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Fullerton Family Law Blog

Millennials enter marriage more cautiously than their parents

Millennials in California and across the globe are showing themselves to have different priorities than the generations that came before them. This shift in priorities has led to changes in the way that millennials look at marriage and the possibility of divorce. A survey showed that there has been a 62% spike, driven by millennials, in people getting a prenuptial agreement.

There are a number of factors that seem to be behind this shift. A lot of it appears to be connected to the way millennials are investing in their financial future. Baby boomers and generation Xers were a lot more invested in concrete assets, such as purchasing a home or other properties. Millennials are more inclined to invest in the stock market; their interest is not only in protecting what they have now, but they are also interested in protecting what they may possibly have in the future in the event of a divorce.

Stay connected while your child's in the other parent's care

After a divorce, it may be frustrating to see your child less. You and your ex-spouse may have bad blood between you, but you know that they're a good parent and uphold your end of the custody agreement. You still worry, though, and wish you could see your child more often.

One way to help parents and children cope with the changes that occur after divorce is by opening up more lines of communication. Being physically present with one another is not the only way to interact. Here are three virtual visitation options you can use to improve communication, so that you and your child can feel more at ease when you are apart.

Mixing divorce with cryptocurrency

During the divorce process, a couple must divide joint assets and finalize a settlement agreement. A key part of this involves being aware of all the debts and assets belonging to the couple. California residents might like to know about how cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are influencing family law.

Cryptocurrency could make dissolving a marriage more challenging for a few reasons. First, cryptocurrency is difficult to trace, which means a person could try to hide assets with cryptocurrency. Online exchanges of cryptocurrency can be traced. However, directly purchasing the currency and then moving it offline could make tracking a transaction very challenging.

Can child support be modified if a parent moves of out state?

For some California residents, life after a split can mean big changes that might include a move out of state. However, when children and child support are involved, there can be unique complications as the new places to which people move might have different rules regarding support. Therefore, parents might need to modify the support order. The Uniform Interstate Family Support Act, or UIFSA, helps families in these situations resolve their child support conflicts in a fair manner. To do this, courts have to combine several child support orders into one that can be enforced.

When it comes to understanding the UIFSA, the state that issued the original custody order is considered the originating state and will normally hold continuing jurisdiction while both parents live there or until they reach an agreement to move the support order to a different state. If the parent who pays child support moves or agrees to move the support order, the originating state has the right to send the new state a withholding request.

Abuse claims may be brushed aside in court

While some California fathers claim that they get a bad deal in the child custody system and that mothers are favored, other evidence casts doubt on that belief. Instead, some people have raised concerns that fathers are being favored in child custody cases even when credible allegations of abuse are brought forward. This is especially true when fathers claim that the other parent is alienating the child and causing him or her to make allegations of abuse. Researchers found that when mothers are accused of parental alienation, they are twice as likely to lose custody.

In addition, they found that if a court believed claims of parental alienation, it almost always rejected allegations of abuse. Only one out of every 51 claims of sexual abuse is upheld in court if the other parent raises parental alienation as a claim, according to the study of over 2,000 child custody cases that involved issues relating to domestic violence, abuse or alienation claims. Experts said that it seems that many judges in the field believe that parental alienation is rampant, despite the fact that the theories behind the concept have not been recognized by the American Psychiatric Association.

Gray divorce harder to recover from financially

The number of divorces involving couples over 50 years of age has more than doubled in the past 20 years. Approximately 25% of people who divorced during the year 2010 were more than 50 years old compared to only about 10% in 1990. California residents who are considering divorce after 50, sometimes referred to as gray divorce, are likely to face different challenges than their younger counterparts.

Individuals who go through a gray divorce are likely to experience a 50% drop in household wealth, for example, according to a researcher from Bowling Green State University. After such a financial setback, those who divorce later in life have less time to make up the ground they lost. Retirement accounts and other investments that are reduced due to the divorce can be hard to quickly rebuild, and the job market for people over 50 is decidedly more challenging than for younger workers.

How to manage finances during and after a divorce

When a couple ends their marriage in California, both partners could suffer financial repercussions. However, a person can make a budget, plan for divorce costs and take other steps to try to manage finances during and after the divorce.

Making sure that property is divided fairly is one step. It can be important to establish which assets and debts were brought into the marriage and which were acquired after the marriage. Debt should be paid off before the divorce is final. If this is not possible, the couple should address how it will be paid in the divorce agreement. If one spouse decides to keep the home, they should be able to afford the costs associated with it. Some people may find the house is too big and keeping it is too expensive.

Get your financial situation in order before the divorce process

If the time comes to talk to your spouse about getting a divorce, there will be many details that require your attention. For example, it's critical to get your financial situation in order before the process begins. Neglecting to do so will only cause more stress and tension in the weeks and months to come.

While no two people are facing identical financial circumstances, here are a few things everyone in this position should do:

  • Create a budget: Now that you're going to be on your own, it's critical to create a budget to better understand your income and expenses. This may lead you to make important decisions, such as reducing your monthly expenses and seeking new employment.
  • Gather all necessary financial records: You'll need these for many reasons during the divorce process, so it's best to collect them up front. Common examples include pay stubs, tax returns, retirement account statements and bank account statements.
  • Create a property and debt division checklist: This detailed checklist should outline all separate and joint assets and debts.
  • Cancel all joint accounts: For example, if you have a joint credit card with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, talk to them about the best way to manage the debt. You may decide to pay it off together so that it doesn't impact either of you in divorce. Regardless of the direction you take, it's critical to cancel all joint accounts.
  • Seek professional help: You don't have to do everything yourself. You can seek professional help from a family law attorney, financial planner and tax professional among many others. All of these people can answer important questions and help you make the right decisions now and in the future.

Tips for keeping a home during divorce

Some people in California who are going through a divorce might want to keep their home. This could be for sentimental reasons, or it might be because the person wants their children to have the stability of remaining in the same house. Usually, keeping the home means buying out the other spouse. The first step is to determine what the house is worth and the equity each person has in the home.

Once this is determined, the person must decide how to get the funds to buy the other person out. Since most people do not have the sum available in cash, they will need to look into other ways to get it. Some divorcing couples make an agreement in which one gets a larger share of other assets, such as a retirement account, in exchange for the house. It might also be possible to get a loan via a refinance or a home equity line of credit. Some people might have friends and family members who are willing to help.

Buying a home while in arrears for child support

Some parents in California who have fallen behind on child support payments might wonder if they are automaticallydisqualified from getting a mortgage loan. While being delinquent on child support payments can be a liability, it does not necessarily mean that the parent can't buy a home.

The federal database called CAIVRS includes parents who are delinquent on child support payments. Unfortunately, inclusion on CAIVRS disqualifies people for federal loans. The easiest solution might be simply to take out a personal loan and pay off the debt. Another option for removal from CAIVRS is to return to court and make a written agreement with the other parent that includes a payment plan. It is also necessary to demonstrate that the payments are being made regularly as agreed. Parents are also disqualified from FHA, VA and USDA loans if they owe back support.

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