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Connecticut Family Law Blog

Developing resilience in children of divorce

In order for children in Connecticut to better deal with the stresses of divorce, they need to come to the table armed with a skill set they have developed over time. Parents should work with their children from a young age to instill in them certain traits that will assist them in dealing not only with the stresses of divorce but also other challenges they will face throughout their lives. A well-known pediatrician and author compiled a list of seven "C" skills that he says are imperative to promoting resilience in children.

"Competence" and "confidence" in handling stressful situations are the first two characteristics that promote resilience in children. The third, "connection," refers to the idea that children who have strong family and community ties have a stronger foundation with more of a sense of belonging and accountability. This will help the child make better, more responsible decisions in his or her life.

How financial assets are divided in a Connecticut divorce

It is never easy to have to split your property with someone else, but some things are harder to walk away from than others. Leaving a home feels like walking away from memories, leaving a dog feels like losing a family member and being forced to spend time away from children can be just about unbearable. While it stings to have to divide financial assets, at least there is no emotional attachment to the money itself. If a Connecticut couple cannot come to an agreement on the division of their assets during their divorce, the court will do it for them.

Connecticut is an equitable division state. This means that all the assets are divided fairly, but not necessarily evenly, between the divorcing spouses. Instead, the courts treat each case separately and divide the property based on a variety of factors, including the length of marriage, financial and supportive contributions of each spouse, current and future incomes and the reasons for divorce.

Children's stress can be minimized in divorce

In Connecticut and elsewhere, divorce is almost always a source of stress. Even in the most amicable of divorces there are emotions that have to be settled. Lives are changed, plans are changed, dreams are changed and everything is changed, so emotions are completely normal. The two spouses getting divorced aren't the only ones who have an emotional investment in the situation; their children do, too. With some work and dedication, the emotional impact of divorce on the child can be minimized.

Divorce is especially emotional for children. Their lives are completely turned upside down, and they have absolutely no control over what is going on. Suddenly their parents live separately, they have to split their lives between two separate homes, and everyone acts differently than they always have. It is a very alienating and stressful time for them. By trying to minimize the changes the children encounter, the parents can help the children better adapt to their new lives.

How an increase in income can impact your child support

There are a lot of myths floating around regarding divorce, child custody and child support. One of the most pervasive is the idea that child support and custody arrangements are set in stone when the courts finalize a divorce.

What does not change after the end of a divorce, barring the discovery of hidden accounts or other extreme circumstances, is the property division decree. The Connecticut courts understand that life circumstances can change for your family.

Family Law: Why prenuptial agreements are important

Prenuptial agreements are becoming more and more common for the average American. Once thought to be only for the wealthy, prenups are now common in family law courts all across the country, including Connecticut. There are many benefits to having a prenup, and the rich and famous aren't the only ones with interests to protect.

Most people know that if one person has much more money going into the marriage than the other that a prenuptial agreement is usually recommended. Not only does it protect that individual, but it also can establish spousal support in the future for the other partner while the couple is on good terms. This could possibly result in a more promising outcome for that spouse should a divorce occur. In addition to dividing up assets, a prenup can also establish who will be responsible for debt. If one spouse has debt going into the marriage, a prenup can prevent the other spouse from getting stuck paying for those debts if the couple splits.

Millennials cause a decline in U.S. divorce rate

Millennials, with their seemingly very different take on nearly everything in life, get blamed for a lot. It seems like, in Connecticut and across the country, they are responsible for creating a larger culture shift than many of the prior generations. A recent study indicates that they have chosen yet another way to veer from the paths set by their parents and grandparents. Millennials may have actually helped to cause a decline in the U.S. divorce rate.

According to a recent study, the U.S. divorce rate declined a staggering 18 percent from 2008 to 2016. While there are a variety of factors that have contributed to this drastic drop, the lifestyle choices exhibited by many Millennials have played a significant role. Many Millennials have chosen not to marry at all, which directly impacts the divorce rate. If there is no marriage, there is no divorce. Unlike earlier generations, many Millennials don't view marriage as a required step prior to having children, so many are entering parenthood without feeling pressured to be married.

Can Connecticut fathers obtain child custody?

Navigating the divorce process can be a scary, lonely and confusing process. It is even scarier when a parent is unsure how the separation will affect his relationship with his children. Often, fathers assume that they don't have the same rights as mothers when it comes to child custody. In order to ensure they have the best chance of obtaining a favorable outcome in their child custody order, Connecticut fathers will want to know how the state courts determine child custody arrangements.

The first important fact to keep in mind for biological fathers interested in custody of their children is that, in Connecticut, once paternity is established, they have the same parental rights mothers have. If the father and mother were married, paternity is assumed. If the couple was never married, paternity may have to be established.

Family Law: Britney Spears to pay more child support

Celebrity divorces are often very different than the divorces of the rest of the population: assets are often much larger, and the public lifestyle causes special circumstances. The basic terms of their divorces are, however, the same terms that must be settled by all navigating the family law process. One of the most important terms that must be agreed upon, whether the couple is in California or Connecticut, is child support. Britney Spears and ex-husband, Kevin Federline, have just reached a settlement that will modify the terms of their child support agreement.

Spears and Federline were married for almost three years before divorcing in 2007. They had two children together. The couple reached a child support agreement at the time of their divorce, but recently Federline has sought a modification, asking for more money.

What qualifies as parental kidnapping?

Parents often disagree strongly about where children should live or whether or not it is good for a child to go on a certain trip. In some cases, one parent may actively prevent the other parent from spending court-ordered time with a child, which is a fairly serious violation that can lead to criminal charges.

Understanding parental kidnapping is not as simple as one might think. Whether some act qualifies as kidnapping may vary depending on the marital status of the parents and whether or not the parents have a court order outlining the time that each parent spends with the child. Needless to say, navigating this particular area is not always simple.

Child custody options in Connecticut

The most difficult decision parents going through divorce face is determining the custody arrangement for their children. Houses can be sold, cars can be replaced, new marriages may follow, but the children are irreplaceable. Parents need to know what their options are before they can make the best decision for their children. There are several different child custody options utilized in Connecticut.

The first thing to remember when exploring the different child custody options is that the court has to make the final decision, and the court will do whatever it feels is in the best interest of the children. Normally, courts feel it is best if both parents are still significantly involved in the child's life. This type of arrangement is called joint custody and is broken down into two parts: legal custody and physical custody. In joint custody both parents will have some percentage of time spent with the child and some level of control over the major decisions in the child's life. The court will determine these percentages if the parents cannot come to an agreement about it on their own.

We Listen, We Help, We Care

  • Thank you Jennifer for handling my divorce. Everything is going well. Get to spend lots of time so far with my boys that makes me happy. Thanks to you again; I wish you and your firm lots of success from this day forward. All the best.
  • Wendy helped guide us through a very difficult and emotional process and was really able to provide an even and fair account for both parties. It's quite evident in her expertise in this area but the way she was able to make you feel safe and secure in a very insecure time goes far beyond her legal prowess. If the two parties are really willing to cooperate and collaborate, she's there to help gain the best possible solution for all involved, especially if there are children.
  • Regardless of how committed one is to the fact that divorce may be imminent and necessary, it is truly one of the most emotional and stressful situations one can experience. It can also be daunting. Wendy has a remarkable ability to cut through the noise and help you focus on the big picture while drilling down on what is most pertinent to your particular situation., they are a formidable team who work collectively with your best interests in mind.
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