Family Law Blog

McKinley Irvin Blog

A little knowledge can go a long way to protect your assets and family relationships. Planning can save headaches and money, and can provide peace of mind. The articles and tips in this section of the McKinley Irvin website are intended to help you understand and prepare for some of the more common issues you’ll encounter in a divorce, child custody, or other family law matter.

Please be advised that family cases can be very complex. The information provided here should not be construed as legal advice in your case.

  • Does Marital Conduct Impact Spousal Support Awards?

    Does Marital Conduct Impact Spousal Support Awards? Marriage can come to a dramatic and abrupt end if a spouse’s misconduct becomes known. Adultery and drug abuse may drive an irreparable wedge between spouses, but misconduct does not typically affect spousal support in Washington State . Alimony – also called maintenance in Washington State – is typically awarded to bridge a big disparity between the spouses’ incomes and employability. Support is not designed as a punishment for a wrongdoing spouse. Instead, spousal support aims to help the lesser-earning spouse regain their ...
  • Negotiating Spousal Support

    Negotiating Spousal Support Discussing the terms of spousal maintenance with an ex is never a comfortable experience. Spousal support negotiations can be one of the most difficult aspects of divorce proceedings, which is why it is important that both spouses carefully analyze each other’s situations to figure out what terms are appropriate for their future needs. Before you start negotiating a spousal maintenance agreement, you need to make sure you have a good understanding of your own personal finances. Carefully examine your monthly income and ...
  • How Separate Property Can Become Community Property

    How Separate Property Can Become Community Property In a community property state like Washington, any property or other asset acquired during a marriage becomes the equal property of both parties. Each spouse may also have separate property they bring into the marriage. In a simplified situation, a divorcing couple splits their community property while retaining their separate property. Not all divorces are simple, however. If separate property is commingled with community property , that once-separate property can be subject to division in a divorce . Transmutation of ...
  • Thanksgiving After Divorce: 3 Tips for Co-Parents

    Thanksgiving After Divorce: 3 Tips for Co-Parents While divorce can be a struggle for families with children all throughout the year, Thanksgiving can be a particularly difficult time when parents can’t celebrate the holiday with their kids. The first few Thanksgivings can be especially tough for divorced families as they adjust to their new normal. Below, we explain three strategies that can help you cope with the new reality of being a co-parent during the holiday season. Tip #1: Stick to Your Parenting Schedule There are a variety of ways co-parents can divide up ...
  • Split Custody Is Possible if in the Child’s Best Interests

    Split Custody Is Possible if in the Child’s Best Interests The guiding principle for all child custody decisions in Washington State is the best interests of the child and not what is optimal for the parents. Custody must determine three aspects: How much time the child spends with each parent Which parent(s) has decision-making authority for the child A detailed parenting plan establishes how the parents will co-parent their child, from holiday schedules to medical treatments. When a divorcing couple has more than one child together, the residential schedule generally applies to ...
  • What to Know About International Child Custody

    What to Know About International Child Custody Child custody cases are never easy, but if you and your co-parent live in different countries, dealing with joint custody or visitation can be quite complicated. The U.S. Census Bureau tells us that international marriages are becoming more and more common, which means there will be more children born of parents from different countries. Our modern society has become much more global, which can be beneficial for several reasons, but it presents very specific challenges in child custody cases. Joint physical custody could be ...
  • U.S. News Recognizes McKinley Irvin in 2023 “Best Law Firms” for Family Law

    U.S. News Recognizes McKinley Irvin in 2023 “Best Law Firms” for Family Law McKinley Irvin is proud to be recognized for professional excellence in this year’s U.S. News–Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms.” Ranked as a Tier 1 law firm in the Seattle metropolitan area for Family Law, 2023 marks the 12 th consecutive year the firm has been honored with this distinction. Firms included in the Best Law Firms list have received persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers. To be eligible for “Best Law Firms,” a firm must have at least one lawyer listed in The Best Lawyers in America. Eight McKinley ...
  • Benefits of Using a Forensic Accountant in a Divorce

    Benefits of Using a Forensic Accountant in a Divorce When a couple begins the divorce process, transparency about assets is critical. This information provides the foundation for nearly every aspect of a divorce agreement, but nowhere more than property division . There can be no fair determination of which spouse receives what if there is no true accounting of the marital property. From finding hidden bank accounts to revealing the dissipation of assets, a forensic accountant’s work can result in a fairer divorce settlement. Role of a Forensic Accountant Divorce lawyers lean ...
  • Tips for Parenting Plans Involving Babies & Young Children

    Tips for Parenting Plans Involving Babies & Young Children Creating a parenting plan is never easy, especially when your children are still young. Older children are often better equipped to handle divorce and separation issues, or they are at least able to grasp what is going on. Babies and young children, however, don’t understand what is happening and ideally should be receiving attention and care from both parents during these early years. For this reason, it can be particularly difficult to create a schedule for a baby when the parents live in different households. If you and ...
  • Is It Possible to Have an Amicable Divorce?

    Is It Possible to Have an Amicable Divorce? When couples decide to divorce and part ways, the transition can be more difficult if the divorcing parties let their emotions get the best of them. Couples who engage in highly contested disputes during their divorces often end up spending significantly more money. Below, we explain a strategy that divorcing couples can take advantage of if they want to have an amicable divorce. Consider Using a Mediator If you want to avoid the hassle and cost of going to court to have a judge settle your disputes, then you should consider ...
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