Thompson Family Law, P.A.
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Fort Myers Divorce Law Blog

Can you get emergency custody if your child is unsafe?

Most of the time, the authorities prefer to stay out of custody issues once a parenting plan and visitation schedule is set. The courts won't usually hear requests for modifications of an order unless there's a significant change in the circumstances for those involved.

Emergencies do happen, however -- and the courts realize that it's impossible sometimes to wait to act until you can sit down and try to negotiate the issue with your child's other parent. If your child is in danger, you may need to act quickly.

Can a Florida spouse request a change in alimony obligations?

When a judge orders a spouse to pay alimony to their ex, they enter in a court order. While you may take that to mean that they cannot seek any changes to it, that's not the case. Spousal support orders can be modified in most jurisdictions. The paying spouse must generally have a valid reason for requesting a reduction in support though. The recipient may also request an increase under the same premises.

If a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) clause is included in your divorce decree, then you are eligible for an increase in spousal support to help cover increases in your expenses.

Why have a Qualified Domestic Relations Order in Florida?

One of the assets that couples end up fighting most about when they divorce is investment accounts. One of these reasons why they do so is because they often have fluctuating values, so it's really hard to hone in on a particular value for them. There are also tax implications associated with taking on or divesting yourself of certain investment assets. These are some of the reasons why individuals who have these types of accounts seek to have a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) drafted up in their case.

A QDRO is a type of court order. It allows a secondary payee to receive access to assets contained in a retirement plan account aside from its owner or original designee. It's only considered to be valid if it complies with both the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and Florida domestic relations laws.

Don't let these child support myths fool you

There are plenty of myths about divorce and custody that need to be debunked before you start going through the process yourself. These myths can be harmful and make it difficult for you to know what is actually to be expected.

Here are several of the most common child support myths that people still spread today. Getting the right information from your attorney will help you better understand your actual obligations.

What are the roles and responsibilities of custodial parents?

Family law judges tend to award both parents joint legal and physical custody whenever possible. They often do this because they've read how children fare best when they spend equal amounts of time with each parent. Splitting custody 50-50 isn't always what's in the best interest of the child though. It's in cases like these that judges tend to award primary physical or legal custody to one of them. That mom or dad then comes to be referred to as the custodial parent.

The terminology "custodial parent" simply refers to the mom or dad that the child spends the majority of their time, or lives, with. It's that parent who generally enjoys primary physical or legal custody over their child. Many rights and responsibilities come with this role.

What impact does divorce have on my immigration status?

When people talk about the impact of a divorce on their life, they often mention the emotional toll that it takes on them. They seldom reference the logistical nightmares that it can cause, such as immigration problems. It can though. This is especially the case if you're not a permanent resident yet.

If you've only secured a 2-year conditional green card as a result of marrying a U.S. permanent resident or citizen at the time that you file to end your marriage, then your immigration status could be in jeopardy.

The length of a marriage can impact alimony awards

If Florida, there's more than just one type of spousal support award that judges can make. Bridge-the-gap, lifetime and rehabilitative alimony are just some of the many options that the court has to choose from. There are many different factors that judges take into account when deciding how much support to award a spouse. The length of the marriage is one key factor.

There are laws on the books in many states that aid judges in making decisions as to what type of alimony to award.

Can I keep my jewelry my spouse gave me when we divorce?

If you're preparing to get divorced, then you may be concerned about what's going to happen to your property such as your home, car and bank account once everything's finalized. Those will generally be divided up between you and your spouse per Florida equitable distribution laws. You may wonder what happens to the property such as your wedding ring though. You may be curious as to whether that's considered a separate or marital asset, especially since it was given to you as a gift by your spouse.

Engagement and wedding rings generally remain the property of the individual that they were gifted to. This is the case regardless of its value.

What rights does a parent with legal custody have?

There are many different types of custodial arrangements that parents request here in Florida. Each status carries with its obligations and limits. Today, let's take a look at what it means to have legal custody of a child.

A parent who's awarded legal custody of their child is generally entitled to make broad decisions on their behalf.

Will the Florida family courts uphold your prenuptial agreement?

Maybe you had a great career already when you got married, or perhaps either you or your spouse had substantial personal assets that you hoped to protect in the event of a divorce. Now that you find yourself thinking about the end of your marriage, you may worry about whether the courts will uphold your prenuptial agreement.

Whether the document favors you over your spouse and you want the courts to enforce it or you feel like the document is unfairly skewed against you and you hope they throw it out, knowing the common reasons why family courts choose to invalidate or throw out a prenuptial agreement can help you determine how they will likely respond to yours.

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Thompson Family Law, P.A.
3949 Evans Avenue, Suite 206
Fort Myers, FL 33901

Toll Free: 888-550-6071
Phone: 239-243-9297
Fax: 239-936-2542
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