Children who lose a mother or father have a much harder time adjusting to the divorce, even if a step-parent comes into their lives. We encourage parents to do everything possible to maintain strong relationships with their children. If you choose to remarry, prepare yourself for the reality of blended families. Therapists advise clients that step-families can be successful but are not automatically happy. Instead, parents need to have appropriate expectations and must work continually on making the relationships succeed. When parents file for divorce in Washington State, one of the first issues they worry about is how the divorce will impact their children.
Many different studies have been conducted on the general effects of divorce on children, while some researchers have focused specifically on the physical effects that divorce can have on kids. Our Tacoma, Washington divorce attorneys will say more about the physical effect of divorce on children at different ages and at varying stages of development.
When parents of toddlers or preschoolers get divorced, the parents may notice that the children are regressing in terms of their behavioral patterns, according to an article in Divorce Magazine. An article in HealthDay emphasizes that aggression among children after a divorce, while physical, often is tied to emotional or psychological issues. To help younger children through a divorce, it is important for the parents to emphasize that both of them will continue to provide care for the child, and it is important to spend time with the child.
In addition, parents should avoid displaying any anger—and especially aggression—toward one another around the child since it can exacerbate the physical effects the divorce is having on the child. Most of these physical effects tend to be short-term ones. To be sure, eventually the child will come to terms emotionally with the divorce, which in turn will result in a shift in the physical effects of the divorce. While many physical effects of divorce are short-term, other studies have suggested that there may be long-term physical effects of divorce on children into adulthood. More recent research has come to similar conclusions.
For example, in a study published in the European Journal of Education and Psychology revealed that children from divorced homes were twice as likely as kids from homes with both parents to develop short-term and long-term disease. Similar to aggression and patterns of returning to old physical behaviors, illness likely is caused by the stress of the divorce. In other words, most physical effects of divorce on children tend to result from the psychological or emotional effects of the divorce. Parents in Washington State who get divorced want to do everything they can to ensure that the divorce has as few harmful effects on their children as possible.
The Best (and Worst) States for Getting a Divorce
In other cases, parents do not see clear signs of emotional or behavioral problems after the divorce and assume that the child is adjusting properly. It is extremely important for parents to know that divorce can have intellectual effects on their children, which can result in difficulties at school and problems thinking critically and engaging academically. Children who are especially young—in preschool or elementary school—can have difficulty developing a range of intellectual abilities and cognitive abilities.
First, in the short term, kids whose parents are going through a divorce tend to have lower grades and worse on tests than their peers from intact households.
In the longer term, children of divorced parents are less likely than their peers in similar socioeconomic classes to attain a higher education. There are many reasons for the intellectual and academic effects of divorce on children. Indeed, stay at-home mothers may feel as though they are limited in their options by the fact that their primary job is at home, potentially precluding them from having the financial resources to act independently to pursue divorce with the help of a Tacoma, Washington divorce attorney. Stay-at-home moms who are thinking about a divorce do not have to take on the process on their own; working with an experienced divorce lawyer can make a world of difference.
Stay-at-home mothers typically are faced with some unique considerations in a divorce case. These include:. These are just a handful of the issues that will likely come up in a divorce settlement. Stay-at-home mothers are encouraged to retain legal counsel to help them to secure the most positive outcome in their favor as possible. During the divorce process, and likely after as well, a stay-at-home mom who is separating from her spouse will need to start thinking about life after divorce and how she will manage when she is no longer married.
The earlier that a woman starts thinking about and planning for these things, the better. Things that a stay-at-home mom may encounter during or after divorce include:. In addition to the above, stay-at-home mothers may also be tasked with building new social networks and learning how to live independently.
Divorce is always hard, but making a huge lifestyle transition can be even more difficult.
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Attending counseling or group therapy sessions can be helpful. Of course, some stay-at-home moms want to continue as such, and do not want to reenter the workplace. This requires a whole separate discussion, and may only be possible based on a large spousal support award. Getting divorced is a complicated endeavor, even with the help of a Tacoma, Washington divorce attorney , and not just because it can be an emotional rollercoaster for divorcing parties, but also because there are various legal elements and financial questions that must be addressed.
For divorcing couples, one of the most important things is determining how healthcare amongst the couple will be shared post-divorce, as well as the effects of divorce on programs such as Medicaid. Especially when the latter is true, when the couple divorces, they may have questions about how each will maintain their health coverage. In addition to the four options listed above, another option that may be available is applying for Medicaid benefits.
Keep in mind that because Medicaid eligibility is based on income and resources, equitable distribution in a divorce may affect Medicaid eligibility. For those who do not qualify for Medicaid, the benefit types listed above may be available. Being left without healthcare post-divorce is the last thing that you want. If you and your spouse are separating, it is best to explore your options and put a plan in place as soon as possible. If you are overwhelmed by the various coverage options and are unsure what will be most affordable for you—especially after a divorce when you are not benefiting from joint income—consulting with a professional is advised.
