Gulfport Divorce Attorneys
Gulfport, MS Divorce Lawyers Protecting What's Important to You
Less people get married in Gulfport, Mississippi than in other parts of the country. And of those who do get married, more of them get divorced than in other parts of the country. Currently, Gulfport, MS has a 16% divorce rate. Whatever your reason for being here, we are here to help you get through this.
No one gets married expecting their relationship to end in divorce—and yet, a substantial amount of marriages are dissolved every single year. Whether you’ve come to this decision after a major life-changing event like infidelity, a long battle to save the marriage, or a realization that you and your spouse are no longer close, it’s important to protect yourself. The divorce process can be contentious and mentally draining, but with the right legal team, you can give yourself the tools you need to prepare for the next stage of your life.
Considering divorce in Gulfport, MS? Our team of Mississippi divorce attorneys is here to help you through this. Call Holcomb Johnson PLLC at 228-432-6652 to set up a consultation right now.
Fault and No-Fault Divorce Options
Most states only allow couples to file for no-fault divorce. This basically involves the couple stating that they are divorcing due to irreconcilable differences, which puts the blame on no one and keeps private matters from becoming exposed. However, Mississippi is one of just a few states that also allows a petitioner to request a fault-based divorce.
A fault divorce claims that one person is the reason that the marriage ended. If you can prove that your claims are true and you are granted a fault-based divorce, it may help you during property division, child custody, and other issues. In Mississippi, you can file for divorce based on:
• Alcoholism or habitual use of drugs
• One spouse being imprisoned
• Cruel and inhumane treatment
• Inability to consent to marriage
• A wife’s pregnancy by another man without the husband’s knowledge
Be aware, though, that you do have to prove your claims if you choose to go this route. You can’t just file on any of the grounds listed above and hope the court will take your word for it. Be ready to prove that your claims are true.
Dividing Your Debts and Assets
One of the main topics that come up during a Gulfport divorce is the division of assets. Mississippi, like many other states, is one that divides marital assets equitably. This is more nuanced than simply giving each spouse half of the marital estate. It involves looking at the circumstances affecting each spouse and determining how to divide assets in a way that is fair. Some of the factors that affect the division of debts and assets include:
• Each party’s contributions to the couple’s assets, including both financial contributions and non-economic contributions that allowed the other spouse to pursue their career
• Which spouse used and benefited from each asset
• The value of each asset, both personal and financial
• How much each spouse has in personal, separate property
• Each spouse’s needs
• Any debt obligations associated with certain assets and who will pay for those debts
• The tax consequences of certain asset division options
• Either party’s contribution to the end of the marriage
However, these decisions aren’t often settled by the judge. They are generally made by the couple and their attorneys, since this route allows the couple to maintain control over how their property is split up. If there are specific assets you want to keep or other issues that are more important to you, know where you are willing to compromise and where you need to draw a hard line.
Some of the assets that may be divided up during divorce include the marital home, bank accounts and cash on hand, additional real estate properties, retirement accounts, and personal items. For some, the marital home is the top priority. According to realtor.com, the average home price in Gulfport, MS was $215,000 as of mid-2022. If you have substantial equity in your home and minimal income, you may be unable to purchase a new home on your own. In that situation, you may want to keep the marital home so you and your children can stay stable.
Custody and Support Matters
Child custody, child support, and alimony are other issues that are likely to crop up during your Gulfport divorce. When it comes to custody, the court focuses on the best interest of the child. It’s generally best for the child to maintain ongoing contact with both parents and avoid excessive disturbances in their lifestyle. This may mean that the parents split parenting time 50/50, but it may also mean that a stay-at-home parent remains in the primary caretaker role while receiving child support from their ex-partner. A number of factors affect child custody, such as where each party will live, the support they have, their willingness to support a relationship with the other parent, and their role in their child’s activities. For example, if one parent plans on remaining in Gulfport so the child can continue attending school in the Gulfport School District and the other plans on moving out of the city, the court may favor the first parent. If the child is already going through a divorce, the court may not want them to adapt to a new school at the same time.
Child support in Mississippi is based on each parent’s income and the amount of parenting time they have. Adjustments may be made to the basic calculation, especially if the child has extraordinary medical needs, expensive extracurricular activities, or other traits that affect the cost of raising them.
Spousal support may be awarded in your Gulfport divorce. It’s typically granted if one partner earns significantly less than the other partner, has given up their career in order to support their spouse’s career, and has otherwise supported the home. Generally, the longer the marriage is, the longer the lower-earning spouse receives alimony.
Why We’re the Right Choice for Your Gulfport, MS Divorce
At Holcomb Johnson PLLC, we understand that divorce may be one of the most difficult things you go through in life. We want to make this time as easy and stress-free for you as possible. When we meet, we’ll talk about what you want from the divorce, where you’re willing to compromise, and where you are strict on what you want. Maybe you want to approach your divorce in an amiable way to support coparenting, or perhaps you want to take an aggressive approach and get everything you can during the split. Our approach is guided by what you want.
With a strong legal team on your side, you can prepare for life after divorce and begin recovering. This time is difficult and painful, we know—but we’re here to help you come out of it stronger.
Schedule Your Free Consultation With Holcomb Johnson PLLC Now
Whether you’ve just started to explore your divorce options or you have already started negotiating issues with your ex-partner, this is a great time to talk to Holcomb Johnson PLLC. Give us a call at 228-432-6652 or contact us online to set up a meeting now.