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Nashville Tennessee Family Law Blog

Addressing the school year when parents in Nashville are divorced

Labor Day weekend, the unofficial end of summer, is behind us and children throughout Nashville are back at school. However, for children whose parents have divorced, school can sometimes be stressful. But, there are some things parents can do to relieve some of this stress.

For example, some schools have websites that parents can log into, to access their child's grades and other information about school. If the child's parents are divorced, they may each want their own login, so they both can access this information. If that is not possible, they should at least both have access to the shared login ID and password, so they do not miss out on any important information.

How should IRAs be split during property division?

When divorcing couples in Nashville think about property division, their immediate concerns may involve their tangible assets. Who gets the house, furniture and electronics, among other pieces of personal property? However, they should keep in mind that some of their most valuable assets are intangible property. Retirement accounts are one of these assets. It is important that retirement accounts are divided fairly, but there are rules involving the division of a retirement account that do not apply to tangible property.

For example, dividing an Individual Retirement Account has certain tax rules that need to be adhered to. First and foremost, in order to avoid triggering taxes on the IRA when it is being transferred, the couple must have a divorce decree in place. Some couples, wishing for a more amicable split, may have already made property division decisions on their own out of court. However, even if they sign a property settlement agreement, this is not enough. That agreement must then be presented to a court, so the court can make it part of the official divorce decree. Moreover, if the divorce decree does not mention that the IRA is going to be split or transferred, this will not be enough to avoid taxes.

What effects does a divorce have on one's mortgage?

As the song goes, "Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home." However, most people in Tennessee have to take out a mortgage in order to purchase a home. Sometimes, though, a couple's marriage fails before their mortgage is paid off, leading them to wonder what happens to the mortgage after divorce.

First, keep in mind that if one party is awarded the home in the property division process, they're responsible for paying the mortgage as well as upkeep on the home, taxes and insurance. This may be more than either party can truly afford post-divorce. Therefore, sometimes the parties agree to sell the family home. In general, this choice is attractive if the parties have built up equity in the home, and, therefore, will be able to make a profit selling it. While it may be difficult emotionally, splitting the profits of a home sale may be the preferred way to go.

Co-parenting a baby after divorce

Tennessee parents expecting a child are often happily awaiting the day their little ones come into their lives. However, even the joy a baby brings cannot fix a broken marriage, and some couples may find that they end up divorcing, while their child is still a baby. When this happens, how does it affect their ability to effectively parent?

First, some parents may feel distress that their baby will not grow up in a "normal," two-parent household. But, this is not such an unusual thing. Divorced parents or parents who are no longer in a relationship with one another raise around 50 percent of the children in the United States.

When might a person in Tennessee be awarded alimony in futuro?

Divorce can bring with it a lot of financial concerns. This may be especially true for individuals in Tennessee who earn significantly less than their spouse, or who stayed out of the workforce entirely while married to care for the family. For these individuals, obtaining spousal support after their divorce may be essential to their financial well-being.

Sometimes, these individuals can obtain a position after their divorce that allows them to sufficiently support themselves financially, meaning they only need rehabilitative alimony. Other times, whether it is due to skill, age, health or time away from the workforce, an award of spousal support is made permanent, subject to a few exceptions. Under Tennessee law, this is referred to as "alimony in futuro."

A change in finances could lead to child support modifications

If you want to pay your child support each month on time, you need to make sure you're gainfully employed, and you're earning enough to afford this financial obligation. However, life circumstances -- and our jobs -- are not always under our complete control.

What if you're forced to get a new job, and you're not earning enough to pay your child support obligations anymore? What if you lose your job and you're currently unemployed? What if you get sick or injured and you can't work for a couple of months?

What rights do noncustodial parents in Tennessee have?

After a divorce or breakup, it is necessary for the child's parents to establish a parenting time schedule. Sometimes, the child will primarily reside with one parent and the other parent will have visitation periods with the child. However, even if a parent in Tennessee does not reside with the child, they still have certain rights regarding the child.

First of all, a parent has the right to phone the child in an unimpeded manner a minimum of two times weekly. Also, a parent can send the child letters and items in the mail, and the custodial parent cannot open or censor these items.

Nashville parents may disagree, even after the divorce is over

Parents may agree that co-parenting after a divorce is the best choice for them and their child. However, co-parenting is not always easy.

Couples that disagreed prior to the divorce may find that they still have disagreements, even after the divorce is over, especially when it comes to parenting decisions. For example, they may not agree when the child should go to bed or how and when the child should be punished. But, even if there are disagreements, there are some things those who co-parent should avoid doing.

Is an inheritance subject to property division?

When a person in Nashville loses a loved one, they may receive an inheritance, some of which can be quite substantial. Of course, nothing in life is predictable, and sometimes a couple that was once happily married eventually finds that their marriage is no longer viable and they are best off divorcing. When that happens, what happens to the inheritance one of the spouses was given?

Usually during a divorce, a couple's marital assets are divided. However, inheritances made out to only one spouse are, in general, considered to be separate property and, hence, are not subject to property division. They remain the property of the person they were granted to.

How dating during divorce can cause problems

It is not uncommon for people going through a divorce to find comfort in another person. This person may start out as someone who is merely a shoulder to cry on or to vent about troubling things about the divorce, but he or she may develop into something more. When a relationship turns intimate, and the person stays the night, the divorce may get complicated if there are children involved.

There are a number of things that can go wrong when this happens. If a custody evaluation is conducted, chances are that the evaluator will want to know as much as they can about this person. The red flags that may come with the person (i.e. drinking habits, smoking habits) may compromise your parenting time schedule. 

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