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Birmingham Divorce Law Blog

Sherri Shepherd decides she doesn't want child custody

Actress and TV host, Sherri Shepherd, has been even more in the spotlight due to her recent divorce filing. Divorce comes with many matters for Alabama spouses to iron out, including child custody, and this case is no exception. In an unusual twist of events, Shepherd has requested not to have custody of the surrogate unborn baby.

Shepherd and her newly estranged husband got married three years ago. At some point in time, Shepherd realized that she could no longer have children, which prompted her and her husband to take further action. They obtained services from a surrogate mother who became pregnant through in-vitro fertilization by a donated egg and the husband’s sperm. Initially, the husband requested for the court to grant him legal and full custody.

In some circumstances, a prenuptial agreement can be set aside

For many individuals -- whether they have important assets or children that they are trying to protect -- a prenuptial agreement can be an essential tool to utilize before entering into a marriage. However, it may surprise some in Alabama to learn that these agreements are not necessarily airtight. After a divorce, a prenuptial agreement can actually be challenged for a number of reasons.

When petitioning to have a prenup thrown out, the question of how and when it was signed may arise. Details concerning the circumstances of its signing are of particular importance as they might indicate that one party was placed under undue duress before signing. For example, a prenuptial agreement signed right before a marriage might be a sign of a spouse who felt pressured to sign rather than cancel a wedding for which they had already shelled out a substantial amount of non-refundable money.

Jennifer Lopez divorce case comes to an end

Jennifer Lopez is well-known in today's society, from being a recording artist to being an actress and a fashion icon. Most Alabama residents may remember Lopez for her hit roles in the movie "Selena" and the TV show "In Living Color." In spite of her successful career, she and recording artist Marc Anthony’s divorce became finalized after the two had been separated for three years.

Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony separated back in the summer of 2011 and, as of 2012, Anthony officially filed for divorce. According to reports, the court granted the parents joint custody of their twin son and daughter. The agreement states that Lopez will keep the children a majority of the time, and Anthony will keep them for seven days each month. In addition, neither of the two will be obligated to pay alimony or child support.

Alabama parents can learn from child support arrests

Child support payments play a vital role in providing kids with basic necessities such as food and clothing. Since child support payments are so important, Alabama parents who fail to pay can be arrested. Recently, police officers in another state arrested six parents for failure to pay support and posted it on twitter.

The Child Support Enforcement Agency and a County Sheriff’s Department in that state joined forces to keep the public up-to-date on the arrests of several noncustodial parents who were not adhering to court orders to make child support payments. Authorities called this feature a "virtual ride along" for those following the officers. These arrests were not just open and shut since a number of these individuals were not so easy to locate.

Including prenuptial agreement in Alabama marriages

Planning a wedding can be a bittersweet moment that is fun and stressful at the same time. While Alabama couples are choosing the perfect venue for their wedding, they may also consider a prenuptial agreement. Prenuptial agreements can safeguard spouses’ assets in case of divorce.

While some may view a prenup as a lack of trust and intimacy, there’s a difference between a young couple with no assets and an older couple with finances at stake. A large amount of couples may decide to get married at a time when they already have a successful career and own a home. They may also have large retirement savings and a considerable amount in financial assets. Even though a prenup may seem businesslike, it can still help to avoid a protracted divorce settlement in the future.

Alabama couples to avoid contingency pitfalls in alimony

Alabama residents who are considering divorce may want to be aware of a pitfall relating to tax deductions. The U.S. Tax Court recently denied a man's alimony payments that were deducted in 2008. Although his divorce decree stated that the alimony could be deducted and that his wife should report the received payments as income on her tax returns, the termination contingency on the divorce decree invalidated that stipulation.

According to the man's divorce decree, he had to pay a specific amount in alimony per month. His ex-wife was also eligible for a 40 percent portion of his bonus. It was stipulated in the decree that these payments would both terminate in the event of the ex-wife's remarriage or the demise of either one of the two parties. However, the first termination condition on the decree stated that payments would be cancelled when the youngest child reaches high school graduation.

How Alabama spouses can be in the financial know in divorce

Divorce can come with many issues, including child custody and asset division, but one of the most common issues in divorce is over finances. It's important for Alabama spouses to be aware of where they stand financially. There are ways that spouses can be financially savvy during divorce.

One step spouses can take is to become knowledgeable about their financial standing of assets and debts. It's important for spouses to know how many debts are owed and how much in funds they may have. This can help with creating a financial plan and budget as spouses enter in the single life. While reviewing finances, it's also important for spouses to check on credit scores to see how many accounts are in their names. Since the divorce process entails exchanging financial information, another step spouses can take is to organize their financial records.

Making the best of child custody in Alabama

The topic of divorce can come up in a marriage for a number of reasons, whether the parties live alone or with a house full of children. In divorce proceedings that involve children, the stress increases and the process may seem more difficult. While deciding on child custody can be challenging, if both parties understand their options and are willing to work together, a solution that works for everyone can be achieved. Parents that are considering divorce in Alabama may benefit from understanding the types of child custody typically available and how to decide which one fits their particular circumstances.

Divorce can seem to be a stressful life-change for those involved. For the children who watch their parents make this decision, it is even more confusing and nerve-wracking. As they deal with their own emotions, the parents should make a conscious effort to ease the tension of the transition for their children. There are some rather simple ways to assist in a child's adjustment to a new situation.

Alabama issues with child custody schedules

The divorce process can bring on multiple arguments between spouses. One of the main issues divorcing spouses argue about is child custody. Many Alabama residents would agree that most parents want to spend as much time as possible with their children. Even after a custody schedule is formulated, there may still be issues present when it comes to weekend visitations.

Throughout the years, child custody issues have increased. Some of the most popular scheduled days to appear in a courtroom is Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. At some point in time after the schedule is ordered, a parent may end up late in dropping off or picking up the child. In some instances, a parent may not show up at all.

Alabama spouses should not hide assets in divorce

A couple with two children filed for divorce back in 1999. As more time went by, the battle between the two grew even more intense. Although dividing assets is an essential part of a divorce, it is not always cut and dry. Recently, a man was found to have hidden a substantial amount in assets. Alabama spouses may be able to learn from this couple's experience.

The man worked in real estate and as an investor for an electrical company. He threatened to file bankruptcy so that his wife could not get anything, even child support. Eventually, the man filed bankruptcy, but he did not disclose all of his assets. He reportedly put his assets in other individuals' names in an attempt to cover up millions. To avoid increasing the amount paid in child support, he disguised incoming income through shell companies.

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