Divorce & Parentage
Ending a marriage is stressful and trying, especially if you have children. This information can help guide you through the legal process of a Vermont divorce.
Vermont law provides several ways to establish parentage. They include:
- marriage or civil union
- voluntary acknowledgement
- court order
- assisted reproduction
You can find more information on these pages:
Parental rights and responsibilities are often referred to as custody. There are two types. The first is the responsibility to make day-to-day decisions concerning the child's well being. The second is the responsibility to make decisions beyond those that occur daily, concerning medical, education and travel matters for example.
Parent-child contact is sometimes referred to as visitation or parent-time.
The Vermont Legislature has declared as public policy that children of separated parents should get as much support as they would if their parents were living in the same household. (Title 15 §650) To promote this policy, Vermont has guidelines for calculating child support. In most cases, the child support one parent pays the other is based on these guidelines. In some cases the court will order a child support payment that is different from the number in the guidelines. That is called a deviation. In other cases the court may order a maintenance supplement in addition to child support. This is different from spousal maintenance.
Special considerations apply when one parent is in the military.
The Vermont Superior Court Parent Coordination Program helps protect children from exposure to adult conflict and reduces the risk of danger to all family members.
|Length of Marriage||% of the Difference Between Parties' Gross Incomes||Duration of Alimony Award As % Length of Marriage|
|0 to <5 years||0-20%||No alimony or short-term alimony up to one year|
|5 to <10 years||15-35%||20-50% (1-5 years)|
|10 to <15 years||20-40%||40-60% (3-9 years)|
|15 to <20 years||24-45%||40-70% (6-14 years)|
|20+ years||30-50%||45% (9-20+ years)|