As you navigate the divorce, you may be asking yourself many things, including whether or not you need to consult with a divorce attorney. While hiring an attorney is a very personal decision, our lawyers at the Alliance Law Group know that the counsel of an attorney can make a big difference in the outcome of your divorce case. There are dozens of reasons to meet with an attorney to discuss your divorce, even if your divorce is uncontested which means that you and your spouse are in agreement about the terms of your divorce. Some top reasons to consult an attorney include:.
It is best to meet with an attorney as early on in the process as possible before you even pick up the paperwork to begin filing for divorce. Having a strategy in place for how you will approach your divorce can provide comfort and peace of mind. However, it is never too late to call an attorney; at the very least, an attorney should review all documents and divorce settlement papers before you sign.
Again, if you have an uncontested divorce, having an attorney on your side who can, at the very least, review a divorce settlement is a good idea. When in doubt about whether or not you need a lawyer, choosing to meet with one for a consultation is always recommended. The first step to being able to afford the representation of a lawyer during your divorce is to ask your divorce attorney what and how they charge.
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Make sure you get a fee agreement in writing so there are no surprises later on. After you know how much a divorce is going to cost you, approximately, you should start setting aside money immediately.
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Evening setting aside a little bit of money every week or month can add up, helping you to be able to afford the services of a qualified attorney. However, you may be able to obtain a court judgment that orders your spouse to reimburse you for some or all of your legal costs. In determining whether or not a court should issue such an order, the court will consider whether or not you actually need help paying your legal fees, and if so, whether or not your spouse has the economic means to offer such help.
A court will not look favorably on a situation where one spouse is able to afford a highly-skilled attorney while the other one is forced into self-representation because of a lack of financial means. If you are seeking a divorce, working with an experienced Washington divorce attorney is certainly within your best interests, even if your divorce is amicable. The process begins with an initial consultation, during which an attorney can learn more about your divorce case and the specifics of your situation.
After an initial consultation, your divorce attorney should outline a strategy for your case that is based on your preferences, situation, and means. This might mean planning for a collaborative divorce, mediation, or even litigation. Your attorney will explain each strategy option, as well as steps that will be required along the way.
Ensuring that both parties have correct information about the other in a divorce, especially as it pertains to finances, is one of the most important parts of a divorce process. Your attorney will manage this process on your behalf, even working with forensic accountants and other experts when necessary.
Average Costs of Divorce In Washington
From filing a petition for divorce to answering a petition to submitting a parenting plan to the court and more, there are numerous documents and paperwork that must be created, reviewed, and filed throughout the divorce process. Negotiations can last weeks, and settlement talks may have many back-and-forths. If your divorce cannot be settled via mediation and negotiation, the final step in your divorce process will be litigation, where a judge will ultimately issue a decision about the issues in your divorce. Litigation can take months, and is a process in and of itself.
Finally, remember that when you are seeking a divorce lawyer, the overall approach that an attorney should take to your case should be thorough and comprehensive. During your initial consultation, ask for details about the process, and choose a lawyer who is experienced in cases like yours. A Guide to Divorce in Washington. Most Important Contributing Factors of Divorce While always challenging, getting a divorce with the help of a Tacoma, Washington divorce lawyer is the right choice for many married couples in Washington.
Lack of Commitment The single leading cause cited as a reason for divorce in the United States is a lack of commitment. Communication Problems Another leading factor cited by divorcing couples is poor communication. Marital Infidelity As many people know, marital infidelity is also a major cause of divorce. Loss of Passion Many divorcing couples cite loss of passion as a major reason for the end of their marriage. Stress Finally, the stress of life can take a toll on many couples.
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Every Marriage is Different Ultimately, every relationship has its own characteristics. Different Types of Divorce in Washington Not every divorce proceeds in exactly the same manner. Understanding the Difference If you are considering divorce in Washington, you may have heard two different terms used: the dissolution of marriage and legal separation. Separation has a different name. But why does this matter?
2. Washington Courts Do Not Consider Marital Misconduct
Some people are uncomfortable with the entire concept of divorce along with its perceived finality of a divorce. They may prefer a legal separation for spiritual, religious, or personal reasons. If this applies to you, separation is an option that is available. Ability to get remarried: You cannot get remarried if you only obtain a legal separation. You cannot be married to two people at once, and technically a separation is not a divorce. If you are only separated, you cannot yet get remarried.
You will have to convert your separation to a divorce this can be done at any time. Insurance issues: In some cases, there may be financial benefits to choosing a legal separation over a divorce.