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Myths & Misconceptions About Family Law & Divorce 

Evan Taylor Law Office PSC Dec. 19, 2022

Nowadays, information is readily available at one’s fingertips. However, it may be difficult to tell the difference between sound advice and misinformation. That is why it’s important to clear up myths and misconceptions about family law in Owensboro, Kentucky, and neighboring areas like Henderson, Hancock County, Ohio County, and McLean County. 

If you live anywhere in Kentucky, reach out to Evan Taylor Law Office PSC to set up a consultation. We’re here to help you and your family move forward, no matter what brings you to our office. 

Here are some common myths and misconceptions regarding family law and divorce: 

1. I can withhold visitations rights if the other parent does not pay child support. 

Child custody, visitation rights, and child support are formal agreements decided in court. Therefore, the custodial parent cannot deny visitation rights even if the non-custodial parent has not made child support payments. Nevertheless, the non-custodial parent is completely within their right to submit a complaint when child support is late. Please note that the non-custodial parent can file a complaint if the custodial parent denies visitation rights for any reason. 

2. One of the spouses can deny divorce entirely. 

It is unlawful for one of the spouses to “deny” divorce. As a result, there is nothing a spouse can do to prevent the other from filing for divorce. Please note that the divorce process may be much longer and more expensive when one of the parties does not cooperate. 

3. The other spouse gets everything when there is adultery involved. 

Adultery constitutes grounds for divorce. While proving it beyond a doubt may be challenging, doing so can become the basis for filing divorce papers. However, the division of assets is based on state law and not on who is “the victim.” The court decides who gets what based on a fair distribution of assets. That being said, the filing party may request compensation for suffering caused by the non-filing party’s actions. 

4. Mothers are always awarded primary custody of children. 

Contrary to popular belief, mothers are not automatically granted primary custody of primary children. Family law does not establish this principle. If necessary, family law states that the most capable parent gets primary custody. Ultimately, a family court decides who gets custody. This decision also includes joint custody or awarding custody to grandparents when neither parent is fit. 

5. You must file for divorce in the state you were married. 

One or both spouses may file for divorce in the state where they live or where the other spouse lives. Consequently, divorce papers can be filed in the state of residence or the other spouse’s state of residence. Please note that state residency requirements must be met before filing. Generally speaking, residency requirements range from 90 to 180 days prior to filing divorce papers. 

6. If the property is listed in one of the spouse’s names, they keep it. 

Division of the marital assets is often based on who paid for what, not whose name is on the paperwork. For instance, the court may award ownership of a house to the spouse who paid for it, even if the other spouse’s name is on the property deed. The decision boils down to proving who paid for what and when they paid for it. 

7. Alimony is a part of all divorces. 

Alimony is not automatic in a divorce. Nowadays, alimony laws are gender-neutral, meaning that either of the spouses may have to pay alimony to the other. The court decides who pays alimony based on both spouses’ financial situations and specific needs. It is possible for the court to determine that neither party has to pay alimony when both spouses are in a solid financial position. Alimony decisions are separate from child support decisions.   

Finding the Right Family Law Attorney in Kentucky 

At Evan Taylor Law Office PSC, we strive to provide professional legal counsel. We work hard to protect your rights, provide you with the facts, and stand by your side every step of the way. Call today to speak with an experienced and trusted family law attorney.