Family Law Articles

Articles written by attorneys and experts worldwide
discussing legal aspects related to Family Law.

Minnesota Family Business Valuation in Divorce: More Art than Science

When divorcing spouses cannot agree on how to divide their property, Minnesota law requires the court to do so fairly and equitably. But when the major asset is the family business — often a closely held corporation running a retail, service or professional enterprise — assigning a realistic, reasonable value to such a unique enterprise can be daunting.

"Marriage on the Brink" Bill Is a Waste of Time

The Family Justice Center in downtown Minneapolis handles more than 3000 cases each year. With most of these cases being divorces, a study surveying nearly 2500 couples by the University of Minnesota found that about one-third of divorcees are ambivalent about dissolving their marriages.

Divorce in Pennsylvania: Is The Price Right?

People facing the prospect of divorce usually find that emotional pain is part of the process. And most are surprised when they discover the financial pain from the experience. Bills and fees add up very quickly when a person pays a divorce lawyer by the hour.

Is Reform Coming Soon for Massachusetts Alimony Laws?

Much to the disappointment of many, the most recent Massachusetts legislative session closed without changes to the state’s alimony laws. Although separate bills had been introduced in both the House and Senate, neither managed to garner sufficient support to pass.

How Property Is Allocated upon Divorce under Florida Law

Even though many property settlements are hammered out outside the courtroom, the factors judges use in dividing property affect the relative strength of each side's bargaining position.

How Will Florida's New Child Custody Laws Affect You?

Florida law governing what was formerly known as primary and secondary child custody and the concept of visitation changed significantly on October 1, 2008, Chapter 61 of the Florida Statutes now highlights the importance of both parents in a child's life, introducing the concepts of parenting plans and time-sharing.

Fathers: from Breadwinners to Custody Winners

In the past, mothers have generally gained child custody more often than fathers. Studies suggest this is because of a widely held notion that mothers and children have a more connected biological and nurturing relationship.

Risks of Attempting Divorce without the Assistance of an Attorney

In these difficult financial times, some people are attempting to obtain a divorce without the assistance of a qualified attorney in hopes of saving money on attorney fees. However, a divorce obtained without legal counsel may result in an unfair judgment that may cost one or both parties a large portion of what is rightfully theirs.

Legal Separation in Kentucky

The author explains the difference between divorce and legal separation in KY.

Elder Abuse and Consequences

Elder neglect or abuse can lead to serious consequences, such as bedsores, gangrene, broken bones and hematoma. Left unchecked, the neglect of caretakers can result in death.

Divorce of UK Citizens in Thailand

Mixed marriages between British and Thai nationals have greatly increased in the recent years. Quite inevitably, divorces have grown in number too.

Same-Sex Adoption Upheld in Florida

In a recent Florida Third District Court of Appeals decision, the appellate court struck down a subsection of a 33-year old Florida adoption statute prohibiting homosexuals from adopting. This decision bodes well not only for Martin Gill and his partner, the appellees in this case, but also for a number of same-sex couples who wish to adopt children.

A Summary of the Child Support Guidelines in Arizona

Child Support in Arizona is determined pursuant to the Arizona Child Support Guidelines. The Arizona Child Support Guidelines can be somewhat complex in application where various factors are in dispute. The following is a basic description of how the Child Support Guidelines work for the reader's ease of understanding.

Home-wrecker Laws: Alienation of Affection and Criminal Conversation

When your marriage has ended and you discover that it is because your spouse has had an affair and/or has fallen in love with someone else, you may be tempted to seek revenge against the person who has “stolen” your spouse’s affections. Before you race off to court, you should check the laws of your state regarding these types of claims, as well as their success rates.

Obtaining a Divorce in Florida

Divorce in Florida is “dissolution of marriage”. When granting a dissolution, the court may issue orders regarding support and alimony; the primary residence, custody, visitation, support, maintenance and education of any minor child; attorney’s fees; and division of property. Any domestic violence protective orders shall be issued as a separate order for the divorce judgment. After obtaining a judgment of dissolution of marriage, both spouses are then considered legally single and unmarried.

