When it’s time for a marriage to end, there are many different courses of action for how former spouses can move forward. In Kansas, individuals seeking to end their marital relationships have three legal options: divorce, annulment, and legal separation. Each of these processes has distinct characteristics, requirements, and implications.
Understanding the Differences Between Types of Separation
No matter what type of separation the parties seek, developing a separation agreement is essential. A separation agreement is a private compact between spouses who are divorced or are about to divorce or are pursuing separation alternatives to divorce. It’s best to consult with a lawyer to determine what sort of separation will work best for you.
A separation agreement contains established stipulations that address numerous concerns relating to the separation, such as which spouse is liable for particular bills, which spouse will remain in the home they used to share, or where and who the children will live with. A typical separation arrangement covers the terms of how the split will occur, how the court will distribute property, whether a spouse is obligated to provide spousal support, and child custody and support if children are involved.
Divorce in Kansas
Divorce is the most common method of dissolving a marriage in Kansas. Also referred to as “dissolution of marriage,” divorce is a legal process that terminates the marital union between two individuals. To file for divorce in Kansas, at least one spouse must have been a state resident for at least 60 days before filing.
In a divorce, the court will divide marital property, determine child custody and visitation rights, establish child support, and address spousal support or alimony. Kansas follows the principle of “equitable distribution,” meaning that courts divide marital assets and debts fairly but not equally. The court may consider various factors, such as the length of the marriage, each spouse’s financial situation, and the contributions made during the marriage.
Annulment in Kansas
Annulment is a legal process that declares a marriage null and void as if it never existed. Unlike divorce, which ends a valid marriage, an annulment retroactively declares the marriage was invalid from the beginning as the parties didn’t enter the legal agreement on the same page. In Kansas, the court only grants annulment under specific circumstances.
Grounds for annulment in Kansas include a marriage void due to a party being underage or mentally incapacitated at the time of the marriage or when a marriage is voidable due to fraud, duress, or a party’s incapacity to consent. Those seeking to end their marriage must file annulment petitions within a reasonable time after discovering the grounds for annulment.
Legal Separation in Kansas
Legal separation allows couples to live apart while remaining legally married. It provides an alternative for couples who wish to separate their lives but do not want to terminate their marriage entirely. Legal separation issues orders similar to those in a divorce, such as child custody, child support, and division of property.
In Kansas, one spouse must reside or be stationed in the state while serving in the armed forces to obtain a legal separation. The legal separation process is similar to divorce, including filing a petition, reaching agreements on important matters, and obtaining a court order. Couples may later convert a legal separation into a divorce if they end the marriage permanently.
Division of Property
When the courts decide how to divide property between the former spouses, they consider the following factors:
1. How Old Are They?
2. How Long Were They Married?
3. What Property Do They Own?
4. How Much Money Do They Have The Potential To Earn?
5. When Was The Property Acquired, From Where, and How?
6. Are There Any Familial Ties or Obligations?
7. Will Maintenance Be Allowed?
8. Will Assets Be Used or Sold Before the Divorce?
9. How Will the Divorce Affect Each Person’s Taxes?
10. What Else is Important to Make a Just and Reasonable Division of Property?
Spousal support is a vital component of divorce proceedings, aiming to provide financial stability to an economically disadvantaged spouse after the dissolution of a marriage. The determination of spousal support considers various factors such as income, assets, contributions, and living standards during the marriage.
Different types of spousal support cater to specific circumstances, including temporary, rehabilitative, permanent, and lump-sum. It’s essential to consult with a family law attorney to ensure the divorce agreement contains a fair determination of spousal support requirements.
Barnds Law LLC Can Help You Navigate the Legal End of Your Relationship
The end of a marriage is a big deal, with many complex systems to navigate and options to consider. As discussed, divorce is the most common way couples separate, in which a valid marriage legally ends, dividing assets and addressing various issues related to children and support. Annulment declares a marriage null and void based on specific grounds, erasing it as if it never existed. Legal separation allows couples to live apart while remaining married, with similar legal orders as in divorce.
When faced with the difficult decision of ending a legal union in Kansas, it is crucial to understand the differences between divorce, annulment, and legal separation.
By working with a great legal team to understand these distinctions, you can make informed decisions and navigate the legal processes surrounding your separation in Kansas more clearly and confidently. Schedule a strategy session with Barnds Law LLC by calling (913) 514-0909 today.