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Divorce Tips from a Pitbull Milwaukee Divorce Lawyer

Fighting for your rights during a difficult time

FAQ: How Is Property Divided?

The law recognizes that the marriage is a partnership and if that partnership is dissolved, all marital assets and liabilities should be divided 50/50. The exceptions to this are any property received as a gift or inheritance. This property is not subject to division so long as it is kept separate.

Wisconsin Divorce Property Division

When property is being divided, the court considers outside circumstances before splitting everything 50/50. Some of these factors include:

  • The length of marriage
  • The property brought to the marriage by each party
  • Whether one of the parties has substantial assets not subject to division by the court
  • The contribution of each party to the marriage
  • The economic value to each party's contribution in home making and child care services
  • The age and physical and emotional health of each parties
  • The contribution by one party to the education, training or increased earning power of the other
  • The earning capacity of each party, including educational background, training, employment skills, work experience, length of absence from the job market
  • Custodial responsibilities for children

It is important to be honest to the court and your attorney regarding your assets and property. Contact the family law attorneys at John T. Fields and Associates for assistant in your divorce and to make sure you get the assets you are entitled too.

Milwaukee Area Office: (262) 782-8322

Madison Area Office: (608) 260-7370


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FAQ: Explain The Divorce Process

In Wisconsin, it takes a minimum of 120 days from the date of service to get a divorce. This is considered a "cooling off" period which is required by law. Complicated divorces may take longer.

The Divorce Process in Wisconsin

The divorce process begins when one party files a summons and petition with the court. The person who files for divorce is called the petitioner. The other person is called the respondent. The respondent is served with the divorce paperwork and the 120 day time period begins. In the beginning, it is usually necessary to have some temporary divorce agreements on major issues; such as who has custody of the children, who stays in the house, and how much temporary support is paid, to name a few. The parties, through their divorce attorneys, should try to reach a written temporary agreement. If this is not possible, a hearing will be held in court and a court commissioner will make any necessary decisions. Any agreements or decisions made by the court are, in fact, temporary and in effect only while the divorce is pending. The ultimate outcome could be very different.

{Attorney Note: Though this phase only refers to the period when the divorce is pending, it is still very important because it sets up a status quo which is often maintained at the end of the divorce. Also, since complicated divorces can go on for some time these temporary agreements may be something that you have to live with for several months, or even longer}

After a temporary agreement has been reached, the case enters the discovery phase. In this phase, the divorce attorneys collect detailed information on debts and assets so that a settlement can be attempted. If there is a custody dispute, child support dispute, or maintenance dispute, your divorce attorney should gather all necessary information for presentation to the court so you can get the result you desire.

The family law attorneys at John T. Fields & Associates help clients facing adversarial divorces, requiring an aggressive, pit bull-style approach. We handle all aspects of divorce disputes including child custody battles, child support settlements, asset division, and other special circumstances involving divorce. We also assist clients who need representation for no-fault divorce in Wisconsin. Contact our divorce and family law firm for more information about legal representation involving divorce matters.

Milwaukee Area Office: (262) 782-8322

Madison Area Office: (608) 260-7370

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FAQ: What Is A Guardian ad Litem?

A Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) is a court-appointed lawyer whose job is to serve as an advocate for the best interests of the children in a Wisconsin divorce. Either parent can request a Guardian Ad Litem be appointed, but one will be assigned if the parents cannot come to an agreement on child custody or placement either independently or with the help of a mediator. After performing an investigation called an “informal discovery,” Guardians Ad Litem will advise the judge based on a number of factors, including but not limited to: the wishes of the child, the safety and well being of the child, the strength and duration of existing relationships with grandparents or other family members, the amount of time spent with the child in the past, relocation concerns including school and child care, and the parent’s ability to cooperate and communicate with the other parent in regards to the child. For more information about how Guardians Ad Litem affect your child custody battle, call to schedule an appointment with an experienced Milwaukee area divorce lawyer at John T. Fields & Associates.

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CHIPS: Children In Need Of Protection Services

When a person brings a child into the world, they have an obligation to that child to make sure that their basic physical and emotional needs are cared for. They have a responsibility to make that child feel safe and secure. Sadly, too often in our society more and more parents fall short of their obligation to care for their child’s needs. Selfish parents may choose to satisfy their drug and alcohol addictions instead of purchasing food and clothing for their children.  A parent may knowingly decide to move in with a significant other who has a history of physical or sexual abuse of children. Or a parent may be abusive or neglectful themselves. What should a concerned friend or family member do in this situation? How can you protect a child in need?

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FAQ: Types Of Divorce: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

No Fault Divorce State

Divorce Laws in Wisconsin stay that Wisconsin is a no fault divorce state. This means that neither party needs a reason or any grounds to get divorced. You do not have to show mental cruelty, adultery, abandonment or anything else to proceed with a divorce. In fact, these issues are legally irrelevant. As long as one party believes the marriage to be irretrievably broken, the court will grant the divorce.

The Good: Uncontested Divorce

An uncontested divorce is one in which the parties have mutually agreed on all issues.

The Bad and the Ugly: Contested Divorce

If a divorce is contested, it means that the husband and wife have not reached an agreement on all the issues involved in their divorce. Examples of issues that must be resolved by the parties and their attorneys are child custody, child support, maintenance (alimony) and property division. If an agreement cannot be reached by both parties, a judge will then make a decision on any unresolved issues.

For more information about divorce in Wisconsin or to schedule an appointment with an experienced lawyer regarding a divorce proceeding in Wisconsin, please contact the family law attorneys at John T. Fields & Associates.

Southeast Wisconsin Area Office: (262) 782-8322

Madison Area Office: (608) 260-7370

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