Spousal Support and Division of Property in Michigan

An overview of Spousal support and division of property, which are critical issues in a Michigan divorce.

An Overview of Child Custody & Spousal Support in Texas

Understanding Texas divorce law can make the progress much less intimidating and give you a sense of control over your future.

When Child Protective Services Comes Knocking: What Happens Now?

The author discusses what to do when child protection service comes knocking.

Your Facebook Account is Not Your Friend During a Divorce

The authors discuss how not to use Facebook during a divorce.

Obtaining a Divorce in California

In California, a divorce is called a “dissolution of marriage” or “dissolution of domestic partnership”. This legal process ends your marriage or domestic partnership, and allows you to marry or become a domestic partner again. In the eyes of the law, you are no longer viewed as a single unit, and you become two separate individuals again.

Post-Divorce Modifications in Texas

The author talks about post-divorce modifications.

Seniors – Planning Ahead is Key to Financial Stability

Recently, there was a case in the news of a Brooks Astor, a New York socialite, who is now 104 years old. Her grandson is in a heated battle to remove his dad as Mrs. Astor's caregiver. In court papers that were filed, the grandson accused his father of ignoring Mrs. Astor's health and personal needs and requested a friend of Mrs. Astor's be appointed as her guardian.

Taking Care of Elderly

Most clients talk with their attorneys about what may happen to them as they become older and are unable to care for themselves.

Care of Elders in Nursing Homes

With a growing population that is aging, many elders spend the last year or two of their life in a nursing home. Many of the elders have to do this as they have Alzheimer’s or dementia and their family is not able to care for the elder nor can they afford to be a full time caretaker in the elder’s home. There have been many stories about the care they elders receive in a nursing home.

Discharge or Non Dischargable, That Is the Question!

It often happens that for one reason or another you owe back taxes. The IRS can be relentless in their pursuit for payment. It may seem like filing for Bankruptcy would get the tax man off your back, but this is not necessarily the case. The Franchise Tax Board and the Internal Revenue Service really don't like to lose money.

Recent Unemployment and Minnesota Child Support

The author talks about the effect of unemployment on child support.

Minnesota Business Owners and Divorce

The authors discuss the special considerations business owners need to be aware of when considering a divorce.

Illinois Legal Separation

In Illinois, a legal separation and a physical separation are not the same thing. In a physical separation, although the couple lives apart, no legal action has been initiated. In a legal separation, the parties must initiate a lawsuit in court to receive permanent orders regarding issues such as child custody and child support, division of property and debt, and spousal maintenance.

New York Legal Separation

In New York, a legal separation is considered a legally acceptable reason for granting a divorce. This is different from a trial separation, where a married couple lives apart for a trial period to determine if they want to get divorced. This type of separation has no legal basis and cannot be used as a ground for divorce. A legal separation should only be used if you have already made a permanent decision that you no longer want to live with your spouse.

Legal Separation in the U.S.

In which states is a legal separation not recognized?

Establishing Paternity in Michigan

In the ideal circumstance, every child would be connected in some way to supportive parents who are able to provide emotionally and financially for them. But life is rarely so straight-forward and many families are faced with issues of unclear paternity or even disputed paternity.

California Legal Separation

A legal separation is not the same thing as a trial separation. For most couples, a trial separation is a period of time where the couple tries living apart to find out if they really want to proceed with a divorce. This type of separation is not legally recognized.

Can You Get an Annulment in Michigan?

An annulment is an option in Michigan, but only under certain circumstances. This article discusses what those circumstances are.

Have You Considered Collaborative Divorce?

The author discusses the option of a Collaborative divorce.

An Overview of Getting a Divorce in Kentucky

Divorce in Kentucky can be a trying and complicated affair. This article discusses how getting a divorce in Kentucky works.

Michigan Estate Planning Overview

Estate planning is a legal arrangement made for the distribution of estates-also called properties-after your death. This article discusses estate planning options in Michigan.

