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Oneida County Divorce Law Blog

What is an equitable division?

People often assume that the property division process seeks an equal division of assets. You get 50 percent of the assets, you ex gets the other 50 percent and you go on your way.

While this varies by state, in New York, it's not necessarily true. New York law stipulates that a division must be fair and equitable. This doesn't mean it's going to be even if the court decides it would be fair for one spouse to get more than the other.

Long-distance parenting: working out the details

There are always challenges to co-parenting after you and your ex-spouse have split up. When one of you moves away, it can be even more difficult to coordinate visits with the children. Additionally, if your children live with you most of the time, you may feel overwhelmed and unsupported when your ex is no longer able to see the kids as much. This frustration is nothing new to you and other New York residents.

When one parent moves away, both parents must make sacrifices and cooperate with each other for the benefit of the children. Fortunately, it is possible for your children’s other parent to maintain a good relationship with them, despite not living close.

What happens when an alternate payee passes away?

A qualified domestic relations orders, or QRDO, stipulates that a pension plan has to be split between the participant and an alternate payee. This is done to divide pensions after a divorce.

For example, perhaps one spouse gets a pension of $2,000. Though every case is different and many factors have to be considered, for the sake of simplicity, the QRDO may simply state that the participant gets $1,000 per month and the alternate payee also gets $1,000.

5 reasons why it may be unwise to keep the house

Heading into divorce, your top goal is to keep your house. It's your refuge. It's where you're comfortable and relaxed. You've lived there for decades, and it's truly something you think of as your own. You can't imagine living anywhere else.

While every case is different, many financial experts warn against trying to keep the house. Below are five reasons why it may not be a good idea.

  1. It can turn into a money pit. You have to pay for emergency repairs and upkeep. You never know how much this is going to cost. So, if you can just barely afford the house on a monthly basis, one issue could ruin you financially.
  2. It may be too expensive. Remember that your income level is going to fall. Some studies show that men see their income drop by 25 percent and women see theirs drop by more than 40 percent.
  3. Property values don't stay stable. For instance, maybe your house is worth $500,000. That's also the value of your financial assets at the time of divorce. You give your spouse the retirement savings and other financial assets in exchange for the house. Then the market drops and your house is worth $300,000. That's all you have, but your ex still has $500,000.
  4. Homes come with many additional expenses. For instance, you need to have home insurance and you must pay property taxes. People often don't realize just how much a house costs until they try to pay on their own.

What is the Majauskas Formula and how does it work?

You and your spouse are getting divorced in New York and you need to split up your pension. You know that your spouse is entitled to some of it, but how much?

The court can use different formulas to reach a decision. For instance, some couples just agree on a flat dollar payout at the beginning. You pay your spouse that total and it's over.

The date of separation could be critical in divorce

You and your spouse are getting divorced. However, it's hard for you to even think of this as the "end" of your marriage.

After all, the relationship ended a year and a half ago. You decided to take a temporary break for a month. That month turned into half a year. That turned into a permanent separation.

A later-in-life divorce can lead to retirement issues

Getting divorced later in life can be problematic when it comes to retirement. The issue is simple, according to one financial expert. People have been planning and saving for decades. They expected to live off of all of their savings and benefits. With the divorce, assets are split up, and much of that can be lost.

For those who get divorced near retirement age, there's just not enough time to adjust. For instance, in 1990, the divorce rate was only 4.67 percent for people who were older than 50. By 2009, it hit 9.74 percent, essentially doubling. That means that about 600,000 people who are older than 50 split up in 2009 alone.

What causes divorces to drag on?

Ending a marriage is a painful and stressful proposition, made all the more difficult because of uncertainties. Many couples are reluctant to pursue a divorce because they fear it will drag on forever. Fortunately, many couples are able to finalize the proceedings within a few months.

However, there are some cases where the divorce goes on for over a year. There are several explanations for why this happens.

What is the average retirement income?

You and your spouse are going to divide your pension, and so you're trying to plan for the future. How much will be left for you, and how much do you need? What is the average for people in the United States?

One study looked at Census Bureau data and determined that for those who were 65 years old and older, the average retirement income came in at $31,742 annually.

Divorce, adultery and the division of assets

In a marriage, adultery is considered the ultimate betrayal, and it sends many couples heading for divorce court.

Often, one person feels severely wronged, as his or her spouse has just been unfaithful to the marriage. That person often wants "justice" and expects to get it in divorce court.

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