Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Link Between Divorce and Bankruptcy - Boise Divorce Attorney - Idaho Bankruptcy Lawyer 208-472-2383

Divorce and Bankruptcy

As a Boise Divorce Attorney and Idaho Bankruptcy Lawyer I field numerous questions about the effect of bankruptcy on divorce and visa versa.  Probably the most common question I receive has to do with the timing of bankruptcy.  People want to know if they should file for bankruptcy before or after divorce.  There are a few things which must be considered when answering this question.

Community Property and Debt in Idaho
Idaho is a community property state.  It follows, therefore that it is also a community debt state.  If you are considering filing bankruptcy before, during or after divorce, you must consider the effect of community debt on your bankruptcy.

The debt you incur during a marriage is a community debt (with a few exceptions which won't be discussed here today).  If one party files for bankruptcy before divorce, they will include all the community debt in the petition.  If the bankruptcy is accepted by the court, the debt is discharged as to that individual, but not to the other member of the community.  This potentially leaves the non-filing party with the complete responsibility of all the debt.  It general, it is always best for a couple to file bankruptcy together so that all the dischargeable debt is discharged for both parties.

Bankruptcy After Divorce
Another twist pops up when you file for bankruptcy after divorce.  When you split the community debt with each party taking a certain split of what is owing, that technically does not leave the other party free from those debts.  They are still community debts but the responsibility is just assigned to one party or the other. If the party assigned the debt fails to pay there are legal avenues to get a judgment against them or order them to pay.  If one party files for bankruptcy after the divorce and the non-filing party will still be responsible for the debt split in the divorce.

Yet another complication is when an individual files for bankruptcy after a divorce and fails to include all the community debt.  Sometimes people think they just need to include the debt they were assigned in the divorce.  In all likelihood, however, the trustee in bankruptcy will discover this over site and require the petition to be amended to include all the debt.

If you are seeking a divorce and need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney or you are filing bankruptcy and need to speak to a Boise Bankruptcy Lawyer, give us a call, 208-472-2383 and see what we can do for you.  You will be glad you did.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Boise Divorce Attorney - Family Law Lawyers - 208-472-2383

The Role of a Divorce Lawyer
As a Boise Divorce Attorney, I routinely provide divorce services to my clients.  But, what does it mean to provide divorce services?  What is the role of a divorce lawyer?  I pose this question because a divorce is a very complex thing.  There are the legal aspects and then there are the social, emotional and potentially spiritual aspects to it.

What a Divorce Lawyer Does
As a Family Law Lawyer, I initiate or respond to a divorce.  I help clients make determinations as to how and why property should be divided.  I help clients understand custody, determine the best custody situation, establish child support amounts.  I negotiate with the other side to get the best settlement for my client.  I file motions, responses, temporary orders, briefs and final orders with the court in support of my client.  I argue before the judge my client's case.  My role is to take the client through the loops and the hoops of the law.

To a degree I also must counsel my clients.  Divorce is a very emotional occurrence; something people don't go through personally everyday.  I see the effects on people daily and I see what pours fuel on a fire and what helps to make things go smoothly.  However, I also always tell my clients that there are many resources out there for counseling and counselors who are best equipped to help them emotionally, spiritually and socially.

Emotional, Social and Spiritual Support Before, During and After Divorce
Just as a legal professional can make your divorce go smoothly and have the best outcome for you, a professional counselor can go a long way helping someone through a divorce.  Long after your divorce is completed, you will continue to suffer the effects of divorce and will continue to need support.  They don't call marriage a life decision for nothing and the end of a marriage has life long consequences, especially if you have children.

While a court will order mediation and a court will order child support and a court will order custody, a court doesn't order you to take care of yourself.  Professional counseling will help you do that.  If you are struggling through your divorce, avail yourself of the resources available to you.  Understanding what the professionals you have employed in your life can do for you can help you make the best of your situation.

If you are seeking a divorce and need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney, give us a call and see what we can do for you, 208-472-2383.  You will be glad you did.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Boise Divorce Attorney 208-472-2383

Divorce in Idaho

As a Boise Divorce Attorney I see a whole range of divorce cases.  Some settle very amicably while others are knock down drag out lengthy court battles.  Today, I will focus on those cases where the divorce settles quickly, but specifically in regard to mutually agreed upon terms.

Default Divorce

You can have a divorce that settles quickly in a couple of ways.  One way is to have a default divorce.  In a default divorce, one party files a complaint outlining exactly what the terms of the divorce should be.  The other party is served with the papers.  Ordinarily in divorce, you must file an answer and if you don't the other party can take exactly what they asked for by default.  If you and your spouse agree to all the terms this is a very quick way to get divorced.  Inevitably, however, someone will change their mind and decide the terms are not fair.  The case can proceed and changes can be made simply by the other party filing an answer within 20 days of receiving the divorce complaint.

Property Settlement Agreements in Divorce

The Idaho Family Law Courts see thousands of divorces a year.  Many will start out very contentiously, however, many often settle because the courts really push mediation to help divorcing couples resolve their issues.  One way to put your agreement on the record is to create a property settlement agreement.  This is basically a contract between the two parties agreeing to the terms and conditions of the divorce.  It is a very effective tool to settle divorce issues.

One caveat, however.  It is critical to ask the court to retain jurisdiction over the case in the property settlement agreement.  If you don't, then when a party fails to comply with the terms or there has been a substantial and material change of circumstance, the court no longer has jurisdiction to hear the case or make changes.  If you want to enforce the agreement, you must start a new case to get a judgment against the other party.

If you are seeking a divorce and need to speak to a Boise Divorce Attorney, give us a call, 208-472-2383, you will be glad you did.