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Florida Divorce Top 10 Vocabulary Words Part 2

This list is continued from the last post, Florida Divorce Top 10 Vocabulary Words Part 1

  1. Venue: Just as jurisdiction determines a state's authority to make decisions regarding a particular matter, Venue is the proper county for the action within Florida.

  2. Marital Settlement Agreement: An agreement between the Petitioner and Respondent that outlines the terms of their agreement on all or some of the issues. If no agreement is reached the matter will proceed to a hearing on any remaining issues and a Judge will decide those issues. 

  3. Parenting Plan: A required document in Florida which outlines the parenting terms for the child. It must contain a determination of parental responsibility and timesharing schedule.

  4. Mediation: A process required in most divorces.  The parties meet with a qualified mediator who is there to assist them in resolving the issues through an agreement. If any agreement is reached, on all or some of the issues, the parties will sign a settlement agreement.

  5. Marital Property / Non-Marital Property: Generally speaking any property or debt incurred during a marriage in Florida is considered marital property and is subject to getting divided among the parties by the Court. Non-marital property is property that the Court does not divide in a divorce which belongs to one party alone. Non-marital property often is property acquired before the marriage and sometimes property acquired during the marriage under limited circumstances.

  6. Equitable Distribution: The division of marital assets and debts in a divorce. Usually the division of property and debts is equal between the parties, but not always. Equitable means it is intended to be fair, sometimes 50/50 is not fair.

  7. Child Support: Child support is owed from a parent to the other parent for the benefit of a child. Child support is not waivable in Florida and a parent cannot agree to drastically reduce such support. Child support is a right of a child, not a parent. In Florida, child support is calculated using an algebra formula.

  8. Alimony: Support owed from one spouse who has the ability to pay such support to another spouse who has a need to be supported. Typically applies to moderate and long term marriage not short term marriage. There is no specific formula in Florida and determining a fair alimony agreement can be one of the most challenging areas of family law.

  9. Imputed income: The ability of a court to pretend that a party has income which he/or she does not actually have based upon the fact that the person is either voluntarily unemployed or voluntarily underemployed.

  10. Final Judgment: The document which actually grants the divorce in Florida. It lays out the resolution of all issues and orders that the parties be legally divorced.

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