Jimerson Law Firm, P.C.

What Are The Common Types Of Family Law Cases
That Your Firm Handles?

The most common family law cases are divorces. Family law is an inadequate name attempting to cover vast areas or topics of law the affect the family. It ranges from divorces, legal separations, annulments, child custody fights, habeas corpus proceedings (parental kidnapping), grandparents visitation, administrative support hearings and appeals, petition for reviews, adoptions, name changes, and legal guardianships. The underlying cause for most of these matters in the breakdown in the communication between spouses and family members. It can be a brutal battle and that’s why it’s important to choose representation that understands what the client is going through.

How Is The Custody Of A Child Determined In Missouri?

There are many factors to how custody is determined. It’s important to know that there is no one set standard. One factor does not determine who gets custody of the children. The judge determines that the party should get equal custody or we call it 50/50 custody. From that standpoint, you must prove as to whether one party should get more than that. Factors that determine whether more custody should be awarded than another includes but not limited to evidential facts such as abuse, neglect, cruelty, or factor that will lead the judge to believe the best interest of the child is with more custody time with one parent or the other.

Who Is Required To Pay Child Support? How Is That Amount Determined?

The parent who is determined to be the primary physical residence for the child is entitled to receive child support. That amount is determined by a financial chart establish by the Missouri Supreme Court Rule. Under that rule all the incomes of both parties are added up, that is the husband’s and the wife’s income are put together in a pot basically and then a percentage of the income is calculated as to how much each party contributed to that. The court then assesses the financial responsibilities of the non-residential parent. This is increased by other factors such as daycare, extraordinary expenses such as insurance or dental needs and then that amount is decreased by the percentage of the visitation costs which is simply if the non-custodial parent visits a lot or has more visitation with the child, then he or she is given a percentage off that amount.

Is Alimony or Spousal Support Awarded In every Divorce Case?

No, most cases are not awarded alimony. There are factors which are used to determine whether to award alimony which is called maintenance in Missouri. The biggest factor is the length of the marriage. Any marriage less than 10 years will probably not be considered for an award of maintenance. Other factors include whether the requesting party has gainful employment sufficient to meet the need in a manner similar to the standard that existed before the divorce. So, if the wife or the husband basically have both worked even though they’ve been married for 20 or 30 years and they earned a similar income, it’s unlikely that the judge will award maintenance. The judge will consider all factors to determine whether the requesting spouse can sufficiently provide their own support. Maintenance can be until the awarded party remarries, dies or if there is a specified time for maintenance to terminate. This is usually agreed on in a separation agreement or ordered by the judge.

When Do Alimony And Child Support Generally Begin And End In A Divorce Scenario?

Child support normally continues until the child turns 18 years old in Missouri unless that child is going to a secondary educational facility, then it goes to the age of 21. Maintenance, however can end whenever the judge decides. It begins at the time of judgement of the divorce. It continues until the party receiving maintenance either remarries, dies or as I said earlier, it could be for a specified period of time just to allow that person to financially recover.

For more information on Family Law Matters In Missouri, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (314) 786-3536 today.

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