Honolulu Family Law Blog

How is property divided in a divorce under the laws of Hawai'i?

A divorce is a time of great uncertainty. You are essentially starting your life over, apart from your former partner. There is paperwork to fill out, decisions to make about where you will live and who will keep what personal and real property. If you have children, you must also decide how to share custody.

Depending on how well you and your soon-to-be ex are getting along, dividing property may be relatively easy or a never-ending argument. Before you make any decisions, here is what you should know about how property is divided in Hawaii.

Is alternative dispute resolution right for your divorce?

Splitting up with your partner is never easy, but when you are married, a breakup becomes even more complicated. Not only are you dealing with complex and sometimes conflicting emotions, you are also trying to handle legal issues like property division, spousal support and child custody. You want to make sure you get what is fair, but you also may want to avoid a courtroom battle that pits you and your soon-to-be ex against each other.

You could explore alternative methods of resolving your divorce disputes, like divorce mediation or collaborative divorce. These options keep you out of the courtroom and may allow you and your spouse to avoid the adversarial nature of a court case.

Can you divorce without a courtroom battle?

Typically, when people think of divorce they imagine a drawn-out courtroom battle. While litigation is an option, it is not the only option.

Many Hawaii families are considering alternative dispute resolution models to facilitate their divorces. These alternative methods can include: collaborative divorce, mediation and arbitration. How do these options differ from traditional litigation?

What does child support money really buy?

Divorcing parents have many worries regarding their children. You most likely want to make sure that whatever happens between you and your spouse does not hurt your child. No matter how much anger a parent may have for their spouse, most parents want the best outcome for their child as well as for themselves.

For this reason, child support can be a common source of conflict. The person who would pay support does not want to pay in excess. The parent receiving child support needs to be able to care for the child financially. Ultimately, the main goal of this process is to strike a balance for the child's sake.

When is the "right time" to divorce your spouse?

Couples who are considering divorce might be uncertain about such a big decision. Divorce can change the future of your finances and family life, so it's normal to feel both excited and intimidated.

There are many reasons why you might want to postpone divorce as well as reasons to begin the process immediately. Although every marriage comes with its own unique circumstances, there are a few considerations that might help you reach a decision.

No, your divorce doesn't have to go to court

Innovation concerns itself with what's next, what's better ... The story has it that Steve Jobs looked at his old cell phone and asked if there was a better way. Indeed there was and the iPhone has forever changed the way we communicate and interact with technology.

It's much the same in litigating a divorce - at least in terms of the status quo. 

It can be:

Planning for daily expenses after divorce

When divorce is on the horizon, it's hard to look at the future with a clear head. There's turmoil about where you'll live, what you'll own and how you'll care for the children. Many couples get caught up in child custody and division of property details while overlooking the basics of daily life.

As you think about the big decisions, the little ones are just as important. The division of property isn't just about retirement accounts and living quarters, it will affect your income and expenses. Most divorcing individuals go from a dual-income household to single-income when they split up. This has a direct effect on quality of living. Studies show that it hits women harder than men.

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