Tampa Divorce Lawyer

For many people, the word “divorce” conjures up images of a husband and wife waging war against each other. It may also include fighting over who will get custody of the children, the house, and even the family dog. However, divorce does not always have to be so acrimonious, as many couples have found who chose collaborative law instead of traditional litigation. A divorce lawyer in Tampa FL can provide you with more information specific to your unique situation. How To Tell Your Kids You’re Getting Divorced?

At The McKinney Law Group, Damien McKinney has extensive legal expertise and experience in all aspects of state family law issues. He has helped many families resolve issues that include divorce, child custody and support, prenuptial agreements, and adoptions. More and more he has found an increasing number of divorcing couples want to avoid the traditional, adversarial divorce litigation. Indeed, many more people are choosing collaborative divorce as a solution. If you would like to find out if the collaborative process will work in your situation, contact our office to learn more from a divorce lawyer Tampa FL respects. Damien McKinney will be happy to offer you a free consultation.

How does collaborative law work?

In collaborative law, couples mutually decide how all issues will be settled within the parameters of a dispute resolution process. The couple, along with a team of professionals, have complete control over how their marriage will end. They make the final decisions regarding child custody, asset and property divisions, and whatever other issues each individual couple may have to settle.
Not only does the couple maintain control over the process, but the collaborative process also teaches them how to work together – an ability that may have been lost as their marriage disintegrated. Being able to work together is especially important for divorcing couples who have children as it can allow them to more effectively co-parent.

Just like traditional litigation, each of the parties should retain their own Tampa FL divorce lawyer. However, unlike traditional litigation, it does not usually become an adversarial situation. For example, another member of the collaborative team might include a mental health professional to help each of the parties work through any emotional issues that may hinder the process.

For couples with children, a mental health professional who specializes in children’s issues can also be helpful. Another team member to consider is a financial professional to help sort through the joint financial assets and debts.

Although the collaborative law process has many advantages over traditional litigated divorce, it does require a strong commitment on the part of both spouses in order to be effective. Both spouses must be willing to communicate with the other – and not let their Tampa FL divorce lawyer do all of the talking. They must also be committed to providing the other with all pertinent documents and information since, unlike traditional divorce, there is no formal discovery options which requires each party to do so.

How are property assets divided in a divorce?

A divorce can be one of the most stressful periods of a person’s life. Issues regarding child custody, child support, alimony, and the division of assets are almost certain to bring forth heated emotions and disputes. With regards to the division of property, you might wonder how all of the assets acquired over the course of your marriage can be equally divided. What happens when high value assets are involved, and who will get what?

At The McKinney Law Group, our divorce lawyers excel in property division. We may help you to create a plan that divides assets equally between both spouses.

What You Should Know About Asset Division Pending a Divorce

In Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin, any asset acquired during a marriage is generally considered to be community property and will be divided equally between both spouses.  A divorce lawyer will also consider an increase in value on any asset, retirement accounts, and so forth. The exception to this rule includes gifts and inheritances.
The remaining states use a system based on equitable distribution. This means any assets and earnings that have been accumulated during a marriage will be equitably divided. This does not necessarily mean equally. It is possible that some judges will order one party to use their separate property to make the settlement fair.

Divorces involving high-valued assets, businesses, professional licenses, multiple real estate properties, and other major financial matters have the potential of inducing conflict between the spouses. A high-profile divorce of this nature should be handled with precision, care, and knowledge. If you’re involved in a high net worth divorce, it is advisable to turn to a Tampa FL divorce lawyer from The McKinney Law Group to ensure your rights are protected.

Community Vs. Non Community Property

The following are general rules that help to determine what is community property and what is not:

Community Property – This includes all earnings during a marriage and anything acquired with those earnings. Debts accumulated during the marriage are also community property. The exception to this may be when the creditor wishes to separate the property of one spouse to recover payment.

Non-Community Property – Also known as separate property, this includes gifts or inheritances that have been given to one spouse. Proceeds of a pension vested before marriage, a personal injury award, property purchased with separate funds, a business owned by one spouse before the marriage, or items owned by one spouse before the marriage may be considered non-community property. If separate property is commingled with community property, it may be ruled as community property. For example, if one spouse owned a house prior to getting married, but then lived in it with their spouse and children, it could be community property.

Purchasing Assets with Community Money and Seperate Money – When any asset, particularly a high value asset, is purchased with both community and separate money, it is generally considered to be community property.

Equitable Distribution – Each spouse may be given  a percentage of the total value of all assets, personal property, and debts.
It should be noted that what is considered to be “fair or equal” distribution is largely up to the presiding judge and other circumstantial factors. To learn more about property division during a divorce, please call a divorce lawyer in Tampa FL.

Let an Experienced Tampa FL Divorce Lawyer Help

If you and your spouse have decided to divorce and you think the collaborative law process may be an option, contact The McKinney Law Group to set up a free consultation. We can also assist you with any other family law issues you may have. Call an experienced Tampa FL divorce lawyertoday and request your free consultation with Damien McKinney.