Collin County Texas Juvenile Legal Process, A Criminal Defense Law Firm's Perspective

An analysis of the juvenile legal process from the perspective of a defense attorney.

Annulments in Ohio

As with many states, divorce in Ohio has steadily increased. From 1970 to 2000, divorce rates more than doubled, from 3.7% to 7.8% per 1,000 couples. For many, it’s an unfortunate reality. If you’re considering ending your marriage, there’s bound to be a lot on your mind. Thoughts of legal proceedings may come second or even third, to concerns about children and your financial future.

Adoption in Jordan

Is adoption legal and permitted or not in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan?

Will Musk's Bitter Divorce Affect Tesla Motors' Business Standing?

Unfortunately for investors and directors alike, Tesla Motors Inc.'s highly hyped initial public offering (IPO) is competing for attention with media coverage of the bitter divorce of its co-founder, chief executive officer and major shareholder Elon Musk, who also co-founded the hugely successful company PayPal. The June 29th IPO went off without a hitch, resulting in a 41 percent in the company's stock on the first day.

Does Marital Love Fade over Time?

After 40 long and tumultuous years of politics, publicity and prosperity, former Vice President Al Gore and his wife Tipper, famous in her own right as an author and outspoken advocate for the Parents Music Resource Center (the committee responsible for the “Parental Advisory” label on music albums that contain explicit lyrics), have announced their plans to divorce.

Courtney Love's Case Highlights Non-Parental Custody in California

For the third time, Courtney Love has lost custody of her daughter, Frances Bean. On December 11, a Los Angeles judge stripped Love of legal guardianship and placed her daughter, now 17-years-old, under the care of her paternal grandmother and aunt, the mother and sister, respectively, of Love's late husband, Kurt Cobain.

Cohabitation before Marriage

A recent study conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics suggests that couples who cohabitate before marriage are less likely to remain together.

California Custody Determinations

Most parents are unaware of the legal standards used by California courts to make decisions regarding the custody of their children.

Social Networking Sites Increasingly Blamed in Divorces

Popular social networking sites such as Facebook are increasingly being cited in courts as contributing factors in divorces.

Fathers Gaining Ground in Custody Disputes

There is a new trend in the courts when determining child custody matters. This trend is seen in Florida's new parenting law, which includes new factors for the courts to consider.

Adoption in Ethiopia

Are you planing to have an adopted child from Ethiopia or do you need to know the Ethiopian law of adoption? Here is a brief note on adoption in Ethiopia.

Divorce and Its Effects under Ethiopian Family Law

If you wonder to know how marriage dissolves in Ethiopia here is a brief note.

Divorce Mediators Can Save You Money and Emotional Stress

One of the many reasons that people hesitate to file for divorce even when they’re sure that their marriage is not the right situation is because of the time, extreme emotional stress and enormous costs that are generally involved with litigating such a matter.

Spousal Maintenance and Asset Division During a Recession

In any divorce the division of assets and debts is likely to be one of the major points of disagreement.

Gray Divorces Pose Unique Challenges for Aging Couples

Much to the shock of the country earlier this summer, Al and Tipper Gore announced their impending divorce after 40 years of marriage. However, to those who routinely help people navigate through a divorce, this announcement was not nearly as much of a surprise.

Can I Get Divorced in Hong Kong?

Hong Kong only has jurisdiction to entertain a divorce petition if, at the date of the divorce petition, either husband or wife is domiciled in Hong Kong, or has been habitually resident in Hong Kong throughout the previous 3 years, or has a substantial connection to Hong Kong.

The Advantages of having a Prenuptial Agreement in Thailand

A prenuptial agreement or prenup is a written contract entered into between future spouses as regards the designation of their assets, control of assets and liabilities, treatment of property and earnings during the marriage, and potential division of marital property in case of dissolution of the union.

Early Neutral Evaluation Pilot Programs Showing Great Promise in Minnesota

Minnesota is leading the nation in proving adversarial court proceedings are not always the best option for deciding the most contentious issues in a divorce. In fact, sometimes the best way to resolve emotionally taxing issues like child custody, parenting time and spousal support is by giving the divorcing couples the opportunity to resolve these issues themselves, and to do so early in the process. With a little help, of course.

