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Shreveport Divorce Attorney Answers Frequently Asked Family Law Questions

What Are The Grounds For Divorce In Louisiana?

Not all divorce cases require grounds. Louisiana law allows judges to grant a no-fault divorce provided the spouses have separated and lived apart for 180 days if they have no minor children. In situations where minor children are involved, the parties must live separately for 365 days to pursue a no-fault divorce.

However, Louisiana law also provides grounds for a fault-based divorce, including:

  • Proof that the spouse being sued for the divorce has committed adultery
  • A felony conviction with a sentence of hard labor by the spouse being sued for divorce
  • Living separately for six months before filing for a divorce if there are no minor children of the marriage, one year if there are minor children of the marriage
  • Upon motion of either spouse 180 days after service on the other spouse of a petition for divorce

What Does The Court Consider When Awarding Spousal Support (Alimony)?

The agreement spouses make in marriage to support one another does not necessarily end when the marriage does. When there is a disparity in income, or if one spouse does not have sufficient income available to reasonably make ends meet, and the other spouse can contribute financially, the court may award alimony, at least for a temporary period of time.

In situations in which one spouse has put his or her career or life on hold while the other advanced his or her education or pursued a higher income, the spousal support is often temporary, providing income for a specific period to allow the recipient spouse to become financially self-sufficient.

How Is Child Support Calculated?

Child support is based on the parents’ incomes, expenses and the financial needs of the children. Louisiana law provides guidelines for calculating child support obligations. Judges may deviate from the guidelines when the court finds the deviation would serve the best interests of the child. Deviations may be based on individual circumstances, such as higher than average expenses or medical bills. if the court finds that a parent is intentionally earning less than he or she is able to earn to avoid paying support, the court may deviate from the guidelines and base the child support calculation on the obligors earning capacity, rather than actual gross income. The main components for calculating child support include:

  • The individual gross income of each of the parents
  • Child care expenses in the individual case
  • Health care insurance costs directly attributable to the children
  • Adjustments to income, such as child support obligations for a child outside of the marriage

The court calculates an overall child support need and allocates shares based on each parent’s contribution to the overall amount of income and the respective percentage of the total obligation that is represented.

Get Answers To Your Family Law Questions

Whatever your family law question may be, contact the Law Offices of Mark D. Frederick, LLC, to assist you with any and all family law matters you may be experiencing. Call us at our Shreveport, Louisiana, office at 318-666-0193. We have the answers.