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Kentucky And Indiana Law Blog

Steps to take after a divorce has been finalized

Kentucky residents who have recently finalized their divorce may feel a sense of relief. Despite wanting to get on with their new life, they need to properly divide up assets and take other steps in a timely fashion. Even though the divorce decree may be in their hands, there are still tasks to be accomplished.

All joints accounts will need to be split. If necessary, names will need to be removed from some accounts. Joint accounts may need to be closed, and then individual accounts can be opened. All non-retirement assets, like brokerage accounts or bank accounts, will need to be retitled.

Courts shifting more toward joint custody

The landscape for parents in Kentucky who get a divorce has changed significantly over the past several decades. While many divorced fathers in the past may have rarely seen their children afterwards, courts today are open to the possibility of joint physical custody. Legal custody, which is usually shared, refers to which parent has the right to make decisions about a child's education, medical care, religion and other major issues while physical custody refers to with whom the child lives.

According to one family law professor, the soaring divorce rate of the baby boomers reflected a surge in couples marrying younger in the 1950s and 1960s, often when the mother was pregnant. Within the legal system, there was also a realization that restrictive divorce laws were not practical. In 1980, the sole physical custody rate for single mothers was 80 percent. As women began to enter the workforce in larger numbers and fathers took a larger role in the lives of their children, this number dropped, and by 2008, it was 42 percent. Equal physical custody rose to 27 percent from 5 percent.

Going through a divorce as a business owner

For estranged Kentucky couples with a family business, the divorce process can include additional complications. It is often associated with legal, financial, and practical entanglements as well as the emotional concerns. However, for spouses that own a family business, especially one of significant value or major personal attachment, it can carry additional challenges. Dividing the family business can be particularly complex when it is the most valuable asset owned by the couple.

In order to commence negotiations on a business as part of a divorce, each spouse should consider how they want to deal with the company going forward. This can form a clear basis for negotiating the next steps to come. In some cases, one spouse will keep the business and buy out the other. This may be accomplished simply by giving up a greater share of other marital property like investment accounts, retirement funds, or the family home. When the value of the business far outstrips these other assets, however, the couple can conclude an agreement for gradual payments over time.

Learning about DUI penalties may help you avoid them

The state of Kentucky is serious about keeping drunk drivers off the road; consequently, the penalties for DUI are harsh.

Whether there is already a conviction on your record, or you have never experienced an arrest for drunk driving, a review of the penalties in this state may help you steer clear of a DUI charge.

Preparing for a divorce often leads to a better outcome

Ex-spouses in Kentucky know that many things can affect the outcome of a divorce. However, preparing for the process by getting organized can lead to the most favorable results possible. The following steps can help individuals to prepare for an upcoming divorce.

The first step is to take inventory. This could involve creating a checklist of accounts and assets as well as all of the documents related to them. Examples include bank statements, property inventory, balance sheets related to personal finance, insurance policies and credit card statements. When a spouse has all of this information gathered, they will save money and time when they begin their divorce proceedings.

Getting a divorce is more expensive than many think

Individuals in Kentucky going through the divorce process know that getting a divorce is never an easy thing. When a couple decides to end their marriage, they can face emotional distress and societal pressures. There are also legal fees and other expenses that add to the challenge of getting a divorce. When a couple plans ahead, there are steps they can take to save money on their divorce.

The average cost across the United States to go through the divorce process is around $15,000 per person. This includes the money spent on attorneys, fees required by the court, the cost of hiring outside financial experts, the cost of using experts to evaluate child custody cases and paying an appraiser to determine the value of a home or other property that is being sold.

Claiming dependents after a divorce

For many Kentucky residents, claiming dependents on their tax returns is not likely to present any issues. However, in situations in which multiple people are claiming the same dependents, such as when separated or divorced parents both claim their children, the process can become complicated, requiring the Internal Revenue Service to step in and closely examine the returns to make a decision regarding which of the claims should be accepted.

Parents who are able to claim their children as dependents may find that doing so may have a positive effect on their taxes. They may be able to file as the head of their household. They may also be able to claim certain tax credits, including the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, the Child Tax Credit and the Earned Income Credit.

How social media can impact a divorce case

Social media is a tool that most people use or have some sort of exposure to. Therefore, it can have a profound impact on divorce cases. According to Web Preserver, 81 percent of attorneys found evidence on social media that they could use in court. Furthermore, roughly one-third of legal action that occurs in a divorce happens because of affairs that take place online.

Generally speaking, most items posted on social media in the United States can be used as evidence in a divorce case. However, it is important that the content is obtained legally. For instance, it is illegal to hack into another person's social media account or create a fake profile in an effort to obtain information. This is true for both a former spouse or an attorney hired to represent that person. However, anything that is posted for the public to see can be used against an individual.

How to set up a business so that it is protected in a divorce

Business owners in Kentucky should pay a spouse who works for the company market rates and should avoid using marital funds to pay for any business-related expenses. Failing to do either of these can result in a spouse being able to claim a larger share of the business if the couple gets a divorce.

Some business owners may want to get a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement. This can take one of several different approaches. To avoid having to valuate and divide the business in a divorce, the agreement can state that the business is separate property. However, some couples may prefer an agreement that names a percentage of the company's value to which the other spouse is entitled. Finally, if both are owners, they may want to arrange for one to sell to the other or to even keep the business going.

Divorcing in 2019? Know these new tax laws

While divorcing at any time impacts the manner in which you must file your taxes, those who divorce in 2019 or after face additional tax considerations as a result of recent law changes. Some of the new tax laws that recently took effect can have a substantial impact on how much you pay and how much you can expect to get back when you file. Therefore, the more you understand about the new tax laws and how they may you affect you after you divorce, the less likely you are to get an unpleasant surprise, come tax time.

So, just how could new tax laws affect you when you divorce in 2019 or beyond?