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Providence Divorce Law Blog

Ex-wife of energy company CEO gets nearly $1 billion in divorce

No matter the length of the marriage, when a couple splits, one part of coming to a divorce settlement is property division. The process tends to get trickier the longer the marriage lasts or the greater the assets accrued during the marriage.

Take, for example, a recent high-asset divorce. After a two-month long divorce trial, the ex-wife of the CEO of an energy company was awarded nearly $1 billion in the divorce decree. Harold Hamm, the CEO of Continental Resources married Sue Anne Hamm in 1988; she filed for divorce in 2012.

Is there a method used to calculate alimony during a divorce?

When married couples in Rhode Island decide it is in their best interest to part ways, there are several other important choices that must be made. Spousal support is one.

While awarding some form of alimony payment might be reasonable, some divorcing couples have a hard time agreeing on what constitutes a reasonable amount for a reasonable amount of time. Because financial support might be a major requirement for a spouse after divorce, some question if there is an alimony calculator or a method used to calculate alimony.

Establishing, enforcing and modifying child support agreements

Ensuring that all the needs of a child are met is often a difficult and never-ending task. When parents divorce, the needs of the child are often the focal point, especially when it comes to meeting the financial needs of the child.

Parents in Rhode Island and other states across the United States should understand that disputes surrounding child support agreements are common. Our firm understands that addressing issues related to child support disputes is important whether it is during dissolution or post-divorce. By acting timely and effective, parents should be able to develop and maintain a child support agreement that fulfills the best interests of the child.

What are the benefits of co-parenting after divorce?

Creating a stable lifestyle for children is often the goal for parents, but some may find that task challenging during and after divorce. To increase the chances of a healthy and working situation among the parents and with the children, an appropriate child-custody arrangement should be developed. When parents in Rhode Island and other states across the nation are able to put aside their differences and focus on the child, they can devise an arrangement that benefits everyone involved.

Co-parenting is a growing trend among divorced parents but some question the benefits of co-parenting beyond being a relatively fair and amicable agreement. In fact, co-parenting has many benefits. For example, in most cases, co-parenting is a way to both avoid and resolve conflicts in a joint custody arrangement. Co-parenting does so by keeping the channels of communication open, which helps ex-spouses talk and ultimately put the needs of their children first.

Asset valuation and high-asset divorces

Sorting through belongings is never an easy task for Rhode Islanders, but when it needs to occur during dissolution, the process could become very complex, especially during a high-asset divorce. Our law firm understands the disputes and complications associated with a high-asset divorce. It is important to understand the details of the property and assets involved. This will ensure that everything is considered, avoiding post-divorce issues.

Asset valuation could be a focal point in the property division process. How much a piece of property is worth could lead to numerous disputes among the divorcing couple. This not only affects the length of the process but could also lead to an improper or unequal distribution.

Rhode Island ranks low for child support recovery

Being able to provide for a child is important to any parent in Rhode Island, but some might find this challenging to accomplish. Following a divorce involving children, parents will reach an agreement that involves various details about the care and custody of their children. Establishing a child support payment is an important component because it ensures that their child is properly cared for, especially when one parent takes on the role as custodial parent. When there is a failure to pay child support, the child and the primary parent could be impacted greatly.

The state of Rhode Island has been ranked towards the bottom of the list with regards to tracking down those parents that are past due with child support payments as well as missing payments. According to reports, the state is lagging in tracking down those who fail to pay child support as well as the child support payments that have gone missing.

Seeking retirement benefits in a high-asset divorce

Initiating the divorce process causes Rhode Island couples to question their rights during and after the process. When dealing with a high-asset divorce, the issue of benefits often arises as they sort through the marital property and assets. Whether it is medical, disability, social security or other retirement benefits, people often seeks to understand what benefits they are entitled to from their ex-spouse.

Depending on the type of benefits people are seeking, they might have to meet certain standards or factors in order to receive them. With regards to retirement benefits, even if the individual is remarried, the person could still owe benefits to their ex-spouse so long as they fit the criteria.

Steps to take to address custody disputes

Depending on the details of the divorce, a spouse might be more focused on a specific divorce legal issue than another. This is especially true when children are involved. Parents in Rhode Island, and in states across the nation, tend to focus their decision-making process on the children in order to ensure they gain rightful custody. This is not always an easy process and some divorcing couples find themselves in a lengthy custody dispute, seeking to obtain the custody and visitation rights they are entitled to.

In order to move forward and reach an amicable child custody agreement, parents should consider taking certain steps. First, it is important to establish common ground. If the divorcing couple is able to find areas they agree on, this might help promote a more positive and progressive negotiating process. If the communication channels are highly constrained, parents might want to consider involving a neutral party to help avoid a heated battle.

Enforcing child support payments and understanding modification

Whether parents are married or divorced, they have the obligation to provide for the financial needs of their children. Designing a child support arrangement can be challenging, and some Rhode Island parents might find it difficult to uphold the agreement due to issues arising post-divorce. This issue could present problems for the custodial parent and the children if the noncustodial parent is unable or unwilling to follow the child support agreement. In some cases, this might lead to parents considering child support modification, which can lead to questions about how they could go about this process and what the process entails.

In order to understand whether modification is a possible option, parents should understand why child support is awarded and how they reach the specific amount used in the order. When child support is established or even modified, the orders are a reflection of various factors including both parents' income. To prevent arrears from accruing, the amount on the original or modified order will be one that the noncustodial parent will be able to fulfill each month.

Addressing property division issues during dissolution

There are events in life that require couples to sort through their belongings. In some cases this occurs for an impending move and a cause for that move is when the couple decide to divorce and move into two separate homes. Even in a short-term marriage, deciding who gets what is not an easy process to accomplish. Our firm understands that the property division step in dissolution could create hurdles, disputes and possibly further complicate the entire process. This is why it is important to outline the process and understand how to address potential legal issues.

A complex property distribution often follows a filing for a high asset divorce. While documents such as a prenuptial agreement could ease the process, these legal documents do not always outline what should be done regarding all marital assets. This could lead to disputes regarding the category the property falls under and who should get what.

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