Three Of The Biggest Ways Divorce Proceedings Differ From State To State

Law Blog

Divorce proceedings can be complex affairs, with lots of tough decisions to be made, potentially emotional court appearances, and lots of paperwork to be signed. But things can be even more complex depending on what state you file in. Divorce proceedings can actually be quite different from state to state. Here's a look at three of the biggest ways that divorce proceedings can be different from one state to another.


Alimony, or spousal support, is one of the biggest areas that differs in a divorce from state to state. Each state usually has very specific guidelines of when and how alimony is paid. In some states, like Texas, Tennessee, and Mississippi, alimony is only awarded in marriages that lasted for 10 years or more, and payments are limited to only three years, while some states will mandate alimony be paid for half the length of the marriage. In some states, alimony can actually be barred if it can be determined that one spouse cheated on the other!

Division of assets

The biggest difference when it comes to division of assets in a divorce is what's called "equitable distribution" compared to "community property." Community property is divided between spouses, with each spouse solely having their respective shares, with an even 50-50 split. Equitable distribution means that each spouse gets shares that are equal in value, even if they're not physically even. Eleven states require that assets in a divorce be divided equally, but not necessarily fairly, while 39 states will ask for fair (but not necessarily equal) distribution. This can get quite confusing, as it often doesn't mean a physical divide. Many times, each spouse will be awarded a certain percentage, where each spouse gets property, other assets, and debt that equal their percentage.  

The cost of divorce

The generally accepted figure for the cost of a divorce is $15,000 to $20,000. But this can vary greatly depending on what state you're in. The biggest cost difference from one state to another is going to be in attorney fees and actual court costs. In some states, a divorce lawyer will cost about $75 an hour. In some states, this can be as high as $450 an hour.

If you're filing a divorce, your first course of action is going to be to hire the services of a divorce attorney, such as Granowitz, White & Weber Attorneys at Law. They have years of experience in this area, and will do their best to make sure the process goes as smoothly as possible.


26 January 2016

Knowing Your Legal Rights Can Help You Greatly in Life

Like many people, I once found learning about law very intimidating. My brother went to law school and I remember glancing through a few of his books and wondering if I was actually reading English due to all of the legal jargon in them! However, when I ended up in a sticky legal situation due to accidentally breaking a small law I didn't know existed, I realized that I needed to learn more about the law, so I could make sure to follow it precisely in the future. My brother helped to break down some complicated legal concepts to me, and I have since been studying up online. I want to post what I have learned and continue to learn about law in the future on my new blog, so my knowledge cannot only help myself, but also help others!