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California family lawyerThe Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was passed by the States Congress last December, resulting in the most major federal tax reform of the last 30 years. This law affects nearly everyone in the U.S., and discussion of some of its changes, such as a lowered corporate tax rate and an increased standard deduction, have filled the news as financial experts examine its impact. However, one lesser-known aspect of the law is important for divorcing couples to understand, since it will affect how spousal support (which is traditionally called alimony) will be taxed.

How Alimony Is Taxed

Previously, when a spouse who earned a larger income paid spousal support to their former partner, they would be able to deduct this amount from their taxable income, and the payments would be considered taxable income for the spouse receiving them. However, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act changes this, so that alimony will now be treated like child support. For divorces finalized after December 31, 2018, spousal support will not be tax-deductible for the payor or taxable for the payee.

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California family lawyerToday’s world is more connected than ever, and the internet provides us with the ability to communicate with others no matter where we go or what we do. For many, social media is an essential part of their everyday existence, giving them the opportunity to share their lives with friends, family, and even total strangers.

People who are going through a divorce may be tempted to post details about their situation on social media, whether they are asking others for advice, informing friends and family members about changes to their lives, or simply venting their emotions. However, it is important to understand that there may be legal consequences to doing so. Here are some ways social media can have an impact on a divorce case:

  • Negativity and over-sharing - Complaining about your ex, discussing the reasons your marriage has failed or laying blame for your divorce are all natural impulses, but angry social media posts can be taken out of context and used against you. In some cases, they could even be considered harassment, and they could affect the decisions made in divorce court.
  • Financial information - Even if you do not discuss your income, the information you share could affect financial matters related to your divorce. Posting photos of an expensive item you have purchased or discussing a lavish vacation could impact the decisions regarding the division of property. Mentioning income earned from a side job could affect the child support or spousal support you pay or receive.
  • Child custody - While you may feel that what you do on your own time should have no bearing on your relationship with your children, a judge may feel otherwise. Pictures of parties, nights out on the town, alcohol consumption, or other activities that could be seen as morally questionable could be used to call your judgment and parenting ability into question during child custody disputes.
  • Privacy and permanence - Anything you post online could eventually become a factor in your divorce proceedings. Even if you think a message is private, it could make its way to your ex (and their attorney). A post that has been deleted may still be accessible for people who know where to look. Never post or share anything that you would not want to have to defend in court.

Ultimately, it may be best to avoid using social media altogether during your divorce, but at a minimum, you should avoid discussing the divorce or sharing details about your life that may come into play during divorce proceedings.

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Posted on in Divorce

California family lawyerMost people hear the word “prenup” and automatically assume the worst - that the marriage is destined to fail because one or both of the spouses do not trust each other. However, one of the best reasons to get a prenuptial agreement is not to protect your assets from the other spouse in the case of a divorce, but to protect the other spouse from your mounting debt. To find out more, do not hesitate to reach out to a San Jose prenuptial agreement attorney for answers today.

Debt Is a Growing Problem in America

There are many good reasons to consider a prenuptial contract. For one, it offers peace of mind (for the spouses and their family members) when one spouse is much wealthier than the other. Similarly, if you expect a future inheritance, a prenuptial agreement may be wise. Additionally, it may be a good idea to consider a prenuptial agreement if you are entering a second marriage but want to make sure that your children from your first marriage are left with your property if you pass away. But what about protecting the other spouse from your own financial woes?

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California divorce attorneyA misconception exists that the mere mention of a prenuptial agreement will somehow derail the harmony and happiness of one’s engagement period. The world has changed, however – drastically so. Even twenty years ago, Internet dating was regarded as inauthentic and inferior to meeting “naturally” in a coffee shop, grocery store, or student union. In 2017, we embrace information.

Modern couples can share information about their financial past, present, and future – putting everything in plain sight – and then working a with an experienced Los Gatos, SaratogaCupertino prenuptial agreement attorney to create and give legal effect to a premarital agreement that makes clear the intentions of each party.

When a Significant Wealth Disparity Exists, a Premarital Agreement May Be Wise

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California divorce lawyerIn many cases of divorce in California, it is possible for divorcing spouses to avoid litigation and retain control over decision-making with regard to the division of marital property and establishing of parenting time with children. In some instances, however, it is not possible to reach a fair and mutually agreeable resolution, whether because of anger, resentment, greed, or other conflict-escalating emotions.

In high-asset divorces, particularly, there may disagreements over the division of marital property. In a California divorce, division must abide by the state’s community property law, which determines what constitutes the “marital economic community” in a marriage. If your soon-to-be ex-spouse is arguing for unfair division of marital property, claiming as separate property what is, in fact, the community property of the marriage, turn to an experienced Sunnyvale divorce attorney.

California Is One of Nine Community Property Law States

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