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Monterey California Family Law Blog

Falling out of love may be the most common reason for divorce

Much has been written in California and around the country about the reasons for divorce, and financial troubles and arguments about money are often portrayed as the chief culprits. However, the results of a recent study conducted by a team of Danish researchers suggest that emotional and not financial problems are more likely to prompt spouses to end their marriages. A survey of 2,371 people who had recently been through a divorce revealed that the most common reasons for taking action all stemmed from an absence of emotional fulfillment.

The most frequently-cited motivation for ending a marriage was falling out of love. Almost half of the respondents told the researchers that they decided to seek a divorce after they realized that they no longer had feelings for their husbands or wives. This response was especially common among spouses who had been married for a decade or longer. Communication problems were the second most commonly reason given for ending a marriage with 44% of the people surveyed saying that they no longer talked meaningfully with their spouses.

Divorce, social media and privacy issues

In California and across the United States, many people find it difficult to conduct their daily affairs without using social media. Couples considering divorce often have social media accounts. Whether the account is located on Facebook, Twitter or an alternative website, people in the process of getting divorced should pay attention to what they post. According to a recent study conducted by Boston University, people with active social media accounts may unwittingly endanger their marriages. In some mysterious way, marriage, divorce and social media have intricate connections.

Active social media participants should avoid posting derogatory comments about their separated marital partners. Venting is best left to confiding in professionals on a face-to-face basis rather than via online platforms. People headed for divorce need to remember that their online comments could backfire during legal proceedings. Consequently, setting profiles and accounts to privacy mode is a wise thing to do during the waiting period before obtaining a divorce. Social media account holders should take the time to weed through their published posts and remove those with negative tones about their spouses.

Prenups often recommended for remarrying couples

Many people in California who decide to marry have been married at least once before in the past. Statistics indicate that around 40% of all marriages include people who are remarrying. As financial issues can be one of the most common contributors to divorce, people planning on remarriage may wish to learn lessons from their earlier relationships.

Remarriage is especially common among people later in life. Among people aged 55 to 64 who were married in the past, 66% have chosen to remarry. This marks a significant upswing in those numbers, which stood at 50% half a century before.

Planning for a divorce before filing

California couples may be interested to learn that divorce filings increase during the summer months. This can be due to a number of reasons, including added stress to the marriage due to the kids being home and summer vacation planning. If the marriage is already on the rocks, spending more time together can actually exacerbate the issues and lead to a divorce.

If a spouse is considering divorce, it is advantageous to start planning for a divorce months before it is actually time to file. Individuals planning to divorce should take the time to get their finances in order, gather all essential documents and even determine if he or she is on the title of the house. In some cases, a person should even consider gathering phone records and banking or credit card statements. Talking to a family law attorney may also give a person some idea of what the general outcome of a divorce may be, eliminating some of the stress a person may be experiencing.

Divorce and student loan debt in California

Many California residents are struggling with a significant student loan debt burden. The cost of higher education has risen dramatically in recent decades, as have student loan obligations. When people decide to divorce, they may be particularly concerned with the financial implications, especially as they can have long-term consequences that linger on for years after the end of a marriage. When student loans are a major burden, both parties may be wondering how this debt will be divided.

In general, most people who already had their student loan debts before marriage will remain responsible for the loans after divorce as well. The obligation will remain a separate debt belonging to the spouse who studied. However, the situation can vary greatly for student loans acquired during the marriage. As California is a community property state, all debt accumulated during the marriage is generally considered marital debt to be divided equally between the spouses in divorce. However, there is an exception in state law that governs the treatment of student loans.

Before moving in, consider signing a cohabitation agreement

Moving in with your significant other can be a big step for your relationship. Although cohabitation before marriage, or without the intention of marriage, has become a common occurrence, it is not a step to take lightly.

Before agreeing to move in with your significant other, be sure that you each understand the other’s expectations and goals for the move. It may make sense to talk about each person’s financial situation, hash out who will pay what monthly expenses and determine who will complete which household responsibilities. However, one of the most important things to do before moving in together can be signing a cohabitation agreement.

Handling co-parenting issues during the summer

Divorcing parents in California may face a tough transition to co-parenting. When both parents are heavily involved in their children's lives, they may find it difficult to only spend a portion of their time with their children in their homes. However, developing a relatively positive co-parenting climate can also be important to supporting their children's mental and emotional health, and many parents strive to do so. The summer months can add some additional stress, however, as the set schedule of school gives way to more unstructured time, vacation plans and other warm-weather activities.

There are several tips that parents can keep in mind to help them adjust to co-parenting together after divorce during the summer months. Communication is important at any time of year, but this is especially true for special plans over the summer months. When one parent can discuss vacations and other activities with the other parent long in advance, it can help both to create a schedule that works for the children and the parents. In addition, as plans are prone to change, a shared online calendar posted in both homes can help everyone to keep track of key events and activities, avoiding cross-scheduling and the disputes that it can produce.

Student loans may put stress on a marriage

The average student loan balance around the country is more than $34,000. This can have an impact on whether or not a person's marriage is successful. Student loan payments may make it difficult to actually have a wedding, buy a home or start a family. Ideally, California residents who have student loan debt will talk about it with their partner prior to getting married. Doing so can help a couple account for it in a variety of different ways.

For instance, it may be possible to create a prenuptial agreement that states that the debt is the responsibility of whoever accrued it. Furthermore, it may be possible for a spouse who helps pay off a debt to ask for reimbursement in the event that the couple divorces. A prenuptial agreement can also be used to determine how assets should be divided in the event of a divorce.

3 reasons you might want to consider getting a prenup

When you are planning your wedding, all you can probably think of is spending the rest of your life with your soon-to-be spouse. Divorce is the last thing on your mind. You don’t even want to think about your marriage ending when it hasn’t even begun yet.

However, you can’t predict the future. In some situations, you should consider a prenuptial agreement to make sure that your finances are secure regardless of what happens.

Handling insurance during and after divorce

When California couples finalize a divorce, they may still have a number of financial issues to disentangle. Even after the divorce decree has been issued, there will be joint accounts to close or transfer, mortgages to refinance, or insurance policies to change. Indeed, insurance can be one of the most important aspects of post-divorce planning for both parties. The two types of insurance most common in a divorce are health and life insurance.

Many people receive their health insurance coverage through their spouse's employer. After a divorce, they will no longer be eligible for coverage and will need to seek a new policy. The employee will need to notify the insurer after the divorce is finalized, and the insurance company will remove the other spouse. The other party will need to seek new insurance, either through his or her own employer or through one of the marketplaces. Under the Affordable Care Act, divorce is a qualifying life event that allows people to enroll in health insurance at any time of the year.

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