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Developing a Budget for the Divorce Process

When most people hear the word, "Budget", they hear, "Diet." And nobody likes to be on a diet. However, developing a budget is a good planning tool for understanding your income needs. Some people divide their income needs into "basic needs" and "lifestyle needs." Lifestyle needs are those items beyond food, shelter, transportation, insurances, expenses for your children, and other basics.

During the process of Dissolution of Marriage, both husband and wife will develop a budget. This can be particularly important when trying to understand alimony or other support. In the beginning, the data you have to work with is your list of past expenditures. Common resources for discovering how much you spend and on what items are sources like your checkbook register, an online banking budget tool you may be using, and credit card charges history from credit card statements.

Collecting this data is relatively easy. The more difficult task is sifting through it all to compose a budget. Working with this data brings you to a "Family" budget. That is, the expenditures for both basic needs and lifestyle needs of your family. Now what?

From this information can you derive your estimated "new" budget going forward?

The budget work that you do can be very informative to the process and to any of the professionals who are helping you. Sometimes creating your budget can be difficult and frustrating. You may consider contacting a professional to help you get started with this and any other help you may need.


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When the Florida court decides on the issue of child custody and visitation, the gender of the parents is not considered. For example, a mother will not automatically receive custody of the children just because she is the mother. The judge must only consider what is in the best interests of the child. Florida divorce law requires Shared Parental Responsibility. This means that even though the child may live with one parent, the other parent has equal say in raising the child. Each party must be consulted on the education, health, religion, and discipline of the child. And, if the parties cannot agree on these important issues, the judge will make the decisions.
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