What Rights Do Noncustodial Parents Have in Minnesota?

Bristol Palin, daughter of former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, recently sued her ex-boyfriend Levi Johnston for more child support money. Johnston, the father of their 1-year-old child, is more than $18,000 behind on child support payments, according to the complaint.

Questioning the Value of Facebook During Divorce

Facebook has become one of the most popular sites on the Internet, with more than 400 million active users. Offering the opportunity to easily connect with friends and loved ones, Facebook has developed loyal users and has amassed an amazing amount of information about these users.

Parentage and Repudiation of Paternity in Thailand

Thailand has distinct laws on parentage. While the issue of maternity is easily determinable, the same is not true on paternity. There is a presumption of paternity in births within a valid marriage. There are likewise laws in case of births outside marriage and after divorce.

Interference with Parenting Time

In Minnesota, interference with parenting time can be combatted through civil and criminal proceedings. Where interference occurs, swift action is often well advised.

Fighting Parental Alienation

Parental Alienation involves disturbiung behaviors that seek to limit another parent's contact with their children. Combatting such conduct requires immediate action.

Orders for Protection (OFP) and Their Defense in Minnesota

An Order for Protection may have a significant and long lasting impact. As a result, an aggressive defense is necessary. Review this guide for details.

Underwater Weddings in Thailand: Legal or Not?

Underwater Weddings have become so popular in Thailand these past years. Marrying couples who want to have this experience must not forget the more important aspect of their union - the legality of the marriage.

Family Law in UAE

In every culture and ideologies all around the world, people believe in the sanctity of marriage and family, as meant for life. The Prophet of Islam is reported to have said ''marriage is my Sunna and those who do not follow this way of life are not my followers”. Imam Sadiq (AS) stated: 'Get married but do not divorce, because a divorce would tremble the Arsh (empyrean) of Allah'."

Surrogacy and Adoption in Thailand

Thailand has yet to pass a law which allows nor punishes surrogacy in the country. Until there is no surrogacy law in Thailand, Legal Adoption as the option for a couple to have a child of their own other than by natural means.

Do I Have to Spend All My Assets to Qualify for Medicaid?

So, let’s say this hypothetical couple with $100,000 can see down the road that the need for long term care is coming. Maybe one of them has Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s. If they give away $50,000 to their kids, how does Medicaid look at that?

Grounds for Divorce in Thailand Explained

The Thai Civil and Commercial Code list numerous grounds for divorce in Thailand. Most people who are planning to divorce in Thailand take the liberty of reading and construing these grounds literally without seeking the assistance of a lawyer in Thailand. While some grounds are indeed self-explanatory, some need to be explained by a lawyer so that the grounds are appreciated correctly by its readers.

Legal Separation in Ohio

When a marriage is no longer working, many spouses believe that the only option is divorce. This, however, is not true. Ohio couples who need time and space apart from one another or who are ready to move forward in their lives separately have other legal options available to them besides divorce.

Ohio Property Division and Child Custody

Determining questions of property division and child custody is often the most contentious part of most divorces. The efforts of attorneys and, ultimately, the decision of the judge will have a lasting effect on both ex-spouses and the children for many years. For that reason, it is critical that any person going through a divorce in Ohio become familiar with how the court reaches its determination and what can be done to best achieve a favorable outcome.

Ohio Civil Protection Orders

Civil protection orders in Ohio can be issued by different courts to address varying threats, but all feature a common purpose: ordering one person not to harm another.

The Value of Working With An Attorney to File an Uncontested Divorce

Divorce can be a lengthy and expensive process, but it doesn't have to be. Many people minimize the cost and time of divorce by filing a simple, no-fault, uncontested divorce. When spouses resolve the issues between themselves and file for a no-fault divorce, they can avoid significant expense and wasted time without the need for a mediator or judge to resolve disputes.

Uncontested Divorce: When Is It Appropriate?

