Family Law

By: Stephen John Henry LLC  01/08/2016
Keywords: Family Law, Family Law Attorney, Divorce Law

“Family law” can include divorce, child custody, visitation rights, child support, contempt cases for not paying child support, name changes, defense of child abuse or neglect cases brought by the Department of Social Services or termination of parental rights. Any actions involving children or marriage are handled in family court. In divorce and child custody cases, many people have decided to “fight for custody” because they think that if the other spouse, husband or wife, “wins” child custody that they are removed from the child’s life. That is not how divorce cases work. Family court judges recognize that divorces will happen and they take particular care to make sure that the kids are not “divorced” from either parent. In most cases, one parent will have “primary placement” of the children and the other parent will have visitation. However, visitation can often include every other weekend from Friday after school until Sunday early evening. Also, the parent who does not have primary placement will usually have three weeks in the summer for visitation plus parts of holiday school breaks. In addition, there is usually a provision in the court order to allow phone calls and other communication with the “other” parent. The idea is for the children to have one place to live primarily to establish a solid routine but to also have frequent contact with the other parent to maintain that important relationship. Before deciding to “fight” for custody, understand that you will not be losing your children. Your rights as a parent will not be taken away from you. Your kids’ schedules will change but you will have regular contact and one-on-one visitation time with them. The wrong choice would be to force a custody fight that will not change your divorce situation and could make things worse for your kids. If it would be clearly bad for your kids to be placed with your ex if he/she abused them or did not provide for them. In those cases you should certainly consider trying for primary placement. Visitation for good parents is pretty standard to the point that family court judges have written a general set of rules that are frequently incorporated into custody and visitation orders. There may be situations when a parent can get more visitation than contained in these typical visitation orders but rarely would they get less time with their children. Child support payments are determined by a formula called the child support guidelines. You can go online to “South Carolina child support calculator” and get a pretty good idea of the child support figure in your case. Mediation is required in Greenville County divorce cases. A mediator will meet with both sides and try to work out a fair agreement before court. If mediation works, then your final hearing will be just 15 minutes long in most instances. The agreement will be “placed on the record” and proof of the divorce (e.g. one year separation) will be presented to the court. Once the divorce has been granted it is not final until the order is prepared by one of the lawyers, the wording is approved by the other lawyer, the judge signs the order and it is filed with the clerk of court. Then it is final. Family court cases, particularly divorces, can be emotional, but knowing what to expect might help.

Keywords: Child Custody Attorney, Child Custody Law, Child Custody Lawyer, Divorce Law, Family Law, Family Law Attorney, Family Law Lawyer, Family Lawyer

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