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Divorcing A Person Who Has A Chronic Medical Condition

On Behalf of | Aug 16, 2023 | Divorce

There are many personal circumstances that may lead to someone opting to file for divorce. One of them involves a spouse developing a chronic medical condition. Cancer, multiple sclerosis and numerous other health conditions can affect someone’s day-to-day lived experience, the work they can perform around the home, the relationship they have with their spouse and their finances.

Some people recognize that they may not be in a position to offer the support that another adult needs because of a disabling medical condition. They may believe that divorce will prevent a hostile situation or help their spouse connect with someone capable of supporting their needs during their medical challenges.

What should someone filing for divorce due to medical issues consider about the process?

The needs of their spouse

Health issues are one of multiple factors that could potentially influence property division and also spousal support requirements during divorce proceedings. When a judge needs to decide what is fair and appropriate, the inability of one spouse to work because of a debilitating health condition and their need for insurance coverage may influence their decisions. The longer the marriage has lasted and the more serious the condition is, the more likely those issues are to impact the outcome of major financial determinations in the divorce.

The needs of all family members for support

Everyone in the family will likely have an emotional reaction to a divorce decision inspired by medical issues, and they may also struggle with the challenges generated by someone’s health condition. Attending counseling sessions will be important not just for the person struggling with their health but also for their spouse and possibly for any children that the two of them share.

Everyone in the family may have grief and anger that they need to address if they want to live a healthier and happier life in the future. Sometimes, agreeing to joint or family sessions could make a big difference, as could offering to help cover the costs of counseling for a spouse who cannot work or children struggling with the changes to the family.

Frequently, those divorcing in unusual and particularly emotional situations, such as a scenario involving a spouse with a chronic illness, may benefit from negotiating terms for an uncontested divorce, as they can have more control over the outcome of the divorce proceedings. Recognizing the unique challenges that will likely arise during a divorce inspired by health issues may benefit someone preparing for the end of their marriage.

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