Busting Common Divorce Myths (Part 1)
In recent decades, divorce has become an increasingly common and socially acceptable decision for some married couples to make. Still, there remains some awkwardness and perhaps even a sense of taboo around the topic of divorce, often making people reluctant to discuss the topic openly. This tendency can make myths, misconceptions, and half-truths about divorce persist for longer than they should. To help clear up some of the most common myths about divorce, we’re busting three often-heard family law misconceptions:
Myth: Only women receive alimony payments.
Strictly speaking, it has only been more common in the past for men to pay alimony to their ex-wives because of traditional household gender roles. Previously, when the majority of wives stayed home while their husbands earned a living for the entire household, it just so happened that men usually wound up paying spousal support after a divorce. Spousal support is generally awarded to one partner when there’s an income imbalance between a divorcing couple, so alimony may not be part of many divorces. Nowadays, it’s increasingly common for the wife to work outside of the home while the husband stays at home to take care of the kids. In this case, the working wife may wind up paying alimony to her former stay-at-home husband.
Myth: Custody is always awarded to the mother.
While it’s still more common for a woman to get custody of her and her husband’s children following a divorce, it’s unwise to assume it will be the automatic outcome. Today, joint custody and equal timesharing are favored by more and more courts as the default solution that’s in the child’s best interests. Although today’s courts tend to try and start both spouses on equal footing during child custody battles, it’s important to remember that the court will consider each parent’s fitness when ruling on this crucial matter. It all depends on the specific situation.
Myth: A lawyer isn’t necessary in an amicable divorce.
Like with most legal issues, getting an attorney is often the smartest decision you’ll make throughout the entire process. While it may be possible to complete the divorce process without attorneys, it’s virtually never the right choice. A lawyer with the right experience and background knowledge is crucial for getting the fairest, most positive outcome for everyone involved—even if you feel certain that you and your former partner will agree on everything.
If you have some questions of your own about divorce you’d like us to clear up, or if you need assistance with anything relating to family law, contact Oxendine Law at (770) 497-8688 today. Remember to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more information and updates.