The Importance of Evidence in Your Divorce
Getting a divorce can sometimes be one of the most stressful events in your life. Even if you are the spouse that wants the split more than anything, it is rare that the proceeding is going to go by smoothly. Sure, there are instances where a couple of people will get married due to some Hollywood drunken rampage on the Law Vegas strip and cannot get an annulment due to the state statutes, but that happens less than you would think.
Most often, divorces involve a great deal of hurt feelings and conflict. It’s a sad fact that love can turn into hate and bitterness but still keep the same amount of passion. In these situations, it falls upon a good divorce lawyer to try to negotiate a reasonable and fair settlement, even though both spouses are just trying to hurt each other in any way possible.
One of the most important jobs that your lawyer will have to do in your divorce is to gather and submit all the evidence surrounding your divorce. Failing to do so can result in a final ruling or settlement that does not represent the actual financial or custodial situation. This means that you could end up paying more in child support and/or alimony that you should.
In Nevada, whenever you file either the contested or uncontested divorce paperwork, Nevada divorce law requires that each party file a financial declaration. These documents detail the exact nature of both spouse’s financial situation.
You will have to declare how much income you have per month, as well as attach pay stubs or other forms of proof of income. You will have to declare not only your wages, but any other forms of income such as social security payments, income from rental properties, child support from other relationships and any other type of income you are getting.
The financial declaration will also have to detail all of the bills that you pay each month like rent or mortgage, telephone bills, child support from other relationships, utilities and more. While you have to attach proof of income, you are not required to attach any bills to show your monthly payments going out; however, the financial declaration is declared under the penalty of perjury so you must be 100% accurate.
Finally, you will have to detail all of the assets and debts that you have. These can be things like property and vehicles that you own, as well as things like credit card or student loan debt.
The Nevada Divorce Discovery Phase
Generally after the first hearing in front of the judge, your divorce lawyer will begin gathering all of the physical evidence that is the subject of the divorce. While this process is in action, the evidence will be indexed and sent to the other party.
This evidence is crucial to your case because it supports the claims that were filed with the Complaint for Divorce. Most often, a large portion of the evidence that is exchanged during discovery is financial related, things like bills and credit card statements will be printed out, indexed and sent to the other party. Depending in the assets and debts that are a part of the marriage, this can tend to be a very labor intensive process.
If there are custody issues of minor children involved in your divorce, your divorce attorney will compile all physical documentation that supports your claim to custody. If you are seeking primary (full) physical custody of the child or children, you will have to prove to the judge that the other parent is unfit. The preference in Nevada is joint custody, so you will have to provide evidence like police reports for domestic violence, child abuse or neglect, drug or alcohol abuse and more to support your primary custody claim.
The production of evidence during discovery in your divorce is one of the most important things that your divorce lawyer will do outside of a trail. The weakness or strength of your evidence will greatly influence your negotiating power when it comes to a settlement. If your attorney does a bad job finding all of the important evidence, then you may not be able to get a fair and equitable settlement.
In the rare instance of a divorce trial, if the evidence that has been submitted to the court is incomplete, you will run the risk of losing at trial. This means that you could lose everything that you have filed for in the complaint. On the other hand, if the evidence that has been submitted is strong, you can win at trial.
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