DIVORCE

7560905 - closeup of legal divorce decree papers

The attorneys at Sejpal Law Firm, P.A. have a strong commitment to assist, counsel, and represent clients through the divorce process. We have completed many divorces including those involving alimony, marital home division, military family issues, and much more.

We understand that the divorce and/or separation often means that things seem out of control and financial issues, living situations, issues involving children and the like can be challenging. Getting through the deconstruction of a marriage and building for your future is a process that can be emotionally difficult and having an attorney on your side and at your side throughout the process can make the process a little easier to handle.

ISSUES THAT MAY ARISE IN YOUR DIVORCE:

ALIMONY

In a Florida divorce, alimony is a common component based on the fact that many households have one spouse that traditionally has been financially providing for the home more than the other spouse. While many households are two-income households, the earnings of the parties may be substantially different during the marriage. Also, there are households that still cling to the traditional set-up of one spouse working while the other spouse is a homemaker. The historical make-up of the marriage is considered by the courts in determining whether a spouse should be awarded alimony.

Florida lawmakers have not yet established an alimony calculation to rival that of other states. As such, determining an award of alimony in a Florida divorce is based on a subjective finding of a spouse’s financial need for alimony and the other’s ability to pay alimony. Other factors that are considered in determining an award of alimony are the length of the marriage, the contribution of each spouse during the marriage, the spouses educational backgrounds, work history, etc.
Florida alimony is based on a number of factors, but the type of alimony that may be awarded has been recently updated by the Florida legislature. Of course, as always, if the parties agree to more or less alimony then that they can sign a formal agreement that outlines their wishes. However, when parties cannot agree the Florida legislature has recently provided guidelines for determining which form of alimony may be awarded based on length of marriage: rehabilitative, bridge-the-gap, durational (set time), or permanent. The court may either award alimony in the form of periodic payments, a lump sum payment, or both.

DIVIDING MARITAL PROPERTY

When you marry in Florida, what you bring with you is considered non-marital, but almost everything purchased or accumulated during the marriage is considered marital property. The Florida divorce and family law courts are instructed by¬†Statute to equally divide marital assets and debts between the spouses. In most cases, the intent of the law is to give 50 percent to the Wife and 50 percent to the Husband. One party may take more debt, but also be given more in assets to equal it all out. The distribution of property can be challenging for spouses because there are items they may both want, or they may feel that what debt is in the other spouse’s name is that spouse’s debt. However, if it became debt during the marriage the name it is in does not typically mean that is where the debt will end up.

In some cases, the courts may deviate from the equal division of assets and debts, but there has to a substantial and proven reason why it should be unequally split. Equitable distribution may not seem fair to some individuals, but the fact remains that it was accumulated for the benefit of husband and wife and so it shall be divided equally.

CHILD SUPPORT, TIME-SHARING,PARENTING PLANS

The determination of child support is one of the most critical decisions made in a family law case.  As part of a divorce or a paternity action, a court determines the child support obligation of the non-custodial parent. Sometimes, the amount of child support that is ordered can be increased or decreased in the future in light of a change in circumstances. In Florida, child support is determined according to statutory guidelines.
Time-sharing and parenting plans are portions of a divorce that can be most difficult to work out between the spouses. We at Sejpal Law Firm, PA work with you, opposing counsel and the courts to obtain a resolution fair to all parties.