Divorce and separation from a marriage or domestic partnership is understandably a very emotional process. Maintaining as much dignity as possible during that process is what we strive to provide our clients.
Our services include:
Divorce (Dissolution of Marriage) and Legal Separations
Divorce and separation from a marriage or domestic partnership is understandably a very emotional process. Maintaining as much dignity as possible during that process is what we strive to provide our clients. The types of issues you may be facing are:
- Custody and Visitation: Establishing, modifying and enforcing orders.
- Child and Spousal Support: Establishing, modifying, enforcing and collecting on orders.
- Property Division: Reviewing all assets and debts for proper division between the parties considering all relevant factors.
Establishing a parental relationship when a child is born outside of a marital relationship will help not only solidify the true parents of a minor child, but open a path for establishing custody, visitation, and support for the minor children.
Child Custody and Visitation
Whether you are in the process of a divorce or a paternity case, or have minor children and have been through the process, issues over custody, visitation and timesharing may often come back to the forefront as the children grow and family situations changes. Modifying order may be needed as a result and we can work with you in this process and focus your efforts on what is in the best interest of the most important people in your world, your children.
The best interest of the children is what is most important when children are involved. It is our goal to help you develop a co-parenting plan by fully analyzing your family structure. Through this analysis we will help parents determine what needs you and your children have and what should be addressed in writing in a legal binding agreement. Nowadays, there are many definitions of family and many definitions of parents, be they traditional or non-traditional. In fact, the law now formally recognizes three parents and often grandparents may have a role in parenting. Navigating the variety of parenting situations can be complex and at times, incorporating co-parenting counseling may be needed. In the end parenting plans are the blue print to a successful shared custody arrangement and are the first step to a successful post-divorce or non-marital parenting relationship
Ensuring that your children are adequately provided for financially following a divorce, separation or even as a result of having a child born outside of a marital relationship, is essential. At Alvis Quashnock and Associates, we work to ensure that the level of support your are receiving or paying is appropriate and considers all relevant factors the law provides. When changes occur, be they employment changes or timeshare changes, it may be the time to review your current support order.
Taking a single household and dividing in into two is a financial burden for both spouses. Understanding what the law provides with regard to spousal support is important, whether you have a right to receive it or an obligation to pay it. The variety of factors that play a part in establishing, modifying and terminating spousal support can be overwhelming. A review of your needs, obligations, income and asset holdings are just some of the factors we review with our clients before engaging in negotiations or litigations regarding spousal support.
How to split the assets and debts is stressful for most couples. Valuation of assets, determination of what is marital (community) property and what is separate, dividing retirement plans, reviewing reimbursement issues and property buy outs can be complex. At Alvis Quashnock and Associates, we approach these transactions without the burden of the emotional ties to help our clients achieve the most fair and equitable resolution to this component of the relationship termination.
Mediation is a process where a trained neutral person (the mediator) facilitates the negotiation between the parties to reach a solution to the issues. The mediator does not advise either party nor represents either party, but rather will inform the parties of what the law provides with respect to their issues and helps the parties identify the issues and reach a solution that is agreeable to both sides. Mediation works in a series of sessions, lasting for about 1 – 2 hours per meeting. Typically the parties split the hourly fee and all costs. Our office paralegal will help complete the necessary paperwork, and our mediator will draft the final agreement which is then presented to the parties for review, typically by another attorney. Mediation is a cost effective way to resolve issues for custody, support, and the division of property and debts. Mediation is an option for couples with basic issues, where the parties do not want to go to court and litigate, but would rather work the issues out and eliminate the adversarial aspects that tend to arise when a relationship ends.
Collaborate Dispute Resolution
This is another process that couples voluntarily may chose as an alternate way to resolve their issues in a divorce, legal separation, or other relationship termination without having to litigate issues in court. It is similar in ways to some mediation however, it takes a more holistic approach by involving attorneys, counselors, financial advisors, tax advisors and any other professional who may be needed to help the parties settle their issues. Unlike mediation, where no neither party is provide legal advocacy by the mediator, the parties are each represented by legal counsel however, the collaborative attorney/mediator may not represent either party if the matter is unsettled and goes to court. Neither may the other professional be called as experts if the matter becomes contested unless the parties mutually agree to use them. In the collaborative process, the goal is for full disclosure of all relevant facts so that the parties may reach a solution agreeable to all. This is best for matters that tend to be more complex and the parties feel they need the advice of professionals when reaching an agreement.
If you and your spouse or partner are able to sit down and agree on the issues related to your divorce or legal separation, we can help develop those decisions into a comprehensive Marital Settlement Agreement. If you have gone through independent mediation and need a review of a Marital Settlement Agreement prepared by someone else, give us a call as well.
Document Preparation Service for Uncontested Matters
So how does one know if their matter can proceed uncontested? If you can answer "yes" to all of the following questions, moving forward with an uncontested process will not only save you a lot of stress but will also be a much more economical process that each spouse hiring their own attorney to arrive at the same result. Are you and your spouse/partner on good terms?
- Do you have simple assets and debts?
- Can you and your spouse/partner sit down and agree on the issues (division of assets and debts, supports, co-parenting)?
- Do you want to stay out of court and avoid fighting?
- Do you want to maintain your dignity?
- Do you want to keep legal fees down?
If your matter is truly uncontested, you may just need some assistance with the preparation of the necessary paperwork which is often overwhelming and confusion. Our paralegal is able to assist with complete the necessary steps and paperwork for a reasonable fee.