Tampa Florida Family Law Blog

Considering the benefits of executing a prenuptial agreement

Although some Florida residents may dismiss prenuptial agreements as unnecessary, it is a good idea for anyone who is planning to get married to educate themselves on what prenuptial agreements can and cannot do for their financial interests. There are some considerations people may want to keep in mind to decide if a prenuptial agreement is right for them.

First, a person should look at their premarital wealth and property holdings. If a person plans to enter a marriage with substantial personal wealth and many valuable assets, they may wish to execute a prenup to formalize and document the property that is and will remain theirs in the event that their union ends in divorce. The same should be done with regard to premarital debts; a person who marries someone with substantial debts may not want any liability for those if the marriage fails.

Did your spouse commit marital waste?

It is extremely frustrating to deal with a financially irresponsible spouse. Reckless disregard for finances and property may reach heightened proportions when the marriage begins to unravel. If your spouse has been recklessly spending your money and misusing assets, is there anything you can do? The answer is yes, and this behavior is called marital waste.

Can a non-custodial parent abduct their own child?

Child custody disputes can be intense. While some parents are able to put their differences aside and make good choices about the health and welfare of their shared children, others cannot get past their disagreements with their former partners and, instead, take actions that may be detrimental to their kids. Parents in Florida can be accused of abducting their own children if their actions violate the custody and visitation agreements and orders that govern their family relations.

A case of parental abduction can have different legal ramifications. The matter may find its way into the criminal courts if the parent is charged with kidnapping. It is almost always also a civil matter, as parents may need to make significant changes to their operating custody orders and agreements to stop similar instances of abduction from happening again.

Why is my spouse claiming that our prenup is unfair?

A prenuptial agreement is a contract that two people enter into when they decide that they want to be married. As with all contracts, Florida residents who desire to create prenuptial agreements should ensure that their interests are represented and protected in their documents before they sign them and make them binding. Certain factors that may be present during the course of the creation of a prenup may, however, subject it to challenges of fairness should the partners to the couple later choose to divorce.

One way that a prenup may be deemed unfair is if one of the party's fails to disclose all of their assets to the other at the time the prenuptial agreement is drafted. A person who hides assets from their future spouses may be considered to be acting in bad faith and on this assertion their prenup may be deemed invalid by a court.

Understanding a parent's obligation to pay child support

Child support is an important obligation that exists between a parent and their child. In Florida, a parent may be required to pay child support if they do not have physical custody of their child. As has been discussed previously on this blog, physical custody concerns where a child lives and which parent is responsible for the child's day-to-day needs.

In the event that a child's parents separate or divorce, a court will need to determine where that child will end up living. If the court decides that the child will split time between the households of the parents, then neither parent may be required to pay support, as each will be responsible for their child's needs when the child is in their care. It is when one parent is given physical custody and the other parent is not involved in the daily maintenance of the child's needs that child support may become relevant.

Wealth does not prevent couples from seeking to divorce

It may be a common sentiment among our readers in Florida that having a little bit more money might make everything in life a little easier. With more money families might be able to enjoy more financial stability and take better vacations, parents could ease off of their jobs and enjoy a little down time and kids would not have to worry about how they will pay for college. Money seems to be the root of many benefits in life, but, according to new research, it may also be a root of conflict in marriages.

According to a recent survey, money was listed as the number one cause of stress in relationships, but not always because there was not enough of it to go around. Having different attitudes toward and uses for money caused much strain for marital couples, but this was the case whether the individuals were high income earners or earned less.

Parents can fight for legal custody of their children

Parents who are going through a divorce may not understand the difficult and sometimes confusing laws that apply to the custody of children. They may, for example, be somewhat familiar with the idea of physical custody and the need for separated or divorced parents to split their kids' time between their different households. However, they may not have a full appreciation for the importance of legal custody and the important rights in bestows on parents.

Unlike physical custody, which addresses where a child will live, legal custody has to do with how and by whom important decisions regarding the child may be made. If a parent has legal custody, then they may be involved in the process of deciding important matters about their child's upbringing. Failing to maintain legal custody of a child may force a parent out of the loop of input when it comes to deciding, for example, where a child will go to school or how they will be raised in a system of religion.

Could a prenuptial agreement hurt my interests?

Most individuals who choose to execute prenuptial agreements do so because they have compelling property or financial interests that they want to protect. In Florida, couples who wish to execute prenuptial agreements may do so and may see those documents enforced in the event that they later divorce. In some cases, they may find that the terms they agreed to prior to their marriages are no longer in their interests.

For example, some property that may otherwise be considered marital property during a divorce may be given to only one party if such a stipulation was included in the couple's prenuptial agreement. In a prenup, a person may agree to release any claims to the earnings or growth of their partner's business even if they, the releasing party, worked for and supported those goals. Generally, the contributions that a person makes to their partner's successes may make otherwise separate property marital property during a divorce.

When can you stop paying alimony?

Alimony is a legal obligation that can bind two people even after their divorce has been finalized. The duration of time that an alimony obligation will last in Florida will depend upon the type of alimony that is awarded by a couple's divorce court. Some forms of alimony have built-in timeframes and when they reach their stipulated ends the paying parties are freed from their obligations. Other forms of alimony, however, do not include these provisions.

For example, if a party to a divorce receives permanent alimony from their ex-spouse then that obligation will last for quite a long time. It may only end when the recipient passes away or elects to remarry. Conversely, a court may award durational alimony, which has a set end point, or lump sum alimony, which is paid only once in order to fulfill the paying spouse's obligation.

What happens if I want to relocate with my child post-divorce?

When you and your spouse divorce, you may wonder whether you have the ability to move away from Florida. Due to a new job or new opportunities for your child, you may wish to file a petition to relocate if you hold sole custody.

In Florida, you must follow specific steps to file an accurate petition to move. Your ex-spouse may agree to the changes or object to them, but a judge works to determine the best interest of your child when dealing with relocation. If you wish to move with your child, you may want to hire an experienced attorney to aid in bringing your petition to court.

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