Divorce in Maine
Divorce (also known as dissolution of marriage) is a decree by a court that a valid marriage no longer exists. The court may divide property, order spousal support, and award parental rights (also known as ‘custody’) and child support as part of a divorce. Not all states handle divorce the same way, which is why it is important to hire a divorce attorney with a deep understanding of Maine’s divorce laws.
At Scheffee Law, our goal is to make the legal process of your divorce easy to understand and to serve as your trusted advocate and advisor in all divorce-related legal matters. Divorce often involves disputes over child custody (including allocation of parental rights and parenting time), alimony, division of assets, allocation of debt, and other ancillary financial matters. In a divorce proceeding, whether involving assets accumulated during marriage, business interests, investments, the division of assets in a divorce can be complicated. Clients may need financial advice, a forensic evaluation, referral to bankruptcy counsel, and in a long term marriage, estate planning. Scheffee Law seeks to minimize the stress surrounding these varied facets of divorce by bringing clarity about the process and compassionate advice about all possible avenues to clients – including exploring options such as mediation and ensuring you are well-prepared for all court appearances.
Drawing on three decades of experience as a divorce attorney in Maine, Liz Scheffee possesses the experience needed to obtain financially sound and swift resolutions for her clients. Liz prioritizes transparency with her clients and is honest about possible outcomes. She assists her clients with gathering required documentation and represents their interests faithfully in all proceedings.
“When my clients learn that the legal process is a controlled environment with rules and expectations applicable to all parties, their anxiety is reduced and they can focus on next steps.”
Liz takes the time to listen to her clients and represents them with integrity, protecting their interests during times of change and representing them faithfully in all proceedings. Above all, Liz understands how to produce results for her clients. She draws on a deep understanding of divorce and post-divorce litigation as well as a national network of expertise to lead her clients to successful resolution of even the most complex legal and financial matters surrounding divorce.
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Facts About Divorce in Maine
Maine law allows divorces to be granted based on “irreconcilable differences” between spouses, also known as no fault divorce.
To file for divorce in Maine, one spouse must have resided in Maine for at least six months previous to filing for divorce.
In Maine, the law does not define a specific financial amount for spousal support payments. Maine law does provide for a term limit and varying reasons for support. For example, if two people have been married for less than 20 years, the term for spousal support may be half the length of marriage. It also provides for transitional support, rehabilative support and reimbursement support.
Maine’s child support guidelines are available online.
The Maine divorce complaint is also available online.
Tip: If you start the case, then you are the plaintiff. If your spouse files the lawsuit, you are the defendant.
To contact Scheffee Law for family law assistance
- Adoption: involves the complete transfer of parental rights and responsibilities from one person to another or to a couple.
- Annulment: treats the marriage as if it never existed and is granted when a court determines a marriage to be invalid.
- Child Custody/Visitation: a court decides how parental rights of minor children are allocated between the parents. This consists of both physical and legal components. Read about how the State of Maine defines shared, sole and allocated parental rights, as well as parental rights and responsibilities.
- Child Support Payments: determined based upon the Maine Child Support Guidelines, and include the basic support entitlement, health insurance and uninsured medical expense costs (including dental and counseling), and day care. May also include extra-curricular expenses and, if the parties agree, a contribution to educational expenses. Child support payments can be paid by wage withholding, electronic transfer, or through the Department of Human Services.
- Divorce: ends a legally valid marriage.
- Domestic Violence: violent crime/abuse within the family structure. Protection from Abuse petitions request the immediate removal of an abusive family member from the home, and include a prohibition against fire arms, payment of support, and other conditions specific to the case.
- Estate Planning: arranges for the transfer of an individual’s estate at the time of death.
- Paternity: the legal acknowledgement of the relationship between a parent and his/her/their child.
- Spousal Support/Alimony: a court-imposed financial obligation on one spouse to continue supporting the other spouse after the divorce or separation.
ELIZABETH J. SCHEFFEE, ESQ.
7 ESTATE DRIVE GORHAM, ME 04038