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Paternity Tests Gone Wrong

Posted on: October 29, 2017 by in Family Law
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These days we assume that DNA will prove everything. It will prove your innocence, and it will prove your guilt. We even trust it to prove the paternity of our children. But, what about when the tests are wrong? You can read more about paternity tests here.

False Inclusions of DNA Paternity Tests

Paternity tests using DNA work by identifying specific size pieces of DNA that a child has taken from the father. If the DNA of the man has the same size pieces, he might be the father. But, there will also be men in the population who have those same sized pieces. So, more locations are tested, which are genetic markers. The more markers tested, the rarer the pattern will be, the more men the testing excludes. If the testing is stopped after only identifying a pattern that is common, there is a greater chance that the man tested isn’t the father. This can be one area where the test will fail. This is why they will always state that these tests offer a probability that the man tested is the father, not a certainty.

False Exclusions

On major reason for an error in exclusions is human error. It can be possible that the collector accidentally placed the child’s DNA specimen in the mother’s DNA envelope and vice versa. This will, of course, exclude the father from paternity because they are testing his sample against the mother’s and not the child’s. There are several different ways that this mistake, and others, can be switched around. But, human error is the bottom line and most common source of false exclusions.

As a result, there are more laboratories that will test all three samples against each other, just to be sure. There are other instances of a parent sending a sample which wasn’t theirs. This may go unnoticed, but once it is found out the father is forced to go in and give a sample. Or there might not be enough DNA in a sample, which may also cause errors.

DNA Mutations

It is sometimes the case that paternity tests will show a father is not the father. This can be the case if two or more locations do not match in their DNA with the child. It isn’t uncommon for the child’s DNA to mutate, causing a harder match to the father. This may happen in one location; two is a bit rarer. But, it is extremely odd for a father to fail a match on three markers. The AAB’s minimum testing requirement is that the lab has to have at least two markers which do not match to exclude the father. Some laboratories will go the extra mile and offer more research to exclude or confirm the father’s match.

Relatives

In some cases, the actual father of the child might be related to the person accused of being the father. This means that when the child is tested, the markers will test positive to a certain number. If the test is stopped too early, the man being tested could be concluded to be the father of the child, because a low number of markers will be the same size. Because the two men share genes, this would not only be possible; but likely. This is why the most efficient laboratories will test as many as fifteen markers for each test. There are also some that will run the test again if there is enough sample left after the initial test.

Attorneys

Attorneys involved in cases that require a paternity test will most likely be familiar with the statistics of errors. They will know how to steer your case in the direction that will give you the rights you deserve as a parent. There may be some problems with a paternity test, but they are solid enough when done correctly. Having a lawyer in your corner who can show that to the court is essential. This isn’t something you want to take into your own hands. It requires an understanding of the law and a level of experience that only a lawyer can provide. They will be able to battle your case a way that you aren’t.

If you have questions about your paternity test or a case you would like to bring to court, you should start here. Having an attorney with experience in these cases can be the difference between paternal rights and losing your child. This isn’t the time for you to try to defend yourself. This is a very serious matter, involving the law and your future. You need a professional on your side to explain what is happening and what will happen next. That only comes with experience and study of the law.

Mid-Life Divorce Rates On the Rise

Posted on: October 19, 2017 by in Divorce
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Mid-Life Divorce Rates On the Rise

Compared to 20 years ago, divorce is common. It’s become some common that people often expect children to have divorced parents. While you might be well aware of the increasing occurrence of divorce, you might not realize that divorce effects one demographic more than others- midlifers. Mid-life divorce is on the rise throughout the US. Instead of making things work, midlife couples are calling it quits. Find out about the newest trend in divorce.

The Statistics of Mid-Life Divorce

You don’t need statistics to know that divorce is common in the US. By now, it’s common knowledge. However, there are some interesting statistics that show the rise of mid-life divorce.

Although divorce is common, the divorce rates for 20 and 30 year-olds is down by 21% since the 1990s. And younger individuals seem to think that divorce isn’t the best option for ending a relationship. In one poll, 44% of young Americans said they would prefer to divorce in an unhappy marriage. The rest would be willing to stick it out.

However, older Americans don’t share that mentality. In the same poll, 66% of Baby Boomers said that they would prefer to divorce in an unhappy marriage. The mid-life divorce statistics support those numbers. Since the 1990s, the divorce rate of people aged 50 and older has doubled. According to the statistics, the younger generation is more likely to stay married. Once they get older, they may change their tune.

The Reasons

The divorce statistics may seem contrary to logic. In the past, midlifers were more conventional and complacent. Meanwhile, the younger generation seemed more flighty and willing to make a drastic life change. While roles may not have completely reversed, things are different. And there are a few trends that could explain the rise in mid-life divorce.

