Tag: stay at home moms and divorce

Equitable Distribution of the Marital Home

My hometown newspaper, The Miami Herald, weighs in on the problems couples face with the equitable distribution of their home during a divorce. The view is from the perspective of real estate agents around the country. In a perfect world, couples sit down together, and figure out the best time and price to sell their house. But of course, divorce is not a perfect world.

selling marital home divorce

Miami Vices

During a divorce, people react differently, sometimes badly, when it comes time to sell their homes. According to many real estate agents, in an attempt at a power play, one spouse simply disappears. And in rare cases, both spouses can vanish before the home is sold.

Divorce is an emotionally charged event, and often one spouse will take a hike when they believe the other one is exerting too much control over the situation. Sometimes, they disappear before an agreement is reached on how to sell the house. But once in a while, a soon-to-be ex takes off after the place is sold but before the deal goes to closing. If they never come back, the transaction can easily fall apart.

But some real estate agents think that it is better to take off and cool off, than act out in an aggressive manner. One real estate agent reported that one of her colleagues was once threatened with a machete. In another instance, emotions were so high that and agent had to sit between warring spouses at a closing.

Florida Equitable Distribution

I’ve written about equitable distribution of the marital home during a divorce before. In a proceeding for dissolution of marriage, in addition to all other remedies available to a court to do equity between the parties, a court must set apart to each spouse that spouse’s non-marital assets and liabilities.

However, when distributing the marital assets between spouses, a family court must begin with the premise that the distribution should be equal, unless there is a justification for an unequal distribution based on all relevant factors.

Generally, the home remains a marital asset, which is subject to equitable distribution, regardless of who lives there during the divorce process. If a home is marital then both parties have equal opportunities to buy the other spouse’s share. Both may also be on the hook for liabilities.

Until a parenting plan for the children is in place, if you are interested in maintaining a meaningful relationship in your child’s life, leaving the home before a timesharing agreement is entered may create problems, and it can be costly, and prohibitive expensive to rent a new place if the process takes a long time.

Staying in the same home could create an incentive to negotiate a final settlement because living with your soon to be ex-spouse is very uncomfortable. However, there are also a multitude of problems with selling the marital home during a divorce, as many real estate agents will tell you.

Love It or List It!

One way agents have dealt with angry spouses is not to allow them to be in the same room together. Some suggest interact with clients separately. Another way is for the couple to hire a skilled team in real estate sales and divorce. But many say that the best way is to sit down together and discuss the situation as calmly as possible.

While the joy of living under one roof may have been lost during a divorce, couples could be living together as housemates until the home is sold – if it is sold at all. Whether the house is sold or not, it’s better to negotiate calmly about who will get what, or how the expenses will be handled. If the home is sold, couples must decide: How to divide the proceeds, and how utilities and other household expenses will be handled.

If addressed early on, before tempers flare, it will go a long way toward making your remaining time together as bearable as possible. Actually, you have to keep your cool until the day after you have sat down at the closing table. You can blow off steam after the closing, but don’t let your pent-up anger scuttle the deal at the closing.

One agent reportedly was working with a client seeking to buy a house from a couple who was in the middle of a divorce. When it came time to close, the wife refused to sign the documents until her soon-to-be ex-husband agreed to pay off a “very large” credit card bill that had nothing to do with the house. He didn’t pay. She refused to sign. The buyers didn’t get the house. A lawsuit could result.

The Miami Herald article is here.

Divorce More Likely for Stay At Home Moms

Is divorce more likely for stay at home moms? One divorce lawyer who received 1.7 million views talked about the top professions women should avoid when marrying a man. Now she is back advising people on the top jobs men should avoid when marrying a woman.

Stay at Home Mon Divorce

Again with Supply Chain?

More scientifically, in a Forbes article a while ago, the career site Zippia had reviewed Census Bureau data to figure out which jobs and industries showed the highest divorce rates for those 30 and younger.

Military jobs put the biggest strain on marriages, topping the list with a 30% divorce rate. Surprisingly, or not, rounding out the top jobs predicting divorce – all of which hovered in the 14% to 18% range – were:

  1. Supply Chain Logisticians
  2. Automotive service technicians and mechanics; and
  3. Chemical technicians

But this recent video by a divorce lawyer about stay at home moms has been getting way more attention – with over 4.1 million views of people wanting to know what profession a man should avoid in their spouse.

“The most common profession that I see in the female parties in my divorces, and this is over 13 years of cases,” she says, before nervously revealing the answer, is a stay-at-home mom.”

Being a stay-at-home parent is not easy, and many people argue that it actually should be treated as a profession where people should be paid for raising and taking care of society’s future.

Florida No Fault Divorce

I’ve written about the causes of divorce before. The official term for divorce in Florida is “dissolution of marriage”, and you don’t need fault as a ground for divorce. Florida abolished fault as a ground for divorce. So, whether your Wife is working in an office, or worse, staying at home raising the children, you don’t need to allege that as grounds for divorce.

The no-fault concept in Florida means you no longer have to prove a reason for the divorce, like your spouse’s diaper changing and cooking. Instead, you just need to state under oath that your marriage is “irretrievably broken.”

Before the no-fault divorce era, people who wanted to get divorce either had to reach agreement in advance with the other spouse that the marriage was over, or throw mud at each other and prove wrongdoing like adultery or abuse.

No-fault laws were the result of trying to change the way divorces played out in court. No fault laws have reduced the number of feuding couples who felt the need to resort to distorted facts, lies, and the need to focus the trial on who did what to whom.

What if you work remotely?

According to this, thoroughly unscientific study by one divorce lawyer with millions of views, there are many reasons why a stay-at-home mom might have one of the highest divorce rates.

“Number one: when you’re divorcing a stay-at-home mom, they are paralyzed with fear, and rightfully so, because their whole life is going to change.”

The second reason, she reveals, is simply an observation she’s made in the past and her own opinion, but relates to the first reason and that is that it’s easier for the pair to grow apart.

“The husband starts feeling like an ATM, and the wife becomes completely focused on the children.”

However, when looking at actual data by industry, there are some surprising findings. For one, the often stated claim that half of marriages end in divorce does not really pan out.

When looking broadly by industry, military marriages hovered at around a 15% divorce rate, and the other 24 industries with reported divorce rates were less than 10%. The legal, science and entertainment fields were among those at the bottom of the list, with divorce rates of about 4% or less.

In other studies, people have looked at the causes. One Kansas State University study, for example, found that arguments about money were the top predictor of divorce among both men and women — even higher than arguments about children, and staying at home.

That is why it is important that money conversations remain a priority. Schedule talks like you schedule doctors’ checkups, several times a year. And start by making sure you’re both on the same page.

The Your Tango article is here.