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Overland Park Family Law Blog

Divorced parents rally to change child custody laws

Divorce is a devastating time for all parties, especially the noncustodial parent. Divorced parents in Kansas are speaking out about the benefits of spending equal time with their kids. The National Parents Organization is hoping to change the current laws regarding child custody decisions in favor of shared parenting agreements.

Children often pay the price for decisions made by the legal system regarding custody. It is important to have both parents in their lives, and that means sharing equally in many scenarios.  With current laws historically favoring moms, most noncustodial parents are reduced to spending just a few hours each week, and some may suffer through years of separation. It is devastating to know that a person has been a great parent all along and an outdated law can get in the way. 

Child custody problems arise in Shannon Beador divorce

Millions of television viewers in Kansas and throughout the nation watched as reality show star Shannon Beador and her husband renewed their marriage vows on the "Real Housewives" reality TV series . It may come a surprise to many to learn that those same two people are not only no longer married, but they are engaged in a child custody battle. As often happens in troubled marriages, a particular event reportedly led to their permanent breakup.

Although starring in a popular TV show like "Real Housewives of California" may have its perks, it could no doubt be difficult as well, especially when family problems are aired in public. In Beador's case, she apparently learned that her husband had been unfaithful. After several attempts to resolve their marital problems, the couple decided instead to divorce. Beador has requested both child support and spousal support in court.

Current wife not the only one concerned with high asset divorce

Hollywood fans in Kansas and throughout the nation, especially those who are women, have been following headline news regarding former movie mogul Harvey Weinstein's current legal situation. Not only has Weinstein been accused of sexual crimes by a lot of people, his current wife filed for divorce and was recently granted primary custody of their children. The high asset divorce and numerous lawsuits pertaining to the other issues have prompted his first wife to submit a special request to the court.

Eva Chilton was married to Weinstein between 1987 and the early 2000s. The current situation has reportedly caused her to worry that Weinstein is likely to become financially destitute once all the lawsuits against him are fully litigated. For this reason, she asked the court to order Weinstein to pay her $5 million in advanced child support. 

Factors of high asset divorce that can impact future finances

It is doubtful anyone in Kansas who has ever navigated the process would say ending a marriage is easy. Even in amicable situations, there are typically challenges that arise that require cooperation and compromise to achieve fair and agreeable settlements, especially in cases of high asset divorce. Any number of issues can impact post divorce finances, some more than others.

Kansas is not a community property state; in fact, there are only nine states in the nation that continue to govern property division in divorce under such regulations. This state and most others operate under equitable property division rules, meaning not all martial assets (or debt) is necessarily split 50/50 in divorce. In certain circumstances, this can lead to significant financial strain if one spouse winds up with a higher debt burden or more assets than the other.

Woman pleads no contest to charges arisen in child custody fight

Any parent in Kansas who believes a former spouse is a danger to a child can take immediate action to provide evidence to appropriate officials. During child custody proceedings, however, it is never okay to take matters into one's own hands so as to violate the law. A mother in another state has learned this lesson the hard way; thankfully, the judge in charge of the case sentenced her to four years of probation instead of prison.

The situation unfolded when the mother took her infant son to another country in 2013. The problem was she did not first seek the court's permission to do so and was engaged in custody proceedings at the time. She did not return to the United States with her son until 2016.

How a prenuptial agreement can benefit you

In our last post, we talked about how debt is divided among the splitting spouses in a divorce. This is part of the property division process, even though most people wouldn't consider debt to be an "asset" or a piece of "property." This process is integral to divorce, and it is imperative that the spouses involved in the divorce take it seriously.

While property division can take some time and it can be stressful, there are effective ways that you can streamline the process. One of these ways is to implement a prenuptial agreement before you get married. This contract can dictate your property division process, and it can take a lot of the time-consuming, stress-inducing moments out of these moments during your divorce.

How is debt divided in a divorce?

When couples decide to divorce, they look at their assets and property to determine how it will be divided. But how does a divorcing couple divide debt incurred while married?

In Kansas, all possessions and interests acquired while married are considered “marital property.” Some states have enacted laws defining property between a couple as “community property,” or property that is equally owned by both parties and must be equally divided in a divorce, but Kansas is not one of them.

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