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St. Louis Family Law Blog

Why you need an appraiser for your divorce settlement

Litigation may be unavoidable when you and your spouse realize you cannot agree on property division in your high-asset divorce. As with any lawsuit, you want to go into the courtroom with proof that swings the judge’s decision about the settlement in your favor.

According to the Journal of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, a professional valuation of your personal property may be the evidence you need.

Common tax mistakes involving child support payments

If you have recently been divorced and you have minor children in the relationship, then the chances are you are involved in some kind of child support arrangement, either as the payer or the payee. This is the most common way of dealing with the financial issues surrounding caring for children, and it is fairly rare for there not to be some form of child support arrangement.

When the arrangement is new to you, though, it is easy to make mistakes. That is how a lot of people wind up inadvertently behind on their payments. It is also how many people wind up in situations where they accidentally make mistakes on their income tax returns. Here is what happens and how to avoid it.

A guide to dividing your 401(k) in a divorce

Your retirement account might be one of your most complicated and valuable marital assets, especially if you have been married for a significant amount of time and make consistent contributions. In certain cases, you may be able to keep your 401(k), award it completely to your spouse or just give up a certain portion.

Dividing your 401(k) requires reaching an agreement and drawing up a qualified domestic relations order. Learn more about the process of splitting a qualified retirement plan during divorce.

3 solutions for dividing your family business in a divorce

A family business provides income and stability for you, your spouse and any children you have. If you are planning on getting divorced, you might be wondering what is going to happen to your business if you and your spouse both have ownership rights. Your family business is marital property that is subject to division.

This is often a subject of great dispute during high-asset divorce, so you should be prepared to resolve arguments and fight for your best interests. Here are some tips for resolving business ownership disputes during your divorce

Understanding how luxury items are divided during a divorce

Depending on how your marriage progressed and what property each spouse brought into the marriage, divorces in Missouri can wind up dividing assets in a number of ways. That's because the state is an "equitable distribution" state when it comes to marital assets. What that means is the court is supposed to take into account various factors to make a fair decision about how to divide the assets based on the specifics of the case. It does not mean that the property will be divided 50/50, nor does it necessarily mean that all the property each party had when entering the marriage is automatically allocated to that party.

How does divorce affect taxes?

There is a lot to consider when going through divorce and it can be very overwhelming. What many couples overlook, though, are the tax implications of their divorce. How property is divided, matters of child support and custody, and how each party files will have effects on your and your ex-spouse's taxes.

Do you have to pay taxes on child support payments?

Many soon-to-be single parents do not consider how child support will affect their financial planning after divorce. Managing a household without the help of a partner means your budget will look very different from what you're used to, whether you will be paying or receiving support. In particular, most parents don't understand or consider the tax consequences of child support.

Understanding the expenses child support doesn't cover

If you are going through a divorce and you are trying to negotiate the financial terms with your spouse, it is important for both of you to understand what child support does and does not cover. This is because alimony and extra cash support might be required to make sure that the children in the family are fully covered for all of their expenses and activities. That is because child support in most states, including Missouri , is designed to see to the basic needs and expenses that every child must have provided for them to be healthy.

The fact is, depending on your lifestyle and economic position, there are many other expenses that might be everyday items you and your child expect to navigate with ease, but they are not necessarily covered by child support calculations. That means that you and your ex will need to negotiate for the cost of the items, especially when it comes to the ones that are unexpected.

Supporting loved ones throughout the divorce process

Every divorce process plays out in unique ways. Therefore, it is impossible to know exactly what to expect when a family member or friend opts to divorce his or her spouse. However, it is safe to assume that your loved one will need various kinds of support throughout their divorce process. Unfortunately, knowing exactly how to support your loved one can be quite tricky.

If you have weathered divorce in the past, you may be tempted to treat your loved one exactly how you would have liked to have been treated during your process. However, it is important to understand that not everyone reacts to this process in the same way. As a result, it is important to personalize your support in accordance with your loved one's personality and your own personality as well.

New Missouri law aims to prevent bias in child custody decisions

Old assumptions about divorce and custody are changing. For many years, courts assumed that children would live with mothers and fathers would pay child support (and often alimony). But these assumptions don't jive with many modern families.

A new Missouri law in effect since the end of August seeks to make sure child custody decisions aren't based on outdated assumptions that mothers are always caretakers and fathers always breadwinners. What assumptions should courts make instead? The legislator behind the law - Rep. Kathy Swan - told the Southeast Missourian earlier this year that the goal of the law is to make joint custody the more typical default assumption.


Law Office of Margaret P. Murphy, LLC
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