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Williamson County Divorce Law Blog

Domestic violence awareness increasing in Tennessee

According to some definitions, domestic violence consists of harmful action, whether physical, emotional or sexual, perpetrated by one intimate partner on another. Tennessee law strongly condemns any act of domestic violence. Any victim of domestic violence may have access to various helplines and agencies to help them escape a dangerous situation.

Domestic violence became a hot topic of discussion after the recent release of the video of an NFL player assaulting his then-fiancé in an elevator. The impact of the video was seen in Tennessee, where cases of domestic violence are all too frequent. After the video went viral on the Internet, domestic violence hotlines said they observed a surge in reporting and complaints.

Things to consider during a high asset divorce

Financial matters relating to divorce proceedings often become a contentious issue between separating spouses. In cases where the estranged couple has amassed a substantial amount of assets during the duration of marriage, disagreements over such financial matters can get even worse.

Sometimes the emotional upheaval of divorce proceedings ends up causing the estranged couple to act in an uncharacteristic and irrational manner. This often results in caustic financial battles amidst the divorce proceedings. Many couples, especially late in life, have substantial savings, but during a divorce, all marital assets often come into the divorce settlement, especially in the absence of prenuptial agreements.

Obtaining an order of protection in Tennessee - Part II

Domestic violence has become a great cause of concern for women of Tennessee as well as law enforcement authorities. After getting away from a violent partner, with the help of an attorney, one may obtain a protection order from the judge in a court of law.

A protection order may be crucial in protecting one from any further domestic violence by an intimate partner. If necessary, a judge may even render an ex-parte protection order in the absence of the defendant in such domestic violence cases. By nature, the protection order is an interim order that makes the accused stay away from an alleged victim.

High-asset divorces often require expert legal guidance

Many divorce proceedings in Tennessee, like elsewhere in the country, are complicated for a variety of reasons. Emotions often run strong over who will get custody of any minor children, who will pay child support and maybe whether spousal support should be paid. If a couple has considerable assets or properties that need to be split, the process of property division also can create conflict.

Attorneys in the law offices of Judy A. Oxford have had years of practice in dealing with such high asset divorce proceedings. Where large assets and multiple properties are to be split, complex calculations are often required and tax consequences should be factored into the disposal of property. Many times a spouse may be emotionally attached to a property or asset and be reluctant to let it go. Aside from the family home, these might include works of art or high-value collectibles. Judy A. Oxford can help her clients reach fair deals and compromises when it comes to property division, especially by using mediation.

What should women know about alimony reforms?

Alimony law is based on the legal principle of equity. Under alimony laws, one spouse provides financial spousal support to the estranged spouse after divorce. The principle is established as one spouse may have become the sole breadwinner of the family while the other had taken on the job of taking care of couple's home.

While many husbands also give up their careers or potential careers for the family, empirical data shows that women are still are the majority of alimony beneficiaries. The principle of equity underlying alimony laws are three pronged. Firstly, it is assumed that the spouse claiming alimony had given up a lucrative career in order to take care of the family. Secondly, by taking care of the family household, the spouse supported the sole breadwinner in furthering that person's career. Thirdly, at the time of the divorce especially in case of a long union, the earning spouse is presumed to be at the helm of that person's career trajectory while the other is practically unemployable due to a long history of not working.

Divorce in Tennessee and prenuptial and postnuptial agreements

When a marriage breaks down, property division is often an area of conflict between separating spouses. Tennessee is an "equitable distribution" state, which means that courts divide marital property in a fair and reasonable manner. The equitable distribution is sometimes an equal division but it is also possible that the property division is not equal because of arguments and evidence presented in court by either spouse. One way to support the court's decision is by drafting and signing a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

The purpose of a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement is to identify each spouse's assets and debts and to decide about each spouse's rights toward that property and other related issues in the divorce, such as alimony. A prenuptial or postnuptial agreement usually applies to marital property based on the principle of "substantial contribution." The contribution does not only have to be monetary -- a homemaker, who has helped rear a family may also be considered a substantial contributor by Tennessee courts.

Will Nick Cannon's net worth exceed Mariah Carey's after divorce?

As many Williamson County, Tennessee, residents may agree, celebrity divorces attract a lot of media attention. Once rich and famous spouses file for divorce, numerous speculative stories appear in the media discussing the possible division of assets and a possible legal fight for the custody of children.

In one such celebrity divorce involving singer Mariah Carey and TV show host Nick Cannon, various media stories are appearing, which discuss the potential positive effects of a divorce on Cannon's net worth. Most divorce laws across the United States, including those in Tennessee, provide for equitable distribution of marital assets after divorce.

Obtaining an order of protection in Tennessee - Part I

Newspaper reports indicate that domestic violence cases are rising across the United States, including in the state of Tennessee. This type of act is traumatic for the victim, and it may affect his or her life, physically, emotionally and financially.

An Order of Protection gives victims of domestic violence protection from those who have abused them. Depending on the victim's circumstances, this order can force the other person to move out of the house, or pay for the rent for another place for the victim to live. It can also give the victim temporary custody of any children, or order the other person to pay for support. It is important to remember, however, that an Order of Protection does not protect children.

Child custody battle seesaws in and out of Tennessee

A long-running child custody dispute that has received tremendous social media attention is yet again awaiting a court ruling. At the heart of the dispute is a 10-year-old girl who was adopted and brought to Tennessee as an infant and raised by foster parents. The girl's biological father had been convicted of a firearms crime and given a 15-year jail term, but his sentence was reduced and he was released earlier this year. He was subsequently given custody of his daughter by a Nebraska court, but that decision is being evaluated by a Tennessee appeals court.

Meanwhile, the girl has been returned to her father although she is technically a ward of the state of Nebraska, and is apparently doing well academically and socially, according to the father's lawyer. Further, jurisdiction on this child custody case had been shifted to Nebraska; however, the hearing has been deferred until the appeals court hands down its decision. The Tennessee court is thus also expected to weigh in on the jurisdiction issue.

Obtaining a fair resolution in a high asset divorce

When high net worth spouses head for divorce, the question of asset division often comes up. Residents of Williamson, Tennessee, may have read stories about celebrities or other wealthy couples who could not come to an agreement on how to divide various assets. While the issues could easily have had to do with some pre-existing animosity between the separating spouses, such asset disputes only tend to make divorces seem bitter and vindictive.

Generally speaking, resolving any divorce dispute - not necessarily a high asset divorce - involves establishing the financial contribution of the partners to the marriage and their status following the divorce. Usually, partners have some assets of their own that they have brought into the marriage. Most times, they get to keep those assets after the divorce. If there is a chance that the divorce will create a significant disparity in the spouses' finances, an arbitrating court may find it necessary to award spousal support in addition to the transfer of some of the assets.

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Judy A. Oxford, Attorney at Law
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Franklin, TN 37064
Phone: (615) 791-8511
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