Family law is a legal focus that deals with issues relating to familial relationships. This may include some of the most popular subjects of family law, such as divorce, child custody, and child support. However, many other issues fall under this same umbrella, including adoption, emancipation, paternity, and many other matters typically heard in family court. Indeed, family law attorneys often practice the spectrum of legal issues associated with family relationships.
Legal Issues Surrounding Marriage
Sadly, marriages can develop into complicated situations for many people. Even before the wedding begins, a prenuptial agreement may need to be drafted and signed. A prenup is a contract that is crafted before a couple is married. It usually lists each person’s assets, and the rights of each individual, in the event that the marriage must be dissolved. Prenuptial agreements are often controversial. Still, they have their pros in addition to their cons. A family law attorney can assist with sorting these out.
Married couples may seek a legal separation. However, a legal separation does not terminate the marriage like a divorce. Instead, it defines the legal rights and obligations of each spouse. An annulment, on the other hand, is a legal decree that treats a marriage as if it never happened. An annulment declares the marriage null and void. There are only limited grounds for receiving an annulment. These may include incest, bigamy, intoxication during the onset of marriage, fraud, legal age issues, and issues relating to force and physical or mental incapacity.
Divorce is the decree that ends a marriage. In some instances, divorce can be relatively friendly. In other circumstances, it can be spiteful and contentious. Child support, child custody, and alimony matters often can cause disagreements between divorcing spouses. Regardless of the situation, however, courts put the best interests of a child or children before anything else.
Domestic violence is another significant occurrence often associated with family law cases. Many marriages that end involve domestic violence and acts of violence. Other relationships, such as dating relationships, elder abuse, and parent and child relationships, can involve domestic violence, as well.
Legal Issues Surrounding Children
Child custody and child support arrangements often work best in situations where the adults are willing to communicate and cooperate, but they don’t always go according to plan. Family law attorneys can assist in negotiations between parents and help to bring a reasonable solution to the court. In adoptive situations that involve stepparents or people with no biological relation to a youngster, the legal proceedings can be complicated. Terminating the rights of the biological parents and processing the adoption usually requires navigating several legal matters. You would do well not to attempt going through such an intricate legal process without an attorney to counsel you.
Child abuse is another legal issue involving children. Sadly, child abuse and neglect are far too common. Fortunately, these crimes have widespread consequences, with implications in both family law and criminal law. The mistreatment or neglect of a child is a matter that needs quick intervention and resolution. All states have established agencies and laws to protect the welfare of children. Other family law matters exist, as well, such as Power of Attorney, inheritance, and changing your name. If you are dealing with any matter related to family law, then you should contact an attorney for legal guidance.