Katz & Associates Law Firm represent clients in all areas of Family Law. Issues that arise in this area require both the legal knowledge to protect your rights and a sensitive approach to handle what is often very emotional and sensitive matters in the lives of those facing these issues.
Our Firm prides itself on the personal attention it provides to clients in the areas of:
- Uncontested Divorce
- Child Support [including modifications]
- Child Custody
- Prenuptials and Postnuptials
- Enforcement Proceedings
- Temporary Restraining Orders
A typical dissolution of marriage case involves many aspects that affect your rights with respect to the marriage, for example, child support, timesharing, division of property and debts, alimony among other issues that may arise. Florida remains a “no fault” state, which means that it has done away with fault as grounds for divorce. Florida follows an Equitable Distribution Model for dividing the property and liabilities acquired by both parties during the course of the marriage. Using this model, courts tend to favor dividing marital property on an equal basis unless there are certain circumstances that warrant dividing property on the basis of an unequal distribution. In addition, a typical dissolution of marriage case involves the calculation of child support, the negotiation of timesharing arrangements between parents, along with the determination of alimony should it be applicable to the spouses. As a result, a divorce case can quickly find someone who has decided to handle their own divorce overwhelmed and often at a disadvantage due to their lack of knowledge as to their rights. Katz & Associates, therefore, follows a comprehensive approach. As a result, the attorneys at Katz & Associates Law Firm strive to work in an efficient and effective manner to provide quality services which will maximize the ability to represent its clients from start to finish in what is usually a complex manner.
§ What happens when I am served with divorce papers? If you are served by a process server with divorce papers, you are given 20 days to respond to the Divorce Petition. Failure to respond can result in a default judgment being entered against you, which may result in your rights not being enforced protected. Therefore, it is important, upon service of divorce papers, to immediately contact an attorney for a consultation as to what your rights are as a result of the marriage. Katz & Associates provides a free one time initial consultation where you will receive an overview of how the divorce will affect certain aspects of your life along with informing you as to your rights.
§ What happens if I do not respond to the divorce petition? Depending on the case matter, you may still have an opportunity to have your day in court. A divorce is not finalized until a final judgment is entered by the court.
§ Does being the Husband or Wife provide an advantage in a Divorce case? In the past, case law in Florida and across the nation tended to focus on favoring the Wife with regards to certain aspects, like Child Support and Timesharing between parents. However, presently, courts have shifted to a more balanced view which acknowledges the importance of both Husband and Wife to be treated equally under the law with respect to Divorce. Therefore, Courts encourage children belonging to the parties to have equal opportunities to foster a relationship as having both parents in the life of the child is considered to be in the best interest of the child according to Florida law.
§ If I do not have money to pay for an attorney to handle my divorce, could I have my spouse pay my attorney’s fees? Some circumstances allow for a spouse to obtain a court order requiring that the husband or wife pay his or her attorney’s fees. This is based on what the wife or husband’s needs are and what the financial ability of the husband or wife is. This is usually awarded in cases where one spouse has a superior financial earning ability over the other spouse. In order for our attorney’s to work on your case, attorney’s fees must be paid before an order awarding attorney’s fees is entered. If the court award’s attorney’s fees, those fees are reimbursed to the party requesting the fees to be paid.
An Uncontested Divorce is when both parties agree on absolutely everything such as child support, custody, visitation, division of property and debts and alimony, if any. However, an uncontested divorce may turn into a contested divorce and involve many complex issues, once both parties begin to analyze the issues involved. Family law matters usually carry an emotional aspect, therefore, it is important to seek the advice of counsel to advise you on a one on one basis so that you are informed as to what your rights are and how you will be affected by the dissolution.
Uncontested Divorce FAQs
o What if my Husband/Wife and I want to have an attorney represent us both? Due to Professional Rules of Ethics, mandated by the Florida Bar, an attorney is not allowed to represent both parties in a legal action due to conflicts of interest.
o What if I cannot contact my spouse due to him/her leaving the country or state? You are still able to obtain a divorce, however, due process requires that you attempt to, in good faith, locate your spouse for service of the dissolution of marriage papers. However, if a good faith attempt is unsuccessful, service can be made by publication in a local newspaper which would serve to ensure compliance with Florida Law.
Parents have an obligation to provide financial support for the health and welfare of minor children. Child Support is calculated in Florida by the Florida Child Support Guidelines outlined in the Florida Statutes. Child Support is calculated by using the net income of each parent and takes into account the number of children in the household to determine a fixed amount. The term “net income” is defined differently than the net income used for federal tax purposes. Child Support
A modification can be made to the final judgments regarding the terms relating to Child Support, Alimony, Timesharing outlined in the Final Judgment. The Petitioner, who seeks modification, must show that there has been a substantial change in circumstances to warrant modification of a final judgment.
Temporary Restraining Orders/Injunctions for Protection Against Domestic Violence
This type of remedy offers immediate relief to a person who believe that they may be in imminent fear of becoming the victim of domestic violence. Should you have a reasonable cause to believe that you are in fear of becoming a victim of domestic violence, the local court in your area usually provides a division dedicated to providing emergency relief for your protection.
§ What if I was served with a Temporary Restraining Order? Usually you will be required to attend a hearing allowing you the opportunity to answer to the allegations. A Temporary Restraining Order, also called an Injunction for Protection Against Domestic Violence, is a very serious matter that can negatively affect many aspects of your life. Some of these may include, loss of employment, denied access to enter into your home should the alleged victim continue to reside in your residence, child visitation/time sharing restrictions.
§ What if I believe that the Temporary Restraining Order contains false allegations or is an attempt to keep me away from my house or children? Unfortunately, the purpose of a restraining order is to protect true victims of domestic violence. Due to the required emergency nature of the restraining order, which is done ex parte (without the presence of the opposing party), some parties can use this remedy falsely for gain in divorce matters or for other malicious reasons. However, should you believe that the Temporary Restraining Order was filed maliciously and contains false allegations, it is strongly advised to retain counsel to represent you at the hearing in order to assist you in defending this matter. Once the Temporary Restraining Order is issued, should you not be able to properly defend your case, it can extend for several months and can affect any future timesharing or visitation arrangements you may be seeking in a future Paternity or Divorce case.
§ Who has standing to obtain a Restraining Order? Your relationship with the person whom the injunction is being filed against must be that of a spouse, an ex-spouse, a relative by blood or marriage, who lives or has lived with you in the same dwelling as a family unit, anyone who lives or has lived with you in the same dwelling as a family unit, or anyone with whom you have a child, with or without having lived together.
This web site is designed ONLY FOR THE PURPOSE OF PROVIDING general information. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice AND DOES NOT RESULT IN the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.
Family Law Resource Links
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.
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