Kentucky Family Law

Kentucky laws are created and revised by the actions of lawmakers and the courts, as in other states. Click on the links below to learn more information.

1.State statute
2. Fault or no-fault (typically when a state allows fault based and no-fault divorce, fault based divorces require no separation period. No-fault or living separate and apart for 2 months.
3. Equitable distribution or community property

Equitable Distribution

a. Methods of apportionment
i. Periera and Van Camp in CA
b. Property distribution factors Kentucky uses fair market value in assessing the value of marital property subsequent to a divorce (as further discussed herein).
4. Legal separation?

Legal separation is a means of establishing some legal rights in a difficult marriage without immediately resorting to “absolute” divorce. It does not go as far as divorce in terms of restoring the parties to their pre-marriage status but is a preferred alternative in certain circumstances. During a legal separation action, the parties may enter into a Separation Agreement which is then filed with the court and defines continued expectations and understandings. Such an agreement may define what actions must be taken to restore the marriage, list which events will cause either party to move for divorce, or deal with child or monetary issues while the parties live apart, etc.

 

a. Waiting period/Separation period
5. Is mediation required Mediation is not required in a divorce settlement in the state of Kentucky.  However, it may be ordered under certain circumstances, specifically where spouses cannot come to an agreement.
6. Forms used Kentucky self-help divorce forms are available through the Legal Aid Network of Kentucky
7. Alimony guidelines and factors For Temporary Alimony Orders See KRS § 403.160
For Maintenance Alimony Orders See KRS § 403.200
Alimony formula
a. Types
b. Term Limits Not greater than 121 months with some exceptions
Cohabitation
c. Imputing income
d. Change in circumstances
e. Ceases on retirement
Impute income on early retirement
Early retirement for health reasons is involuntary
f. Definition of income
8. Child support factors and guidelines Child Support factors & guidelines
9. Child support calculator Child Support Calculator
10. Lump Sum  Support allowed?
11. Valuation Divorce
a. Valuation date Personal goodwill is not divisible.  Enterprise goodwill is divisible. - Gaskill v. Robbins, 2009 WL 425619 (Ky.)(Feb 19, 2009)
b. Goodwill divisibility Investment value- Personal goodwill is not considered a marital asset in Kentucky.  Professional goodwill is considered a marital asset.  
c. Standard of value Kentucky law requires the use of the ‘fair market value’ standard for valuing businesses in a marital property context. 
d. Discounts
e. Shareholder/partner agreements
 12. Double dip  No prohibition - Clark v. Clark, 782 S.W.2d 56 (Ky. Ct. App. 1990)
 a. Stock options  
 b. Retirement accounts  
 c. Child support
 13. Key cases  
 14. Premarital agreements  The Kentucky premarital and prenuptial agreements are similar to the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act, written by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Law in 1983.
 15. Common law  Kentucky does not recognize common law marriages.


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