How Is Child Support Determine In Divorce?
Child support is calculated by looking at all of the circumstances of a divorce and family finances to determine how much money is appropriate to pay. Considerations include alimony (spousal support or maintenance), the custody agreement, child care and several other determining factors such as education and healthcare for the child. Watch Divorce Matters attorney Bridget Finn explain more in this video.

Divorce Matters has created an app for your phone that can help you estimate your child support and alimony payments. To download it for free, you can visit our web page here. You can contact our attorneys here.
What Can I Do Before Filing For Divorce to Protect Myself Financially?
Find out as much information as you can about the family finances, savings accounts and insurance accounts before you file for divorce. Make sure that you will have access to credit, savings, and an income source.

Refrain from making any large purchases, such as a new car or a new home. If you received any gifts or inheritances during or before the marriage, or entered into the marriage with any property, put together documentation showing where each item came from. If you own a business, consider having a business valuation report prepared by a financial analyst. Email, social media, and separate bank accounts passwords should all be changed, taking care to use passwords that your spouse cannot easily guess.

Consider putting together a list of all marital property (furniture, appliances, jewelry, etc.) and marking the items you want to keep and the items you have to keep. Then, if you or your spouse moves from the marital home, you will have a list ready to review. This can make negotiations about who gets what, much easier. Try to be rational about what is important to you – you want to avoid arguments over things like who gets to keep season three of Seinfeld. It also is a good idea to make a visual record of everything in the home. If you decide to make a tape, make sure to inventory the entire home – opening drawers and cupboards so the inside items are visible – and make sure the video is date stamped. Store your list and tape outside of the home.

Whatever you do, do not misuse any marital property. You are obligated to disclose all debts and assets during a divorce and if you misuse any marital property (e.g. go on a cruise with your new partner, or buy them jewelry) your spouse could use that as evidence against you in court in dividing up the assets and liabilities.

If you have questions regarding your finances and divorce, please contact Divorce Matters today to speak with one of our attorneys.
Navigating Divorce When You Co-Own a Business
In a divorce, a judge unwinds a couple’s financial entanglements. But what happens if you own a business together with your spouse? In addition to being co-owners, you probably both contribute to the business, and it will suffer if either one of you disappears altogether. For this reason, unwinding a couple’s finances when they own a business together presents unique challenges.

Divorcing couples have options for what happens to the business. For example, you can:

  • Sell the business to a new owner.
  • Buy out your spouse’s share of the business.
  • Continue owning and running the business jointly.
  • Close the business down entirely.

If the business is profitable, closing it down is probably not the best option. However, you should take a close look at how much money the business makes. Also assess your own desire to continue working in the business. A divorce might be the right time to cut the cord to your business—along with your spouse.

How to Sell a Business

If you want to sell to a new owner, you need to value how much the business is worth. This might be tricky. Many business owners hire a valuation company, but both spouses should agree on the company hired. Valuation companies charge high fees, and you want each spouse to trust the valuation report issued. What you should avoid is each spouse obtaining their own valuation, which simply creates another disagreement.

After valuing the business, you can advertise it for sale. You might also want to jointly hire a lawyer or broker to manage the sale. Again, both spouses should agree on who to hire. Disagreements about whether to sell can actually cause buyers to flee.

Buying Out Your Spouse’s Share

You will also need to value the business so that you know how much your spouse’s share is worth. If you cannot obtain a loan to buy your spouse’s share, you should discuss giving them marital assets of equivalent value. For example, you might take the business while your spouse receives the home and other assets.

Running the Business Jointly

This option, though not ideal, is also possible if you can separate your personal issues from business ones. According to Michelle Crosby, CEO of Wevorce, you should clearly define your business roles so that there is no confusion. You should also protect yourself by drafting a buy-sell agreement in the event one ex wants out of the business at some point in the future.
If you think you may need to talk to an attorney about your situation, you can visit our website and contact us here, or you can call us at 720-542-6142.
This newsletter is for informational purposes only. Nothing in this newsletter should be taken as legal advice and receiving this newsletter does not constitute an attorney client relationship.