Nevada family law cases are no laughing matter. They deal with emotional people who often can make rash decisions that can have a negative impact on the rest of their lives. Issues such as divorce, child custody, child support and more can drive a sane person crazy. But there is help for Nevada residents who can put in the time necessary to understand their case and find out what can be done. Our Nevada family law primer, below, will help educate you on the basics of common family law matters and help it make sense. Of course, it helps to have a professional on your side too. And if you so desire, we can connect you – at no charge – to a local Nevada family law professional who can help you get the family law rights you deserve.
Nevada’s requirements for divorce are less stringent than many other states probably because Nevada is home to Las Vegas. Nevada is a no-fault divorce state which means that a divorce petition can be filed on the basis of incompatibility of the couple and nothing else. This means that you and your spouse do not foresee reconciliation in the future and that the marriage is irretrievable and over. Furthermore, a no-fault divorce petition can be filed based on the grounds that the spouses have lived apart for at least one year.
Nevada, unlike the majority of states, can be a fairly quick process if everything is in order. Nevada Revised Statute NRS 125.020(e) states that spouses need only be residents of the State of Nevada for 6-weeks to file for divorce. This is among the fastest residency requirement in the entire country. On top of that, there is no mandatory waiting period as many other states have. As soon as you can get a signed agreement and judgment dissolving your marriage in front of a judge, he or she can enter it and end the marriage.
Nevada is like other southwestern states in that it is a “community property” state. This means that property acquired during the marriage (known as “marital property”) will be evenly divided unless the spouses agree to a different type of division. Of course, this also means that debts will be evenly divided too. Property that was inherited or bought prior to the marriage, however, will normally remain that person’s sole and separate property. Nevada considers many relevant factors in determining the division of the property under community property standards that can be found here at NRS 125.150.
Nevada also allows awards of alimony to be given to a spouse post-marriage. This is governed by similar rules as the division of property, by following Nevada Revised Statute NRS 125.150. Judges will examine a variety of factors to determine first, is alimony proper, second, how much alimony should one spouse pay to the other, and third, for how long should the payor spouse continue to make the alimony payments. Educational level, earning capacity, work history, health, age and potential disability all come into play when a judge makes an award of alimony in Nevada. This can result in tens of thousands of dollars of payments yearly in many cases, so navigating this alone is not the best gamble to make.
Nevada Child Support
Nevada child support laws determine the amount of child support to be awarded based on a noncustodial parent’s income, while considering additional factors such as the costs associated with a child’s healthcare and educational costs. Nevada sets a minimum child support obligation of $100 a month even if the parent paying support is unemployed. In Nevada, the determination of child support awards are based on which parent has physical custody over the child ie. – which parent the child lives with on a regular basis. The determination of the proper child support award is based on monthly pre-tax income and is set based on the type of custody agreement the parties have entered into.
Nevada follows a set percentage amount for the payment of child support based on the noncustodial parent’s gross monthly income according to the table below:
[column col=”1/2″]Number of Children Requiring Support
Each additional child after 4[/column]
[column col=”1/2″]Percentage of Gross Monthly Income to Pay
Additional 2% per child[/column]
This child support percentage is capped a specific amount depending on the paying spouses gross monthly income. Learn more by reading the statute or speaking to a local Nevada family law attorney to protect your rights.
Nevada Child Custody
Nevada child custody determinations can be decided upon agreement of both of the parents. However, if the parents cannot come to agreement the court will be forced to get involved. In this context, the court must make a child custody ruling that is in the “best interests of the child”. This best interests of the child standard involves taking into account the parents emotional and physical health, earning capacity, ability to provide for the child, the child’s adjustments to school, home, and the community they live in, and the relationships that the parents with each other and their child. For a complete list of the most relevant factors Nevada courts utilize can be found here at NRS 125.480.
Custody agreements can be created that provide for physical custody – which parent the child will live with the majority of the time and which parent will have visitation, in addition to legal custody which provides the parent(s) with the right to make major determinations and decisions about the child’s life and upbringing such as religious, educational, and health related needs. If agreement as to joint custody cannot be made, the court will award one parent sole custody so that they can make every day decisions without combatting the other parent on a regular basis as this is clearly not in the child’s best interests.
Child custody cases take place in divorces and also when parents are unmarried ad have a child (these are known as paternity cases). Child custody determinations where the parents are married and divorcing mean that, according to Nevada Revised Statute NRS 125.465, the parents automatically have joint custody unless the court finds otherwise. Paternity is important to be established as it both gives a father the rights associated with being dad as well as cementing rights as to which parent pays the other child support.
Nevada Father’s Rights
The Nevada father’s rights movement has mad large advances in the way that courts deal with awarding custody between a mother and a father. Although the bias towards mothers as the primary caregiver still exists, many fathers are establishing themselves as the primary caregiver of the children and thus are winning custody fights on a regular basis. Of course, it is essential to avoid common father’s rights pitfalls that can destroy your case. Setting up a plan ahead of time where you bath the children, drop off at school, pack lunches, and are involved in bed time and school meetings helps show the court that you deserve the right to joint custody, sole custody or extended visitation time with your children. Father’s rights lawyer shave been fighting for an equalization of these rights and headway is being made daily.
What’s the Next Move to Make?
Continue to get educated on your matter and the laws that play to your Nevada family law case. Read the statute located right here (Title 11 Domestic Relations) and try to apply your facts to the law. The next best step is to get a professional involved that has years of experience fighting for people like you. The good news here is that we can help connect you – for free – to a local Nevada family law lawyer or professional who can help. Don’t waste any more time, get started and get your family law rights!