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Is your marriage on the skids in the new year?

It seems like there's a month designated for almost everything imaginable these days. Welcome to "Divorce Month," the appellation given to January.

This month actually is the time when unhappy couples begin to survey their options, visiting attorney websites and doing some legal research on their own before actually taking the plunge and filing a petition for divorce. That action tends to peak more at the end of March, presumably when the hard decisions have been made and action is taken.

What makes the first quarter of the year especially ripe for uncoupling? Family law attorneys surmise that the decisions are not really all that fresh, but that couples — especially those with children — decided to hold off until the holidays had passed before moving forward with any actions.

Then there are the financial repercussions. Staying together through the end of the year can provide both spouses with needed tax benefits and for some couples, the right to claim their portion of their partner's year-end or holiday cash bonuses. Some may even need to use these windfalls to finance their divorce and child custody battles.

Still others may have barely gotten through the holidays with their spouses and find themselves in the new year contemplating their freedom like a caged animal from inside of a zoo. They can no longer go through the motions or contain their discontent with the state of their loveless marriages.

If you and your spouse fall into one of the above categories, make sure that any decisions you make about ending your marriage are well-informed. A Massachusetts family law attorney can answer any questions you may have and prepare you for the process ahead.

Source: CNN, "In January, 'ex' marks the spot," Sarah LeTrent, Jan. 09, 2017

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