Divorce is an emotionally heightened time for many individuals. To satisfy a duress claim, an individual must experience more than stress or uneasiness. If individuals are able to demonstrate that duress existed, however, it is possible to modify the terms of the divorce. It is essential that individuals who might have felt pressured or forced into signing a divorce settlement consider whether the individual was forced to sign under duress.
Duress occurs when a former spouse either performed an unlawful act or threatened an individual to sign divorce papers. When determining when duress conditions existed during the signing of divorce papers, a judge will analyze an individual’s state of mind. Some of the events that are found to constitute duress include:
Individuals who attempt to modify the terms of a divorce due to duress face a substantial burden. To modify the divorce settlement, individuals must demonstrate that exceptional and compelling circumstances exist while filing a motion with the court. This motion must allege that duress caused the divorce to resolve in an unfair manner.
An individual will be required to prove that the divorce settlement was signed under the influence of duress. One way that individuals attempt to prove that duress existed is eyewitness testimony, which can prove invaluable in a duress claim. Another type of evidence is information about the prior dealings of a husband and wife including the couple’s previous relationship.
In some situations, individuals might be able to produce written proof of threats that the duress existed.
If you are involved in a divorce that involved duress, consider retaining the services of an experienced Birmingham divorce attorney at Alabama Divorce & Family Lawyers, LLC who has experience helping individuals in similar situations.
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