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Annapolis Divorce Law Blog

Determine whether you need a qualified domestic relations order

If you were married to a spouse who receives, or will receive, retirement benefits, you are likely entitled to at least a portion of those benefits in a divorce. However, in order for the plan administrator to recognize you as an alternate payee, you will need to obtain a qualified domestic relations order.

Known as a QDRO, this is the decree, order or judgment required by retirement plans to pay you your share of the benefits of their plan participant. There is very specific information that must be present in the QDRO, namely:

6 good reasons to try co-parenting

It's an unfortunate fact of life that couples grow apart and marriages end in divorce. Sometimes the traits that once seemed the most endearing at the first blush of romance become the most grating in the final throes of the relationship.

However, as annoying as your spouse may be, the fact that the two of you are divorcing doesn't by default make him or her a bad parent. When it comes to settling custody matters, it's often best to achieve detente and learn to co-parent effectively.

Military divorces are particularly complex

Divorce is always disruptive, but for military couples, it presents even more challenges to already stressful situations. Against backgrounds of deployments, actual battlegrounds, post-traumatic stress diagnoses and the intricacies of military life, a divorce can become a true hardship in the lives of those who serve our country.

For service members on active duty, there are often young children involved, so settling custody issues becomes paramount for the spouses. The spouse who is deployed may not have had the opportunity to spend extended time with his or her children, creating barriers to custodial arrangements.

Do biological parents have the upper hand in gay divorces?

Gay couples have come far in their fight for equality, having been granted the right to legally marry — and subsequently divorce — same-sex spouses. But when children are involved that are biologically linked to only one of the spouses, is justice skewed in favor of that parent?

Some divorcing gay and lesbian spouses feel that way. Despite the strides that gay couples have made in recent years toward equality, non-biologically related parents still have fewer legal protections over their rights to remain viable presences in their children's lives.

Are holiday custody arrangements stressing you out?

Families ruptured by divorce often struggle mightily during the holiday season with hurt feelings over child custody matters. Especially if this will be the first post-divorce holiday season for you, your ex and the kids, it's quite common to be frustrated at not having your children with you during the entire holiday celebration.

Some couples agree to allow the kids to spend a portion of the day with each parent. For instance, dad could have the kids the night before Thanksgiving and bring them over to Grandma's house for a hearty midday meal. Dad could then return them in time for a late supper with Mom and all of her extended family members.

Relocation may cause custody concerns in Maryland

Having children can be a considerable change in a person's life, but after the kids are born, the changes likely do not stop there. Many parents may later find themselves facing divorce, and as a result, custody issues could be a new area with which they must contend. If divorced Maryland parents are considering moving, they may wonder how relocation could affect their custody agreements.

One woman in another state is currently facing such concerns. It was reported that she is planning on remarrying and moving out of her current state. She has primary custody of her children, while the kids' father has custody every other weekend and one night a week in other weeks. She stated that her ex-husband does not want to agree to the move and also claims that her fiance is a danger to the children.

Property division could face complications in Maryland

The legal proceedings that individuals will likely go through when ending their marriages can often be complicated affairs. In many cases, property division is among the most contentious processes as many Maryland residents and individuals across the country work to ensure that they are getting their fair share. If parties are dealing with particularly complex assets and division, they may wish to seek assistance. 

One man in another state is currently dealing with questions regarding property division. Reports stated that the man had been wrongfully incarcerated, and while in jail, he met a woman and got married. He was later released after being exonerated, and after pursuing various lawsuits pertaining to his incarceration, he achieved a $20 million settlement. However, he and his wife are now getting divorced, and the woman believes she should have some claim to that settlement.

Mediation may be viable option for Maryland divorce cases

Many individuals who have decided to end their marriages may feel apprehensive about the legal proceedings involved. Luckily, divorce does not necessarily have to lead to complicated litigation. Many divorcing Maryland residents may be able to utilize mediation as a less intimidating process. Both individuals involved could express their wishes, and a mediator could assist in negotiations.

Individuals with children may also find mediation to be an agreeable process as it may lead to less stress for everyone involved. Rather than having children caught in the middle of tense court proceedings or having to deal with overly stressed parents, civil negotiations could lead to a calmer environment as the marriage dissolves. Parents could also discuss their custody desires and come to terms during their mediation proceedings. 

Divorce impacts may worry Maryland residents

The process of ending of a marriage affects everyone differently. The outcomes could have emotional and financial impacts that individuals must deal with for a considerable amount of time. Therefore, Maryland residents going through divorce may want to ensure that they understand what goals they would like to work toward and how to take action in hopes of achieving them.

Financially speaking, divorce can be costly. The outcomes for alimony, child support and property division can all leave individuals facing very different financial situations after the separation than before. Therefore, individuals should be open to negotiating in an amicable manner in hopes of taking less time to come to terms and in an effort to make those terms as agreeable as possible. 

Glen Rice achieves child support modifications

Having a child is a substantial responsibility, and some parents may face varying circumstances when it comes to the care for their child. Divorced parents or parents who were never married often have to contend with custody and child support agreements that other parents may not have to worry about. Though these arrangements are often made with the best interests of the children in mind, the parents can sometimes struggle. 

Maryland residents may be interested in a case concerning Glen Rice, a former NBA player. Reports stated that in 2010, Rice was part of a paternity case due to having a child out of wedlock. The case ended with Rice being required to pay the child's mother $1,500 a month in child support. 

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