No one enters a marriage intending it to end. However, when things don’t work out it’s best that the marriage end in an equitable manner. After a petition has been filed and served or joined, the parties must wait as least 90 days before their marriage can be dissolved.
Washington is a no-fault dissolution state. It doesn’t matter what causes the marriage to end; it only matters that the marriage is irretrievably broken. In practice, that means the main areas of contention in a dissolution are property division, custody of children (if any) and child support.
Washington is also a community property state. What that means is that property accumulated during the marriage is community property unless there is an agreement to the contrary. Equitable doesn’t necessarily mean a 50-50 split. It means what’s fair. We will fight to ensure that the division of property and the determination of child support is done in a way that’s fair for you.
Parents are required to take a parenting seminar that will educate them in the basics of parenting including conflict resolution and how a marital dissolution affects their children once a dissolution petition is filed. A certificate of completion is usually required before the dissolution can be finalized unless good cause can be shown otherwise.
Parenting plans which will govern the parties’ custody of children are often detailed and complex. Unforeseen problems can arise if the parenting plan isn’t properly structured. Life changes may necessitate changes in parenting plans. Each case requires careful consideration in drafting a parenting plan. A guardian ad litem may be required if the parties can’t agree on custody or a parenting plan. The attorneys at Integrity Law Group have the experience and foresight to craft a parenting plan which will accommodate the needs of both parents and obviate the likelihood of conflict now and in the future. And if there is conflict, we will work hard to help you achieve the best results possible.
Child support is determined in accordance to the Washington State Child Support Schedule and the best interests of the child. It’s best to remember that child support is for the support of the child. However, some deviation is allowed if it is still in the best interests of the child. If your income has changed and you can’t pay the same level of support, you may be able to adjust the level of support you pay. There are many issues involved but Integrity Law Group will advocate zealously for what’s right for you. Child support may be adjusted every two years from entry of a final order of support or sooner by agreement by motion with the court. Substantial changes require modification.
An online child support calculator can be found at: https://fortress.wa.gov/dshs/csips/ssgen
Keep in mind some of the figures may have changed since that calculator was programmed.