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Are You Dealing with a Family Law Issue?

Family law matters can be overwhelming and incredibly sensitive. The longer the problem remains unresolved, the greater the toll it can have on the welfare and well-being of you and your family. An experienced Houston family law attorney will help protect your rights.

Family Law Issues

There are many legal issues that face families, such as child custody, child support, divorce, domestic violence, legal separation, annulment, paternity or spousal support. Of course, as diverse as families are, there are more Family Law issues that land under this broad category of law.

Remember dealing with a Family Law issue will not only have an impact in your life emotionally, but also legally and financially. It is very important to take the time to discover long-term solutions for your family’s needs and future.

What does family law mean?

Family law covers a broad spectrum of legal matters that have to do with families, and not all of them mean something terrible has happened. The term family law can refer to adoptions, divorce, child custody, paternity, child support, guardianships, prenuptial agreements, property division, and many other issues.

What does contempt of court mean in family law cases?

In family court, a judge can hold you in contempt of court if you fail to comply with any court orders. This could include refusing to follow your custody plan, failing to pay child support, or disparaging your ex when a judge orders you not to. Being in contempt of court could mean spending time behind bars or other penalties, such as garnishing your wages to pay back child support.

How do courts resolve family law disputes?

Courts generally like to resolve family law disputes by helping people like you and your ex find an amicable compromise. This allows people to continue to work together in the future, such as when it comes to making parenting decisions. If necessary, a judge may order you and your ex to meet with a mediator to find a solution. If you cannot agree, the judge may schedule a hearing to decide the matter, at which point you will have to comply with whatever the ruling is.

What sort of issues can I seek legal help with?

Specialized legal help is available for most legal issues. Each case is unique; seeking legal help is a smart first step toward understanding your legal situation and seeking the best path toward resolution for your case. An experienced lawyer understands the local laws surrounding your case and what your best legal options might be. More importantly, there are certain situations and circumstances – such as being charged with a crime – where you should always seek experienced legal help.

How to Prepare for Your Initial Consultation

Prepare for your consultation by writing down notes of your understanding of the case, jot down questions and concerns for the attorney, and gather your documents. Remember that you are trying to get a sense of whether the attorney has your trust and can help you address your legal issues. Questions should include how the attorney intends to resolve your issue, how many years he/she has been practicing law and specifically practicing in your area, as well as how many cases similar to yours the attorney has handled. It can also be helpful to broach the subject of fees so that you understand the likely cost and structure of your representation by a specific attorney and/or legal team.

How to Find the Right Attorney

  • Determine the area of law that relates to your issue. Attorneys specialize in specific practice areas around legal issues within the broad field of law.
  • Seek out recommendations from friends, family, and colleagues. A successful attorney or practice will typically have many satisfied clients.
  • Set up consultation appointments to get a better understanding of your case as well as gauge your comfort level with different attorneys. Find the attorney who is the right fit for your needs.

Common legal terms explained

Personal jurisdiction – Requirement that a particular court have authority over a person, in order to bind that person to the judgment of the court, based on minimum contacts. International Shoe Co v. Washington is a landmark Supreme Court case outlining the scope of a state court’s reach in personal jurisdiction.

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