Do I Need My Spouse’s Signature For A Divorce?

Do I Need My Spouse's Signature For A Divorce? - Seattle Divorce Services Blog

While it certainly helps to have a spouse sign off on a divorce, in Washington you can still get divorced even if your spouse is uncooperative. That can happen in several different ways, depending on the actions your spouse takes or fails to take.

If the two parties are able to agree to get divorced and as to the terms of the divorce, then it can all done by signature. We would ask your spouse to sign a document showing they received the initial papers (including the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage), or even to sign the Petition as a co-petitioner with you.

Then when we have the final divorce orders prepared, we ask both parties to sign the orders showing that they are agreed. [Read more…]

Seattle Divorce Services Supports Reign FC Women’s Soccer!

Seattle Divorce Services supports Seattle Reign FC Women's Soccer

Seattle Divorce Services has renewed its partnership with the Reign FC for 2017, Seattle’s professional women’s soccer team!

SDS’s support of women’s soccer stems in part from the enthusiasm of our business manager for the sport. She has played recreational soccer league for many years. At age 58 she is still playing several times per week (we can only hope to keep up with her energy level).

We also support women’s soccer because we believe participating in sports helps women improve their health and overall well being. Women’s sports are too often overlooked and inadequately funded. By supporting the growth of women’s professional sports, we hope to help promote sports for all women. [Read more…]

Divorce vs Legal Separation – Child Custody / Parenting Plan, Property & Debts, and Spousal Support

Divorce vs Legal Separation - Child Custody / Parenting Plan - Property & Debts - Spousal Support - Seattle Divorce Services

Many people wonder what the difference is between a Divorce and a Legal Separation when it comes to specific issues like child custody and parenting plans, child support, property and debt division, and spousal support. In fact, with regard to those issues, in Washington State it really does not matter whether the action is a Divorce or a Legal Separation.

In Washington, a Legal Separation is basically a Divorce without getting divorced.

In other words, the same issues are dealt with and orders are entered dealing with all of the same issues that would be dealt with in a Divorce such as parenting, child support, spousal support, division of assets and liabilities, and even change of name. The difference is that when the final Decree is entered, we leave out the line that says the parties are now divorced.

[Read more…]

Sophisticated Solutions to Complex Divorce

Sophisticated Solutions to Complex Divorces - Seattle Divorce Services

What does it mean when we say “our divorce attorneys believe in taking a more sophisticated approach to resolving complex cases”?

Many divorce cases are complex. That does not necessarily mean the cases involve great wealth or unusual issues. It does mean there there may be issues of parenting, child or spousal support, property division, etc. that do not lend themselves to easy solutions. Support issues may be complicated by uncertain incomes. Parenting issues may be complicated by differences of opinion about what is best for the children. Property division may be complicated by issues of separate and community property or value of the property.

And all of these issues may be intertwined such that the answer to one affects another (determining income for support may also affect property division, and determining a parenting schedule may affect support). [Read more…]

What is Cooperative Divorce?

What is Cooperative Divorce? - Seattle Divorce Services

Along with Collaboration and Mediation, you may sometimes hear the term “Cooperative Divorce”. Cooperative Divorce is not a form of Alternative Dispute Resolution like Collaboration and Mediation, but is rather a way of approaching a traditional litigated divorce.

There are no special rules or procedures associated with a Cooperative Divorce, but it does mean that the two sides (and particularly the attorneys) try to cooperate with each other to the extent possible to help the case resolve as simply and cost-effectively as possible. [Read more…]

Can I Modify My Spousal Support?

Can I Modify My Spousal Support - Seattle Divorce Services Blog

In Washington, spousal support, also known as alimony or maintenance, is modifiable under some conditions.

First, the decree of divorce must have NOT ordered non-modifiable spousal support. Second, there must be a “substantial change of circumstances”. I would add, however, that in my experience, spousal support modifications tend to be disfavored by the courts (i.e. you need to have a VERY good case). [Read more…]

Civility Matters in Divorce

I recently read an article by Carol Bailey-Medwell on Why Civility Matters.

Civility Matters in Divorce - Carol Bailey

Carol Bailey with Integrative Family Law

Carol manages Integrative Family Law, a firm that shares many of the same values we hold here at Seattle Divorce Services. Recently I had the pleasure of reading one of her articles in a member’s publication, and I thought I’d share some of her insights.

I particularly liked Carol’s point that short term revenge seeking is not a good basis for long term happiness, and may also have negative consequences for family, friends, and children when it impacts relationships that will continue in one form or another into the future. [Read more…]

How Are Retirement Benefits Divided in Divorce?

Retirement benefits and divorce - Seattle Divorce Services

This might also be titled “What is a QDRO?”, but the answer is really bigger than that. Some people assume that because retirement benefits were earned by the one party and is in her or his name, it is not subject to division.

In fact, retirement benefits are considered community property and so are subject to division in divorces in Washington State. [Read more…]

Nathan Cliber: Strategies That Help the Client

Nathan Cliber: How to Help the Client - Seattle Divorce Services

Nathan Cliber

I asked Nathan Cliber, an attorney here at Seattle Divorce Services, about ways that he helps the client navigate the tricky and challenging currents of their divorce.

He said that he finds it is very important to hold space for the client to be heard. Too many attorneys spend too much time talking about what they are going to do for the client, and don’t spend enough time listening to the hopes and concerns of the client.

When the client is able to have their own voice in the divorce process, they are empowered to be a part of the team and help determine the direction we go in, to make choices about their own future. [Read more…]

How Do I Get More Time with My Children?

Can I get More Time with My Children?

We often hear from parents who are unhappy with their current parenting plan and want to have more time with their children. While the standard you have to meet for modifying a parenting plan is a tough one, there are several options to consider:

[Read more…]