Going through a divorce can be very stressful. Emotions run high and there are many difficult decisions to contend with. The outcome of a divorce proceeding has long-lasting ramifications that can affect the rest of your life, as well as the lives of your family. At West County Family Law, our attorneys understand that you are going through a difficult transition and we know you may have many questions and concerns. With years of experience handling divorce cases in the St. Louis area, attorneys Case & Rajnoha will provide you with the legal guidance you need to make informed decisions and the legal representation necessary to ensure that your interests are properly protected.

In Missouri, couples can either file for a divorce or a legal separation. Determining which type is right for you will be based on individual factors, such as your relationship with your spouse, the structure of your assets (property) and liabilities (debts), how well you and your spouse are able to communicate with each among other factors. The difference between a divorce and legal separation is that on the petition when filing for divorce you must allege that the marriage is irretrievably broken. On a petition for a legal separation you do not allege that the marriage is irretrievably broken therefor can be preserved. For more information on the difference between the two proceedings call West County Family Law and talk with one of our attorneys.

Understanding the Process

If both parties agree on relevant issues such as child custody, child support, maintenance (alimony), and division of property and debt issues, the divorce is considered "uncontested." In many instances, the parties then submit a written agreement to the court for approval. If any issues are "contested," the parties can either negotiate an agreement or resolve them through court proceedings. Along with the divorce petition, the person who files for divorce must submit a statement of the parties' separate and marital property and debt, as well as a statement listing his or her own income and expenses.

If you are looking for a less expensive and less traumatic way to end your marriage through divorce, it is best to try to agree to as many issues as possible in advance so that negotiations do not have to be carried on by opposing divorce attorneys. The more both parties can work out their differences on their own, the less resulting time and money (not to mention aggravation) will be expended.

Essential Facts About Divorce Everyone Should Know

· One of the parties must be a Missouri resident for at least 90 days before filing a divorce petition.

· Missouri is a modified no-fault state, meaning that the party filing for divorce is not required to declare grounds in the petition.

· There is a 30-day waiting period following the filing of the petition before the divorce can be granted.

· A divorce cannot be finalized if the wife is pregnant.

· In Missouri, all parents of minor children seeking divorce must attend a parenting class.

There is no denying that the divorce process can be challenging, painful and difficult, but the understanding that you are not alone and that you have experienced representation of attorneys Case & Rajnoha to guide your decisions and protect your best interests is an important step in getting back on track to a brighter future.

If you are considering initiating a divorce or have already been served with divorce papers, call West County Family at 636-861-1111. We can provide you with solid legal guidance, answer the many questions you may have, and schedule a divorce consultation during which you can further discuss the unique aspects of your case.

What are some of the decisions that need to be made during divorce?

When a couple splits up, many decisions need to be made related to the distribution of assets, liabilities and property. Spousal support, or alimony, is another aspect of the process that needs to be agreed upon. If children are involved, the situation becomes more complicated, since issues such as time-sharing (child custody and visitation) and child support must be considered. Aside from day to day finances for dependent children, considerations related to health insurance, life insurance, college education funding and other financial matters must be agreed upon. Every divorce case is unique and the types of considerations that need to be made in each case will differ depending on circumstances.

Division of Property

Division of property is often the most troublesome issue in a divorce proceeding. One of the questions almost always asked is who gets to keep the (insert valuable or sentimental item here)? Property division is an important consideration in every divorce and it takes an experienced attorney to assist you during this process. The court has the responsibility to fairly distribute the marital and non-marital property of the spouses. Marital property is generally any items acquired during the marriage. On the other hand, non-marital property is pretty much everything that you owned before you got married. Keep in mind that a division of property does not necessarily have to be "equal". Courts often make what may at first seem like an unequal distribution based upon the specific circumstances of the marriage. Several factors are taken into account here. Courts generally consider each spouse's contributions to the marriage, both monetary and non-monetary. The ultimate goal is to arrive at a fair solution which takes into account the whole of the marriage.

Free Divorce Phone Consultation - 636-861-1111

We offer free, no-obligation divorce phone consultations, providing you with the opportunity to ask questions and obtain more information. This allows you to enter into the divorce process with necessary knowledge that can affect your future. This helps us determine how we can best meet your needs.

At the West County Family Law, we work with either parent involved in divorce proceedings or other issues in child custody and support, such as paternity. Our knowledgeable attorneys Case & Rajnoha will help identify your rights and negotiate a parenting plan that fits your individual circumstance.

Experienced Service and Legal Counsel

Our goal at West County Family Law is to provide the highest quality of experience, service and legal counsel. With more than 65 years of experience, attorneys Case & Rajnoha are capable of handling many types of legal matters. Founded in 1975, West County Family Law's trademark has been prompt, personal attention. Our success has been our dedication to our clients and protecting their best interests and rights. Our clients deserve to be well-represented, with quality legal services provided by a dedicated team of attorneys and paralegals. We pride ourselves in our personal service by making sure we are available for our client throughout the legal process.

We're Here to Help You

We seek to help you through the legal problem confronting you. The first step is an easy one: call us for a free telephone consultation at (636) 861-1111 to speak with our Ballwin family and criminal law attorneys. You can also contact us online.

We accept Visa and MasterCard.

West County Family Law is located in Ballwin, Missouri, and serves the cities of St. Louis, Chesterfield, Fenton, Valley Park, Clayton, Creve Coeur, Kirkwood, Des Peres, Webster Groves, Manchester, Eureka, Hillsboro, Maryland Heights, Town and Country, Ellisville, Frontenac, Wildwood, Ladue and Crestwood. We also serve other communities in St. Louis County, Jefferson County, St. Charles County, West County and South County.