|Greenberg Stone & Urbano, P.A.||Boca Raton||Florida|
|Greenberg Stone & Urbano, P.A.||Miami||Florida|
|Mateer Harbert, PA||Orlando||Florida|
|Vaka Law Group||Tampa||Florida|
|Lesnevich & Marzano-Lesnevich, LLC||Hackensack||New Jersey|
|Lesnevich & Marzano-Lesnevich, LLC||Newark||New Jersey|
|Coughlin & Gerhart, LLP||Binghamton||New York|
|Fogg Law Firm||El Reno||Oklahoma|
|Handley Law Center, The||El Reno||Oklahoma|
|Rosen Hagood||Charleston||South Carolina|
|Winder & Counsel, PC||Salt Lake City||Utah|
|Masters Law Firm, L.C., The||Charleston||West Virginia|
As a branch of civil law, family law involves the legal issues pertaining to the relationships among family members. Family law encompasses a broad scope of issues, including adoption, child custody, divorce, domestic violence, juvenile dependency and delinquency, property rights, support obligations, visitation rights and paternity. Family law courts are governed at the state level, so the laws and regulations may vary by state.
The grounds for divorce depend on the state, and may be based on no-fault or fault. A no-fault divorce is available in some form in all 50 states; many states also have fault-based grounds as an additional option. A no-fault divorce is one in which neither the husband nor the wife officially blames the other for the breakdown of the marriage. Common bases for no-fault divorce are “irreconcilable differences,” “irretrievable breakdown” or “incompatibility.” Another common basis for no-fault divorce is that the parties have lived separately for a certain period of time with the intent that the separation be permanent. The list of grounds for a fault-based divorce may include: adultery, physical cruelty, mental cruelty, attempted murder, desertion, habitual drunkenness, use of addictive drugs, insanity, impotency, and infection of one’s spouse with venereal disease.
If the parents cannot agree on custody of their child, the courts decide custody based on “the best interests of the child.” Determining the child’s best interests involves many factors, no one of which is the most important factor. All 50 states have adopted child support guidelines. Some states use tables that indicate a support amount for different ranges of income, similar to tax tables. Although some states base support on the payor’s income, many states use an income shares model, which is based on the income of both parents.
Adoption is the process by which a legal parent-child relationship is created between individuals not biologically parent and child. In most cases, adopted children may inherit on an equal basis with biological children under state laws of distribution upon death of a parent. In some states, doctrines of “equitable adoption” allow courts to recognize adoptions when not all statutory procedures have been carried out.
Legal Disclaimer: Primerus and our member law firms welcome your emails, contact forms, phone calls and written letters. Contacting us or our members does not create an attorney-client relationship. The general information you find on this website is not intended to be legal advice and you should consult legal counsel regarding your individual circumstances. Although we strive to provide a website with accurate and current information, Primerus and its members shall not be responsible or held liable for errors or omissions on our website. Please do not send any confidential information to Primerus or its member law firms until an attorney-client relationship has been established.