Contact Us

Divorce

Unfortunately, most Americans will encounter a divorce within their immediate family at some point in their lives. If your family may be facing the challenge of Divorce, you need to have your own lawyer on your side who is working to make sure you get what you deserve. Divorces can be Contested or Uncontested depending upon whether the parties can or have reached an agreement which meets the scrutiny of the court and falls within the scope of the law. John Milazo and Misty D. Parks have experience helping hundreds of families throughout Middle Tennessee transition through the Divorce process. Put that experience to work for you and call (615) 599-7719 now to speak with one of our attorneys or click below to leave a message through this website that will be returned promptly. The initial consultation is free.

When contemplating pursuing a divorce there are two questions that a person should ask themselves.

1. First and probably foremost will be "Is this what I NEED to do?" Some issues, such as domestic violence, which includes spousal abuse or child abuse, leave little to be considered. There is simply no excuse for committing physical violence against your spouse or your child. Rarely do these situations improve and the risk of remaining in a situation such as this in hopes that it may; simply are far outweighed by the potential harm that could come to yourself or your children. If you find yourself in a situation where domestic violence is either occurring or imminent, do not hesitate a moment. Many organizations exist which are designed to, and are effective at, providing a safe environment for victims of domestic violence and their children. You may contact Bridges of Williamson County at (615) 599-5777. Their representatives will aid you in obtaining an Order of Protection without expense. Other situations including emotional abuse, infidelity, drug or alcohol abuse, gambling etc. leave room for serious consideration to determine if you simply must file for divorce or address the issues through counseling and treatment.

2. Next will be "Is this what I want to do?" Again, Milazo Law, P.C., is happy to meet with you for initial consultation free of charge to discuss these matters in further detail. Once aware of the procedures involved and the likely outcome of having filed for divorce; you will be able to make an informed decision of which course is more appropriate for your situation.

Planning for a Divorce

Proper planning can significantly improve the post divorce lifestyle you and your children can expect to enjoy. At Milazo Law, P.C., we will take the time necessary to help you establish realistic goals for you and your family. You will meet one on one with your attorney to develop a legal strategy tailored to the unique needs and circumstances affecting you and your children. Planning for your Divorce is planning for you and your children's future.

Several things should be considered before submitting a proposed Divorce Decree:

  • What assets are marital and what may be considered the separate property of either spouse?
  • Can either party afford the marital residence or does it need to be sold?
  • Is there enough equity to sell the residence or any other real estate?
  • What is the household debt situation and is bankruptcy going to be an issue?
  • Does one party earn substantially more money than the other and is alimony appropriate in your situation?
  • What education or training may be available to improve the income of the less advantaged spouse?
  • What retirement accounts exist and is all of the money marital or were contributions made before the marriage?
  • Your age needs to be measured against your anticipated retirement age and a plan should be established that will allow you to retire from work and maintain a reasonable lifestyle.
  • Health Insurance must be addressed and all possibilities should be explored.
  • Do you and your souse intend to pay for college, cars, etc for your children?
  • Who has served as the primary caregiver to your children? And how will this be modified by that spouse returning to work or adapting to the post divorce schedule?
  • The respective incomes of the parents, health Insurance cost, days spent with each parent, recurring medical expenses and the number of children involved will be used to calculate child support.
  • Certain complicating factors such as Drug or Alcohol addiction or abuse, Domestic Violence, serious health conditions, unique employment schedules or religious beliefs may require that specific language be included to address these within the Divorce Decree.

If an agreement can be reached, your Marital Dissolution Agreement and Permanent Parenting Plan will reflect the knowledge and experience of the attorneys at Milazo Law, P.C.. A well drafted agreement should anticipate and resolve many of the potential conflicts families encounter after their Divorce is final. Whether an agreement can be reached that resolves all of the issues in your divorce or if some or all of the conflicts within your divorce must be taken to trial, your best interests will be better served by an experienced Divorce Trial Attorney. A long career in Divorce and Family Law practice areas, provides a legal professional with a large volume of experience leading to specific skills and foresight which applied to your family's specific circumstances will help you pursue a divorce decree that best suits you and your children's needs.

Asset & Debt Distribution, Child Custody & Visitation, and Alimony or Spousal Support are the three primary areas causing conflict in Divorce:

Every divorce, Contested or Uncontested, will result in the Court issuing or approving an equitable distribution of the marital assets, as well as, debts and designation of assets and debts that may be the separate property or obligation of one spouse or the other. Generally, assets or liabilities brought into the marriage by one spouse will remain the asset or obligation of that spouse should the parties divorce. Property can be Transmutated from separate property into marital property by Co-Mingling the asset with marital property.

Marital property, as well as, marital debts will be divided equitably by the Court or the Court will approve an agreement, if it determines the division to be equitable. Many people mistakenly believe that equitable means equal. The Court can use several factors to determine what division of assets and liabilities would be equitable in a particular divorce. The separate assets of either party, the income of the parties, the age and health of the parties, the respective fault of the parties, as well as other factors, are often used by the divorce court when determining a fair and equitable division. An attorney who is familiar with the laws regarding distribution of marital property and the tendencies of your particular divorce judge, after a thorough examination of your family's circumstances should be able to help you determine a fair and equitable proposed Marital Dissolution Agreement that maximizes your position. A well crafted Marital Dissolution Agreement that contemplates realistic post-divorce lifestyles for each of the parties, and adequately assesses obligation for the parties' liabilities and equitably divides the assets can avoid thousands of dollars in litigation expenses often made necessary by unfair offers of settlement. Many lawyers out to impress their naïve clients, and in an attempt to appear "tough" will draft proposed divorce decrees that are not equitable and fall well aside out of what a party can expect a judge to order. This type of behavior employed by some unscrupulous attorneys serves only to increase attorneys' fees for both parties and may even upset the divorce judge, who may see the unreasonable proposal as the reason the parties have proceeded to trial. An experienced divorce attorney should be able to determine a range within which a case should settle and should have the skills and resources available to maximize their client's position and to impeach the position of the other party, thereby, ultimately reach the best outcome for their client.

