16 January 2011 0 Comments

Costly mistakes made during a divorce settlement

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Divorce is very common in the United States and especially in California.  About 50% of all marriages end in divorce.  Unfortunately, in some cases, one of the individuals may end up with an unfair settlement and find that he or she is experiencing financial challenges later on. 

The following are mistakes that can be avoided if you have the guidance of an experienced California Family Law attorney at your side.  Keep in mind – 90% of all California divorce cases settle with a written Settlement Agreement.  The Agreement contains all the court orders and divorce decisions that the parties must follow.

Before preparing your Settlement Agreement, make sure the divorce petition and disclosure requirements is complete.  Do not sign an agreement prepared by your spouse without your attorney reviewing it first.  If you or your spouse is to receive spousal support, make sure the provisions are clear and detailed – showing when the payments will start and when they will end, and if they can be changed, etc.  Discuss the fact that the party who pays the support can use it as a tax deduction and the party who receives it, must report it as taxable income.  Insert a paragraph to deal with any future disputes that may arise – use a mediator or head back to court. 

Finally, have your Settlement Agreement notarized to make it official.  The Settlement Agreement is your written agreement containing all your divorce decisions and how to handle all issues.  Consult with an experienced and knowledgeable Family Law Attorney to make sure it is done correctly and to avoid any serious problems down the road.

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