Divorce is often thought of as a drawn-out, expensive courtroom battle, but it doesn’t have to be that way. An uncontested divorce offers couples an affordable, timely way to avoid the expense and drama of a contested divorce.

No-Fault Divorce: Cheaper, Faster, Less Painful for All Concerned

Only one of the 50 states refuses to allow some form of no-fault divorce. In a recent editorial, the New York Times lambasted that state’s legislature for failing to enact no-fault divorce, stating that current law makes “divorces costlier, longer, and uglier than they need to be.”

While the Parent’s Away… Joint Custody of Teenagers and Business Travel

Parents have concerns about leaving teens home alone while on vacation. But what about divorced parents with joint custody whose careers take them out of town?

Facebook and Divorce: Airing the Dirty Laundry

Divorce attorneys have taken to reviewing social networking sites as a best practice to glean whatever information they can, looking to see if what a spouse says in court is different from what he or she is saying online.

Child Abuse Rises in Bad Economy

The recent economic hard times have been difficult for many people. But according to a study conducted by Dr. Rachel P. Berger, the recession has been particularly hard on infants. Berger, who revealed the results of her study on May 8 at the annual meeting of the Pediatric Academic Societies, said there is a "marked increase in the rate of abusive head trauma among children during the recession compared to beforehand."

Arizona Legislature Demonstrates Support of Joint Custody in New Law

With all the news coverage of Arizona's new immigration law, much less attention has been paid to other new laws coming out of the recently ended legislative session. One such law, SB 1314, may affect custody decisions regarding minor children in contested divorces and other child custody proceedings.

US K1 Visa in Thailand

Introduction: The K1 visa is the exclusive visa that allows an American to bring their fiancé/fiancée to, and get married in, the United States. Upon the marriage, the foreign spouse is eligible to adjust of status for permanent resident.

Instances When Contested Divorce in Thailand is Available to Parties

One of the forms of divorce in Thailand is Contested Divorce. This is also known as Judicial divorce in the country. The court is given the task to determine the propriety of a divorce case lodged by concerned parties.

Arbitrage en Code de Procédure Civile Morocain

Chapitre VIII: De l'arbitrage, Article 306 Toutes personnes capables peuvent souscrire un compromis d'arbitrage sur les droits dont elles ont la libre disposition.

Overview on Thailand Divorce

The increasing number of marriages between Thais and foreigners has inevitably resulted in the escalation of divorce cases in Thailand. Many associate this unfortunate trend to the dissimilarity in culture and language. While there is always a common hope that one’s marriage will weather all trials, there is also equal possibility of the marriage ending in a divorce.

Thailand Marriage Registration and Wedding Ceremony

One distinct concept in Thai marriages is that it consists of two different parts: The Wedding Ceremony and the Marriage Registration. Not too many foreigners are aware that it is the Marriage Registration which marks the legal start of their marriage in the country. Many get surprised to find out that after years of being together, Thailand has yet to recognize their union for failure of registration.

Thailand Prenuptial Agreement

Every couple tying the knot hopes for a marriage that will last a lifetime. Unfortunately, it does not always happen. When couples divorce, custody battles and conflict over division and distribution of properties add unnecessary stress to an already very stressful state. With an inter-racial couple, things may become more complicated. To avoid this kind of situation, unromantic as it may seem, an engaged couple may consider entering into a prenuptial agreement.

Adjustment of Status for Thai Spouses

Introduction: Adjustment of Status is the procedure by which a resident alien can become a permanent resident without leaving the United States. Thai spouses who gained entry to the United States via a K1 or K3 visa typically utilize this process. The results often depend on the discretion of the USCIS District Director but are typically successful.

Divorce and Estate Planning

If you are going through or even contemplating a divorce, the single most important step you can take to make sure that your desires are carried out is to execute a new will, power-of-attorney and health care proxy.

Marriage in Thailand

Thailand is a truly unique place for most couples to make their dream wedding come true. Nonetheless, a legal marriage in Thailand for both foreigners and Thais should be performed according to Thai law.

