Parkersburg, WV Divorce Lawyers
Once you’ve decided divorce is the way forward for you, it’s important to take steps to protect yourself, your financial stability, and your future. Without a plan, you risk going into this complicated legal process with no set goals or strategies. This can lead to a divorce that drags on for months or even years, leaving you stressed and mentally exhausted. But when you work with a team of Parkersburg divorce attorneys, you can figure out what matters most to you and how to get it.
That’s where we step in. At Hardy Pence, we have many experienced divorce attorneys who are ready to help you work through this challenging time. Call us at 304-345-7250 to set up a consultation now.
Fault or No-Fault Divorce?
One decision that you will need to make fairly early in your divorce is whether to pursue a fault or no-fault divorce. West Virginia is one of only a few states that allows married individuals to choose fault-based divorce. We’ll explore the differences below.
No-fault divorce is the more common option, both in West Virginia and across the United States. Couples who choose no-fault divorce claim that the marriage is irretrievably broken or beyond repair for no specific reason. This allows the couple to preserve their privacy without assigning blame. It’s often the better way to go for couples who want to pursue divorce in an amicable or cooperative manner since it lets you avoid hashing out the ugly details of what went wrong.
There are situations in which fault divorce may be the right solution. In West Virginia, you may opt for fault divorce if your spouse has treated you inhumanely or cruelly, has been unfaithful, has been convicted of a felony, is incurably insane, is addicted to alcohol or drugs, or has abandoned you for at least six months. You must be able to prove your claims in court, so be prepared to put in more work if you choose this route. If you are granted a fault divorce, it may help you when it comes to the division of assets, alimony, and other aspects of your split.
Dividing Your Assets and Debts
Whether you have a lot or a little to split, this part of the divorce process can be difficult for many couples. Both of you want to get back what you put into the marriage and create some financial stability, and that often means that couples argue over valuable assets.
You’ll need to look at your property to determine what will be considered marital and separate property. If you both owned assets prior to the marriage, they will likely be considered separate property. These assets are not subject to division unless they have been commingled with marital assets. Inheritances are also generally considered separate property, even if they were received during your marriage.
Marital property usually means anything that was obtained or earned during the marriage. Both parties are entitled to a share of this property, but what you actually receive depends largely on the details of your relationship and divorce. Factors include the separate assets owned by each party, financial and non-financial contributions made to the marriage, and each party’s earning ability.
While these factors all come into play, it’s important to remember that many couples do not leave this part up to the court. By negotiating a division of assets and debts with your spouse, you can retain control over the compromises you make.
Exploring Options for Your Children
You’ll also have to discuss child custody and child support. In West Virginia, the courts generally prefer both parents to have parenting time. This allows each parent to maintain and grow their relationship with their children. A comprehensive parenting schedule will include the school year, summer, holidays, and other important days. If shared parenting time is not a viable option for your family, one parent may have the majority of the parenting time while the other follows a set visitation schedule.
Each state sets its own formula for child support. In West Virginia, the total amount of support is calculated based on both parents’ income. The amount owed is then divided in a way proportionate to each party’s income. If parenting time is not split 50/50, this may also affect the child support order.
Why You Should Choose Hardy Pence
Divorce may well be one of the most difficult things you ever go through. You’re going to go through a wide range of emotions during this time, and unfortunately, they take over when you have to make some of the most important decisions of your life. By working with the Parkersburg divorce lawyers at Hardy Pence, you can ensure that you are making the best choices for your future and goals. We strive to be an objective voice that provides you with options, explains potential outcomes, and helps you decide which path suits you every step of the way.
Our goal is to navigate your divorce in a way that suits your preferences. For some individuals, divorce is the result of infidelity or other forms of betrayal—and they want to get everything they can. For those individuals, a conventional approach to divorce may be the best option. Others want to avoid the stress and anxiety that can come with this type of divorce, especially if they have minor children that they must co-parent. For those individuals, a cooperative divorce or a divorce that uses mediation as a tool may be a better choice.
Everyone has different needs and priorities when their marriage ends. You can trust us to act in your best interests and make this process as pain-free as possible for you.
Contact Us Today to Discuss Your Divorce Options in Parkersburg
Ready to get started on your Parkersburg divorce case? Don’t wait any longer to contact our team of experienced family law attorneys. Set up your consultation now by calling us at 304-345-7250 or contacting us online.