Why You Need a Skilled Rhode Island Divorce Lawyer
Rhode Island is an equitable distribution state, which means that property is distributed based on what the court considers to be equitable — not necessarily equal. There are multiple factors that a judge will consider in the division of property, but your share of any property — and the way child support is calculated — is at the court’s discretion.
It is imperative that you have an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney on your side to help you navigate the legal process and represent your best interests in matters of:
- Child custody: In Rhode Island, if you and your spouse cannot reach a child custody agreement, a family law judge will determine your child custody arrangement based on the “best interests of the child.” This may seem like a vague guideline, and it does give the judge a lot of discretion. However, that’s why having an experienced family law attorney on your side can help you make the appropriate arguments in your child custody case.
- Child support: The State of Rhode Island determines this based on a child support formula that takes into account both parents’ income, health insurance premiums, other child support payments, day care expenses, and additional factors. The non-custodial parent may be required to pay through a Child Support Order that will require wages withheld from his or her paycheck. A knowledgeable Rhode Island child support lawyer can guide you through this process and the formula behind it.
- Division of property: Property generally includes the family home, tangible items such as vehicles, and intangible property such as pension and retirement benefits. If you and your spouse cannot agree on how to divide your property, the court will make an equitable distribution based on many factors, including income, length of marriage, health and age, employability, and what’s in the best interests of the children. An experienced Rhode Island divorce lawyer can help you identify all of the martial property, including assets and liabilities, and stand up for your rights in court.
- Alimony: This form of support may be granted on a temporary basis (rehabilitative alimony) or indefinitely. Among other factors, the court will take into account:
- Length of the marriage
- Conduct of both spouses during the marriage
- Spouses’ income
- Skills and employability
- Other financial responsibilities each spouse is liable for
- Age of any children who need to be cared for
- Extent to which one party is at a disadvantage due to devotion to homemaking duties
- Standard of living during the marriage
- Ability of the other spouse to pay
The decisions that are made in these divorce proceedings will forever shape the rest of your life, particularly if you have children. A compassionate and dedicated Rhode Island divorce attorney can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. Contact one of our seasoned family law attorneys at Gemma Law Associates Inc., today to schedule a consultation and discuss your future.