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Common Misconceptions About Divorce in Kansas

July 29, 2020

In 2018, there were 2.3 divorces per 1000 inhabitants in Kansas. Going through a divorce can be an overwhelming and emotional experience. Unfortunately, there is a lot of misleading information, myths, and false assumptions surrounding divorce, all of which make it relatively easy to make costly mistakes without proper guidance.

For more than 20 years, I have been handling matters of divorce, parenting time, support issues, and adoption. I can fight to protect your rights and help you navigate critical decisions in your divorce process. Rundberg Law, LLC, is proud to serve clients in Overland Park, Johnson County, and nearby counties throughout Kansas and Missouri.

Misconceptions about Divorce in Kansas

Going through a divorce can be an unsettling and emotional process and often, common misconceptions can make it even more daunting. Knowing what to expect and being able to separate fact from fiction, can make it feel more manageable. Below are some of the most common misconceptions about divorce and why they're false:

Misconception I: If the other parent doesn't pay child support, I can withhold parenting time.

This is a common misconception that causes a lot of problems. Child support is a separate issue from parenting time. The custodial parent has no right to withhold parenting time even if the noncustodial parent doesn't pay child support. A modification in parenting time needs to be addressed through the proper legal channels.

Misconception II: If adultery was involved, the other spouse gets everything.

Infidelity is one of the major contributing factors in many divorces. However, while Kansas is a “hybrid” state, allowing for both fault and no-fault divorce, the grounds under a fault divorce are very limited and do not include infidelity. Missouri is strictly a no-fault state so whether or not infidelity occurred will not be a factor.

Likewise, as a rule, infidelity is not factored into such decisions as spousal maintenance and asset division except under extremely rare circumstances.

Misconception III: The mother is always awarded primary custody of the children.

Historically, trends in child custody awards suggest that the mother is always awarded primary custody. However, this is not the case anymore. The court believes that joint custody, equal parenting time, and regular contact with both parents is generally in the best interest of the child.

Misconception IV: You have to get divorced in the state you got married in.

You don't necessarily have to get divorced in the state in which you got married. You can file for a divorce in the state in which you currently reside. Although the time of residency requirements vary by state, to file for divorce in Kansas, you or your spouse must be a resident of the state for at least sixty (60) days.

Misconception V: Our assets will all be split 50/50

When people hear “equitable division of assets” they assume that refers to a 50/50 split. However, “equitable” doesn't mean the division must be equal, it means the distribution must be fair. Asset division will take into account various factors such as the length of the marriage, financial standing of each spouse, current and potential earning capacity of each spouse, and how and when the assets were acquired.

Misconception VI: If the property is in the name of only one of the spouses, they get to keep it.

Most property and assets acquired during the marriage are considered marital property and are presumed to be equally owned by each spouse. All marital property will be subject to equitable division.

Separate property, or that which a spouse owned prior to the marriage or acquired through inheritance or gift, belongs solely belongs to the spouse who owns it, and generally won't be divided in a divorce.

Therefore, property division depends more on the when and how the property was acquired rather than the name on the deed.

How a Divorce Attorney Can Help

The divorce process can certainly be overwhelming but an experienced family law attorney can help you decide the best course of action and help you navigate key decisions. Their experience in the nuances of family law specific to the state in which you live can positively impact the outcome of your case.

As an experienced Kansas divorce attorney, I will help you protect your family and your future. I can help you fight compassionately to protect your rights and negotiate a fair resolution. Rundberg Law, LLC provides the experienced legal guidance and advocacy you need to get through this phase of your life.

Experienced Divorce Attorney in Overland Park, Kansas

If you are considering divorce or have just been served with divorce papers, call Rundberg Law, LLC today to schedule a free one-on-one consultation. I can help you understand the divorce process and fight to protect your rights. I proudly serve clients in Overland Park, Johnson County, and surrounding communities throughout Kansas and Missouri.