1What is Family Law?
Family law is comprised of case precedents and a body of statutes that govern the legal responsibilities between people who share a domestic relationship. Usually, the cases involve parties who are related by marriage or blood. However, family law may also affect those who are in a more casual or distant relationship. Due to the fact that most family law cases are very emotionally-charged nature, it is strongly advised that litigants retain legal counsel.
2Who Pays For Child Support?
Whenever married parents separate or divorce, or when just one unmarried parent has custody of their child, the non-custodial parent (who the child doesn't live with) may be ordered by the court to pay part of her or his income as child support. There are other scenarios where support may arise as well. Less often, when neither of the parents has custody of a child, the court might order them to pay a third party child support
who is caring for their child.
3What Are The Different Types of Child Custody?
- Physical custody - Basically, physical custody is whereby a parent is entitled to have a child live with him or her.
- Legal Custody - This is whereby a parent has the right and responsibility of making decisions about how the child will be raised.
- Sole Custody - One of the parents can be granted either sole legal custody or sole physical custody of a child.
- Joint Custody - This is whereby parents who aren't living together share the role of decision making, and/or physical control and custody of their children.
- Joint Custody Arrangements - In this case, the parents have to come up with a schedule depending on their housing arrangements, work, and also the children's needs.
4What Are The Different Types Of Spousal Maintenance?
Spousal maintenance is usually ordered by the court to be paid by one spouse to another when one spouse lacks the capacity to become fully self-supporting even when the income and resources available to that spouse has been taken into consideration.
- Permanent Spousal Maintenance - Permanent spousal maintenance is paid until the death of the payer or upon the remarriage of the recipient.
- Lump-Sum Spousal Maintenance - Instead of weekly or monthly payments, lump sum spousal maintenance is settled in one payment.
- Temporary Spousal Maintenance - Temporary spousal maintenance may be awarded where the financial status of the spouses is almost equal but one spouse may need temporary assistance to help ‘get on their feet’.
- Rehabilitative Spousal Maintenance - This is the most common type of spousal maintenance and is usually awarded in cases where the recipient is young or will eventually be able to return to the workforce after a divorce and become financially self-supportive.
5What Are The Basics Of Spousal Support (Alimony)?
Whenever a married couple divorces, spousal support or alimony might be awarded by the court to one of the spouses, based on either a decision made by the court or an agreement reached by the couple. Spousal support is separate from marital property division and is determined on an individual case basis.
Many people also have questions about child support vs. alimony. Child support payments are different from alimony because the money from child support payments may be used only for minor children when they are in the are of the custodial parents.
6What is a Prenuptial Agreement?
A premarital agreement (which is also referred to as "prenup" or a prenuptial agreement) is a legal step that is commonly taken before marriage. The financial and property rights of each spouse are established by a prenup in the event there is a divorce. Although no one thinks about getting divorced while they are getting married, about fifty percent of marriages in American do end in divorce. Therefore, it is often wise to consider having a prenuptial agreement. Often prenups are used in order to protect a wealthy spouse's assets. However, it also can protect a family business or serve other important purposes. Find out what the legal requirements in your state are for prenuptial agreements and whether or not it is right for you.
7What Is A Postnuptial Agreement?
When two people get married, sharing their financial assets (properties, bank accounts, debts, and so forth) is an integral part of the arrangement. If they then get divorced, those assets are divided up between them -- either an even half-and-half or an "equitable" split, depending on the applicable state laws covering marital property. Couples can change the way property is divided at the end of a marriage by entering into agreements on the subject. The most common such agreements are prenuptial, or "prenups." "Postnuptial" agreements are a viable alternative, drawn up after the marriage instead of before it.