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Can you divorce in Mississippi if you’re expecting a baby?

On Behalf of | May 28, 2024 | Divorce |

With reproductive rights and the rights of pregnant women in general now being left up to the states, there’s been a lot of attention around a number of states that reportedly don’t allow pregnant women to divorce.

In fact, a number of states, from Arizona to Mississippi, generally won’t finalize divorces for couples when a woman is pregnant. However, the reasoning behind that is that courts don’t want to give final approval of child custody and support agreements and parenting plans until the baby is born, and this is typically done when the divorce is finalized.

Even though doctors can often determine whether a child will have special needs before they’re born, there may be instances where a baby is born with unexpected challenges or suffers injuries during birth that can drastically change any agreements made before they’re born

What can you do before your baby is born?

It’s important to know that this doesn’t mean that couples can’t separate whenever they choose. There’s a lot that spouses can do – separately or together – to prepare for their divorce while they await the birth of their child. The sooner that each spouse gets legal guidance, the sooner they can begin collecting the documentation they need, such as financial information. They can negotiate the necessary agreements. It’s also wise to keep track of pregnancy-related expenses.

Co-parenting a newborn is very different from co-parenting an older child (even a toddler). You can’t just drop a baby off at your co-parent’s house and pick them up every few days. Newborns are heavily reliant on their mothers. Determining a parenting schedule for a newborn requires considerable thought and planning.

Some circumstances are more complicated than others

There are many different scenarios for a couple divorcing while the wife is pregnant. Whichever one applies to you, it’s crucial to get legal guidance as soon as possible to help you make the best decisions for yourself and your child.