The hope is that when parents don't live together, they both understand it is their obligation, both legally and morally, to step up and care for their children. Part of doing so means that both of them should take some financial responsibility for the children, often in the form of child support. Though we might hope that all parents would willingly contribute, the reality is that some may not. So what happens when someone does not pay child support in Massachusetts? What are the consequences?
A QDRO is a Qualified Domestic Relations Order that details how monies from a qualified retirement plan are transferred from one spouse to another upon a Massachusetts divorce. Once the Court and Plan Administrator approve the QDRO, the Plan Administrator will send the alternate payee a form asking the alternate payee where he or she wants their money deposited or what form they want to receive it.
Unless you've gone through a Family Court case of your own, chances are you aren't very familiar with the process. Movies and TV shows and some occasional bits of wisdom gleaned from friends may be of how things work. One area that might be especially confusing is that of child support. Many people believe child support is treated like alimony or property division, and can be fought over until a mutually agreeable number is decided upon. However, the reality is very different.
If you're in the midst of divorcing or finalizing a divorce in Massachusetts, it's important to begin looking ahead and making plans for what happens after the dust settles. One of those things that you need to consider is what changes may need to be made to your estate plan given your recent divorce. Most experts say that estate plans need to be changed when major life events occur, divorce being chief among them. If you find yourself facing estate planning after divorce, consider the following questions:
Given the abundance of smartphone apps on the market today, it was only a matter of time before someone created some helpful apps for divorced parents. The following apps might help you co-parent with your former spouse after your divorce:
Hopefully this is an issue you'll never have to encounter. Sadly, it has been known to happen that one party, in an attempt to prevent a divorce, simply disappears. If that happens, does that mean you're stuck, married until your husband or wife finally surfaces? Keep reading if you want to learn how to get a divorce when you can't find your spouse.The first question you may be asking is why does it matter whether you can find your spouse or not? After all, you've already decided that you want to end the marriage, so who cares if your spouse is around? The reason it matters is that our legal system requires that parties be notified when a legal proceeding that impacts them is taking place. This notification happens by serving the other party to the lawsuit with paperwork that explains what's being sought. This gives them the opportunity to protect their interests if they wish to do so. Serving the other party in a divorce is usually straightforward, especially when you have a current address or know where the person works. What happens if you don't? Before moving to other options, such as service by publication, you will need to convince the court that you have made a diligent effort to locate your spouse. That means you may even need to hire an investigator to try and find the person, often starting where that person was last known to live.
Whether you are just considering divorce or if you are in the early stages of a Massachusetts divorce, the good news is that you can take steps to ensure the process goes smoothly later on. One good way to do that is to create a "household inventory" or a list of all household items of value before the divorce is fully underway. Creating a household inventory might seem silly; after all, you've both lived with the items for years, or even decades, and you likely already know what everything is, right? Wrong! Though you pass by the items every day, it is quite possible if you were forced to draw up a list without being able to walk through the house you might forget many items, even the important and most valuable items. Living among the daily clutter of a house, it's unavoidable that some things fade into the background, making them easy to forget about in a divorce.
Many people worry that once their divorce case is finalized, there's less incentive to remain on good behavior. The fear is that without a judge and court oversight, it's easier to ignore parenting plans and simply make up your own rules, potentially even denying parenting time to the other parent.
Starting a business is hard enough, and building a successful business is even harder. To then worry about having all that taken away in a divorce is truly upsetting to imagine. So what can you do to protect your business in a divorce?
The cost of college continues to skyrocket with no end in sight. Sending a child to college is now one of the most costly expenses that a family will undertake. Planning for and paying for college becomes even more complicated for divorcing parents. Massachusetts Probate and Family Court judges have been confronted with issues concerning the allocation of college education expenses with growing frequency, in large part due to the seemingly ever increasing cost of college and the growing acceptance of college as a necessity to future economic independence.
In a Massachusetts divorce, the Court will divide the marital assets and debts between the spouses. Generally, everyone is quite willing to make the debts known because no one wants to get stuck paying them. However, that is not always the case with the assets, as spouses sometimes attempt to keep all for themselves by hiding them.
The division of personal property in a divorce can be one of the most expensive, emotional, and wasteful parts of a case. Parties will often spend thousands of dollars arguing over a very inexpensive piece of personal property.
In child custody cases, each party's parenting skills are frequently a key issue. One particularly important area in which this can be seen is with regard to the children's medical care and health issues. For instance, parents can and often do argue over whether a child was taken to the doctor too much, too little, or too late.