Four Things You Need to Know About Family Law

When you hear the term “family law,” what comes to mind? Some people immediately think about divorce, however, family law encompasses far more than divorce and separation. If you’re searching for divorce lawyers near me, then you’ve come to the right place. But before you make a final decision, here’s what you need to know about family law.

1. Divorce

Getting a divorce isn’t as simple as walking out of the house and leaving the ring on the table. It is a legal process that can be either contested or uncontested. A contested divorce is one where both parties hasn’t settled all of their issues. During a contested divorce, the couple may have to a mediation session under the supervision of a trained mediator. Should the mediation fail, the judge will ultimately determine the outcome.

An uncontested divorce is when the couple has settled all of their problems. After that, the couple then files the complaint for divorce. Finally, the couple must then file an agreement on settlement. This agreement dictates the resolution of the issues and sorts out things like who gets custody of the children, who pays child support and visitation. While the timelines do depend on the state the couple is in, uncontested divorces take less time than contested divorces.

2. Child Support

One of the most common issues with divorces is child support. Every single state has laws that mandate the payments of child support by the parent who doesn’t have custody. Furthermore, each state also has their own set of guidelines that governs how much child support has to be paid.

3. Child Custody

Similar to child support, child custody and visitation is also another recurring issue. Most of the time, courts always apply the best interest of the child when it comes to custody and visitation disputes. Of course, judges have to consider the best interests of the child based on various circumstances.

These circumstances include:

  • The living conditions
  • Income
  • Employment
  • Physical health
  • Mental health
  • The relationship they have between parents

4. Alimony

Sometimes, during the divorce process, one of the spouses may request alimony payments, which is also known as spousal support, from the other. The laws that govern the award of alimony varies on the state the couple is in. The court will take how long the marriage lasted, the earning power, the education, their financial contribution to the marriage and the health each spouse is in.

In rare cases, the judge may order one spouse to pay alimony for a set period of time. This is called temporary alimony. Other times, a spouse may be ordered to pay alimony permanently.

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, there may come a time when you say to yourself, “Are there divorce lawyers near me?” If this is the case, the first step to finding a viable solution to your problem is research. Take the time to identify the key points you need to address if you do need the assistance of an attorney. Never rush into an agreement with any leagal representative without initial consultation.

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