Pennsylvania Divorce Laws

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Divorce laws in any state are important tools which govern the process in that particular state. Though the federal principles of family laws are applicable in almost every state, each state has found their own set of laws that operate the legal procedure. Pennsylvania laws contribute to the process in a great manner. They act as a guideline for the spouses who wish to apply for a divorce in this state.

Pennsylvania Laws pertaining Alimony

Spousal support is the amount provided by a partner for the survival of the other one who is facing financial difficulties after divorce. Spousal support is requested by the spouse who is not in a condition to afford the basic necessities after getting separated from the partner. The Court finds out if alimony is essential and if so, the mode of payment, duration, amount and nature of it is fixed. In order to finalize these issues, the following factors are taken into consideration, like:

  • The period marriage
  • The inheritances and expectancies of both spouses
  • The income sources of both partners inclusive of insurance, retirement, medical and other benefits
  • The emotional, mental, physical states and the ages of both parties
  • The relative earning abilities and earnings of both partners
  • The requirements of the partners
  • Each partners contribution towards running a house
  • Property purchased by both spouses during the marriage
  • The liabilities of both partners as well as the assets
  • The education and qualification of both partners and the time required for a partner to gain enough education and training to seek apt employment
  • The living standard attained during marital life
  • If the custody of a minor child is awarded to one of the partner, then the degree to which the financial accountability, expenditures and the partners power of earning is affected
  • The input of partner for the increased earning power, training and education of the other partner
  • Whether the partner requesting for spousal support is incapable to support self by taking up an apt job
  • Whether the partner requesting alimony does not have enough property to fulfill the reasonable requirements
  • The local, State and Federal tax consequences of the alimony award
  • The marital misconduct of the partners in marital life

The spousal support order will be canceled if the partner receiving it marries again. Also, cohabitation with the person of opposite sex is considered as a valid reason for the alteration in spousal support. Such spouse can request the support again if the second marriage ends in a divorce.

Pennsylvania Divorce Laws pertaining Property Distribution

Property division is often a subject to disputes between partners. Many times, it is found that the partners cannot solve the conflicts between them regarding property. Thus, the court finalizes the terms of property division by judging the disclosures made by the partners. The Court is guided by the following issues while finalizing property distribution:

  • The chances of either of the spouses to attain income and capital assets in the future
  • The input of a partner contributing the earning power, education and training of the other spouse
  • The following attributes of both spouses:
    • Needs
    • Liabilities
    • Estate
    • Employability
    • Vocational skills
    • Total income earned and its sources
    • Station
    • Health
    • Age
  • If any of the partners has any previous marriage
  • The period of marital life
  • If a partner agrees to play the role of custodian of any dependent minor child
  • The financial conditions of each party, inclusive of local, State and Federal tax effects after the separation of property would take place
  • The living standard relished by the partners during the term of marriage
  • The valuation of the property reserved for each spouse
  • Whether the marital property has been appreciated, depreciated, preserved or attained due to the dissipation or input of either partner including the input of a partner as a homemaker

Marital property is defined as all personal and real property attained by either party in the marital life irrespective of the fact whether the title is held individually or in some form of co-ownership like tenancy by the entirety, tenancy in common and joint tenancy.

In this way, the Pennsylvania laws can be elaborated. The nature of the case will decide the usage of laws for that case. The proper knowledge of laws is necessary to avoid any kind of mistakes which will affect the divorce process in a bad manner.

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