If you’re ready for a divorce and want to get on with the next chapter in your life, wait just a minute and speak with a family lawyer. You don’t want to separate from your spouse or the other parent of your children if that will cause more problems for you. The following are some things you should know before packing up and moving out.
1. Always Have Legal Advice
Before making any move one direction or another, it’s smart to always get legal advice from a family lawyer. These attorneys have dealt with situations like yours many times and know what will work toward your advantage and what will cause you detriment. Listen to your lawyer and express your concerns about child custody, spousal support, etc. so the result feels fair to you.
2. Stay in the Matrimonial Home
Although you might want to leave the matrimonial home, it’s often a good idea to stay put until child custody and child support have been determined. Maybe you’re thinking, “I’ll just take the kids with me!” Unless the other parent has given their consent, it is illegal to take the children with you upon leaving the home. The only exception to the rule is with a court order stating you can take them.
Now you might think, “I’ll leave now and get custody of the kids later!” This may not work to your advantage after all. In such a situation, parents can prejudice their rights to obtain child custody. Additionally, if you want to obtain any personal belongings, or even the house itself, it could be more difficult to do if you are the one who leaves.
3. Split Custody Sometimes Comes With a Cost
Split custody might be an ideal situation for spending equal amounts of time with your children, but depending on the specifics of your separation or eventual divorce, you may still have to pay child support. This is often determined by comparing the incomes of both parents and seeing which is greater. The parent with a higher income is often left paying child support costs.
4. Married and Common-Law Spouses Have the Same Rights
While there are different property and spousal support rights for married and common-law spouses in the event of a separation or divorce, there is no difference when it comes to the kids. Children are entitled to both parents, so child support, custody and child access are equal to those who were actually married and those who lived common-law.
Contacting a Family Lawyer
In the event of a separation or divorce, it’s important you contact a family lawyer before leaving your children’s other parent. Find an attorney today to help you through the legal battle ahead.