Tacoma Divorce Lawyers for Spouses Contemplating Legal Separation
Working with Families in the Bonney Lake, Gig Harbor, Lakewood, Puyallup, University Place Areas
Commonly referred to as a divorce, the process of legally terminating a marriage in Washington is officially known as a “dissolution” or “dissolution of marriage.” While people tend to think of divorces as messy and contentious court proceedings (and they sometimes are), in most cases, spouses who are willing to work together can reach an amicable resolution that saves time, stress, and money for all parties involved.
If you and your spouse no longer wish to live together but do not wish to file for divorce, in Washington you have the option to file for a “legal separation.” With a legal separation, you remain married, but you divide your assets and debts, enter into a parenting plan, and establish financial support obligations just as you would if you got divorced. Couples often prefer to remain married for financial or other reasons, and the legal separation provides a legally sound option for doing so.
Getting Divorced: Preparing for the Road Ahead
If you are considering a divorce, or if your spouse has already filed for divorce, it is important to prepare for the road ahead. Getting divorced is a process, and the more you do to prepare, the smoother the process will likely be.
At Blado Kiger Bolan, P.S., we work closely with our clients at all stages of the divorce process. From deciding when to file to collecting the documentation needed to secure a favorable outcome, we sit side-by-side with our clients, listening to their questions and helping them make informed decisions about protecting their financial interests and legal rights. Our family law attorneys bring decades of experience to representing clients in divorce negotiations and litigation, strategically advising clients in the areas of:
- Distribution of Community Property – In Washington, with only limited exceptions, any assets acquired by either spouse during the marriage are considered “community property.” This means that they are subject to distribution when the spouses divorce. We help our clients identify which of their assets qualify as separate and community property, and we fight to preserve the property rights our clients desire.
- Maintenance (Alimony) – In Washington, either spouse can claim maintenance (alimony) depending upon the spouses’ respective financial circumstances and career decisions before and during their marriage. This is a surprisingly complex area of the law, and we make sure our clients secure the financial support rights and obligations to which they are legally entitled.
- Child Support – Under Washington law, child support obligations are determined according to a statutory formula. But, this does not mean that securing an appropriate child support order is easy. From uncovering hidden income to determining which deductions apply, we take a comprehensive approach to protecting our clients’ rights with regard to child custody.
- Parenting Plans (Child Custody and Visitation) – For spouses with shared children, custody (officially known as a “parenting plan” in Washington) will often be among the most important and emotionally charged aspects of their divorce. We work with our clients to understand their goals and personal circumstances, and we use the law to negotiate or argue for the parenting plans that best serve the interests of our clients’ children.
As we mentioned above, while some divorces are contentious, in most cases spouses are able to resolve their differences out of court. At Blado Kiger Bolan, P.S., we focus on securing favorable results for our clients in the quickest, most cost-effective, and least-contentious way possible. Depending upon the circumstances at hand, this may mean going to trial; but, more often it will mean negotiating a settlement, using mediation, or pursuing a collaborative divorce.
Legal Separation: Is It the Right Option for You?
If you and your spouse have decided to separate but you wish to remain married, Washington allows you to file for a legal separation. With a legal separation, you and your spouse can resolve all of the divorce-related issues listed above, but your marriage remains intact. Many couples pursue legal separations for financial reasons (such as maintaining medical insurance for a sick spouse), though spouses often prefer to remain married for a variety of other reasons as well. If you are considering a legal separation, our Tacoma divorce lawyers can help you decide if this is the best option for you.
Schedule an Initial Consultation With a Tacoma Divorce Attorney Today
With offices in Tacoma, our attorneys serve clients in Bonney Lake, Gig Harbor, Lakewood, Puyallup, University Place, and the surrounding areas. To speak with one of our eperienced divorce attorneys about your divorce or legal separation, call (253) 272-2997 or request an initial consultation online today.
Tacoma Divorce Lawyers – Blado Kiger Bolan, P.S.