Divorce

4 Traits the Right Divorce Lawyer in Weston Will Have

It can be tricky to identify them amongstthe crowd. If you’re seeking a divorce, you will need an experienced Divorce Lawyer in Weston to help you. During this difficult time, mental stress and the burden of a divorce may cloud your judgment, so it is important to have someone to help guide you through every aspect. While there’s a list of things that canhelp you during the proceedings,choosing the right lawyer is a priority andwill make an enormous difference in your case. How to Identify a Good Divorce Lawyer They will focus their practice on primarily marital and family law matters. You should likely avoid an attorney who practices in many other areas. Credentials are always important: A good lawyer has the right certifications, along with a proven record in court. He willgive you an overview of how the information you’ve disclosed can come in handy during your...

Things You Should Be Aware of Before Selecting a Divorce Attorney

Once you have decided to part ways with your spouse, is critical to find an experienced divorce attorney in Davie. To make sure that you are dealing with the right lawyer for your case, there are a few things you shouldconsider, such as: Experience: It is most important that you are working with an attorney that deals primarily with divorce and family law matters. Divorce law is complex and you should only work with someone who is focused on family law. An easy way to determine that is to ask what percentage of their cases are family law related. Fee: For many people, how much divorce attorney in Davie charges will impact their ability to hire them. While you never want the “cheapest” person to represent you, some attorneys charge much more than others. Just as important is how much time they may take to handle certain matters. Asking questions like, “how much is your retainer?” or “how much does a case like mine usually run?” can be an effective guide. Connection: Perhaps the most important aspect for hiring a divorce attorney in Davie is how much you like them. You will need to trust your lawyer completed, and a connection is an important part of that process. Your attorney must know how and when to empathize,when to be firm with you, and when not to say things that can cause...

Weston Florida Collaborative Divorce Attorney

THE COLLABORATIVE PROCESS “IT IS THE POLICY OF THIS STATE TO ENCOURAGE THE PEACEFUL RESOLUTION OF DISPUTES AND THE EARLY RESOLUTION OF PENDING LITIGATION THROUGH A VOLUNTARY SETTLEMENT PROCESS” The above quote is from the Florida Collaborative Law Process Act. It is probably somewhat contrary to what many of you or friends or family have experienced while going through a divorce. Everyone has heard the “horror stories” of endless litigation and exorbitant fees. There is in fact a way to possibly avoid those issues, by using the collaborative process. It is defined as “a unique non adversarial process that preserves a working relationship between the parties and reduces the emotional and financial toll of litigation”. There are some definite rules that must be followed and not every case is suited for the collaborative process.“As part of this non adversarial and voluntary resolution of disputes, lawyers who engage in the collaborative law process in a family law matter, and any other lawyers in that lawyer’s firm,may not afterwards represent any party in any related proceeding except to request that a court approve the settlement reached during the collaborative law process or in specified emergency situations in accordance with family law court rules.” As stated above, if for some reason the collaborative process “breaks down” and litigation becomes the only alternative, the collaborative attorney must withdraw from representing his/her client. Therefore, if the process is not successful, either a new attorney must be retained, or the client can represent his/herself. One attorney cannot represent both parties. In addition, both parties must agree to use the collaborative process. The goal of the...

The Reality Of Equal Time Sharing

As the law stands today, equal time sharing is not presumed to be in the best interests of the children in all situations. I will however state that it is becoming the norm, rather than the exception. It is believed that frequent contact with both parents will result in better adjusted child. Of course, every case is different and as such, it is difficult to have a set rule for all cases. Parent’s work schedules, travel schedules and locations should be considered. A parent who must leave for work prior to a minor child having to wake up for school, could present a problem. A parent who does not have a set schedule such as pilots or firefighters also require some planning. Parents who choose to live a distance apart can also complicate the situation. Of course, the other factor which is always considered is child support and how equal time sharing affects the monthly amount to be paid. Child Support in Florida is based upon several factors, one of which is the number of overnights a minor child spends with each parent. An equal time-sharing schedule will result in a reduced amount of support, since it is presumed that each parent will have significant “out of pocket” expenses if each has an equal amount of time with the child. This concept of equal time sharing has existed for several years now. I have recently met with prospective clients who seem to share the same issue. A parent has equal time sharing pursuant to their Parenting Plan, but in reality, the parent is not actually exercising his/her 50%. The...

How To Define Income During Dissolution Of Marriage

How To Define Income During Dissolution Of Marriage In a Dissolution of Marriage the couple’s finances are usually the main issue in the case.  Finances are considered in determining the division of assets and liabilities (equitable distribution), child support and alimony.  In most instances determining a spouse’s income is not very difficult.  Tax returns, w-2’s and pay stubs can assist in determining a person’s yearly income.  However, not everyone is a salaried employee who gets paid on either a yearly salary or standard 40 hour work week. There are many people who work on commission or have a large part of their income paid in either quarterly or yearly bonuses.  So are these bonuses income? How do we determine income when a bonus is not guaranteed or a commissioned sales person cannot predict how his year will be?  In determining child support each parent’s income must be considered to calculate the monthly support. It cannot be recalculated each month depending on an individual’s income which may vary based on sales totals or bonuses. Income is actually defined by Florida Statutes as follows: 1. Salary or wages. 2. Bonuses, commissions, allowances, overtime, tips, and other similar payments. 3. Business income from sources such as self-employment, partnership, close corporations, and independent contracts. “Business income” means gross receipts minus ordinary and necessary expenses required to produce income. 4. Disability benefits. 5. All workers’ compensation benefits and settlements. 6. Reemployment assistance or unemployment compensation. 7. Pension, retirement, or annuity payments. 8. Social security benefits. 9. Spousal support received from a previous marriage or court ordered in the marriage before the court. 10. Interest...

