Divorce is a painful experience; there is no doubt about that. However, the emotional damage associated with divorce is so grave that most people ignore or do not notice the legal side of it. In such cases, they incur legal damage on top of the emotional damage as well. That’s why Dorothy Lawrence, the CEO of the Dorothy Butler Law Firm, always advises couples to think about their divorce in a rational way. She says:
“It is okay to feel the emotional side of divorce, but it’s unwise to make legal mistakes because of it.”
There are many legal issues that couples need to settle between them in case of divorce. Here are some important suggestions Dorothy would like to give to divorcing couples.
Finalize Your Divorce Wisely
It is very important, Dorothy says, to agree on an appropriate time before finalizing your divorce. For example, finalizing your divorce before the end of a tax year may not be a good idea. The issue of capital gains is a major one and must not be taken lightly. Dorothy suggests that if you have large capital gains during a calendar year, it is preferable not to divorce before the end of a tax year. The reason behind this is that you will take a bigger hit on taxes if you file as single, as opposed to married filing jointly.
Determine an Appropriate Tax Filing Status
All couples, Dorothy says, must know that filing status is determined on the last day of the year. So, if you are married on December 31, you are married for the year! Similarly, if you get divorced on December 31, you are single (or head of the household if appropriate) for the year. However, depending on how long you’ve been separated and other facts, there can be exceptions to this basic rule. That’s why you need to consult a tax professional before filing a tax return in the year of a divorce!
Sort Out Who Gets the Tax Credits
Sorting out who gets the tax credits can be very complicated, which is why Dorothy always suggests people seek the advice of tax professionals. Dorothy often assists couples in divorces outside of her firm to assist them in such matters. It is very common, Dorothy says, that when couples divide assets, one of them is left with a disparity due to the tax owed on the asset. This often happens when divorcing couples divide retirement accounts or stock accounts. If you are facing such issues or want to avoid them in the first place, the Dorothy Butler Law Firm can advise you on how to properly divide assets based on the taxes owed.
Divorces also involve property transfers in most cases. The appropriate way of such transfers, Dorothy says, depends on the type of property and the situation. The property transfer will be handled pursuant to the divorce decree for most major assets. Household goods can also be divided between the parties if they are in an amicable situation. Otherwise, Dorothy and her firm always recommend that couples allow the lawyers to handle the division of all assets.
The Dorothy Butler Law Firm handles divorce-related issues from the start to the end for couples that are in agreement on what they regard as the most contested matters out there. Dorothy’s firm has worked with couples that prefer to have one attorney assist in a “collaborative” divorce effort in order to maintain amicability in the relationship. Dorothy and her firm can also handle divorces that may require protective orders for domestic violence and extremely heated and sensitive custody matters. Dorothy’s firm believes in total inclusivity and diversity. Her firm regularly works with same-sex couples as well as trans couples. It is a very LGBTQ-friendly firm. Whatever the marital situation, the Dorothy Butler Law Firm can absolutely assist in the transition to separation and divorce.
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