U.S. Supreme Court decision in which the Court ruled that a woman who was named as the beneficiary of her former husband's 401(k) plan was entitled to inherit the money in the plan, even though state law said that the divorce had automatically revoked her right to inherit. Because a 401(k) plan is ruled by federal law (ERISA), it overruled the state law.
A divorce in which the parties are able to agree on how to divide their property and share custody of their children, and join together in filing the appropriate paperwork to have the divorce granted. (See also: default divorce)
A court order prohibiting one party from coming near or contacting another. Most common in divorce actions and cases of stalking.
Monetary support paid by one former spouse to another, usually for a specified period of time, pursuant to a divorce agreement or court order. In many states, it's called alimony.
A custody arrangement under which one parent is the only one to have either legal or physical custody or both. A parent with sole physical custody has the right to live with the child, while the other parent has visitiation rights. A parent with sole legal custody has the right to make all decisions affecting the child, including decisions about education, religion, and medical care.
The inability of a spouse to engage in sexual intercourse with the other spouse. In some states, physical incapacity is a ground for an annulment or fault divorce, assuming the incapacity was not disclosed to the other spouse before the marriage.
The right of a parent to have a child live with him or her. In a divorce, physical custody may be either "sole" or "joint." Compare: legal custody
A co-owner or investor in a business, called a partnership, who shares profits from that business with at least one other person. Partners are agents of the partnership and may enter into contracts on behalf of the partnership.
A federal law that seeks to control and prevent parental kidnapping by requiring states to ensure parents are in compliance with the terms of the PKPA before the court will make a custody order, and to refuse to enforce child custody orders made in another state when the parent obtaining the order did not have legal custody of the child.