Unless you have already gone through a divorce before, you are probably a bit concerned about some of the myths you’ve heard about the divorce process. When you hear stories from friends and family, you may get the wrong idea about some of the issues associated with divorce, such as child custody, child support, alimony, and other principal matters. In order to prepare yourself for your upcoming divorce, make sure you can tell the difference between fact and fiction.
Read below to discover some of the most common divorce myths, and the truth behind them.
1. If I cheated, I’ll receive less in the divorce.
Most states, including California, abide by the no-fault divorce law. In a no-fault divorce, the court cannot penalize either spouse for causing the divorce, regardless of the circumstances. The only way in which either spouse can be penalized is if there was domestic abuse. However, even in situations of domestic violence, the abusive spouse is more likely to lose custody rights than assets or alimony.
2. The mother always gets custody of the children.
California courts do not favor the mother over the father in custody battles, they only consider what is in the best interest of the child. The court will look at the parenting responsibilities of either parent, their health, living situation, and other key factors that affect the health and happiness of the child. Child custody can either be awarded to one parent, or split as shared custody.
3. I won’t be able to keep my house after the divorce.
What happens with marital property is never consistent in each divorce. Every couple is different, which means there are several different options when it comes to what couples choose to do with their home when they divorce. Some people choose to sell their home and split the profit, or one spouse keeps the home while the other is awarded additional assets. In rare cases, both spouses may choose to keep the home as a shared source of income.
4. Ex-wives always receive spousal support.
It is a common misconception that men must always pay the women spousal support. Spousal support, or spousal maintenance or alimony, is not always granted in a divorce, but it can be granted when the lesser-earning spouse requires additional funds. The higher-earning spouse may be required to pay alimony to the other spouse so that he or she may maintain the same standard of living the couple enjoyed during the marriage. The gender of either spouse does not matter. The court will only evaluate the income of either spouse, their earning capacities, the duration of the marriage, and other important factors.
5. I don’t need a lawyer to get a divorce.
Although there are a few simplified services available to people who do not want a divorce attorney, it is always best to work with a lawyer when you get a divorce. Working with a divorce attorney can help you retain your most valuable assets and protect your interests. If your spouse has an attorney, it is especially crucial for you to hire an attorney of your own, or you could face a long uphill battle.
If you are going through a divorce, make sure you have an experienced attorney in your corner.