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Resourceful Legal Guidance In Family Law

Lakeland Family Law Blog

Why did a judge rule on child custody case involving a rapist?

An unusual custody case has led to outrage in Florida and across the nation. A judge granted sole child custody rights to the mother, a 21-year-old woman. However, the court also named a 27-year-old man as the child's father. The child in question was conceived when that man raped the mother when she was just 12 years of age.

This was not a traditional child custody case in which parents argue over the care and custody of a shared child. The only reason the parties were before the court is because the mother had applied for financial assistance. The state required that she pursue child support and paternity issues in court in order to receive that assistance.

Money talks: Will you receive or pay alimony after divorce?

It is no secret to Florida readers that divorce brings about significant financial changes. Both parties are naturally concerned with their financial well-being after their marriage is over, and one of the most common sources of money-related disputes pertains to alimony.

Alimony also goes by the name of spousal maintenance or spousal support, and it is not a one-size-fits-all issue. The amount, frequency and duration of spousal support payments depends largely on the details of the financial circumstances of the two divorcing parties. Whether you will have to pay or you hope you will receive this type of support, knowing more about how it works can help you protect your interests.

Parents face child custody case and criminal charges

In the vast majority of custody battles, the parties fall along predictable lines. Two Florida parents are unable to see eye-to-eye over the care and custody of a shared child or children, and they take the matter before a court. There are child custody cases, however, that do not fit this mold. An example is found in a couple facing both a child custody battle and criminal charges in connection with the death of their third child.

The couple belongs to a religious group that prohibits the use of medical intervention in virtually all circumstances. Because of their religious beliefs, they failed to seek medical care after their daughter was born in their home. A midwife attending to the mother and infant expressed concern that the child appeared jaundiced and suggested that the parents take their daughter to see a doctor.

Military divorce will lead to significant tax changes

When Florida service members are going through divorce, often the last thing on their minds is the manner in which their tax scenario will change once that process is finalized. However, in order to make the best possible decisions during a military divorce, it is important to consider a number of financial matters, including tax obligations. Working through the outcomes of various decisions can help spouses make choices that are in line with their long term goals.

One issue that many parents are unaware of is how a divorce will impact their ability to claim their children as dependents on their taxes. In most cases, the parent who assumes primary custody of one or more children also assumes the right to claim those children on his or her tax return. Is important to understand, however, that such an outcome is not dictated by law or the Tax Code.

Child custody dispute led to parental abduction

Few things are more stressful to Florida parents than a bitter custody battle. That is especially true when one parent feels strongly that his or her child would be better off having no connection to the other parent. In such cases, a small number of parents consider fleeing with their child to avoid having to comply with a child custody determination. This, however, is always a poor decision, and can result in criminal charges and a full loss of child custody rights.

An example is found in the case of a mother who was recently arrested for relocating with her young son to avoid an unfavorable child custody ruling. She and the child have been missing since late 2014. The child's father has made every effort to locate his son since that time, with the help of law enforcement agencies, including the FBI.

An annulment eliminates any claim for spousal support

The vast majority of Florida residents who enter into marriage do so with a sincere intent to create a lifelong partnership. In some cases, however, it swiftly becomes apparent that the marriage is unsustainable. Faced with reality of the divorce, many people wonder if their circumstances make it possible to get an annulment. One benefit of an annulment is the elimination of any claim of spousal support by either party.

A divorce is the legal end of a marriage. An annulment, on the other hand, is a legal declaration that the marriage was never valid to begin with. Obtaining an annulment is not a simple or easy matter, and certain requirements must be met. Not every marriage can be annulled, even those that are very short in duration.

Walking through the process of a stepparent adoption

Families comes in all shapes, sizes and types, and for many in Florida, adoption is a way to allow their individual family units to grow. Traditional domestic or international adoption is not the only way for a family to do this; for some, stepparent adoption is a viable choice. 

The process of a stepparent adopting his or her stepchild is not always easy, and it is useful and important to have qualified guidance when navigating this process. If this is your goal for your family, you may find it useful to first seek a complete explanation of your rights and the options available to you under the law.

Tips for finding a good military divorce attorney

When the time comes to bring a marriage to a close, choosing the right attorney can make all the difference in the world. For many Florida spouses, a divorce marks the first time in their lives when they will have to use the services of an attorney. Knowing how to select the best possible match is important, especially for families who are facing a military divorce. The following tips are offered in the hopes of guiding military spouses through this process.

One of the most important things to consider when meeting with different attorneys is whether their communication style and general personality offers a good match. A spouse needs to share intimate details with his or her attorney, and it is easier to do so when a spouse feels comfortable with that individual. Communication preferences are also important; a spouse who is not tech savvy may prefer to select an attorney who is willing to communicate in person or over the phone rather than through email.

How a financial advisor can assist in high asset divorce

One of the most difficult aspects of a Florida divorce is determining a fair division of marital wealth. In some cases, this need is further complicated by the efforts of one party to shield assets from the property division process. This can be especially challenging in a high asset divorce, where a couple's financial holdings can be very complex. The services of a financial advisor can be helpful in sorting out the full scope of marital wealth.

If an advisor suspects that money has been hidden, he or she can delve deeper into the couple's financial records to determine if, when and how that diversion has occurred. In some cases, dishonest spouses will attempt to give money to friends or family prior to a divorce. Others will open offshore accounts and divert funds over a period of time.

Don't forget college tuition during child custody negotiations

For many Florida parents, making sure that their child receives a college education is a top priority. During a divorce, however, that priority can be overlooked in favor of more pressing concerns. Unless college tuition and other expenses are specifically addressed in a divorce settlement and child custody agreement, parents have little recourse in securing assistance from their former partner when the time comes to begin writing checks.

One way that parents can address this matter is by agreeing that both parties will provide financial support at a predetermined rate once the child begins his or her college education. For example, if a wife earns considerably more than her husband, she might agree to cover 35 percent of college tuition and expenses while her husband agrees to cover 15 percent. The additional expense will be the responsibility of the student, who will be expected to take out student loans or earn scholarships to cover that portion.

Law Office of Amanda Salcido
206 Easton Drive
Suite 206
Lakeland, FL 33803

Phone: 863-266-4122
Fax: 863-680-2641
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Attorney Amanda Salcido has served her country as a member of the U.S. Army JAG Corp for more than 10 years. Her military experience spans over twenty years. Ms. Salcido provides professional legal guidance for service members and non-service members alike.

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