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Las Vegas Divorce Law Blog

Planning ahead while also taking care of business today

Apple co-founder and high-tech icon Steve Jobs had a flair for the dramatic. When introducing revolutionary technological jewels, he liked to pause near the end of his presentations and say, "One more thing..." It was a fun way for the late innovator to add one more dazzling feature the latest world-changing device could perform.

There are several things that people need to put ontheir check list to change or add that are not necssarily part of their divorce cases. They include chnging beneificiaries in wills, trusts and pensionadbn retiremebnt plans, and changing titles on property or vehicles. There is always "one more thing" for people going through the parallel legal and emotional processes to remember to do. The Wall Street Journal recently discussed a "one more thing" to do after divorce: change your estate plan.

What are causes for divorce in Nevada?

Incompatibility, Insanity, and separation for more than a year are the only legal gorunds for divorce in Nevada, which is a no fault state.  According to Nevada law, insanity must exist for at least two years prior to the commencement of the divorce action. The court will then ask for evidence supporting the claim, and if that evidence is convincing, the court can grant a divorce decree. Because  insanity or separation have to be proven, but incompatibility does not, it is rare that a party seeks divorce upon grounds other then incompatibility. 

'Losing' your house in a divorce setttlement can be a win

Couples no longer fight over who gets the house. Now the couples are more inclined to fight over who should be strapped with the large mortgage.  Either way, navigating through the emotuional and financial consequences of divorce are best left to the professionals.  Divorce lawyers have to advise their clients about taxes, mortgage refinance, or house sales.  And in this new economy, leaving the marrrige debt free can be a huge asset.   And, divorce lawyers can help get each of their clients into a manageable home with a modest mortgage.    

Signs of impending divorce: here are a few

A marriage counselor writing for the Huffington Post recently detailed some of the behaviors common among couples she recognizes as being caught in relationships that can no longer be fixed. The telltale signs of impending divorce are apparently not terribly difficult for an experienced counselor to spot, though pretty close to impossible to repair and heal.

The counselor did note that if a couple can reach agreement to attend counseling, that is itself a sign that their marriage might not be irredeemable.

Reasons for a legal separation rather than divorce

We recently read a newspaper article in which an interesting bit of trivia was dissected. Try to think of the names of the only two countries in the world in which divorce is forbidden. Give up? (We did, too.) The first one, the Vatican, is perhaps an obvious choice. The second, the Philippines, is probably less obvious.

According to the Associated Press, however, the nation of 100 million people -- most of whom are Catholic -- has not allowed divorce in the 500 years since Spanish colonists imposed their religious views on indigenous people upon their arrival.

When domestic violence allegations enter child custody disputes

Few issues in Nevada family law are more emotionally charged than a child custody case.  And now it is presumed that the perpetrator of an act of an act of domestic violence cannot be a joint or primary physical custodian under Nevada law.  So  allegations of domestic violence made by one parent  or spouse against another, or by both parents against each other, have to be taken a lot more seriously.

It is imperative that parents employ the steadying hand of an experienced family law attorney to guide a client through often contentious custody and domestic violence allegations.

What to do next

Your spouse has said a sentence that is difficult to hear: "I want a divorce."

The moment you hear that sentence from your spouse can be a devastating one. Perhaps you had an idea that the statement was going to come one day or perhaps it came from out of the blue. Regardless, you are now wondering what you should do next. A recent newspaper article on the subject shared some ideas we would like to pass on to you.

Want to keep your pre-marriage assets from spouse in divorce?

If you have significant assets before marriage you need to protect yourself from a costly divorce.

One legal tool available in Nevada is a prenuptial agreement. However, if that is not practical, there are things you can do during your marriage that can clarify property division matters in divorce, helping to ensure that you keep what you owned prior to exchanging rings.

For instance, you can make sure that during marriage all bank and brokerage accounts stay in your respective individual names.  And, make sure that no earnings or community property monies get deposted into those bank and brokerage accounts.  You can also make sure to keep all tracing documents to later prove how you have meticulously kept separate property separate. You can also establish a separate property trust, or have your spouse sign and notarize documents disclaiming his/her interest in accounts, real estate or even inventories of personal property.

But, the easist way to handle these matters is to see an experienced divorce lawyer and  have a prenuptial agreement drafted and signed before marriage, or draft a post-nuptial agreement during marriage. The division of separate versus community property assets during divorce can be an expensive, tedious, and sometimes impossible task.  And since it is presumed under Nevada law that assets acquired during marriage are community property, it will take clear and convincing evidence at trial to avoid equal division-abssent a prenuptial agreement that destroys such presumptions.    

Rapid-fire divorce celebrations

When a divorce becomes final, many people find it cathartic to celebrate the occasion with friends and family. After a divorce, some people throw a party where laughs and well wishes for the future are in order, while others trace a line of bullets across their marriage certificate, turning the once-cherished document into confetti.

Sound strange? It’s is nevertheless true, reports ABC News. A Las Vegas shooting range called Machine Guns Vegas is offering divorce celebration packages that enable participants to mow down marriage certificates, wedding gowns, tuxedos or anything else from your marriage that might be fun to riddle with bullets. (Obviously, your ex is not included among those items.)

Divorce brings tax-time changes for parents

Divorce changes just about everything for parents, from their time spent with their children to the dynamics in their families, their living arrangements, social lives, finances and taxes.

Forbes notes that if you ended 2014 as unmarried, earning at least half of your household’s income, and had your children living in your home for at least six months, you should file as the head of household. In most situations, this will lower taxes and raise deductions.