Family Law Blog

Taxes and Divorce: When Do You File Alone?

Picture of woman calculating taxesFiling taxes can be a daunting task. In the United States, there are currently five filing options. These options include:

  • Single;
  • Married filing jointly;
  • Married filing separately;
  • Head of household; and
  • Qualifying widow(er) with dependent child.

Determining which filing status to use depends on many different factors. First, your marital status on the last day of December dictates your marital status for tax purposes for the entire year. If your divorce was finalized on or before December 31, then you cannot file jointly.

Consequently, if your divorce is not final, you may choose to file:

  • Married filing jointly
  • Married filing separately
  • Single under certain circumstances

According to U.S. Code § 7703 (a) (2), if you are legally separated from your spouse “under a decree of divorce or of separate maintenance” you are not considered married and may file as single.  However, do not presume you are “legally separated” because you are living apart and a divorce is in the works. read more

Understanding Florida Custody Relocation Laws

Picture of co-parent conflictThere are numerous reasons why a parent may wish to relocate with his or her children. A new job, a new marriage or moving closer to your family can all be good reasons to move. However, if you share custody, relocating with your children in Florida is not easy. Child relocation in Florida is only allowed in certain situations, and only when it is in the best interests of the children.

Florida child relocation laws are complex. Before deciding to move with your children, it is important to understand child relocation. It is also important to familiarize yourself with all the Florida child relocation statutes. Education and preparation will give you the best chances of relocating with your children, even if the other parent is unsupportive. Our experienced West Palm Beach child custody lawyer can review your situation and help you improve your chances of winning your child relocation case. read more

Is Florida a Community Property State for Divorce?

Picture of concept of divorce and property divisionDivorce is never easy. Dividing your assets and property can be stressful in even the best circumstances. During a divorce, property division often becomes a contentious issue. Who will get the marital home? How will the judge decide to divide your property? Is Florida a community property state?

What Is Community Property?

Community property states consider both spouses to co-own all marital assets and debts jointly. These states distribute marital property and debts in half. There are 10 community property states in the country. Florida is not a community property state. Florida follows the equitable distribution rule. read more

How to Modify Child Support in Florida

Picture of Child Support written in building blocksMany divorce decrees in Florida involve child support. As your life circumstances evolve, you or your former spouse may find that a change is necessary. You can modify child support in Florida through the court system.

Before you proceed, make sure that your current order qualifies for a modification and explore the different reasons a child support order can be modified.

Does Your Current Order Qualify for a Modification?

Before the court will grant a child support modification in Florida, you have to verify that the change would be large enough to warrant a modification. The resulting change must be identifiable. If you have completed the calculation and the change meets this requirement, you can consult with a child support attorney in West Palm Beach to plan your next step. Typically, you must prove a change in one of three areas to request child support modification in Florida. read more

What Is a Motion for Temporary Custody?

Picture of father and daughter hugging

Conflicts in family court can take a long time to resolve. Unfortunately, people usually do not have a long time to wait for resolution. A motion for temporary custody is a legal request of a parent to have physical and legal custody of his or her child.

What Is a Motion for Temporary Relief?

A motion for temporary relief is an order by a judge that provides temporary resolution to a major issue. It is often used by people involved in the following cases:

  • Child custody/time-sharing
  • Child support
  • Alimony
  • Marital asset distribution

Know that these orders only remain in effect until the formal case is complete. If you are interested in filing a motion for temporary relief in Florida, contact our West Palm Beach family law attorney. read more

5 Tips for Dealing With an Unreasonable Co-Parent

Picture of co-parent conflictDealing with an unreasonable co-parent can be frustrating and exhausting, especially when you have been through a recent divorce.

Fortunately, there are ways to help remedy the situation. Here are five tips you can use to help cope with an unreasonable co-parent:

  1. Accept What You Cannot Change

There is nothing you can do to change your former spouse. The time has come to accept what you cannot change about them. Instead of looking at your former spouse as though he or she is intentionally trying to make you crazy, try looking at the situation from their perspective as well. read more

7 Factors Considered for School Choice in Family Court

Picture of child at schoolOne of the most difficult decisions to make following a divorce is where your child will continue to go to school. Because it can greatly impact their future, the argument over where your child will attend school may seem like the most bitter of the divorce.

Here are a few significant factors considered for school choice in family court:

  1. Wishes of the Parents

First and foremost, the wishes of each parent will be heard and considered. Then, the argument of each parent will be closely analyzed. Is one spouse disagreeing for the sake of disagreeing? Has any research been conducted by either parent? Is there evidence to support their recommendation? If one parent is lacking in this department, the choice could quickly swing toward the other parent’s school choice. read more

Education Wars: When Parents With Shared Parental Responsibility Disagree on Schooling in Florida

Picture of school children runningGoing through a divorce is already difficult. Then, if you share a child, you will need to navigate the child custody process through the Courts. When these issues have been decided and ordered by the Court, and you have been awarded shared parental responsibility, you will need to make some important and sometimes difficult decisions as co-parents, regarding your child.

Perhaps one of the most difficult of these decisions is determining where your child will go to school. If you are still working on redefining your role as co-parents, this could be one of the first major disagreements that occurs — which has the potential of putting your child directly in the middle of parental conflict, which is not in their best interest. read more

4 Tips for Co-Parenting Across State Lines

Picture of child hugging leaving parentFollowing a divorce, a former spouse may choose to move to another state, whether to be closer to family or to start a new life. Children are often directly involved in this move.

In most cases, when one parent moves out of state, a court will grant more timesharing to one parent — rather than offering equal timesharing. In rare situations, parents agree to alternate school years and summer vacations, but this can be a complex system.

When your child lives primarily in another state, it can be difficult to be an active and involved parent. It can be even more difficult to co-parent with your former spouse. read more

How to Modify Your Alimony Payments in Florida

Picture of alimony paymentIf you have been making the same alimony payment for years, there is a chance you are ready to move on with your life — and a chance your former spouse is ready, financially, for you to end spousal support.

But the modification or termination of alimony is a difficult process, particularly when you and your former spouse are not on good terms. To get started, follow these steps:

Understand the Different Types of Alimony

There are several different types of alimony. Some are designed to be short-term, giving one spouse time to finish an education, get a promotion, or start a new career. Others are more permanent. read more