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Draft A Divorce Decree

Using the scenario below, you are to draft a divorce decree, which is the final order of the court and dissolves the marriage and any and all outstanding issues of the marriage; this would include property, debt, children custody, support (alimony and child support), and miscellaneous issues. In this scenario, Patty filed divorce. Therefore, Patty is the Plaintiff and David is the Defendant. In some jurisdictions, the Plaintiff will be called the Petitioner, while the Defendant will be referred to as the Respondent. Additionally, a divorce decree may be referred to as a judgment of divorce. Remember, your textbook can be a great resource for your assignment.

Fact Scenario

Through years of marital problems, Patty has filed for divorce from David. Both Patty (38 years old) and David (40 years old) have legally separated and are residing in different homes. Patty resides at 123 W. Golf Road, Boston, Massachusetts 12345. David resides at 456 E. Lark St., Boston, Massachusetts 12345. The couple has two children: David, Jr., 8 years old and Patricia, 5 years old. David has a successful career as an architect making $125, 000 per year.

Patty currently resides in the marital home with the children, while David has relocated to a relative’s home. Patty has accepted a job offer to be a high school principal at a local high school in Westerly, Rhode Island. Her salary will be $75,000 per year and benefits that include a pension plan, short term and long term disability, medical and dental insurance for her and her family.. She will need to certify as a teacher in the state of Rhode Island but she can prepare for certification examination as she settles into her new role as a principal. Westerly is over 100 miles away from their current residence. David fears that this distance would not benefit the children’s relationship with both parents. David files a motion for custody during the pendency of the divorce proceedings.


  • Using the sample in Chapter 14 as a guide draft a divorce decree (judgment of divorce), which details the above facts. Your facts and expansion of same should be consistent with the factual scenario. Please do not add any facts. However, you can use effective words to better articulate the points. Remember, Patty is the Plaintiff and David is the Defendant. The decree should resolve all issues of the marriage, including custody, alimony, child support, debts, property, miscellaneous such as life insurance, health insurance, relocation, payment of attorney fees, etc.
  • Be sure to include the following portions of the decree based on Massachusetts law: (1) child custody and visitation (parenting time) and all issues incidental and necessary; (2) property rights; (3) insurance provisions (health and life); (4) child support; (5) spousal support; and (6) miscellaneous issues incidental and necessary to the decree. Of course, the standard caption and introductory paragraph and signature lines of the parties and the judge should be include.
  • Remember that both parties must agree to the terms and conditions in the decree. The decree will be final, so all issues incidental and necessary should be addressed and resolved within the decree. The court will not approve same with it.
  • After you have reviewed, proofread, and corrected your assignment, please upload the Assignment into the applicable Dropbox. If you experience any difficulties with the Dropbox, please e-mail your assignment to the instructor before the deadline and contact student tech support as well. Remember, Chapter 14 of your textbook has a sample for this assignment.

In addition to fulfilling the specifics of the Assignment, a successful divorce decree must also meet the following criteria:

  • Viewpoint and purpose should be clearly establishedand sustained
  • Assignment should follow the conventions of Standard American English (correct grammar, punctuation, etc.).
  • Writing should be well ordered, logical and unified, as well as original and insightful
  • Your work should display superior content, organization, style, and mechanics
  • Appropriate citation style should be followed

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