Your Local Family Law Attorney, and What She Does

Here are the different legal elements a family law attorney may focus on. Often, these attorneys can dive deep into more than one category. From divorce and dissolution, to child custody and adoption, a family lawyer can assist with many life changes:

Spousal Support

Also known as alimony, spousal support deals with the regular (often monthly) payments that one spouse makes to another

Paternity

Who should be recognized by the court as the father of the child? DNA tests may be necessary.

Legal Separation

This is a legal alternative to divorce. In such situations, the couple stays married, but divides their assets so that they can live separately. This is rare.

Adoption

Adoption can be costly, but all adoptions must go through the formal court system.

Child Support

These monthly payments help take care of a child’s essential needs – education, medical care, food, and shelter. Enforcing these payments may require additional assistance.

Custody

What are the visitation rules? What are the schedules? Which spouse gets physical custody, and for how long each year? Child custody issues are common during divorces.

Guardianship

If a child’s natural parents are unable (or unwilling) to care for the child, a legal guardian may enter the picture. This legal protector can assume responsibility for the individual or “ward.” The same process may apply to incapacitated adults as well.

Divorce

This is the largest area of family law. Property division, “fault” and “no-fault,” and “contested” and “uncontested” divorces each have their own sets of concerns.

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