Due to the complicated nature of divorce, each case requires specialized legal attention. There are a number of variables that determine the outcome of any court case. Nevertheless, those filing for a divorce in Wisconsin frequently ask the following questions during their first consultation.
How long until the divorce is final?
It largely depends on you and your spouse. If both parties are agreeable, the process can be final within a few months. You must wait at least 120 days on this type of divorce. However, if the two parties are at odds, it can take years to bring a complicated divorce case to trial.
What will the divorce cost?
Since the amount of time spent on each divorce case varies, so does the cost. There is typically a base fee. However, several factors contribute to the overall cost, including the properties involved and the value of those properties. Even when both parties agree to work together, emotions run high in these cases and can cause delays.
Can a party date to date before the divorce is final?
Yes, but be aware that a new relationship could cause your spouse to become emotional, which can complicate things.
Can we divorce without a lawyer?
You you can however, unless the union involves no children or assets. However, it is not recommended to forgo legal advice while filing for divorce in Wisconsin. It is possible to file through the court clerk. Most couples are emotional during this time and do not want the additional headache of filing on their own.
What is martial property?
Unless your property was a gift or inherited, all property acquired during the marriage is considered martial property. Property acquired before marriage or after separation may be considered martial property if both parties’ names are on the deed.
Is Wisconsin a community property state?
Yes, Wisconsin is a community property state. This means martial property is divided equally, regardless of who contributed more financially during the marriage.
How is custody determined?
It’s ideal for both parties to work together on custody. It is less traumatic for the child(ren) when both parents agree and stick to their arrangement. Typically, one parent will receive primary custody. Joint custody prevents either spouse from moving out of state with the child, until the agreement is changed.
What percentage of my income will go to child support?
The state of Wisconsin sets the child support rates. Noncustodial parents pay 17 percent of their income to financially assist in raising one child. Those with two children pay 25 percent. The maximum amount for child support is 34 percent, which covers five or more children. The court may require more or less in special circumstances.
Will I be forced to pay maintenance?
Wisconsin is a “no fault” divorce state. Infidelity and domestic abuse, for instance, do not factor into maintenance awards. If the court finds you responsible for maintenance, the amount will be based on the length of the marriage. The financial status of both parties also comes into play.
When you’re ready to begin the filing process, consult with an attorney that handles divorce in Wisconsin. Most offer free consultations. It’s an opportunity to ask questions and decide if you are comfortable with the attorney handling the case.