Glossary

Affidavit An affidavit is a written statement signed in the presence of a notary public, under oath.
Alimony Also called "spousal support". Alimony is financial support paid to a spouse.
Appeal A party may choose to disagree with a judge's Order. An appeal consists of the attorneys for the parties submitting written briefs to the Nebraska Court of Appeals or the Nebraska Supreme Court and then presenting oral arguments to that Court. After the oral argument is concluded, the Court will issue a written decision.
Asset The term used to describe money, real estate, retirement accounts, investment accounts, vehicles, business entities, and other property which has a monetary value.
Bailiff The Judge’s assistant in the courtroom who takes care of the paperwork and scheduling.
Child Support Money ordered to be paid by one parent to the other parent for care of the children.
Decree This is the final document which completes a divorce proceeding. The decree lays out the directives for property division, debt division, custody, future retirement monies, alimony, child support and any other issues in the case.
Deposition This is when one or both of the parties answer questions asked by the attorneys, under oath, in the presence of a Court Reporter. This is formal testimony, but it is not given in the presence of a Judge.
Discovery The "discovery process" is the step of requesting the other side furnish information about the case in order that we can know the other party's position on the issues in the case. In a divorce case, this would include financial information as well as information about custody.
Divorce Proceeding This is the legal proceeding in which a party's marriage is formally ended.
Encumbrance This is a term used to describe a debt, generally loans, mortgages, credit cards, etc.
Ex Parte A proceeding brought before a court by one party only, without notice to or challenge by the other side.
Interrogatories This is a series of written questions which must be answered in writing and under oath. They may include financial considerations, lifestyle choices and questions regarding children. Interrogatories are part of the discovery process.
Marital Estate A “marital estate” is, generally, the assets and debts accumulated during the marriage. The law states that in a long term marriage, marital assets and debts will be divided equally and in a shorter term marriage, the law states assets and debts can be divided anywhere between 1/3 – 2/3 and 50/50. There are exceptions to what is included in a marital estate, which your attorney will advise you about, such as premarital assets, the growth in value of premarital assets, etc.
Mediation Parties with minor children are required to attempt mediation to develop a Parenting Plan regarding parenting time, custody, holidays, etc. There are two steps to mediation - the parties will separately attend a parenting class and then meet with a trained mediator to attempt to work out a Parenting Plan.
Modification Proceeding A legal proceeding to change the terms of a divorce decree or paternity decree. Issues that can be modified include child custody, parenting time, parenting-related matters, child support, and alimony.
Parenting Class The Nebraska Parenting Act requires parties going through a divorce or paternity case which involves children, to attend a parenting class. Parenting classes are offered by numerous organizations. The classes approved by the Nebraska Supreme Court are listed on the Nebraska Supreme Court website.
Parenting Time This is defined as time that each parent may spend with the minor children, as defined by the temporary order or the final decree.
Paternity Case A paternity case is when two parties, who are not married and have a child or children, have a legal proceeding to determine all custody and financial-related issues relating to the child/children.
Physical Custody There are two types of physical custody. Sole physical custody means the child lives primarily with one parent. Joint physical custody is when the child lives equally with each parent.
Premarital Agreement This is a written contract signed by parties before their marriage which establishes how financial issues will be resolved in the event the parties divorce or legally separate.
Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) This is a Court Order which divides certain retirement accounts in a divorce proceeding.
Settlement When the parties in a family law case reach an agreement to resolve all issues in the case.
Subpoena A command, issued under a court’s authority, to a witness to appear and give testimony or to produce records.
Temporary Hearing This is a hearing, usually soon after the filing of the case, in which the Court addresses any temporary issues, such as temporary custody, temporary child support, temporary alimony, and other matters that need to be addressed before the final hearing.
Temporary Order This is the Order that results from the temporary hearing.
Trial This is the last step in a family law proceeding. If the parties are not able to reach an agreement to resolve all issues in the case, a trial will be held before a Judge. The Judge will hear evidence presented by the attorneys for the parties and then make a decision as to the issues that have not been agreed-upon. At the conclusion of a trial, the Court will make a decision and the Court's decision is then incorporated into a Court Order.

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