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Nevada Divorce 101

The State of Nevada, the marriage capital of the world, is known for quick and easy marriages. But with 13.9% of Nevadans being divorced, it is also the divorce capital of the world. If divorce hasn’t affected you personally, chances are it will affect a family member or friend. Here are some basics to consider:

Grounds/Causes for Divorce: The grounds for divorce are outlined in NRS 125.010. Most people choose “incompatibility.” Incompatibility is a “catch-all” provision. The mere fact that one party wants a divorce, even if the other party doesn’t, proves incompatibility. Nevada is a “no-fault” state, which means you can obtain a divorce for any reason and your spouse cannot prevent you from obtaining a divorce.

Residency Requirements: The spouse initiating the divorce must have been a resident of Nevada for at least six weeks prior to filing for divorce and must intend to make Nevada their home for an indefinite period of time.

What about the Children? If you have children under the age of 18 (or 18 and in high school), then custody and support must be addressed. The children must be a Nevada resident for a least six months prior to filing.

There are two types of custody; legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody means a parent has a say in important decisions and may obtain records for the child.  There is a presumption that joint legal custody is in the child’s best interest.

Physical custody is based on where the child lives. Primary physical custody mean one parent has the child most of the time. Joint/Shared Physical custody means both parents have equal time with the child. The Nevada Supreme Court allows for a split of 60/40 to be considered joint custody. Sole legal custody means only one parent has the child and the other parent may have limited, supervised, or no visitation.

In Nevada, child support is calculated based on the parents’ gross monthly income – one child is 18%; two children is 25%, three children is 29%; four children is 31%; and each additional child is +2%. There is a statutory minimum of $100 per month per child. If one party has primary physical custody, then the non-custodial parent will pay the appropriate percentage of child support to the custodial parent. If the parties enjoy joint physical custody, then the Court will take the appropriate percentage of both parents’ incomes, calculate the difference, then the lower earner will pay the difference to the higher earner.

Spousal Support:  There is not a statutory formula to calculate spousal support like child support. Whether a spouse will pay/receive alimony depends largely on the length of the marriage, the contribution to their finances, and their income and earning capacity.

Divorce is a stressful and emotional process for all parties involved. Information can alleviate some of this stress. Becoming educated can ease your mind and help you make good decisions quickly and cost effectively.

McDonald Law Group offers free consultations in divorce and all areas of family law. Please call the office to set up your consultation.

This article was provided for informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice or establish an attorney-client relationship.


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