How does one go about raising the issue of divorce with one's spouse? Because many men and women have struggled with that question, a lot of deceptive and hurtful methods have been chosen. If fact, some experts believe that there are spouses who choose to have an affair just to get caught and thereby end the marriage by having the other person demand a divorce. This avoids having to engage in one-to-one discussions about what went wrong and what to do going forward. It's not a good way to go about it, yet the strategy occurs repeatedly both in Missouri and elsewhere, whether it be a conscious or subconscious strategy by the offender.
Many people in Missouri and throughout the country may be escalating their divorce plans to finalize their settlement agreements prior to Dec. 31, 2018. That is the date on which certain tax benefits will be eliminated by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. At that time, for example, the tax break traditionally given to those who pay alimony will be eliminated, making divorce negotiations more difficult and perhaps more damaging to those who counted on alimony as a significant source of support post-divorce.
The last thing one person in a couple is likely to believe is that splitting up may actually be good for his or her health. Divorce won't necessarily make Missouri residents unhealthy. Researchers in London found those who have remarried after their divorces aren't more prone to having cardiovascular or respiratory ailments in middle age than those who have remained married.
There is a growing realization among most people, including here in Missouri, that domestic pets are cherished family members. People readily find that each domestic animal has a distinct personality of its own, and the animal's loyalty and unswerving affection toward its care keepers is reciprocated by its human counterparts. Stories abound of dogs who react valiantly to save their owners in emergencies, and dogs are recruited to calm and comfort the elderly and people who are hospitalized. It is no wonder, therefore, that the decision of who gets the family dog in divorce can raise nearly as much strife as a dispute over child custody or visitation.
Divorce in Missouri generally follows the contours of procedure and substance that exist in other states. Although each state has its own variations, most divorce statutes today have a provision for a no-fault divorce. This means that neither party has to be blamed for causing the dissolution of the marriage.
Divorces nationwide and in Missouri will see some significant changes in federal tax rules due to the recent 2017 Tax Reform Act. For a divorce after 2018, the longstanding rule that makes alimony deductible to the payer and reportable income to the recipient will be eliminated. The payment will no longer be deductible nor will it be reported as income. In practice, the rule as it now exists has been a secure and generally useful mainstay of divorce negotiations for as long as family law practitioners can remember.
A recent celebrity divorce settlement illustrates some of the same general principles that may be applied in an average family law case here in Missouri and in other states. The celebrities are Dennis Quaid and his wife Kimberly Buffington-Quaid. The divorce, filed by the wife in 2016, was finalized recently with the issuance of a final divorce decree.
When a husband makes three times the income of his wife and he generously helps her to pay off a boat load of debt, including substantial student loans, will that reverberate to his credit in a divorce action started by the wife just two years after they were married? This scenario or a similar version of it often comes up in Missouri divorce cases. In this example, it is also noted that the wife communicated to the husband that she was going to take the house and his retirement, along with requesting alimony.
Missouri divorce law attempts to treat the genders equally and without favoritism. However, societal practices and long-held cultural values seem to leave an indelible mark that favors men over women. According to several reports, there is a gender-gap in financial matters between men and women during a separation and a divorce.
A nationwide increase in couples seeking prenuptial agreements is reported. However, those planning their weddings in Missouri will likely agree that it remains a difficult subject to broach. The idea of preparing for divorce, even before the marriage, remains the thorny bit of this conversation. Advisers maintain that it is less uncomfortable if the subject is brought up when a couple is still dating. At that stage, it will be an exchange of ideas rather than a situation in which it can be mistaken as one partner demanding a prenuptial agreement.