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8-year high asset divorce case complete

Florida residents may recall media coverage of a high-profile divorce between the wealthy founder of Cancer Treatment Centers of America and his wife of 26 years. The couple have been separated for 10 years, and have been negotiating the details of their high asset divorce case for the past eight years. Unable to reach a settlement outside of court, the couple finally achieved resolution through a legal proceeding.

The wife initially asked for $400,000 per month in spousal support. Her husband argued that $9,000 a month was a more reasonable payment. The court determined that she will receive $55,000 each month, which amounts to approximately $27,500 after taxes.

3 benefits of divorce mediation

A divorce is a stressful situation and can tear a family apart. However, many couples in Florida have discovered the benefits of mediation. Mediation is a collaborative effort where a couple works together to create their divorce settlement. It is a process of negotiation where each person can speak freely and where cooperation is highly coveted.

Divorce mediation can be used in any situation. Couples with high assets, children, complex financial situations and any other complication imaginable can use this approach. Each person still gets to work with an attorney, and the court can become involved at any point if the process stops working.

Altering alimony due to employment change

If there is one thing that Florida residents can be certain of, it is the fact that change is inevitable. This is true when it comes to personal relationships, and also to matters of employment. As part of a divorce, many people are tasked with making alimony payments. When an unexpected job change leads to a reduction in income, meeting that financial obligation can be a challenge.

One way to address this issue is to re-approach the court and ask for a reduction in alimony. Doing so can be challenging, and it is important to present a strong legal argument. Courts approach alimony very seriously, and it is not always easy to have those payments reduced.

Preparing for contentious property division negotiations

Bringing a marriage to a close is never an easy matter. Many Florida spouses are prepared for an unpleasant experience as they prepare to broach the subject of divorce. For some, however, their spouse's reaction far exceeds anything they could have imagined. When a divorce shows signs of being especially contentious, spouses must prepare for a rocky property division and child custody process.

There are some signs that indicate that a divorce may become more challenging than "normal." The first indication lies in how one spouse reacts to the initial news that divorce is on the horizon. Most people will experience sadness or regret when they realize their marriage is coming to an end. When a spouse immediately reacts with anger, there is a chance that anger could soon turn into a quest for vengeance. That can lead to significant trouble when trying to negotiate the terms of the divorce.

Dispute over pet-related property division issues

During the course of a Florida divorce, many couples find themselves at odds over matters pertaining to their pets. People often feel a close connection to the animals in their care, and are concerned about their ability to take their pets with them when a marriage comes to an end. In some cases, pets are specifically addressed during the property division process, and an agreement is reached concerning their care. One couple is currently fighting a legal battle over costs related to pet care.

When the couple divorced after six years of marriage, the husband agreed to pay his soon-to-be ex-wife $200 each month specifically for the care of their beloved English bulldog. In addition to that amount, the husband agreed to pay for all feeding costs and half of any veterinary bills required for the dog's care. In a recently filed lawsuit, the wife claims that her ex has failed to meet those obligations.

Marital settlement agreements and high asset divorce

When a Florida couple has achieved a significant degree of wealth, a great deal of effort is often placed in securing those assets from loss. That includes losses that occur during high asset divorce. Many a wealthy man or woman has watched his or her assets take a significant hit after a marriage fails. In some cases, those losses are sustained after only a few years of marriage, and when one party contributed far more to the base of marital wealth than the other.

Wealthy couples have numerous tools at their disposal to protect against financial losses. One such tool is known as a marital settlement agreement. This little-known legal document outlines a means through which one spouse provides financial support to the other while the couple remains married. While these agreements are often seen as a precursor to high asset divorce, that is not always the case.

Finding a happy medium in negotiating prenuptial agreements

Faced with a request for a prenup, some Florida residents will initially react by taking offense. Once the practicalities of prenuptial agreements are examined in closer detail, many people will come to see the benefits of having a carefully drafted prenup. One way to smooth ruffled feathers is to underscore the fact that the agreement is not a one-size-fits-all product, and entails a degree of negotiation. The final outcome should reflect the interests of both parties, not just one.

For example, a person who already has one or more children, and brings considerable assets into a marriage, may want to ensure that the bulk of those assets pass down to his or her children in the event of a divorce. Once that individual begins to talk about his or her concerns, however, it may become apparent that the real concern is protecting wealth if the marriage is short-lived. In cases where a marriage lasts for many years, few spouses truly wish to withhold assets from a spouse.

Considerations in choosing a divorce attorney

Navigating through a divorce is rarely easy, but you may find the process goes much more smoothly if you take time and care when selecting a family law attorney. Choosing the right attorney from the outset can help you save money, streamline the process and even salvage or improve the relationship between you and your soon-to-be-ex spouse. Therefore, it is important you take the task seriously and avoid making any hasty decisions.

To improve the chance you find the right attorney for your needs, consider taking the following steps:

The changing role of prenuptial agreements over time

When many Florida couples sit down to plan their wedding, they also consider what level of financial protection to include in the process. Prenuptial agreements are far more common now than they were in years past. In fact, the very concept of a marital contract is a relatively new thing, and is an issue that has only been widely accepted in the past 25 years or so. Over that span of time, the reasons leading individuals to consider a prenup have changed.

In the 1970s, when prenups began to be widely considered, the contracts were more about estate planning than anything else. Only those couples that had a sizeable difference in wealth were likely to enter a prenuptial agreement. Today, prenups are used by couples from all walks of life.

All spousal payments are not alimony under the law

When a Florida family goes through a divorce, ongoing payments are often made from one party to the other. Those payments are usually classified as either child support or alimony. It is important to understand, however, that there are instances in which payments may not fall under either category, making it hard for the paying party to claim them on his or her taxes.

In order for a payment to be considered alimony, it must meet certain requirements. To begin, the payments must be made after a divorce has been made final or a separation agreement or court order has been filed. The payments must be in cash (or through checks or money orders) and there can be no obligation to continue making payments after the recipient's death. Payments must also not be voluntary, meaning that they must be governed by an official order or agreement, and not just pass from one party to the other on an arbitrary basis.

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Fort Myers Family Law

Sheldon E. Finman, P.A.
2134 McGregor Boulevard
Fort Myers, FL 33901

Toll Free: 877-214-3207
Phone: 239-332-4543
Fax: 239-334-7828
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