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Palm Harbor, Florida Family Law Blog

Are you considering adoption?

Have you ever wondered why so many of us are so set on having a "child of our own" when there are so many homeless children throughout the United States and beyond? Deciding whether or not to adopt rather than conceive is a difficult decision and it's important to research all facets involved when considering adding a new member to your family.

Myths about paternal rights to consider before taking action

Separation and divorce are a stressful time for all parties involved, and the complexities of family law in Florida can exacerbate an already tense situation. Parental rights and obligations, particularly those of fathers as they pertain to custody issues, requesting visitation rights and child support, are often mired in popular myths.

Getting divorced? It can be trickier than you expect

Too many people make the mistake of assuming that because divorce is almost ordinary, it requires little more than some paperwork and signatures. However, this can be an extremely costly assumption to make. While divorce is not new, it is still considered a very complex area of law. 

For example, you may have to deal with some complicated property division issues. You and your soon-to-be ex might disagree on whether something is considered marital or separate property; you may not understand your rights regarding spousal support; you could wind up missing out on money you deserve from a property purchased with co-mingled assets. 

When is child support paid?

Parents ask themselves and their kids countless questions every day and expect answers. However, there are some questions that need to be answered by a court when parents share custody.

For example, the question of when child support payments need to be paid is something that many parents often are concerned about. There are statutes in Florida that set the guidelines for child support, but these can be confusing. In this blog post, we will examine the "when" of child support.

US Supreme Court restores adoptive mother's visitation rights

Adopting a child is one of the most life-changing experiences a parent can have. Whether you are adopting a child from another country or one you have already been helping to raise, the process of making the parent-child relationship legal can be overpowering.

Unfortunately, the adoption process is not always as smooth and easy as many people would hope. There are complications that arise and put the child's future and a parent's rights in jeopardy. For instance, an adoptive mother recently struggled through extensive legal proceedings to finally restore her rights to have parenting time with her children.

Under child support laws, income isn't just the number on a W-2

In a perfect world, every marriage would be perfect, and every child would be able to experience a loving home where they would be able to benefit from the presence and financial means of their parents' combined resources. For many reasons, this doesn't always happen.

In 2013, Florida's divorce rate was more than 13%, and ranked among the top five states with the most divorces in the country. When these couples have minor children, the question of child support is a looming one. How much child support is appropriate? Who is going to have to pay? How much will they pay?

What happens if I don't get a paternity test?

These days, families come in all shapes and sizes. No longer is it assumed that a family consists of a mom, dad and a few children. Today, there are same-sex spouses raising adopted children, unmarried parents raising a child together, divorced parents raising children in a co-parenting arrangement and single parents tackling parenting alone.

This diversity in family structures means that truly no two families are the same. However, there are some similar challenges people will face in terms of family law because of the parenting issues that can arise. For example, whether you are married, divorced or unmarried, you may be confronted with the question of whether to take a paternity or not.

Bill to assume equal parenting time progresses in Florida

One of the most powerful emotions driving parents in the aftermath of a divorce filing is fear. Mothers and fathers can be overwhelmingly scared about what will happen to their relationship with their child when they are no longer living together as one family.

In many cases, this fear stems from the fact that people don't always know what to expect when it comes to parenting plan issues. They might expect the court system to unfairly favor one parent or use past mistakes as a reason to strip one person of parenting rights. However, the fact is that most cases do not fall into these extremes and many parents end up sharing parenting time. In fact, if a bill that was recently approved by the Florida Senates is enacted, shared parenting arrangements would be the standard.

Six important tips when divorcing with special needs children

Divorce is always difficult. If you're a parent of a child with special needs, however, ending your marriage can pose even greater challenges.

Children with Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorders and other physical or mental conditions frequently require individualized education programs (IEPs) and other types of educational, social and medical support. These issues should all be taken into consideration during the divorce process.

Here are six of the most important points to keep in mind:

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