Mary Gay McDaniel MGM Law, P.A.
Collaborative Family Law Help

Pensacola Florida Family Law Blog

Will the court decide matters of custody for you?

As a divorcing couple in Florida, matters of visitation and child custody are up to you to figure out. However, if you and your ex-spouse can't reach a decision together, then the courts are going to take over and make one for you. Mary Gay McDaniel, P.A., is here to help prevent that.

Making a parenting plan that both of you can agree on is of crucial importance, because no one knows what is best for your child like their parents. A court usually favors joint custody, and will do their best to be an impartial third party. They will attempt to use the knowledge they learn during the case to build a plan that they think will serve the child's best interest. But will it actually do that? No one can know for sure, but unfortunately, the court's word is final.

Is joint custody the best option for you?

Divorcing parents in Florida have a lot of tough decisions to make. Many of them will revolve around your children. How do you want to raise them moving forward? How will you handle matters of child support? Most importantly, what about custody arrangements?

The American Psychology Association, along with numerous other recent studies, argue that joint custody is the way to go. For the longest time, one parent would be given primary custody and the other would have a greatly reduced role in their child's life. They would be unable to make decisions regarding important matters like religion or medical matters. Additionally, they often only see their children a small fraction of the time that the primary custodian gets to see them.

Why should you consider collaborative law?

Floridian couples who are seeking to get a divorce may want to look into collaborative divorce options. Mary Gay McDaniel, P.A., is here to help explain exactly what this option can do for you and why you may benefit from it.

Collaborative divorce law goes directly against what many people expect when they consider matters of divorce. Many people often think of aggressive battles, court cases, and plenty of arguing. However, it doesn't have to be that way. In fact, it's better if it isn't, especially if children are involved.

Elements of a successful parenting plan

When Florida parents get a divorce, one of the things they need to consider is how they will successfully co-parent their children. This means they typically need a parenting plan.

When people first sit down to create their parenting plan, it is important for them to remember that every plan looks different. The Huffington Post says that people should generally find a plan that will be best for their family and unique circumstances. In order to see what this plan might look like, it is a good idea to use a calendar so parents can see where they might run into scheduling problems. Additionally, parents usually need to consider how their children's belongings will move from house to house. People may have a greater chance of experiencing success with their parenting plan if they can work out some of these small details early on.

4 tips for having a cheaper divorce

Divorcing can be expensive. Ending a marriage can cost couples significantly, even leading to bankruptcy in certain cases. You may assume going negative on your bank balance is necessary, but that is not true.

It is possible to have an inexpensive divorce as long as you make the right decisions. Here is how to lower the cost of your breakup:

Bankruptcy with a collaborative divorce

If you are facing an impending divorce and simultaneously a mound of debt that you do not know how to get out from under, you are far from alone. Money problems plague many a couple in Florida. The challenge you must deal with is how and when you should tackle your marriage and divorce relative to tackling your bills and financial future. If you and your spouse are able to work together in a collaborative divorce, you may actually have more options than couples who cannot take advantage of this type of divorce.

As explained by My Horizon Today, there are two types of bankruptcy - a Chapter 7 and a Chapter 13. The latter lasts for up to five years and if you and your spouse were highly adversarial with each other, you would certainly not want to entertain this type of bankruptcy as it would link you together for that time. However, it may be an option if you can collaborate well.

What role does a mediator play in a divorce?

In Florida, many couples choose to rely on mediators when going through a divorce. But do you know what a mediator's purpose ultimately is? Unfortunately, many misunderstandings surround the role that they play in a split.

Huffington Post lists different myths regarding divorce mediation. For example, there's an old-standing belief that divorce mediation is not accepted by the legal profession. However, that hasn't been the case since 2000, when the American Bar Association embraced divorce mediation as a smart and even preferable method of handling a divorce.

Handling a home in a collaborative divorce

Florida residents who are considering ending their marriages understandably might be hesitant about this in part due to all that they have to lose. One of the things that many divorcing spouses are concerned about losing is their home. It is normal for people to want to maintain stability for their children and even themselves but caution should be exercised when pushing to keep a home in a divorce.

Spouses who are able to be collaborative in their divorce may have a better chance of keeping a home than those who are more adversarial with each other. As Time Money explains, one of the pitfalls that disputing spouses face is the lack of trust in each other to follow through with a commitment. If one person keeps the home and the current mortgage and says they will make the payments, the other person's credit is at risk if the first person fails to stay up on the mortgage.

5 benefits of using collaborative law to get a Florida divorce

Getting a divorce is often a frightening situation. You may not know what steps to take now to begin the process or ensure the best outcome. Your future is changing, and you may experience backlash from loved ones for this choice. Even if you feel confident, the cost and time involved may worry you.

Some parts of the divorce process are out of your control, such as how others respond. The good news is that you can eliminate many of the fears by choosing the right approach. Litigation, or fighting in court, may be the tradition, but collaborative law is the improved way to divorce.

What are misconceptions of collaborative divorce?

As a divorcing couple in Florida, you may have heard of the term collaborative divorce before. Mary Gay McDaniel, P.A., is here to help guide couples through the divorce process and help you understand the true purpose of collaborative law, which is often mired in misconceptions.

Collaborative law in relation to divorce is usually misinterpreted by people who are unaware of its true purpose. For example, some think that only couples on great terms can collaborate. Others believe that mediators, who often help with collaboration, are there to make the final decisions for you and your ex-spouse. Neither is true. It's possible for any couple in any situation to use collaborative law to help reach a final decision that every party can be satisfied with.

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