Louisiana Divorce Lawyer: the Inner-workings of Community Property and Child Custody

Feb 22 07:56 2012 Will Beaumont Print This Article

Quite often family law cases involve both community property and child custody.  This article presents an example of such a case.

This article provides an example of community property and child custody,Guest Posting as viewed by a divorce lawyer.  So, let’s say that Angela and Martin have been married for thirteen years.  They have two children: Stacy and Peter.  Angela works in management training at a high tech company in New Orleans; Martin works as an engineer at an architect firm in Baton Rouge.   Both Angela and Martin make approximately the same amount of money.  About five years into their marriage, the couple decided to move out of their apartment and to buy a family home.  They settled on a four bedroom house in Kenner, which they purchased for three hundred thousand dollars.  Seven years into their marriage, Martin gets a sizeable inheritance from his deceased mother, who left for him in her will one hundred thousand dollars.  Martin takes the money and puts it into a separate bank account.
In year thirteen of their marriage, Angela decides to hire a divorce lawyer to end their marriage.  Neither one of them is “at fault” according to the laws of Louisiana.  At this time, Stacy is ten years old and Peter is twelve.  Both of the children attend a local public school in Kenner.
Angela’s divorce lawyer explains that in order to meet the requirements of Louisiana law, Martin and Angela have to live separate and apart for three hundred and sixty five days.  Thus, Martin moves into an apartment complex in Metairie.  Angela remains in the family home in Kenner.  Although they are ending their marriage, the two spouses agree amicably to visitation of the two children.  Although they have worked out visitation, the fact is that Martin really cannot see the children as much as he would like.  The reason is that he recently got promoted at his job.  The promotion makes it so that he must travel extensively throughout the United States, in order to provide engineer consultation to various building projects that his company has contracts for.  Martin estimates that he probably will be traveling about six months out of every year.
It is ultimately impossible to predict what a Louisiana court will do in a particular family law situation.  However, given the above facts, there are a few generalizations which a divorce lawyer may draw.  For example, Martin and Angela share what is called a “community property regime” during the course of their marriage.  This generally means that anything they earn over the course of the marriage is split right down the middle in the event the marriage ends.  One probable example of this could be the house they purchased.  The purchase was made during the course of the marriage, and was done using money that Martin and Angela had earned during their marriage.  As for Martin’s inheritance, it is very probable that a court would consider this “separate property.”  That means that, Martin’s divorce lawyer will have a good argument to get to keep the entirety of the money his deceased mother divested to him.  This is because generally, inheritances to one spouse are considered separate property.
From a child custody standpoint, one could argue that there is a good chance Angela will be named the custodial parent of the kids.  Assuming there are no other facts at work, and only going on what we know about the example above, Martin would be less suited to be the custodial parent given his rigorous work schedule.  A Louisiana family court would likely consider this heavily in awarding custody to Angela.  It is important to know that Martin would still have visitation rights over his children.
Family law attorney Will Beaumont has an office in New Orleans, LA.  The foregoing article is only designed to be informative and not legal advice.  If you are in need of knowing how the law might apply to you, contact a lawyer in your area.

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Will Beaumont
Will Beaumont

For more information on this and other areas of family law, meet with New Orleans divorce lawyer Will Beaumont at his office at Beaumont Divorce, 3801 Canal St #207, New Orleans, LA, 70119 (504) 483-8008.

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