Payne & Associates, PLLC

Are you and your ex ready to share custody after the divorce?

When couples head for divorce court, it is usually because they no longer relate well. They may have trouble enjoying one another's company or could have lost the trust that is a critical foundation to a lifelong relationship. It is far too easy for divorcing parents to become more focused on their own emotional issues than on the needs of their children.

The parents may dig their heels in and plan to fight over every moment of parenting time and every penny they have saved or invested during the marriage. Sadly, that contentious approach is only going to make things that much harder for you and your family in the future. It will also make it harder to parent with your ex. Mediation or cooperative divorce can help you move forward with less fighting in some cases.

Know what matters most to you before you file for divorce

Divorce can be relatively quick and painless, or it can become a contentious, drawn-out battle that depletes the mental and emotional health of the parties involved, to say nothing of their bank accounts. The outcome of your divorce is partially up to you and partially up to your former spouse.

The more pragmatic you are in your approach to divorce, the faster and less expensive it becomes. That is why you should develop a strategic focus when you begin planning for your divorce. You need to determine what outcomes and considerations are the most important to you.

Empower yourself with an uncontested North Carolina divorce

In the past, divorce had a surprisingly negative social connotation, but the stigma associated with it is not nearly as severe now as it was years ago. While it is true that there can be trauma resulting from the end of a major relationship, divorce can actually be a positive experience for a family.

Once a relationship is no longer healthy and positive, a divorce can offer everyone a fresh start. A couple who can't maintain a healthy relationship while living together may find that they work better as co-parents. Couples may experience better overall satisfaction and quality of life as singles after ending unhappy marriages.

Worried about who gets the house in your North Carolina divorce?

There is a popular saying that the home is where the heart is. In reality, your home is likely where a lot of your savings are. For most couples in North Carolina, the marital home represents the single biggest purchase and investment of their adult lives. A significant portion, up to 30 percent, of your household income each month goes toward paying your mortgage.

Over the years, you have likely accrued substantial equity in your home, if you have not yet paid it off. When you start considering the end of your marriage, it's typical to worry about what will happen to your interest in the marital home. It's important to understand that there is no definite answer that will apply to your situation, as every divorce and family unit is unique.

Mediation can actually make your divorce easier on your kids

For many parents, the most nerve-racking aspect of divorce is the worry about how it will affect the children. Kids often have a difficult time processing the emotions that come with a divorce. They may fear losing their families or the love of either parent. Children can also become angry at feeling out of control about their lives, which can cause them to act out at home and in school.

The more bitter and contentious your divorce becomes, the more potential it has for all of that negativity to spill over and impact your children. Taking steps to shield the kids from the social and emotional fallout of divorce is always prudent. Divorce mediation may be one tool you can use to limit the damage divorce inflicts on your children.

Don't make these mistakes during your divorce

Divorce can be a long and complicated process. It is also typically very stressful. Due to this combination, it is easy to lose focus and make mistakes that can cost you. For example, your attachment to your home in Winston-Salem may cloud your judgment about whether to keep the house or sell it. In addition, you could make some mistakes that affect you emotionally and even physically.

In order to avoid some of the long-term negative effects of divorce, it is important to stay alert for some of the traps that make your divorce and its aftermath worse than it needs to be. Don't fall into these common pitfalls during your divorce:

4 reasons to consider divorce mediation

For some people, divorce means spending months fighting over every last detail in a Winston-Salem courtroom. For others, it is a simpler process, with only a few hours of negotiations and hashing out a handful of details. For example, if your and your husband's decision to split up was mutual, your divorce may not be as contentious as another couple's.

If you and future ex-husband are exploring divorce options other than litigation, then mediation might be your best option. Here are a few reasons why you should consider divorce mediation.

Can mediation turn a contentious divorce into an uncontested one?

It's very common for divorcing couples to disagree on key aspects of a divorce. Issues often crop up around emotional topics like asset division, fault and child custody, support and visitation. You may feel like these issues can't possibly get resolved, and that a messy, court-based divorce is inevitable.

Truthfully, if you and your spouse can still communicate and are willing to try to compromise, mediation could be an alternative. Unlike divorce court, mediation empowers both spouses to have equal control over the outcome of the divorce. More importantly, it can lay the foundation for a functional and healthy co-parenting relationship after the divorce gets finalized.

How will North Carolina's alimony laws affect you?

Getting divorced can seem like a journey into the great unknown. A combination of legal complexity and social stigmas imbue separations with an air of uncertainty, so it's critical to educate yourself. Here's everything that you should know about how alimony works in North Carolina. 

Family law, child custody and taking a vacation

Are you interested in taking your child on vacation this summer? If so, and you are divorced, you need to understand what you are and are not permitted to do. After all, you don't want to make a mistake that could upset the other parent or land you in trouble with the court.

First things first. Check on any agreements or restrictions that may be in place. For example, there may be a provision about where you can take the child for vacation. An example of this would be a provision stating that you are only allowed to travel within the United States.

Payne & Associates, PLLC
206 North Spruce Street, Suite 1B
Winston Salem, NC 27101

Phone: 336-283-2937
Fax: 336-217-8784
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