Answering Your Family Law Questions

Do You Know Your Rights?

Many people who find themselves in challenging family situations never expected to need a lawyer. If you're in such a situation, you likely have many questions about what might happen in your case, and what the consequences of a divorce or other family law issue might be. Some such questions include:

Q: What will happen to my kids if I get divorced?

A: There are several ways that custody can be structured. In many situations, couples opt for joint custody, meaning the children will split their time between living with both parents. In a sole custody arrangement, the children will live exclusively with one parent, although the other parent may also have legal custody, meaning he or she will have a legal say in how the children are raised. In each divorce, the child custody arrangements are made depending on the particular circumstances of the divorcing couple and take many factors into consideration.

Q: Is divorce going to ruin me financially?

A: The process of a divorce aims to give each party of a former marriage the best possible opportunity to forge a new life. In your divorce, there may be a possibility of alimony, which are payments one spouse makes to the other after a divorce. You may also have property and financial assets that need to be divided, which will account for part of a divorce settlement. By working with an experienced attorney, you ensure that no detail will be left neglected that may cost you money in the wake of a divorce.

Q: My spouse cheated. Does this mean I get the house?

A: In Alabama, you can pursue a divorce from either a "fault" or "no-fault" standpoint. In "at-fault" divorces, judges have a good deal of discretion in deciding how to weigh infidelity when deciding such issues as child custody and property division. In other words, the fact that someone cheated could potentially be used as a factor in property division, but much of that decision rests with the judge.

Q: Why does establishing legal paternity matter?

A: Both the parents and child of an unmarried couple can benefit from a legal establishment of paternity. Establishing paternity is necessary if a mother wishes to receive child support from a man she was not married to, but who is otherwise known to be the father of the child. Establishing paternity is also essential for a father who wishes to establish custody and/or visitation rights if he hadn't been married to the mother of his child. Legal paternity also ensures that the child has certain legal rights, for example, rights of inheritance and the right to certain medical information.

Bring Us Your Questions

We are happy to answer questions about your specific case in an initial consultation. Knowing where you stand from a legal perspective can help you take the first smart steps toward the foundations of your future. In  Birmingham, Alabama, get in touch with attorney Guy Fullan by calling 205-208-7710 or send us an email to get the information you need.