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Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Complex Divorce Blog

Why is divorce mediation so popular?

"Divorce mediation" is a relatively new term to a lot of people -- especially if you still picture divorce the old-fashioned way, with two parties bickering in court over the disposition of everything from the house to the cookware. But divorce mediation isn't new -- and it's definitely not a fad. It is, however, becoming one of the hottest trends among divorcing couples.

Why is mediation so popular these days? Because divorce mediation, unlike divorce litigation, has the following benefits:

Keeping the house? What to consider about refinancing and divorce

You know you're headed toward a divorce. You know you want to stay in your Florida home, and your soon-to-be ex will be content if you do. But there's more you need to know.

It has to do with the best way of removing your spouse from the mortgage loan if you don't own your house outright. That involves buying your spouse out from the property, letting them cash out and you paying for the house on your own.

Bezos divorce leaves blueprint for other couples to follow

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie, recently finalized their divorce, and the billionaires seem to have left behind a valuable lesson for the rest of us: how to keep a high-asset divorce amicable and on track.

And even though none of us have their money - Mr. Bezos is the richest man in the world - their divorce is a blueprint for how to end a marriage the right way. In fact, a Florida couple in any economic category can follow their example.

Examples of complex assets to divide

Dividing any assets can be complicated during a divorce. Even if it is as simple as dividing a bank account, when you and your ex do not see eye-to-eye, it can lead to a long court case as everything gets sorted out. And that's for one of the easiest assets to split up, with the least questions. If even something that straightforward can cause problems, what are some more complex assets to split up?

There are plenty of them, depending on your lifestyle and income. Generally, the more money you have, the more complicated it will be -- though this is not always the case. Some examples of assets include:

  • A professional practice, such as a doctor's office
  • A retirement plan
  • A pension plan
  • Deferred compensation from your job or your spouse's job
  • Your family home, with both names on the mortgage
  • Rental properties that you own and/or run
  • Family-owned businesses
  • Restricted stock or stock options
  • Brokerage accounts
  • Overseas investments
  • Art collections

Tips to get along with your spouse during divorce

Divorce mediation can make the process a lot easier and smoother for both you and your spouse. You retain more control over things like asset division. You work toward a resolution together, rather than fighting in court.

That's all positive, but it does mean that you have to get along with the spouse who will soon be your ex. Both parties must commit to actually working together. That's easier said than done for many divorcing couples. Here are a few tips that can help you:

  • Be careful with your online interactions. Don't snoop on their social media profiles or send or post any snarky or combative comments or messages. The "distance" that the internet creates makes it easier to say things you wish you could take back.
  • Give each other space when needed. People often cannot get along when they get emotional. It's natural to feel a lot of emotion during a divorce, so know when to take a step back and cool down before working together again.
  • Set up some guidelines. You may be married, but the relationship has changed. What ways are you willing to interact? Guidelines are especially important if you have kids and you need to determine your roles in their lives.
  • Focus on yourself. It's not as selfish as it sounds. Take time to think about what you want, what you need and what steps you should take to create the life you're after.

Do I have to split premarital property during a divorce?

You may have owned a cottage prior to marrying, and now that you and your spouse have decided to call it quits, you wonder what will become of that cottage. You still own it and, in fact, you get rental income from it.

Florida is an equitable distribution state, meaning the court divides all marital property between the spouses in an equal fashion. This does not mean both spouses get exactly half of everything because the judge takes into account other variables when making the decision on how to split things. What happens to premarital property during a divorce? Take a look at the information below and find out.

Money, values and divorce

When people say that money leads to divorce, do you assume that what they actually mean is that a lack of money leads to divorce? Do people just split up because they can't make ends meet and it stresses them out?

That does happen, but do not assume that your marriage will stay rock solid just because you never struggle to pay the bills. Money also leads to plenty of divorces for those who are very well off.

Cryptocurrency issues starting to creep into American divorces

It's easy to go to the ATM, enter your card and learn your bank balance. It's a whole other thing to figure out where your spouse might be keeping cryptocurrency - a digital asset, such as bitcoin - and how to access it.

But that's just the position some high-asset divorcing spouses find themselves in: trying to gain their share of joint money their soon-to-be ex has squirreled away digitally.

Divorce mediation helps couples resolve many issues

Many Florida couples approaching the end of marriage tend to view divorce mediation as a fad or a trend. They may not understand the many benefits this way of ending a marriage offers. Quick examples of these benefits include less conflict for parents and kids, affordable costs and a faster overall resolution.

Those that have heard about divorce mediation may believe that it is only an option for childless couples or couples with no real assets. We want you to know that this is a fallacy. Mediation can work especially well when a couple has children and for high-asset marriages in which the two spouses are willing to cooperate. Mediation does not simply end a marital relationship; it aids couples in resolving sensitive issues that arise when divorcing.

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