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Washington, DC, Family Law Blog

Are you and your ex-spouse good candidates for joint custody?

The decision to break up with your spouse is rarely a speedy one to make when children are involved. However, if you're in the throes of a toxic marriage, you might want to consider whether your children are better off if you and your spouse go your separate ways.

In the end, if you decide to follow through with your break-up plans, you'll need to determine how you and your spouse will share child custody. One growing trend is for parents to share joint physical custody.

Celebrity divorce ends in $10,000-plus per month support payments

One of the stars from Real Housewives of Orange County, Lizzie Rovsek, finalized a divorce settlement with her ex-husband Christian Rovsek to bring her $10,950 in monthly support payments. The former reality television personality signed the deal in December 2018.

Specifically, the support payments relate to $6,949 in alimony and $4,001 in child support to settle the divorce that the female TV star filed in October 2017.

A primer on physical and legal child custody

The arguments and emotions that come up during a child custody dispute are enough to deal with. Nevertheless, you will also need to understand various legal concepts if you're facing a situation like this.

At the most basic level, you'll need to familiarize yourself with the different types of child custody. There are two primary kinds of child custody: (1) Physical custody and (2) legal custody.

Follow these tips to effectively discuss a prenuptial agreement

Once you get engaged, you can expect to face a variety of important questions and decisions in the months to come. While you're sure to focus a lot of time and energy on your wedding, you need to look past this. For many, this means considering the creation of a prenuptial agreement.

In your mind, a prenuptial agreement is exactly what you want. You know this document can protect your assets in the event of a future divorce. You also know that asking your partner to sign a prenuptial agreement could result in a disagreement.

3 things to include in your premarital agreement

A premarital agreement is the kind of document no one wants to think about signing before they get married, but it's the document many wish they had signed in the event of a divorce. This is because divorces governed by prenuptial agreements tend to be faster, smoother and less stressful.

If you're planning to get married -- and you're thinking about drafting a prenuptial agreement -- here are four basic things you should include in the document.

5 signs that your marriage is coming to a close

If your marriage has been on the rocks for some time, you are probably well aware of this fact. However, there is a difference between having marital challenges and having a marriage that's ready for divorce.

In some cases, overcoming challenges brings us closer to our spouses. In other cases, the challenges are far too difficult to overcome. It's therefore important that spouses in conflict learn to understand some of the hallmark signs that divorce is imminent versus the typical marital challenges that all spouses face -- and eventually -- learn to resolve.

Prenuptial agreements are more popular than ever

According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), approximately 50 percent of lawyers surveyed have seen an uptick in requests for prenuptial agreements from millennials. The frequency of filing prenuptial agreements before marriage has increased five times during the last 20 years, and most of that increase is attributed to those between the ages of 18 and 34.

One of the reasons for the increase in prenuptial agreements is the fact that the youngest generation of adults is choosing to wait before getting married. This means that many of them have more accrued personal assets to protect.

You may have to establish paternity to gain custody of your kids

Not that long ago, it was very unusual for children to be born outside of wedlock in much of the country. That expectation has shifted drastically in the last generation. More people than ever before pursue long-term relationships without the commitment of marriage. Many couples choose to have children without marrying before conception or after the birth.

While there is certainly nothing wrong with this arrangement, it can create unique obstacles for fathers at the end of a relationship. If you are splitting up with the mother of your children but are not married, you may need to consider establishing paternity for your children.

What's the timeframe of the average divorce process?

Everyone wants to get their divorces over and done with as quickly as possible. What many spouses discover, however, is that the process takes longer than they thought. Just because your distant cousin — who was unemployed and didn't have any assets to his and his spouse's name — finalized his divorce in two months does not mean that you and your husband will finalize your marital break-up that quickly.

Ultimately, the length of your divorce will depend on the strategies you implement. Let's review some of the most common divorce strategies and how long they tend to take:

Is the 80-20 parenting schedule right for you?

Separated Washington, D.C., parents use a variety of strategies to divide their parenting time. Some opt for a 50-50 plan of time-sharing while others opt for a 60-40 or 80-20 plan. All of these plans are valid, but depending on your and your family's situation, one may be more appropriate than another.

Let's take a closer look at the 80-20 plan. For whom might this plan work best? In what kind of situations would this plan be applicable?

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