Jeffersontown Divorce Lawyers
The decision to get a divorce is one that is not made without a lot of thought and consideration. Usually, one or both spouses finally comes to the conclusion that dissolving the marriage is the only viable option remaining. When this is the case, there is a long and complicated legal proceeding ahead, one which may involve litigation. Before beginning the process, it is very important to retain the services of a seasoned family law attorney.
Since 1999, John H. Ruby & Associates has represented clients in Jeffersontown and communities throughout the Louisville, Kentucky area with divorce and all other types of family legal matters. We understand that when you are going through a divorce, this is a very difficult time in your life. We are here to provide strong legal guidance and moral support, so you can put this chapter of your life behind you and gain a fresh start.
We know that no two situations are exactly alike, and there is no “one size fits all” remedy that works for every circumstance. We work closely with our clients, and we take the time to listen and understand their unique needs, so we can customize the solution that works best for them.
Most often, it is in everyone’s best interests to negotiate a divorce settlement without the need for a long, drawn out court battle. This keeps costs down and helps preserve delicate family relationships. All that said, there are some situations in which the parties are simply unable to settle their differences amicably. In such cases, we are ready and able to advocate forcefully for your rights and interests, and the best interests of your children, at trial and upon appeal (if necessary).
Comprehensive Divorce Representation in Kentucky
We represent clients in Jeffersontown and nearby communities for all legal matters related to divorce. This includes but is not limited to:
- Contested Divorces
- Uncontested Divorces
- High Net Worth Divorces
- Divorces with Stay-At-Home Parents
- Divorces with Special Needs Children
- Child Support
- Child Custody and Visitation
- Alimony/Spousal Support
- Division of Assets and Debts
- Discovery of Hidden Income and Assets
- Parent and Child Relocations
- Post-Decree Modifications and Enforcement
Kentucky Divorce Requirements
Kentucky is a “no fault” divorce state, which means that either spouse can file for a dissolution of marriage without having to show any grounds. The only reason that needs to be given to the court is that the marriage is “irretrievably broken”, meaning there is no reasonable chance that the spouses can reconcile.
In order to file for divorce in Kentucky, one or both spouses must be either a resident of the state or stationed at a military base in the state for at least 180 days (roughly 6 months). And although the spouses can be living together at the time when the divorce is filed, they must have lived apart for at least 60 days (or lived under the same roof but without sexual relations for at least 60 days) before the divorce can be finalized.
Kentucky law also permits the form of legal separation known as “divorce from bed and board”, which is similar to a divorce except that neither spouse is allowed to get remarried. After a divorce from bed and board has been in effect for at least one year, it can be changed to a regular divorce.
How is Child Custody Determined in Kentucky?
When divorcing parents cannot agree on questions related to child custody and visitation, the family courts must decide these issues based on the best interests of the child. In Kentucky, the legal presumption is that joint custody and equally shared parenting time is what is best for the child. However, the courts may deviate from this standard if it can be shown, by a preponderance of the evidence, that joint custody and shared parenting is not in the child’s best interests.
The court examines several factors in making its determination. These may include:
- The desires of the parents and the desires of any person other than the parents who has had de facto custody of the child;
- The level of involvement each parent has in the lives of the child;
- The ability of each parent to provide care, nurture, and support to the child;
- The wishes of the child (assuming the child is mature enough to provide meaningful input into the discussion);
- The relationship between the child and the parents, custodian, siblings, and other important people in their lives;
- The mental and physical health of the parents, child, and others involved;
- Any history of domestic violence or abuse by either parent.
How Much Child Support is Paid with a Joint Custody Arrangement?
Since shared/joint custody is the default standard in Kentucky, child support for these types of arrangements are calculated based on the combined monthly gross income of each parent, the number of children for whom child support is needed, and the health insurance and day care costs for each child. The Court then evaluates if there are sufficient grounds to deviate from a standard child support calculation pursuant to the Kentucky Child Support Guidelines. If the Court deviates from the child support guidelines, then each party will be responsible for all of the children’s expenses while they are in their household.
The children’s extraordinary medical expenses are addressed separately. Medical expenses are typically divided between the parties pursuant to their combines monthly income percentage.
When is Alimony/Spousal Support Paid?
Alimony, also known as spousal support or spousal maintenance, can be requested by either spouse during a Kentucky divorce. In order for the court to award alimony, there are two main criteria that are supposed to be met:
- The spouse who is seeking alimony lacks the resources to support themselves, even after the property division is completed;
- The spouse who is seeking alimony does not have the ability to sufficiently support themselves or is not able to because they need to stay at home and care for the children.
If one of the spouses is eligible for support, the court looks at several factors to determine how much is appropriate and how long spousal support should be paid for. These may include:
- The age, physical, and mental health of the recipient spouse;
- The financial resources of each spouse;
- How long the couple was married;
- The established standard of living during the marriage;
- Any sacrifices and contributions made by the recipient spouse to advance the career of the payor spouse;
- The amount of time needed for the recipient spouse to complete the required education and training to obtain appropriate employment.
Alimony may be awarded temporarily while the divorce is in process, then a permanent award is determined at the time the process is finalized. This award may be for a fixed period of time (such as long enough for the recipient spouse to find work), or it may be paid indefinitely until there is a substantial change in circumstances. Alimony may also be awarded as a lump sum rather than ongoing payments.
Contact the Experienced Jeffersontown, KY Divorce Attorneys at John H. Ruby and Associates
For skilled legal guidance with divorce and all other types of family legal matters in Kentucky, call John H. Ruby & Associates today at 502-895-2626 or message us through our online contact form to schedule a consultation. You may also stop by our Louisville office in person at your convenience.