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Federal Way Divorce Law Blog

Key points of the Washington relocation law

You want to provide the best possible life for your children. What do you do when that requires you to move your child away from your ex-spouse? You may have a custody dispute on your hands.

Should you have to defend your decision to move, the state of Washington's relocation law governs the proceedings. There are a few key points of the Washington relocation law you should be aware of.

Defining separate property in Washington divorces

Washington is a community property state, which means the general approach to dividing marital assets is splitting them down the middle. Separate property, however, can escape the division process.

Especially for high-asset couples, establishing the boundaries between separate and community property can make a difference when it comes to division. Understanding the basic principles of how separate property works can help you protect yourself financially.

Things to consider about custody when relocating after divorce

Whether your divorce is final or you are in the middle of your divorce proceedings, deciding to relocate can have a strong impact on your custodial agreement. Especially if you are the custodial parent, there may be certain hurdles that you will have to overcome. Here are a few things to consider before proceeding with your relocation case.

If you have an amicable relationship with your ex-spouse, then you may seek to come up with a resolution between the two of you, either by yourselves or with your attorneys. In that case, once you have come to an agreement, you will need to complete the proper forms and have them approved by the courts. However, if you cannot reach such a decision together, you may need to prepare yourself to appear in family court.

Staying in contact with your children from a distance

If you are having to relocate following a divorce, it can be difficult to imagine living hundreds or even thousands of miles away from your children. Technology makes it easier to keep up with your kids these days, but you will have to make an effort. You cannot put the burden on your children to reach out to you. 

Children need both parents involved in their lives. The research clearly demonstrates that children who are engaged with both parents tend to do better in school, have better coping skills and keep away from drugs and alcohol.   

Why Mediation Should Be Considered for a High Asset Divorce

You have now decided to broach the topic of divorce. You and your spouse are in the process of separating and you are trying to determine your next steps. Understandably, there are many questions that are running through your head at this point. Where will I live? How will this impact my retirement? When will this all be finalized? How will this all be determined? These are all issues that can be complicated further when either spouse in a divorce has significant assets. One solution to an amicable and efficient high asset divorce is mediation.

Why an Attorney is Especially Important in a High Asset Divorce

Getting the finances right is important in any divorce settlement, but in cases where there is a lot of money at stake, doing so becomes more complex. When high asset divorce happens in Washington State, the court decides how to divide up marital property in an equitable way -- equitable, meaning fair and equal, not necessarily 50/50, and they will also look at what assets should be considered separate property that the other spouse should not hold a legal claim to.

Determining Child Support in a High Net Worth Divorce

When a wealthy couple splits, it presents many complex issues. The existence of children further complicates matters. Unlike other couples, whose assets and incomes may be minimal, high net worth parents often spend vast sums on their children's upbringing and education. Other financial issues may include sharing responsibility for tuition at a private school, setting up trust accounts or managed bank accounts, and contributions over time to special accounts for college education.

If the couple will live in different states or countries, special issues may arise involving regular contact by Skype, Face Time, or other providers. Scheduling visitations and passports may also present an issue after the divorce if they are not addressed in the final court orders. Finally, there are sometimes extremely sensitive issues like paternity of children which wealthy parents may wish to shield from the public record. All of these issues can be handled with discretion and expertise by the attorneys and staff at Clement Law Center. We would be pleased to protect the interests of you and your children, and can offer you excellent advice and representation in and out of court.

High Asset Divorce: Dividing Property in Washington State

Washington is a community property state. What does this mean exactly? In general, this means that each spouse receives fifty percent of all property (debts and liabilities) acquired during the marriage. However, you may not receive exactly fifty percent of property in a divorce, depending on the circumstances. And, you may be able to keep some property that is deemed "non marital." If at all possible, it's best to divide the property through divorce negotiations, else you may not get what you want if a court has to divide the property.

Preparing For Divorce Without Tipping Off Your Spouse

When a marriage is about to be over, both spouses usually have some ability to see the writing on the wall before one of them actually says the word "divorce" or simply has papers served. But whether there is a vague sense of an upcoming breakup or not, moving on requires a certain amount of preparation in order to be able to move on successfully. The more time you are able to spend making preparations the better, because it's likely you will be able to be more subtle and be better prepared as you walk away.

Failure to Comply With Child Support Orders Can Affect Professional Lives

When a person ordered to pay child support in Washington fails to comply with that order, it can have serious implications for their professional lives. Child support enforcement is based on both federal and state laws, with a range of options available to enforcement agencies to compel people to make payments.

In Washington State, failure to pay child support can result in the suspension of a driver's license. In addition, unpaid child support arrears can be automatically deducted from a federal income tax refund. Wages and bank accounts can be garnished. Arrears can also be entered as a court judgment, which is an automatic lien on real estate, and can profoundly affect credit ratings. For certain professionals and military servicemembers, unpaid child support can adversely affect employment, promotion, background checks and security clearances. Sometimes technical errors or mistakes in data entries can unfairly create or inflate the total amount due. Whether people own their own businesses or serve in an important capacity, they should seek the help of a lawyer immediately if they foresee an inability to make payments. Payment plans or the correction of errors can often be accomplished through negotiations or court proceedings. Failure to do so can result in financial and professional problems that only exacerbate whatever other issues people are already facing.