The Concept Of Divorce Planning

Over The past year or so it has come to my attention that many couples who are considering a dissolution of marriage from their spouse are attempting to initiate the process in a more civilized manner. Instead of retaining an attorney and filing for the dissolution they first seek to try and resolve it by reaching an agreement. This process obviously has many possible advantages. It is obviously less costly, since the costs of litigation can be expensive and it usually leaves the couple on much friendlier terms after it is finalized. Most importantly the couple is able to decide what is best for them and what is best for their children. I am not suggesting that this process can work in all cases, but there certainly seems to be a movement towards this manner of resolution. A couple who wishes to resolve their marriage by negotiation should deal with each other in good faith. If there are hidden assets or attempts to gain an advantage in the negotiation, a fair and equitable resolution will not be reached. In some relationships one party may be the person in charge of finances and as such may have greater knowledge of the financial position of the parties. It is important to understand that once an agreement is signed it is binding on both parties and very difficult to set aside. A settlement without all the information and without proper advice can often lead to inequitable results. I suggest that even if it is the intention of both parties to settle their dissolution without litigation it is still beneficial to retain an...

Holiday Cheer

Most people think of the holiday season with gleeful anticipation of time with family. For couples who have been through a divorce, the holiday season can often be a very stressful time. This stress can also be felt by the children of a divorced couple.

Do you need a Divorce Attorney?

DO YOU NEED A DIVORCE ATTORNEY? These days many individuals going through a divorce try to handle the matter without the assistance of an attorney.  They feel that it is better to try and settle the matter without spending large sums of money on legal representation.  In all honesty, simple divorces can easily be handled by the parties. Simple divorces are cases in which there are no minor children and no real assets or liabilities to divide.  There is a great deal of assistance through the courthouse or the internet to “walk you through” the process.   HOWEVER, sometimes people can be as they say “penny-wise and pound foolish”.  In an effort to save money on attorneys’ fees they may wind up giving up too much or perhaps not receiving his/her share.  An individual who represents him/herself is held to the same standards as a licensed attorney. A judge will not give an individual the benefit of the doubt, just because an attorney is not sitting by his/her side in court. This can often present a problem in a more complicated case. I have often reviewed Marital Settlement Agreements which were entered into without the assistance of counsel. Often these individuals come to see me after the fact, to request assistance in attempting to “get them out” of the Agreement.  Unfortunately it is extremely difficult to undo what has already been done.  A Marital Settlement Agreement or a Mediation Agreement has the same validity as any binding contract.  In addition, as I previously stated, individuals are expected to know the law and it is not an excuse to later say...

DISSOLUTION and FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE

DISSOLUTION and FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE Clients who are going through a Dissolution of Marriage are often surprised to learn how much personal financial information they must reveal.  The laws of this state require complete financial disclosure. Most people get overwhelmed with this requirement, since it can be very time consuming.    Since Florida is a “No Fault” State, the primary area of dispute between a husband and wife is usually financial.  The following is a list of the financial information required pursuant to Florida law. All parties MUST complete a Financial Affidavit.  This Affidavit list a party’s income, expenses, assets and liabilities.  It is a sworn document, signed under oath by the client, swearing to its truthfulness.  A financial affidavit must be filed in all dissolution proceedings, even in the most simplified uncontested matter. In addition to the financial affidavit, certain documentation must also be exchanged between the parties within approximately six weeks from the date of filing. If it is a simplified divorce this requirement can be waived by both parties. The Financial Affidavits must be produced however.  The documents that are required include: 1. Income tax returns 2. Pay stubs for the past three months 3. Statement of income 4. Loan applications and financial statements prepared during the preceding 12 months 5. Deeds, leases and promissory notes executed during the past 12 months 6. Checking account statements for the past three months 7. Bank statements (other than checking) for the past 12 months 8. Brokerage account statements for the last 12 months 9. The most recent statements showing value of retirement accounts, profit sharing or deferred compensation accounts. 10....

Basic Issues Of Divorce

It seems that DIVORCE is often misunderstood.  Unfortunately everyone seems to know someone who is either going through a divorce or has been divorced.  Everyone has heard various “horror stories” about someone’s divorce case.  Many people who come to my office for a consultation are lost or confused as to what may lie ahead.  A common question is “how do I start this?”  Even though every case is obviously different from the next, most cases deal with the same general issues one might encounter in a divorce.  I thought it might be helpful to briefly touch upon each one of these.  1. Equitable Distribution: This is the principle by which assets accumulated and debts incurred during the marriage are divided. In most cases the division will be an equal division of both assets and debts.  This however is not always true.  Florida Statutes allows a Judge to consider various factors in determining the possibility of an unequal distribution.  In addition, non marital assets (assets owned prior to the marriage or received from a source unconnected with the marriage; such as an inheritance) will not be divided unless these assets were co-mingled with marital assets or gifted to the other spouse. 2. Alimony: Alimony is not an issue in every case.  There are a number of factors which must be considered in addressing alimony.  There are several different kinds of alimony which are contained within the law.  The one most people think of is “permanent alimony”, which is a sum of money paid on a monthly income until death or remarriage by the receiving spouse.  This is based upon, among...