When parents are divorcing with minor children many factors must be considered when drafting a proposed Permanent Parenting Plan. A well-written Permanent Parenting Plan will allow your family to grow with your child and should anticipate most of the conflicts that arise between parents who are struggling to co-parent their kids. You should meet with an experienced divorce attorney and discuss all of the relevant factors that affect any co-parenting relationship and the facts and circumstances unique to your family. The work schedules of each of the parents; school schedule and extracurricular activities of the minor child or children; the residences of each of the parents post-divorce and their proximity to one another and the school; domestic violence, emotional or verbal abuse, or drug and alcohol abuse of either parent; the respective parenting roles each parent has filled during the marriage; the likelihood of each parent choosing to remain in the Middle Tennessee Area; whether the parties require restrictions about the romantic partners of the other parent and their exposure to the children; any health concerns of the children; life insurance and estate planning matters regarding the benefit of the children; private school tuition or payment of college tuition and living expenses; implementation of a discipline or reward system for the children; automobile for the child; along with any other specific needs of your children may be included in a Permanent Parenting Plan.

The respective incomes of the parties, the length of the marriage, separate assets of the parties and many other factors affect alimony in any given. As early as your free initial consultation John M. Milazo and Misty Parks of the Franklin, TN Law Firm Milazo Law, P.C., will listen to your concerns and will ask you questions to help him determine if alimony is appropriate in your divorce. If alimony is appropriate the amount of alimony, type of alimony and duration that alimony will be paid will be assessed based upon your particular needs and the ability of the financially advantaged spouse to provide the support. The types of alimony set out on the Alimony Page of this website, will vary in their application and effect. Alimony can be modifiable or non-modifiable, taxable or non-taxable, tax deductible or non-tax deductible, permanent or temporary, or may gradually increase or decrease as time goes on. Alimony may also be a one time lump sum payment such as equity from the marital home or a larger portion of the retirement account. It is important that you and your attorney determine the alimony that best suits your situation. You may call (615) 599-7719 to discuss you alimony concerns or you may Click Here to leave a message through this website that will be returned promptly.

Should I get a legal separation instead of a divorce?

Advantages of a Legal Separation:

  • Health Insurance - Upon the entry of a Divorce, a party carrying a health insurance policy covering their spouse, can no longer carry the ex-spouse and that spouse must obtain a policy through COBRA, if available, or otherwise obtain their own policy.  A COBRA policy can be quite expensive and can only be carried for a certain period of time.  With a legal separation, the parties remain legally married and can therefore remain on a family health insurance policy through their spouse.  This can be especially beneficial to both parties if one spouse has health issues, and the healthy spouse can avoid paying what would be a much larger alimony payment by continuing to carry the health insurance policy and thereby save the other spouse from trying to pay the costs of obtaining their own policy.
  • Religious Beliefs - Certain religions prohibit divorce or do not recognize a divorce as severing the bonds of marriage.  In these instances, a person may feel that they have no options or no way out of a marriage that may have issues of alcohol or substance abuse, domestic violence, verbal or emotional abuse, or other destructive behaviors.    A spouse in this situation may obtain a legal separation, which allows both spouses the freedom to live in a peaceful and stable environment without conflicting with their religious beliefs.

Disadvantages of a Legal Separation:

  • You are NOT Divorced and are still married - At the conclusion of a legal separation the parties are not divorced and are still considered married under the law and are expected to consider themselves married.  Entering into a relationship with another person can give rise to grounds for divorce as either Inappropriate Marital Conduct or Adultery.
  • Civil Liability for the Negligence of your spouse may possibly continue during a period of legal separation when the parties have not yet divorced.  Similarly, creditors of your spouse may still be able to bring action against you to collect a debt of your spouse, even though you are already legally separated.
  • Ultimately, in Tennessee the parties having been legally separated for more than two years gives each of them the ability to bring an action for divorce alleging as grounds the two year  legal separation and may obtain a divorce decree without the consent of the other party

Serving clients in Williamson County, Franklin, Tennessee Fairview, Tennessee Spring Hill, Tennessee Brentwood, Tennessee Maury County, Tennessee, Columbia, Tennessee, Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee Davidson County, Tennessee Nashville, Pulaski TN, Giles County, Tennessee Waynesboro, TN Wayne County Hickman County, Tennessee Centerville, Tennessee Lyles, Tennessee Lewis County, Tennessee Hohenwald, Tennessee Perry County, Tennessee Linden, Tennessee Bedford County, Tennessee Shelbyville, Tennessee Marshall County, Tennessee Lewisburg, Tennessee Burns, Tennessee Rutherford County, Tennessee Murfreesboro, Tennessee Smyrna, Tennessee Sumner County, Tennessee Gallatin, Tennessee Dickson County, Tennessee Dickson, Tennessee Robertson County, Tennessee, Springfield, Tennessee and Giles County, Tennessee Pulaski, Tennessee John M. Milazo would be happy to serve you as well.