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Affleck/Garner divorce teaches lessons about spousal support

A famous Hollywood couple calling it quits is hardly news in this day and age, even if it is a media-darling couple like Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner. However, Connecticut residents dealing with divorce may do well to learn from the lessons this couple may be teaching divorcing couples across the nation. Namely, the importance of knowing the divorce law in a home state. 

In the Garner/Affleck case, the divorce filing came 10 years and one day after their marriage became legal. This was not a mistake, some experts are claiming. According to the divorce law in the couple's state of residence, 10 years is considered a "long-term" marriage, which means once that milestone has been reached, the terms of spousal support change. 

It is also possible in this particular case that a prenuptial agreement was in place between the couple. Considering the star power involved, this is not unlikely. However, as was the case with spousal support, the terms of a prenuptial agreement can often depend upon the duration of a marriage in order to set the terms for asset division and any kind of alimony that might be paid out. 

While the average Connecticut couple is not dealing with the level of assets a couple like Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner likely are, divorce is sometimes eerily similar regardless. It is a good idea for any couple getting divorced to know the facts about their state's laws in advance. This can help smooth the road to an equitable and relatively amicable settlement, at least insofar as the paperwork is concerned. 

Source: fortune.com, "Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner's divorce timing not a coincidence", Laura J. Vogel, July 4, 2015

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