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October 2018 Archives

Making sure kids are happy after a divorce

Divorce can often involve many intense emotions, but the children who are involved can usually bounce back and live happy lives when their parents focus on their well-being. Despite the personal difficulties they are going through, when parents are sensitive to the needs of their children, they are more likely to give their kids a sense of confidence, security and peace of mind. Parents in Texas can focus on a few key areas when aspiring to reach this goal.

Tax changes could complicate divorce matters for older adults

It's not unusual for divorcing couples in Texas to fight over the house and possessions. However, for adults age 50 and over calling it quits, another common point of contention is retirement savings. It's even more important to pay attention to such assets because of changes mandated by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Acts that will fully take effect in 2019. The most noticeable change pertaining to end of marriage issues is with alimony. These spousal support payments will no longer be tax deductible for the paying spouse, and the receiving spouse won't be able to claim payments as income.

When unmarried parents have child custody issues

Children of unmarried parents have a bit different situation than children whose parents are married. In most cases around the country, an unwed mother who is considered a fit parent will be granted physical custody or as it is dubbed in Texas law, 'possession" of her children. However, a father can act through the courts to establish visitation or 'access" to his children. In child custody and visitation cases across the nation, the courts will always keep the best interests of the child in the forefront of the decision-making process.

Father's rights and child custody

Many fathers in Texas wonder how much they will see their children if they file for divorce. In many states, judges prefer to award joint custody to parents. It is important for fathers to know that they can get full custody of their children if it is in their children's best interest.

Buying a home when back child support is owed

Child support is counted as debt when applying for a loan or attempting to obtain a mortgage from a lender to purchase a home. Therefore, if a Texas parent is delinquent on payments, it will show up as a derogatory credit event. This could minimize the odds that the homebuyer will get the loan. Nevertheless, not all loan programs automatically disqualify applicants because of back child support issues.

Types of joint custody and child support

Many parents in Texas share joint custody of their children. These moms and dads should make sure they understand the differences between joint legal and physical custody when discussing how to share parenting time and responsibilities. The type of custody a parent has been granted in a court order can determine their legal obligation to pay child support.

Planning for the future after a 'gray divorce'

Older Texas couples considering divorce may be particularly concerned about how ending a marriage later in life could affect future retirement. No matter a person's age, divorce can be an emotional and financial challenge. While custody and child-rearing are often the biggest issues for younger ex-spouses, divorce presents its own challenges for older couples. It's especially difficult for those who have been married for many years and have deeply intertwined finances.