Summary in Divorce
Very often in divorce, one party asks the court to act on a temporary basis until the spouses can settle an issue. For example, courts sometimes order alimony pendente lite when the wife -- requires support during the proceeding and before a property settlement can be negotiated. Alimony pendente -- often called "temporary alimony" -- is used to bridge this gap.
Stay-at-home mothers whose contributions to the marriage have not been economic are often in a position to argue for court-ordered spousal and child support, at least on a temporary basis, because their contributions to the marriage are not economic and they may find themselves at a real disadvantage entering the work force. The court, therefore, orders support payments at a interlocutory hearing, which are provisional and result in pretrial orders. In divorce actions, one spouse, usually the wife, may appeal for pendente lite relief or temporary child support, pending the course of the marital dissolution. Temporary orders also take the form of injunctions, court orders preventing someone from doing a particular act likely to cause physical, mental injury or property loss to the appealing party. Temporary injunctions can be particularly important in cases where one spouse controls a business, manages substantial investments, and therefore is in an advantageous position to hide or dissipate assets. In divorce actions, property-related injunctions, which, for example restrict the sale or transfer of property, are common. Injunctions are court orders that are often issued ex parte, which means without notice to the recipient, because notice would give the party the opportunity to evade the very purpose of the injunction. Sometimes called "preliminary injunctions," "temporary restraining orders," or "stays," these court orders cannot be arbitrarily made because they are controlled by statute and generally require that the mover "demonstrate an imminent threat of irreparable harm."
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#461: Property settlement agreements are not generally modifiable once incorporated into a final decree of divorce. Issues like custody and child support are, but issues involving property and debt distribution are typically not. Do not rely on the ability to appeal a divorce order.
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