Skip to main content

I'm Separated, Why Should I get Divorced? - Reason #1: Cutting Financial Ties

In Massachusetts, the standard for a no-fault divorce is whether or not you subjectively believe that your marriage is irretrievably broken down with no chance of reconciliation.

If you are separated but believe that there is a chance of reconciliation, then you should not get divorced (and you do not meet the legal standard to do so anyway).

However, if you are separated and you do believe that your marriage is over, then there are some compelling reasons not to wait to get divorced. This four part post will highlight the most compelling of these reasons.

Reason #1 Not to Wait: Cutting Financial Ties

So long as you are married, you have a financial link to your spouse. In Massachusetts any property that you hold either jointly or individually can be considered marital property subject to division by the family court. This means that if you acquire financial assets after your separation your spouse may have a claim to those, even if they didn't pay a dime to help you obtain those assets.

Similarly, if your spouse incurs debt after your separation, you may have some obligation to help pay that debt. This is true even if you had nothing to do with the items purchased.

The Court does not ignore the fact of your separation, and it may have a significant impact on how those post-separation assets or debts are divided. But the separation is only one factor among many that the Court must weigh. This means that until the divorce is filed, you are financially linked to your spouse whether or not you are physically separated (and whether or not you separate your finances).

Read Reason #2: The Ticking Time Bomb.

Comments

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

What is the purpose of the Divorce Nisi waiting period?

In Massachusetts the statutory waiting period after a Judgment of Divorce and before the divorce becomes final (or absolute) is called the Nisi period. After a divorce case settles or goes to trial, a Judgment of Divorce Nisi will issue and it will become Absolute after a further ninety (90) days. This waiting period serves the purpose of allowing parties to change their mind before the divorce becomes final. If the Judgment of Divorce Nisi has issued but not become final yet, and you and your spouse decide you don't want to get divorced, then you can file a Motion to Dismiss and the Judgment will be undone. Although many of my clients who are getting divorced think the idea of getting back together with their ex sounds crazy, I have had cases where this happened. In addition to offering a grace period to change your mind, the Nisi period has three other legal effects: 1. The most obvious effect of the waiting period is that you cannot remarry during the Nisi period, be

New Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines (2021): Big Changes, Little Changes, Typos & some Unexpected Results

UPDATE: The court has released a web calculating version of the 2021 MA Child Support Guidelines Worksheet .  It resolves some of the typos referred to below, but the unexpected calculations still apply. Every four years, per federal mandate, the Massachusetts Probate & Family Court revisits the Child Support Guidelines through the work of a Task Force appointed by the Chief Justice.  The 2021 Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines were recently posted.  They take effect on October 4, 2021.    If you are interested in a training on all of these changes to the new Child Support Guidelines: DMTA Presents the 2021 MA Child Support Guidelines Update  – Attend this event to learn the key updates you need to know for your mediation clients. Presented by Justin Kelsey of  Divorce Mediation Training Associates  and  Skylark Law & Mediation, PC . For a full comparison of all the  tracked changes between the 2018 and 2021 Massachusetts Child Support Guidelines you can download a pdf sho

Online Tool for Creating Parenting Plans

It is our hope that all families find a way to resolve conflict peacefully.  This is especially true when children are involved.  Divorced or separated parenting has many complications and the first is just deciding how to share time with a child from two separate households.  Developing a schedule can result in a lot of tension, especially if parents have trouble picturing how this new schedule will interact with their work schedules and the schedules of their children. To help make this easier, we've created an online tool for creating parenting plans that is simple and easy to use: We encourage parents, regardless of the process they are using to divorce, to use this form to assist in evaluating and settling custody disputes. The form allows you to choose between the Model Parenting Plan proposals or customize your parenting plan over a four week period by clicking directly on the form.  When you click on a section of the calendar it switches between Mom and Dad, an