Legal Issues You May Face After Divorce
Legal issues related to child support, alimony, property division, and parenting time must be resolved before a divorce can be finalized. Unfortunately, divorcing parties don’t always fully disclose their assets during this process. In fact, it is not uncommon for one spouse to discover relevant financial information only after the divorce process is completed. In these cases, an ex-spouse may need to initiate another divorce proceeding, in which the new information will be submitted and the court will make an updated determination. This can be a complicated process, so if you were recently divorced, but discovered new information that is relevant to a divorce-related issue, you should consider consulting with an experienced Florida divorce attorney who can assist you.
Making Accurate Financial Disclosures
When two parties decide to dissolve their marriage, they are required to make certain financial disclosures to ensure that a fair property settlement, alimony agreement, and child support arrangement is reached. Unfortunately, many divorcing parties fail to provide accurate information about additional bank accounts, real estate, and other properties and assets, either in an effort to hide those assets or as an oversight. When this happens, the other spouse could end up with a much lower and ultimately unfair amount of spousal or child support.
Reopening a Case
In the event that one spouse discovers relevant information about his or her former spouse after the divorce is finalized, that individual has the option of reopening the case by petitioning the court. It is during this process that the petitioner will have the opportunity to explain why the discovery of new information warrants the issuance of a modified judgement. Fortunately, when a settlement agreement is the result of fraud, the wronged party isn’t restricted by a certain time limit, but can request that the case be reopened at any time.
It’s important to note that a court will not be willing to reopen a case just because a petitioner requests it. Instead, petitioners will need to provide convincing evidence demonstrating that the other party failed to disclose the existence of certain assets, whether or not it was done intentionally.
Change in Circumstances
It is also common for many couples to undergo a significant change in circumstances after their divorces are finalized. In these situations, even if both parties fully disclosed their financial information at the time of divorce, a court could be willing to modify a divorce settlement. However, courts will usually only take this step if the petitioner can prove that a substantial change in circumstances has occurred. This could include a job loss, relocation, or being diagnosed with a serious medical condition. As long as the change constitutes a substantial change in circumstances, the court will consider reopening the case and modifying the divorce decree.
Call Today for Help with Your Case
To speak with dedicated Fort Lauderdale divorce attorney Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. about reopening your own divorce case, please call 954-945-7591 or complete one of our brief online contact forms. A member of our legal team is standing by to help you through each step of your case.