Potential clients often ask us how long it will take to get a divorce in New Mexico. There are three time frames that may affect the length of time: the legal residency requirement, the waiting period, and the degree of conflict between the parties.
New Mexico is one of the few states that presumes that joint legal custody is in the best interest of a child. With a joint legal custody arrangement, each parent has significant periods of responsibility for the child and the parents work together to make major decisions about the child. But what happens when one of the parties asks to terminate joint custody? How do courts handle that situation? In making their initial determination about custody, New Mexico courts use the “best interest of the child” standard. Many factors go into this determination.
A common question we are asked has to do with the cost of getting a divorce in New Mexico. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to establish a specific amount because some marriages involve many more issues than others, such as children, property disputes, and prenuptial agreements. Also, the degree of conflict between the spouses significantly influences the cost of a divorce, known in New Mexico as a dissolution.
Occasionally, one spouse dies while a proceeding for dissolution of marriage is pending. When this happens, several questions arise. Do the divorce proceedings continue? What happens to the deceased spouse’s property? Is a will or trust still valid? What if there is no will? The easiest question is the first, regarding whether the divorce proceedings continue. A specific New Mexico law addresses this issue. It provides that actions for dissolution of marriage do not die with one of the spouses, as long as the petition for dissolution was properly filed with the court and served on the other party before death.
A central concept in New Mexico family law is that the way property is titled does not necessarily dictate who owns it, at least where spouses are concerned. This can be a difficult concept to come to terms with. Often, people understand it, but they don’t want to believe it.
In dire situations involving finances, married couples sometimes declare bankruptcy as a last resort. But this is never an easy process. The situation is even more complicated when a divorce or legal separation is impending and only one spouse files for bankruptcy protection.
After a petition for dissolution of marriage is filed, the court will issue a temporary domestic order. This order gives the parties general instructions about how to interact with each other, as well as how to deal with their finances, children, and property until the divorce is final. In addition, at this point in the proceedings, either party can ask the court to provide temporary relief.
Marriage entails a lot of preparation. But before getting into major wedding plans, every couple must first ensure that they will comply with state requirements for the union to be considered legal. Marriage in all states is deemed as legal only when a license has been obtained.
Divorce, commonly called “dissolution of marriage” in New Mexico, brings about many changes. One great change is in financial status. Dissolution of marriage also means separation of a couple’s financial lives.
In a New Mexico dissolution proceeding, the court must determine how to divide the debt of the spouses. This generally requires the court to do three things: identify all debts, classify the debts, and divide the debts.