Family Law is a legal practice area where attorneys focus on legal issues such as divorce, adoption and child custody among others. Practicing family law attorneys can represent clients in family court proceedings, related negotiations and can also help to draft legal documentation such as property agreements or court petitions. Some family law attorneys also offer specialist services to help with adoption, emancipation, paternity or other matters not usually related to divorce.
A term known as: “reasonable formal requirements” are determined by individual states for marriage, legal capacity, and age as well as the procedures and rules for family law matters and divorce. Prior to the Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriages- there were states who restricted marriage (and divorce to couples only of opposite sexes.
The following family law terms are often used in family law cases:
- Alimony: An allowance from one partner to the other for support during or following a divorce or legal separation.
- Emancipation: A court process through which a minor becomes self-supporting, is no longer under the care of his or her parents and assumes adult responsibility for their welfare, and is no longer under the care of his or her parents.
- Marital Property: Property acquired by either spouse during a marriage that is subject to division upon divorce.
- Prenuptial Agreement: An agreement made between partners before marrying in which they forgo future rights to each other’s property in the event of a divorce or death.
- Paternity: Descent or origin from a father (to establish paternity is to confirm the identity of a child’s biological father).
Reasons To Hire A Family Law Attorney
Family law is a broad area of practice and encompasses more than just matter s related to divorce but issues such as reproductive rights and foster care. It is important to have a trusted legal professional by your side ensuring those closest to you are protected and represented properly during the course of any legal processes.
The most common reasons to hire a family law attorney include the following:
- Adoption / Foster Care: Adoption is a complex process that differs according to the adoption type, where the child originates, and other factors such as variances in state laws. Foster parents sometimes adopt their foster children, but the foster process does not necessarily require legal representation. It is always vital to consult with a good family law attorney.
- Child Support / Child Custody: Court orders and settlement agreements involving both support and custody usually are included in large divorce cases, but may be revisited for example if the non-custodial parent’s financial situation changes.
- Divorce: Each partner hires an attorney of their own to devise and negotiate a plan of settlement with the purpose of avoiding a trial. divorce attorneys are skilled at the division of marital property, the calculation of spousal support and proposing visitation, support and child custody plans.
- Paternity: In most cases, paternity cases are filed by the mother in an effort to secure child support payments from an absent father. But sometimes biological fathers file for paternity in order to have a relationship with their child. Paternity typically is determined through DNA testing.
Related Practice Areas
Family law will often intersect with many other areas of legal practice. Child Abuse and Domestic Violence typically involve criminal investigations and family courts determine how best to protect the victims and ensure safety for those involved. OPther related legal practices include:
Need a Family Lawyer in Scottsdale?
Our experienced family law attorneys will work with you to obtain the best possible outcome in your situation. Proven trial lawyers in family court, you can trust the firm to represent you fully so you can get on with your life. Call today for your initial consultation. Our family lawyers can help with divorce litigation, collaborative divorce, divorce mediation, child custody, legal guardianship, paternity, prenuptial agreements, and more.