FAQs Regarding Divorce
Every divorce case in Missouri is different, but the following are answers to some questions people commonly have. For answers about your particular situation, call 314-287-5959 for a free case review.
Is there a difference between divorce and legal separation?
In a legal separation, unlike a divorce, parties are still legally married. However, the process is similar otherwise – you will need to determine division of property as well as child custody and support arrangements. Choosing a legal separation instead of divorce is done only by a small percentage of couples, but if you need to stay legally married for insurance or religious reasons, it may be a good option in your case.
Are moms more likely than dads to obtain custody?
No. Gender should never be a factor in custody decisions in Missouri. Courts are obligated to consider the ability of each parent to provide care and the best interests of the child, not the gender of the parent, when making custody decisions.
Is alimony automatic?
Spousal support, or alimony, is not always awarded in a divorce. Courts may award alimony in Missouri if they determine one person needs more help to meet a reasonable standard of living after the property settlement. Sometimes, this may be a temporary fix to allow the lower-income spouse to make a new home or give time to re-enter the workforce after caring for children. Generally, these decisions are on a case-by-case basis and there is no set formula.
Is a lawyer needed for divorce?
Many of the people who initially file for divorce by themselves later realize they need a lawyer to support them through the process. Often, this happens after costly mistakes. It can be essential to have a forceful advocate on your side if animosity and contention become involved. You should waste no time hiring an attorney if your ex has done the same.
Your Situation is Unique
You can count on me for honest, straightforward answers for your unique situation and what divorce laws might mean for you. You can call me, Jackie Gonz, at 314-287-5959 or email me your concerns. I work with clients throughout southeast Missouri, particularly in Ste. Genevieve, Perry, Jefferson, and St. Francois counties.