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Can I Divorce my Disabled Spouse?

divorcing a disabled spouse

When it comes to divorcing a disabled spouse, an already emotionally difficult process becomes even more complex. In this blog, we’ll explore the considerations, challenges, and potential solutions if you are thinking about divorcing a disabled spouse.

Legal Considerations

  1. Disability and Divorce Laws: Divorce laws vary by state, but most states allow for divorce regardless of a spouse’s disability. Disability itself is not typically a legal barrier to divorce. A divorce can proceed with a disabled spouse as long as someone is named as guardian of the disabled spouse who can negotiate on their behalf.
  2. Property Division: In most cases, the division of property, assets, and debts remains the same whether a spouse is disabled or not. Courts typically aim for equitable distribution based on the circumstances of the marriage.
  3. Spousal Support: The disabled spouse may be entitled to spousal support or alimony if they are unable to maintain their standard of living due to their disability. The court will consider factors such as the duration of the marriage, financial resources for each of the parties, and the disabled spouse’s ability to work.
  4. Child Custody: Disability does not automatically affect child custody decisions. Courts prioritize the best interests of the child and consider each parent’s ability to provide a safe and supportive environment as well as their ability to make sound decisions for the benefit of the children.

Solutions and Support

  1. Mediation: Mediation can be a helpful approach to divorce when one spouse is disabled. A neutral third party can assist in facilitating open communication and finding mutually acceptable solutions.
  2. Legal Counsel: Consult with an experienced divorce attorney who understands the complexities of divorce involving a disabled spouse. They can provide guidance on legal matters, property division, and spousal support.
  3. Disability Benefits: Research and understand how the disabled spouse’s disability benefits, such as Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), may be affected by divorce. Legal advice from an experienced attorney can help you navigate this aspect.
  4. Support Networks: Seek support from disability advocacy groups, therapists, or support groups. Connecting with others who have faced similar situations can provide valuable insights and emotional support.

Remember that the specific steps and considerations when divorcing your disabled spouse can vary widely depending on your unique circumstances. It’s crucial to consult with a qualified attorney to navigate the divorce process successfully and ensure that the rights and needs of your disabled spouse are appropriately addressed. Contact Jacobson Family Law at 443-741-1147 or Schedule a Consultation today to speak with an experienced attorney.