The area of family law deals with the legal issues of the family, in whatever form. All areas of family are complex and often interrelated. It is rare that one aspect of family law does not overlap with another.
Family Law Matters*:
- Child Custody
- Child Support
- Civil Partnerships
- Divorce and Dissolution
- Foster Care
- Name Change
- And many others
Adoption is generally categorized as either contested or uncontested. Adoption is a primary vehicle serving the needs of homeless, neglected, abused and runaway children. As a result of the adoption process you become responsible for the financial, emotional, and physical care of your children.
Alimony is payments provided to an ex-spouse generally for the ex-spouse to maintain a certain standard of living that was established during the marriage. The amount of alimony paid is based upon a number of factors including the length of marriage, income and other community property issues.
Child custody issues are usually tied to legal separation or divorce proceedings. It is not uncommon for parents to share legal and physical custody (joint custody). In may circumstances however, the courts may be award one parent custody while the other parent is awarded visitation rights, as determined to be in the best interests of the child or children.
The non-custodial parent is ordered to provide financial payments to be used to the support of the child. These may payments continue until the child attains the age of 18.
Some states recognize civil unions between two people of the same sex, who have agreed to look after each other from a financial stand point. Texas does not recognize civil unions. Legal issues may include civil union agreements (both pre and post union). It is important to consider a comprehensive estate plan as the federal government does not currently recognize civil unions.
Divorce and Dissolution
Divorce and (dissolution of a civil union) are highly contentious matters that require competent legal counsel. Divorce issues generally include at a minimum at least one of the following: property settlement, alimony, child custody, child support, and name changes.
While you can change your name for any reason, name changes are typical after marriage, divorce, or adoption. There are circumstances when you can change your name without the assistance of a lawyer.
*Divorce, Dissolution, Modification, Enforcement or Establishment of Family Law Order have a six-month waiting period from the policyholder’s effective date.