Adoption in Thailand

Adoptions in Thailand are governed by the Child Adoption Act 2522 (1979). Adoption requirements are strict. The process can take upwards of 1-3 years. In addition to complying with Thai law, the adoptive parent(s) must comply with the regulations set out by their own governments. Additionally, adoptions must comply with the Hague Adoption Convention.

Settling Your Divorce through Mediation

Many Newport Beach family lawyers will work with clients towards a fast and civil solution to a divorce, that doesn't guarantee that the situation will play out that way.

What Constitutes Marital Property Subject to Equitable Distribution?

Equitable division of assets is a multi step process. The first step is for the Judge to determine what property constitutes marital property in Rhode Island. After a judge determines what constitutes marital property, the Rhode Island Family Court judge must apply the factors set forth in 15-16.1. The judge must lastly equitably divide the marital property.

Post Divorce Do's and Dont's

Keep accurate records of child support, alimony, or other property settlement payment(s). In the event that there is a dispute as to whether or not you have made payments, accurate records are important for proof of payment.

Working Moms and Dads with Child Custody: A Growing Trend

As fathers become more active in the care and upbringing of children, they are also becoming more likely to get child custody following a divorce.

Michigan’s Rules for Relocating with Your Child

Michigan ranks at the top of the list of states hardest hit by the recession. With the ailing housing market and high unemployment rates, some are finding it desirable if not necessary to leave the state and start fresh somewhere else.

Impact of Court Order for Minor Child’s Attendance at Boarding School

When parents who have joint legal custody can't agree upon important decisions such as school attendance, the trial court is required to resolve the dispute in the child's best interests.

Wisconsin's Treatment of 17-Year-Old Offenders Faces Scrutiny

Approximately 30,000 17-year-olds are arrested in Wisconsin each year. If they are charged with a crime, they are charged as adults.

Tiger's Plight Highlights the Issue of Prenuptial Modification in Florida

When Tiger Woods and Elin Nordegren married in 2004, like many celebrity couples, the pair signed a prenuptial agreement. The details of the agreement were never officially released, but reports put the figure allotted to Elin at $20 million - available after 10 years of marriage.

Modification of Child Support Payments in Florida

While there is some hope for improvement soon, the current economic climate has taken its toll on families in Florida and throughout the United States. Unsurprisingly, parents obligated to pay child support - formerly known as noncustodial parents in Florida - have not been immune to the current economic downturn.

Prenuptial Agreements: Saying ‘I Do’ to the Many Advantages

A Primer 101 Guide to Prenuptial Agreements.

Teenage Wasteland? It Doesn’t Have to Be

Someone once said that everyone should be born at 50. That way we would be wise right from the start! Unfortunately, that is not the case. And as far as parenting goes there is no instruction tag on our children either.

Do I Have to Pay Child Support if I Receive Disability Payments from the Government?

One common question is whether a parent has to pay child support if the children are receiving social security payments as a result of the parent's disability. The short answer is that social security payments do not negate the obligation to pay child support. A disabled parent, however, does receive credit for the social security paid for the benefit of the children.

The Spousal Share of a Marital Asset: When Two Plus Two Does Not Equal Four

It is quite possible that you may have overlooked a short recent decision in the Appellate Division, Second Department. However, this case, Peritore v. Peritore, is pregnant with implications and evidences a judicial trend to award to a non-contributing spouse a small percentage of the appraised value of a professional license, business or practice.

When and under What Circumstances Should Non-Durational Maintenance Be Awarded

Since the passage of the equitable distribution law on July 19, 1980 which set forth new standards for the award of maintenance, the courts have grappled with the issue of whether to award fixed or life time maintenance to a needy spouse. More apt, would be the phrase “non-durational maintenance”.

Morality and the Need For a Liberal Construction of Egregious Conduct

Have the courts been so hardened to offensive behavior that they fail to recognize egregious conduct when they see it? Does the emperor’s new clothes really hide his nakedness? Has the court’s sense of morality been diminished to such an extent that any type of sexual misconduct or aberrant behavior will be countenanced in the twenty first century?

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