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Howard County Divorce Law Blog

Three things to do after your divorce is finalized

Depending upon your appetite for celebrity relationship gossip, the recent announcement of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s impending divorce may, or may not be, a surprise. Those who closely follow tabloid news saw this coming. Those who don’t are probably wondering what went wrong in their relationship.

As of this writing, chances are that no petitions have been filed in court, but one thing is certain. If and when their divorce is finalized, there are a number of things they will do to protect their interests as individuals. This post will highlight a couple of things they are likely to do, and will serve as an example for couples in the midst of a divorce as they plan their post-divorce lives. 

Elements that custody evaluators consider

Custody evaluators are third parties who are either appointed by the court, or agreed to by the parents, to make recommendations to the court regarding legal custody, physical custody and parenting time. Custody evaluations are not easy. In fact, most parents in Maryland dread them. The notion of having someone who they barely know make a decision about a relationship with their child can seem unfair. Regardless, custody evaluations are a normal (and vital) part of the process, so it is best to be prepared for them.

This post will review a few of the things that custody evaluators look for.

What do courts consider in move away cases

It is an unfortunate, yet common part of divorce; one parent may choose to move away with the children. Sometimes a change is necessary because a parent recently receives a new job or promotion that takes them to a new city or state. In some instances, a parent may move to be closer to a family based support system. In others, a parent has fallen in love again and wants to further a new romantic relationship.

Regardless of the reasons, Maryland law requires a custodial parent to seek the court’s permission before moving to another jurisdiction. After all, family court judges have a vested interest in preserving relationships between children and non-custodial parents. 

What to do when a child does not want to visit

During a divorce or child custody dispute, parents may deal with situations where a child will not want to spend time with a non-custodial parent. Essentially, instances may arise where a child becomes anxious about exchanges or may be hostile about going over to the other parent’s home. This may occur when a child hasn’t seen a parent for a while or ties something emotionally jarring to the other parent’s home.

When this occurs, there are several things parents can do to alleviate the child’s fears. This post will explore them.

Three tips for handling new routines and a new school year

Change is not always easy. It may seem cliché, but it is true. Just like kids must go through an adjustment period when a new school year starts, so must parents; especially when they have recently gone through a separation or recently completed a divorce. To avoid these complications (or at least to mitigate them) it is critically important for parents to put aside their personal differences and work together for the benefit of the children.

This post will highlight several things that can help.

Lessons for healing after a divorce

The emotional and financial trials of a divorce are unfortunately a common part of dissolving a relationship. Because of this, many may think that it is a sign of personal failure that will live with them forever. However, you should think of the process as part of a new beginning, not simply the death of a relationship. This post will include some helpful lessons on how to heal as you go through the process and after the decree is final.

Lesson 1 – Live for you: It might seem obvious, but it is important to do whatever is right for you in order to heal properly. It may not be the most popular thing, but your happiness will be contagious as your children (if there are any) will benefit as well.

Six tips to help children through a divorce

When many people decide to divorce, they may consider how their own lives will change, but they may not always consider how the end of a marriage may affect the children that must endure such a change.   Indeed, research suggests that some kids will have emotional and academic problems because of a divorce, but other children may be resilient and won’t miss a beat.

Ultimately, you may not know how your children will react until it actually happens. Nevertheless, divorcing parents can take the following steps protect kids from additional harm.

Why some angry couples prolong divorces

In our years as divorce attorneys, we encounter our share of angry couples. While the reasons may be as diverse as the couples themselves, there are certain dynamics that we see with every warring couple. These idiosyncrasies sometimes work to keep the couple together; even though they are miserable with each other. But when a couple decides to divorce, sometimes the anger keeps the couple together as well. This post will identify some of the reasons angry people seem to work to prolong a divorce.

The fight for power – Angry people are less likely to cede power whether it was over finances, parenting decisions or their spouse’s actions. When this happens, the divorce process is likely to continue as spouses battle over everything.

Could a support modification help with school expenses?

It’s no secret that a new school year is nearly upon us. If you haven’t noticed by all the new offerings in Target, Kohl’s or Walmart, the back to school commercials have likely given you a clue. Because of this, newly divorced and separated parents may have disputes over who will be responsible for covering back to school shopping.

This is likely because a parent who is paying child support may be unwilling to pay additional money without the ability to decide how it is spent. At the same time, a parent receiving support may not have the same ability to cover additional expenses attributed to extra-curricular activities, such as ballet classes, piano lessons or football uniforms. 

Things to consider when telling kids about a divorce

Whether you are contemplating a divorce, or are currently filing a petition, it is likely that people will have questions about your decision and may wonder what will happen next.  Indeed, it may not be easy answering a myriad questions about your future from family and friends, but it can be especially difficult to do when children come asking. After all, kids are not likely to understand the concept of divorce and may be concerned about two people they love going their separate ways.

As such, parents should take great care in telling their kids about a divorce. This post will provide some helpful tips. 

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