More than 50 years of combined experience providing dedicated advocacy for families
Divorce is a difficult process. Even if you know it's the right choice, working through the legal system can be stressful for your entire family. But it can also be the first step toward the rest of your life. Finding a divorce attorney that can provide the tough advocacy you need with the compassionate attitude you deserve can make all the difference in preparing you for a positive future. At Pate & Knott, our Murfreesboro divorce attorneys work ardently to navigate through the complex process of dissolving your divorce, helping you reach a settlement that's fair and meets your individual needs.
Answers to frequently asked questions about divorce in Tennessee
Is there any waiting period to file for divorce in Tennessee?
No. You can file for divorce at any time if you have resided in the state for at least six months.
Does the judge have final say in how property is divided in a divorce?
It depends on whether your divorce is contested or uncontested. If you and your spouse are able to agree on to how to divide your marital property, you can enter into a Marital Dissolution Agreement, which simply needs to be approved and entered by the court. If you are unable to come to an agreement, a judge will determine both what should be considered marital property and how to distribute it equitably, in a contested divorce.
How does the court divide property if the spouses can't agree?
First, the court will determine whether property should be considered separate or marital. Marital property generally refers to assets acquired during the marriage or separate assets that were comingled during the marriage. For example, if one spouse receives an inheritance from a deceased relative, it is generally considered a separate asset. Alternatively, if a home was solely owned by one of the spouses before the marriage, but during the marriage both spouses significantly contributed to the upkeep and renovation of the home, it may be considered a marital asset for purposes of property distribution during a divorce. Next, the court will determine an equitable distribution of all marital property based on a variety of factors, including the length of the marriage, the amount of separate assets owned by each spouse, each spouse's earning capacity, and more.
Are spouses entitled to alimony in Tennessee?
Yes, you may be entitled to alimony payments depending on your situation. The court may order alimony be paid from one spouse to another if it is demonstrated that one spouse has a need for spousal support and the other spouse has the ability to pay support. The court as factors to consider in awarding spousal support or alimony, including the disparity in the parties incomes, the income earning potential of each spouse, the length of the marriage, the non-marital assets owned by each spouse, and their ability to meet their individual needs following the dissolution of their marriage.
What types of alimony can the court award in Tennessee?
The court may award long-term alimony support known as alimony in futuro, which is paid out in installments over time and may be modifiable. The court has the discretion to order alimony in the form of a lump sum payment, known as alimony in solido. The court may also determine that short-term alimony support is sufficient to help the spouse become financially independent, such as transitional alimony or rehabilitative alimony. Short-term alimony may include financial support for education or job training. Some forms of alimony are modifiable and some forms of alimony are not modifiable, unless specified otherwise in the divorce decree or by statute. For example, alimony generally ends if the receiving spouse gets remarried, unless specified otherwise by the divorce decree of statute.
What if my spouse was at fault for the divorce? Will that affect their property distribution?
No. Tennessee is an equitable distribution state. Property will generally be distributed equitably regardless of who was at fault for the divorce.
Murfreesboro divorce lawyers protect your rights against serious allegations
If you are considering divorce, you might have more questions than answers. You need a skilled Tennessee divorce attorney to give you the time and attention necessary to ensure you get the information you need and map out the best plan for your future. We accept all major credit cards. Call us at 615-848-1221 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation. We're conveniently located on the square, near the judicial building and offer evening and weekend appointments.