Gusty A.E. Sunseri & Associates, P.C. Attorneys at Law Super Lawyers

The Five Parts of Divorce

Divorce is a confusing process, but with a little help it doesn't have to be. What does it take to get divorces in Pennsylvania? The five parts of divorce are (1) Divorce, (2) Support and Alimony Pendente Lite, (3) Equitable Distribution, (4) Alimony, and (5) Custody.

First, to get a divorce requires a valid marriage. Both opposite- and same-sex marriages are now legally recognized in Pennsylvania, and equally eligible for divorce, although common-law marriages are no longer recognized.

Equitable distribution is not equal distribution, but rather a "fair" distribution of all marital assets based on a number of factors, including but not limited to fault, and the parties contributions to the marriage and ability to support themselves after the divorce.

Support is a potential obligation based on the marriage, and child support is based on a parental obligation to his or her child. Alimony can be paid by either former spouse, and is a payment owed after the marriage for a period of time, or until certain conditions are met. Sometimes alimony can be modified. Alimony Pendente Lite is alimony while the litigation is pending.

Custody includes the legal and physical rights to any children of a marriage. Custody agreements can always be amended, and must focus on the best interests of the child. The courts also favor involvement by both parents in the child's upbringing.

If you have more questions and would like a free consultation with an experienced Pittsburgh attorney, please contact our office to get the help that you need to protect your rights, and ensure that you uphold your legal obligations.

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Gusty A.E. Sunseri & Associates, P.C.

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