Featured Topic: Divorce & Family Law
Not every divorce is equal. In fact, almost every divorce is different in some way. That is because the factors leading to a divorce and the issues that need to be resolved differ from case to case. Obviously, the need for legal help depends on whether or not the divorce is disputed or uncontested and whether the well-being of minor children is at issue.
Uncontested Divorces In many cases, the divorcing spouses are able to reach an agreement on their own and resolve all issues without much or any court intervention. Nonetheless, the process of divorcing is not always obvious. Procedures, forms, and deadlines make it sometimes helpful or even necessary to have an experienced lawyer monitor and supervise the process. It is our experience that little guidance makes the divorce faster and easier, even in uncontested divorces.
Contested Divorces Quite often, divorcing couples disagree on some or even all terms of their divorce. In these contested or disputed divorces help from experienced counsel ensures that you are not unreasonably giving up rights to property or your children.
When Kids are Involved.. Naturally, both parents do not want to give up their rights to their children. However, sometimes a judge or a jury will face the difficult task to decide whether the parents are equally fit to educate and raise their children.
Child Custody Child custody refers to the sub-section of family law that addresses the just division of possession time of two divorcing spouses with their children. Since the children cannot stay with both divorcing parents at the same time, legislators and judges have long established criteria and scheduling orders that attempt to provide the best split of parental time for the children. While this formula can differ in each case, all courts must determine the adequate possession time in light of the “best interest for the children.” What the best interest for the children means, depends on the situation in each family. For example, courts will consider past behavior of parents (e.g. known drug issues, arrests, domestic violence) and always contrast each information with the expected level of responsibility of the other parent.
Child Support Under virtual all state laws, parents have a duty to financially support their children. Importantly, this duty to pay child support exists regardless and completely independent of one parent’s possession time with his or her children. That said, even if one parent is awarded no custody at all, that parent may still be ordered to pay child support until the child reaches age 18 or graduates from high school.