During your initial consultation with a divorce attorney, it is important to ask questions regarding the handling of your case. The following are some questions you may want to ask to get a feel for the day to day handling of your case before making a decision to hire a divorce attorney:
- Who will be working on my case? Many attorneys work closely with associates. Ask your attorney if anyone will be assisting him or her on your case and what their experience and qualifications they bring to the job. If an associate will be working on your case regularly, you may want to meet them to put a name with a face. Although the help of an experienced associate is invaluable, ensure that your attorney will be negotiating your case.
- How will communications be handled during my case? Ask how you will be notified of developments and if the attorney is available to take phone calls to answer questions you may have. It is important that you know what is going on in your case and you should expect to get copies of important papers in a timely manner. Of course, you may have questions as your case progresses, so find out who is the best point of contact at the firm for questions that arise.
- What is the general plan for a case like mine? After meeting with you to discuss your unique situation, an attorney should be able to give you a general idea of the divorce process and the time it could take. Ask the attorney to briefly speak to an overall plan for your case. Ask them what problems they foresee and if you will have input in the decisions concerning your case. Finally, ask the attorney how much they think the case will cost given the circumstances of your case – see our blog regarding questions to ask about divorce fees.
You should be comfortable with and trust the divorce lawyer you choose. Asking questions during the initial consultation can help you find the right fit in a divorce attorney. See our Wisconsin divorce blogs regarding what questions to ask about experience when hiring a divorce lawyer and what questions you should ask about fees when hiring an attorney.
Contact Experienced Waukesha Family Law Attorneys
Probst Law Offices, S.C. will assist you with your family law concern. Call (414) 210-3135 or send an email for your free, half-hour initial consultation. We will personally and promptly respond to all messages.
A reminder to those considering divorce…new tax laws will impact how spousal maintenance is treated beginning January 1, 2019, which can make a difference in how much money remains in the the family unit.
Current Tax Laws and Spousal Maintenance
Spouses who pay alimony that finalize their divorce on or before December 31, 2018 will be able to deduct the alimony paid from their taxes while the presumably lower earning recipient claims the payments as taxable income. For top earners, this arrangement often translates into a whole lot of money saved in taxes for the benefit of the family unit.
Spousal Maintenance Tax Treatment Changes with the New Year
However, for couples finalizing their divorce on or after January 1, 2019, alimony will not be deductible by the payor or taxable to the recipient. Although at first glance, many think a recipient might favor such a change, the shift will likely result in less alimony being paid when a payor loses the incentive of a reduced tax burden.
How Does the Law Apply When Couples are Already Divorced?
The law permits ex-spouses to modify an earlier divorce agreement to adopt the new rule after it goes into effect in 2019, however if a pre-2019 divorce is not modified, your ‘grandfathered-in’ allowing the payer to continue to deduct payments made and the recipient to pay the taxes on what is received. Seek the help of an experienced divorce lawyer to see if a modification is right for your situation.
The timing of your divorce can impact the amount of spousal maintenance you will receive. If you have questions regarding Wisconsin divorce or spousal maintenance, contact Probst Law Offices for a free, half-hour initial consultation with an experienced Milwaukee and Waukesha attorney for child support and spousal maintenance. Call (414) 210-3135 or send us an email.
Many married couples may be living together while separated, when in reality they are leading separate lives. In a growing trend, particularly among long-married couples, some husbands and wives do not move on even when the marriage is over.
Their reasons for not getting divorced may include:
- One or both of the spouses may not be emotionally ready to formally and permanently call it quits
- There may be hopes of reconciliation
- They may want to continue living together for the children, sometimes after the kids have started college and beyond
- Not knowing what to expect during the divorce process
- Fears of the unknown when it comes to life after divorce
- And, in many cases, one or both spouses cannot afford to live on their own or maintain their current lifestyle.
There are a number of reasons why couples may delay divorce, but it is important to understand that, in many states:
- couples must live apart physically for a specified period of time before they can begin divorce proceedings
- Until the legal process begins, spouses are liable for the other’s debts and the division of marital assets will be delayed, both of which can be financially disadvantageous
- If there are child custody concerns, continuing to reside with your spouse under the same roof with the children despite the fact your leading ‘separate lives’ may factor into a child custody determination when you are ready to move on
Contact a Waukesha Legal Separation Divorce Lawyer
It is important to protect yourself financially if you are considering divorce now or in the future. The first step is to get the information you need. If you have questions regarding legal separation or divorce in Wisconsin, contact the Family Law attorneys of Probst Law Offices for a free consultation at 414-210-3135.
During a divorce, you may want to stay in the family home especially when are children involved. If your spouse refuses to leave, there are certain conditions under which a court can order him or her to go, particularly if the other spouse or children feel threatened. You may request a temporary order if there is evidence of domestic abuse or believe your mental or physical well-being is compromised if both spouses continue to occupy the home during divorce proceedings.
Temporary Support Orders in a Wisconsin Divorce
Many spouses who are stay at home moms or dads, or those who earn less income compared to their spouse, may worry how they will get by if their spouse is ordered to leave. In cases where you remain in your home without your spouse and they are the breadwinner of the family, you can file a special motion with the court asking the he or she continue paying the mortgage until things are sorted out. You may also request the payment of temporary child or spousal support during the divorce proceedings so that you can stay afloat while issues such as marital property division, child custody and visitation, child support and alimony are determined.
Contact Our Experienced Child and Spousal Support Lawyers for Help Today
If you are considering divorce and would like more information regarding temporary orders to occupy the family home during a divorce or to obtain temporary monetary support while your divorce is ongoing, contact the Waukesha Family Law offices of Probst Law Offices for help at 414-210-3135.
Many clients have questions regarding legal separation or even annulment as alternatives to a divorce.
Legal Separation of Marriage
If you and your spouse are uncertain about divorce, you may want to consider a legal separation. Sometimes a trial separation provides couples considering divorce time and space to decide whether a divorce is the right decision. For many, it is hard to imagine what life will be like after divorcing a spouse, so a legal separation may provide needed clarity.
If you are considering a separation of more than a few months, it is important to protect yourself financially. It is highly recommended that you consult with an experienced divorce lawyer to draft a legally binding separation agreement that spells out the terms under which you will live apart while still married. This may include issues such as:
- Provisions for spousal support
- Child support and child custody
- Property division while separated
- How expenses and debts will be paid
A legal separation agreement addressing these issues and more is absolutely in your best interests to avoid financial problems in the future should you divorce.
Keep in mind that even if one spouse hopes to reconcile the marriage, the other may have other intentions. Make sure that you gather financial documents from the marital home before you separate and consider closing joint accounts so you are not liable for debts accrued during the period of separation.
If the marriage is truly over, it is recommended that you convert your legal separation into a divorce. If you decide to remain married, you may dismiss the judgement of legal separation.
What about a Wisconsin Annulment of Marriage?
An annulment is different from a legal separation and a divorce as it is a determination by the court voiding the marriage as if it never existed. A marriage can be voided under certain circumstances such as:
- One or both of the parties to the marriage were already married at the time of the marriage
- Either you or your spouse or both were too young to be married
- You and your spouse are close blood relatives
- The influence of drugs or alcohol factored into getting married
- Mental incompetence
- Unable to consummate marriage
Contact an Experienced Waukesha Family Law Attorney for Help
An experienced divorce lawyer can help you determine if an annulment is possible in your unique circumstances. Whether you decide to divorce, obtain a legal separation or annulment, it is important to seek the help of a knowledgeable divorce attorney to protect your interests. Contact the Waukesha and Milwaukee area family law attorneys of Probst Law Offices, S.C., for answers at 414-210-3135.