15 Myths About Divorce

mythsCommon divorce myths say 50 percent of all marriages fail, second marriages are more successful, Mom gets custody of the kids, men initiate most divorces, living together lowers divorce rates, all wives get alimony, America has the world’s highest divorce rate, you have to file for divorce where you married, your spouse can prevent the divorce, shared custody means no child support, older children can choose where they live, the wedding ring is community property, divorce is always ugly, men are better off financially after a divorce, and your spouse can never get your separate property.

Most Marriages End in Divorce.

Because 50 percent of American marriages end in divorce doesn’t mean your marriage has a 50/50 change of failing, because divorced people marry and divorce multiple times.

Second Marriages Are More Successful.

You might think you would learn from a failed marriage and have a better chance next time.  However, over 70 percent of second marriages end in divorce.

Moms Get Custody of Kids.

It seems reasonable that Mom should get custody because she’s generally the caretaker.  However, both parents have an equal right to custody of their children.  If Mom isn’t a good parent, Dad will get custody.

Men Initiate Most Divorces.

In America, over 75 percent of divorces are initiated by women, even though they will be financially worse off after the divorce.

Living Together Lowers Divorce Rates.

Most people believe that living together before marriage will help you avoid divorce, but if you move in for financial reasons, that’s not true.  Better to live together after careful thought to avoid divorce.

All Wives Get Alimony.

A generation ago, most wives received alimony and child support after a divorce.  Now, only if a wife was dependent on her husband before the divorce can she can expect to receive alimony.

America Has the World’s Highest Divorce Rate.

The U.S. does have a high divorce rate, but there are five other countries with higher divorce rates.  Brazil and Italy have the lowest divorce rates, but not necessarily the happiest marriages.

You Must File for Divorce Where You Married.

Usually there are residency requirements involved, and you must file for divorce where you have lived for the last several months.

Your Spouse Can Prevent the Divorce.

No-fault divorce means if you want a divorce, you can get one.  There is no requirement that one spouse be at fault and neither spouse can prevent the divorce.

Shared Custody Means no Child Support.

Child support is generally based on the number of children involved, where the children live, and the relative incomes of the spouses.  When custody is shared, courts still consider the incomes of both spouses in setting child support.

Older Children Can Choose Where to Live.

In Texas, children over the age of 12 can state a preference for where they want to live, but that is only one of several factors that a court will consider when determining child custody.

Wedding Rings are Marital Property.

Jewelry is generally considered a gift from one spouse to the other, and wedding rings are no different.  The wife owns the wedding and engagement rings as her separate property.

Divorces are Always Ugly.

When you opt to litigate your divorce, it will generally be ugly.  However, if you choose a collaborative divorce, you can get through the process with minimal damage to your family, avoid putting the children in the middle, and often save money.

Men Are Better off Financially after Divorce.

This depends on whether you are talking about household income or net worth.  Men often have a higher income a few years after their divorce, but their net worth is almost always lower because the marital estate was divided.

Your Spouse Never Gets Your Separate Property.

Generally separate property can’t be divided in a divorce.  However, if you commingle assets, and can’t show which funds are still your separate property, the funds will become marital assets and get divided at divorce.

 

There are many myths about divorce–don’t be misled by these false beliefs.  Most marriages don’t end in divorce, second marriages are less successful, Mom doesn’t always get the kids, women initiate most divorces, living together doesn’t avoid divorce,  wives don’t always get alimony, five other countries have higher divorce rates that America, you must file for divorce where you live, Texas is a no-fault divorce state, shared custody may involve child support, older children can’t control where they live, the wedding ring belongs to the wife, divorce are not always ugly, and men are not better off financially after a divorce.