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Do's and don'ts: Talking to your child after divorce

The legal process of a divorce is to help spouses end their relationship as smoothly as possible. However, the last thing that either spouse wants is for their relationship with their children to dissipate as well. Divorce is difficult for both parents and children and it can cause strain in a family's relationships.

Here are some important tips for North Carolina parents on how to communicate with their children after divorce:

Financial Considerations for Couples Divorcing Near Retirement

The rate of divorce among adults over 50 has skyrocketed over the last twenty-five years, rising by 109%, according to the Pew Research Center. Whether it is due to increased financial independence for women or longer, healthier lives due to better healthcare, it seems this trend is unlikely to go away.

In some ways, divorce is easier for older couples because they are far less likely to encounter issues of child custody and child support. However, in longer marriages there are often significant financial implications to be aware of when considering separation and divorce. 

Should you keep the marital residence after divorce?

house-2492054_1280.pngWhen going through a divorce and dealing with property division, one of the most difficult things to deal with can be the marital residence. How this asset is handled varies from couple to couple. Some couples choose to sell it and split the net proceeds.Others choose to have one spouse keep the home and buy out the other spouse's share. Some couples leave it to one spouse and compensate the other spouse with different assets equal to his or her share in the property.

Often, one spouse really wants to keep the marital residence because it has sentimental value or because they believe it will minimize the disruption that their children will face after the divorce. If you're of this mindset, there are numerous factors to consider before deciding to hold onto the house in divorce.

Why you should have a custody agreement

siblings-862967_1920.jpgThere's no question that divorce is a process that requires heavy involvement from both you and your ex-spouse. While you may want to get the whole thing over with as quickly as possible, it's important not to skip steps. By the time you and your spouse reach an agreement on issues like property division and spousal support, you've already resolved many important issues.

Another important issue that you should resolve is a custody agreement for your children. The absence of a custody agreement can lead to problems in the future, even between the most amicable of people. Here are a few reasons why you should take the time to draft a custody agreement:

Tips for repairing self-esteem after divorce

Where do you rank your emotional well-being during a divorce? Chances are most people are more concerned with making their court dates, negotiating spousal support and property division agreements, and paying for their divorce than their emotional health. These things are important, but the end of a marriage can take a difficult emotional toll that you should not ignore.

Unlike the legal portion of the divorce, a court cannot issue a conclusion to the emotional processing of your divorce. It's not uncommon to feel down or have your confidence and self-esteem affected by the end of your marriage. It's important not to be too hard on yourself and make yourself a priority. A few things you can do to help your emotional well-being during your divorce include:

Insurance coverage after divorce part 2: Life insurance

In our last post, we began a discussion about maintaining health insurance coverage after divorce. Many people don't realize that you can directly address medical coverage and cost issues in a separation agreement or other divorce settlement document. Doing so is a wise idea to ensure that you maintain coverage for yourself and your children.

In today's post, we'll discuss life insurance after divorce. Although it is not as immediately important as health insurance coverage, it can play an important role in spousal support (alimony).

Insurance coverage after divorce part 1: health insurance

There are many details that need to be worked out in a divorce. So many, in fact, that some are commonly overlooked. One example of this would be health insurance coverage. In many families, both spouses and the children are covered under one health insurance plan - often one spouse's employer-sponsored plan.

What happens to coverage for the children and spouse who was not the policyholder once the divorce is finalized? Can insurance coverage be addressed in a settlement agreement or child custody order? These are some of the issues we'll address in today's post.

How opioid abuse is leading to more grandparent caregiving

The "traditional" American family doesn't look quite the same as it used to. As just one example, consider the fact that in many households, grandparents are taking on the role of primary caregiver to their grandchildren (rather than an being an extra set of eyes or frequent babysitter).

There are numerous reasons for this change, and not all of them are positive. In many states, the rise in grandparent caregiving is reportedly linked to the opioid crisis that has impacted millions of Americans across the country. According to recent research, many states with the highest rates of opioid prescriptions also had the highest rates of grandchildren being raised by their grandparents.

Hidden assets/debts during marriage and in divorce proceedings

When a couple gets married or otherwise decides to build a life together, it is common practice to commingle finances. This often leads to each spouse/partner knowing the couple's full financial situation.

However, it is also not uncommon for spouses/partners to keep financial secrets from one another. If done for the wrong reasons or if left unaddressed, these financial secrets can harm the relationship and make a couple more likely to divorce.

What Factors Inform the Best Interest of the Child Standard?

Below are some factors that may be considered when evaluating what custody arrangement is in the best interest of the child:

  • Do both parents work outside the home and what is the home environment in each home?
  • If both parents work outside the home, do they have roughly equivalent work hours?
  • If both parents work outside the home, do they both have some flexibility to take time off work to deal with doctor's appointments, school events, activities, illnesses, and family emergencies?
  • Does one parent's employment require regular overnight or extended travel?
  • Is it a low conflict or high conflict case?
  • Does a parent suffer from a substance abuse or mental health issue which currently impacts the parent's ability to provide care, or does a parent have a history of impaired care?
  • Is there any history of domestic violence between the parents?
  • Have there been any issues with a parent's care which rise to the level of child abuse or neglect?
  • Can the parents effectively communicate or are their tools that can be implemented successfully to assist the parents with communication?
  • What is the geographical location of each parent and can transitions from one parent's house to the other parent's house occur with minimal disruption for the child and the child's schedule?
  • Are the children in school or are the children below school age?
  • Do any of the children have special needs?
  • Did one parent consistently do the majority of the caretaking during the marriage or did both parents contribute to caretaking responsibilities?

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