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Personal and Professional Legal Services in the Heart of Vermont

I’ve finally decided to get divorced. What are my rights?

On Behalf of | Mar 8, 2024 | Divorce, Family Law |

Deciding to end a marriage is not easy, but it may be exactly what you need. When embarking on the path of divorce, it is vital to be aware of your rights. Knowing what you are entitled to may give you better control over an undoubtedly difficult phase of your life.

Here are some rights to keep in mind during a divorce.

File a divorce complaint

Divorcing in Vermont starts with filing a complaint in court. The court accepts various grounds for divorce, but Vermont also allows a no-fault divorce as an option. This can spare you from the need to assign blame or fault and cite irreconcilable differences instead.

Maintain financial transparency

Vermont divides property through equitable distribution, prioritizing fairness rather than an equal split. It is imperative that both parties fully disclose all assets and debts. If you have reason to suspect your spouse of hiding assets, you can use the legal system to demand records, inspect properties or employ other investigative measures.

Receive alimony

Either spouse can seek maintenance, commonly known as alimony. The court will decide on the alimony amount and duration based on multiple factors, such as earning capacity and physical health.

Prioritize your children

Among the many important issues for discussion in divorce are those involving children. You can use the case manager conference to create a parenting plan, determine who pays for child support and work out a parent-child contact schedule.

Seek help making decisions

It is common, almost normal, for divorcing spouses to disagree. There are various options that may help bridge the gap. You may arrange for a second case manager conference or turn to mediation.

If these measures do not provide results, you may need to take the court to intervene. You can file a motion to request the court to make decisions temporarily.

Appeal a divorce judgment

You can appeal if you disagree with the judge’s final order or believe they made a mistake. However, it is often difficult or complex, especially without possessing legal knowledge.

Reclaim your former name

Should you wish to reclaim the identity you held before marriage, you can request the court to restore your former name. If granted, the final divorce order will include a provision that legally reestablishes your previous name.

Modify or enforce a divorce order

If you encounter new circumstances following your divorce or if your ex fails to comply with the order, you can seek assistance from the court.

Asserting your rights during a divorce can be challenging to do on your own. For personalized legal guidance and help to protect your best interests, consider seeking an experienced divorce attorney well-versed in Vermont’s unique legal landscape.