- A divorce can be a traumatic and confusing period, forcing you to make hard decisions.
- Attorney Simon Dippenaar of SD Law and Associates shares things to consider.
- When you divorce, custody of any children of the union is normally granted to a single parent, with reasonable access awarded to the other parent.
A divorce can be a traumatic and confusing period, forcing you to make decisions you never thought you would have to make.
In the process, there may be things you don't think about that are important and inform how you move forward with your life. And this will be for your benefit, your children, and even your ex.
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Attorney Simon Dippenaar of SD Law and Associates says these are things to consider:
Child care and contact
When you divorce, custody of any children of the union is normally granted to a single parent, with reasonable access awarded to the other parent. Or the parents may opt for joint (shared) custody. If parents can't agree on childcare arrangements, the court may insist on a parenting plan.
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In South African law, no one who can support themselves is entitled to maintenance. However, a court may order rehabilitative maintenance. This will be based on the couple's current and potential future financial means, earning capacities, financial needs and obligations, the length of the marriage, and other factors.
With rehabilitative maintenance, the court will estimate how much time the relevant spouse will need to gain the skills to re-enter the job market.
Where there is a stand-off between the parents, the family advocate may be called in. This state official assists divorcing parties in reaching an agreement on issues such as care, contact and guardianship. The family advocate's task is to make a recommendation to the court that puts the child's best interests first.