the children until a Court decides otherwise. Does this mean a mother or father is not allowed to take the children with them in the event that they move out of the family home? The simple answer is no. Under current
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Child Support in Massachusetts

In a Massachusetts divorce, one parent may be ordered by the court to pay child support. Under Massachusetts law, both parents are required to support their children—and this is true regardless of marital status (whether the parents are married, divorced, separated, or were never married). The parent the child lives with is termed the custodial parent. The noncustodial parent may be required to pay child support. Child support is complicated, but there are several things you should know. One, child support may be used to pay for housing, food, clothing, education, and insurance and medical costs. Two, if one parent has received an order for child support and the other parent is not paying it, payment can be compelled. The procedure is to file a Complaint for Contempt with the appropriate Court. This means that, if the other parent does not obey the child support order, he or she can
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Divorce Modifications in the State of Massachusetts

When the terms of your divorce no longer fit your present circumstances, petitioning for divorce modification can help alter the terms accordingly. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, overturning a divorce decree requires an appeal. The appeal process is often drawn-out because one appellate court will need to overturn a lower court’s decision. Appeals are usually unsuccessful except in the case of exceptional and compelling circumstances. The following are common examples of situations that warrant a divorce modification. 1. Moving a long distance from an ex-spouse. 2. A needed increase of alimony. Spousal support is not mandatory in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It depends upon the income and situation of the spouses. 3. Dramatic increase or decrease of income for former spouse under a child support order. 4. A child not being properly supervised by parent or current partner of parent due to psychological or substance abuse problems. 5. A teenage
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