The decision to seek a divorce is one of the most difficult decisions a person will make in his or her lifetime. Many people, when they get married, believe the spouse they married will remain their spouse until death. When the marriage falls apart, the effects of the divorce are felt strongly by the other spouse and the children of the marriage.
The divorce can be amicable, meaning that the parties agree to divorce and decide all issues of the divorce including alimony, child custody and support, and the division of marital assets or contentious meaning no agreement on any of the issues requiring court intervention to resolve.
This post will only review options for obtaining a civil divorce in Southeastern Alabama. For information about obtaining a religious divorce contact your rabbi, priest, pastor, or other spiritual leader for guidance.
Alimony actions seek to declare the marriage null and void; divorce actions dissolve the marriage.
Alabama is an equitable distribution state meaning the assets and liabilities of the parties upon dissolution of the marriage are divided fairly and equitably. The spouses keep any separate property they owned prior to entering the marriage and split marital assets equitably. Considerations of alimony, or maintenance to one of the spouse, are also decided using this fair and equitable standard. Factors like length of marriage and the contributions of the spouses to the overall financial status of the family, among others are evaluated to make a final determination.
Parties can agree to joint and separate legal custody and visitation arrangements for the minor children of the marriage. When there is no agreement, the court will apply the best interest of child standard found in Ex. Parte: Devine v. Devine (1981).
Child support is based on the Income Shares Model meaning both parents are required to support their children pursuant to their means with the non-custodial parent making the payment to the custodial spouse directly or by income execution order.
If you are contemplating filing for divorce in Southeastern Alabama, including the city of Birmingham, or you have been served with divorce papers by your spouse, you should consult a divorce lawyer to understand your rights and responsibilities as you legally end your marriage.
Massey, Stotser & Nichols, PC is a full service, Birmingham, Alabama law firm that serves clients in the cities of Birmingham, Alabaster, Ashville, Bessemer, Clay, Fultondale, Gardendale, Homewood, Hoover, Leeds, Moody, Mountain Brook, Oneonta, Pelham, Pell City, Pinson, Springville, Trussville, and the surrounding areas. Visit our website at msnattorneys.com for more information about our business law, family law, and accident and injury law practice groups.