Baltimore, Annapolis & Belair Men’s
You might see lawyers who advertise as a “men’s divorce attorney.” While men sometimes face quiet bias in divorces, Maryland’s laws are relatively gender-neutral. At James L. Crawford, Jr. & Associates, we recognize that each man’s goals and circumstances are different. Rather than offer cookie-cutter “men’s divorce” strategies, we work with our clients and craft personalized solutions. Learn more about our approach to divorce below.
Maryland Divorce Law 101
In Maryland, you are eligible for divorce if:
- You and your spouse have been separated for at least a year;
- You both consent to the divorce (and do not have minor children);
- Your spouse subjected you to adultery, desertion, or cruel treatment;
- Your spouse is legally insane, or;
- The spouse was sentenced to at least three years in jail and has served at least one year of his or her sentence.
Other couples are eligible for a limited divorce — you divide your property, negotiate child support and custody, but cannot remarry. Under certain circumstances, a men’s divorce attorney might suggest limited divorce as a temporary solution while you complete your one-year separation.
Top Concerns for Maryland Men During a Divorce
While Maryland’s laws are primarily gender-neutral, a men’s divorce attorney knows that quiet biases can impact alimony, child support, and child custody awards. For this reason, it’s important to retain a skilled, aggressive family law lawyer. A lawyer can combat this bias and fight for your legal rights.
However, during a divorce, you typically must consider the following information.
Alimony and Spousal Support
You or your spouse might receive support payments during and after a divorce. In Maryland, most alimony is temporary, giving the spouse time to find a job, get training, and care for his or her children. A men’s divorce attorney will advocate on your behalf.
Child Custody and Visitation
If you have children, you must address child custody issues. Either you and your spouse — or the judge — will divide your collective power to make important decisions regarding your child (“legal custody”) and your right to spend time with your child (“physical custody”). While Maryland courts do consider your child’s gender as a factor when awarding custody, fathers have parenting rights. You might get sole or joint custody of your child, depending on your circumstances and the child’s needs.
Parents have a legal obligation to financially support their offspring. If you have custody of your child, your spouse must pay child support. Child support payments typically continue until a child turns 18 years old — although there are exceptions to this rule. As your circumstances change, you can also ask the court to modify or terminate child support payments.
Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements
Sometimes, couples enter into a nuptial agreement. A valid nuptial agreement dictates how your marital property is divided during a divorce. If you have a nuptial agreement (either a prenup or a postnup), notify your men’s divorce attorney immediately. A lawyer might help you interpret and enforce the document.
Maryland is an equitable distribution state. In other words, you will not necessarily split your marital property 50/50. Instead, the court will weigh a series of factors and attempt to distribute your property fairly. This is an important and emotionally-charged process that frequently results in disputes and delays. A men’s divorce attorney will fight on your behalf and work to diffuse the situation (when possible).
At James L. Crawford, Jr. & Associates, we focus on client education, aggressive legal representation, and attention to detail. If you have questions about your rights and obligations under Maryland family law, contact us for a free evaluation. We also handle child support and alimony modification issues.
Schedule a Consultation With a Maryland Men’s Divorce Attorney
A Maryland men’s divorce attorney is on your side and will work to protect your interests. We know that most men value their parenting time and want to provide fairly for their families — even during a divorce. We work with our clients to protect these values. Contact us today for a free and confidential consultation.