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November 2014 Archives

Division of marital assets doesn't have to be equal

Since Massachusetts is not a community property state, divorcing couples may be surprised to learn that marital assets do not need to be divided equally, just equitably. Couples seeking divorces should try to work out a division of marital property first. If they cannot work out a property settlement, the courts will do it for them.

Can I pay alimony in a lump sum?

Divorces in West Springfield sometimes involve a spouse being ordered to pay the other spouse alimony, also referred to as spousal support. Even if the payer spouse has come to terms with the agreement, sending a check to their former spouse every month could be an unpleasant reminder of a failed marriage.

Grandparent rights in Massachusetts

There are some situations that can occur that may prompt grandparents to seek visitation rights for a grandchild. The law in Massachusetts allows grandparents to seek them if certain circumstances apply. In making its decision, a court will only grant grandparent visitation rights in the event that doing so is in the child's best interests.

Complex property division in Massachusetts

One of the most complex aspects of a divorce is the division of property. Married couples may have multiple liabilities and assets such as taxes, bankruptcy, insurance policies, family business, annuities, stocks, profit-sharing, pension plans, military benefits and retirement benefits. In divorce, all of these assets and liabilities will need to be accounted for and divided. However, this does not necessarily mean that each asset will be divided in half. Rather, a value will be assigned to each asset, then all assets and liabilities will be totaled to come up with a value for the marital assets. Then the property will be divided. For example, one spouse may keep the house, while another keeps a retirement account of similar value.

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Johnson, Sclafani & Moriarty, Attorneys at Law
776 Westfield Street
West Springfield, MA 01089

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