Outcomes Of Divorce In Short-Term Marriages

28 April 2017
 Categories: Law, Blog


It's painful to realize that you made a mistake in choosing your life partner and need to dissolve a marriage after a short time. What makes it even more difficult is negotiating the split of assets after a very short marriage. Here are some of the things you might expect when mediating a divorce after a short-term marriage.

Trends in Asset Splitting

Courts look at marriage as not only a union of love, but also a sort of business arrangement that involves shared financial concerns. It's presumed that spouses offer a higher standard of living to one another, either through greater earnings, or through the dispersal of responsibilities for housework, childcare, and other logistical concerns. So, in a divorce, courts seek to make sure that each spouse has a good standard of living.

In longer marriages, this tends to lead to a complex split of assets. For instance, one spouse may have stayed home with children and, thus experienced a reduction in their lifetime earning potential. They may not have been able to develop a career at all. In a divorce, that partner would likely be awarded a larger share of the assets as well as ongoing alimony payments to support them financially. In long marriages, the lower income spouse might receive permanent alimony payments.

In shorter divorces, a 50/50 asset split is more often considered. However, nothing is set in stone; if you can argue for why a 50/50 split is unjust, you may be able to successfully get a different outcome.

A Short Divorce Can Harm or Hurt You

Short-term marriages may be looked at differently by the court, depending on how your family law attorney supports your case. If you are the less wealthy spouse, you could argue that part of the implicit agreement of the marriage was a higher financial status. If the other party was responsible for the divorce, you can argue your way into a better settlement.

On the flip side, you can protect your assets as a higher-earning spouse by arguing that there was little joint asset accumulation during your short marriage. There is no cut and dry way to split assets, which is why you need to consult an experienced family law attorney who is a strong negotiator. With the legal support from a lawyer like those at Urech & Livaudais PC, the length of your marriage will play a much smaller role in the final settlement you receive.