1. More of a focus on individual happiness

In the past, midlifers had less of an individualistic mentality. They worried more about the happiness of their partner or children. Today, midlifers finally realize that they deserve happiness too. If you look at some of the best-selling self-help book titles, you can clearly see that self-happiness is a priority. Bookshelves are full of books that

2. The kids aren’t around to keep you together

Many couples stay together for the children. Although a couple might have some trouble, they think of their children first. When things get difficult, they put off divorce because of the children. There’s the fear of what the emotional distress of divorce will do to the children. Then, there’s the worry about coming up with a custody arrangement. When children are part of the equation, divorce is often a last resort.

Once most couples hit their 50s, their children are older. For the first time in their life, they can make decisions that revolve around them. Midlifers might finally realize that a divorce is an option. They can put their needs first, and those needs might result in a divorce.

3. The empty nest

When you spend your whole life taking care of children, having an empty house can seem strange. Many midlifers experience empty nest syndrome. When kids are in a home, life is busy and stressful. There’s always something to do and someone to take care of. A married couple doesn’t have much one-on-one time. Everything is about the family.

As the children in a home grow up and move out, the house gets quiet. Once everyone is out of the house, a relationship can suffer. A woman might find that she has nothing to discuss with her husband. Or, both individuals might find that they grew apart over the years. In some cases, they find that they fell out of love in that time. The only solution for them is a divorce.

4. The desire to do more

As individuals get older, they start to realize the value of life. A woman might realize that she never accomplished her dream of traveling to Africa. Meanwhile, her husband might realize that he never got a chance to pursue his favorite hobby. Midlife couples might be more likely to opt for divorce because they want more with their lives.

Often, the desire to do more means less time with your partner. Even if you have similar desires, your relationship could suffer because of your new interests. Too much time volunteering could leave your partner alone and unhappy. In the end, it could lead to divorce.

5. Remarrying has a lower success rate

Another reason for mid-life divorce relates to remarrying. After the age of 50, remarriage is quite common. They decide to remarry a new partner, which increases the chance of another divorce. According to statistics, second and third marriages are less stable than first marriages. As a result, the chance of divorce is greater. The divorce rate is two times higher for remarried Baby Boomers than it is for other Baby Boomers.

There are many reasons for the rise in mid-life divorce. While you can’t prevent divorce from happening, you can prevent a bad outcome from your divorce. With an experienced lawyer, you can get the best possible outcome.

Don’t Do These 4 Things During a Child Custody Battle

Posted on: July 21, 2017 by in Family Law
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A divorce is a very trying time in anyone’s life. The hardest divorces are the ones that include a nasty child custody battle. This added stress can cause someone to act irrationally and in ways that can negatively affect his or her case. It is crucial to keep a cool head as the court will take all of your behavior into account. The most important thing to every parent is their child or children. To give yourself the best chance for a favorable outcome of you child custody battle it is important to know what not to do so you do not hurt your chances. Having a knowledgeable family attorney can take away much of the burden and be a great resource during this difficult time.

Do Not Have Negative Interactions with Your Child’s Other Parent

With today’s technology, you can effortlessly shoot off an angry text or phone call that you will later on regret. Sometimes if you are lucky, these snafus will not come back to haunt you. However, if you are in a child custody battle, you can not take that chance. You can be confident that your ex-spouse along with his or her lawyers are preparing any past mistake you have made for the court to see. This point although true for both parties is particularly the case for fathers.

In our society males are thought of automatically as dominant and in some cases controlling. This preconceived notion makes it easier for a woman to claim that her ex-husband is abusive or at the very least very demanding and controlling, not painting a good picture for the court. Because men start off at a disadvantage, in this case, it is imperative that the mother does not have any past texts or calls that can paint you in a bad light. There is also more to this than just electronic interactions. It is of the utmost importance that there is never a physical altercation between mother and father.

First of all, any physical contact with another person made in a harmful or offensive manner is a crime, and you can not parent your child from jail. This stays true 100% of the time. If you are in the middle of a child custody battle and the judge see’s you have a prior incident of violence towards either your ex-spouse or children it will significantly hurt your chances for a favorable outcome. This not only true for men but also women. Just because someone is a female does not mean they can not be abusive. It is crucial for a child not to see mom and dad fighting. Studies show that children who witness domestic violence early on suffer developmental challenges and life-long emotional problems.

Do Not Fail to Pay Child Support

This is not a fact but it is a good rule to go by that child support is your most important financial obligation to a judge. It cost money to raise a child obviously. Failure to pay child support after a court order can be considered contempt of court. If you are found to be in contempt, you can face either a hefty fine or possibly even jail time. Failure to pay child support can significantly damage your chances in a child custody battle. First off, the judge will take you not paying child support as a slap in the face for not following a direct order from the court. Second and most importantly, not paying child support looks like a lack of concern for your child. A judge will be hesitant to grant custody to a parent who can not follow through on paying child support.

Do Not Miss Scheduled Times

In a child custody battle, everything matters. Things such as showing up late for school drop off and pick up may seem inconsequential, but they can hurt your chances at a favorable outcome. Courts and judges understand life happens and you may run late here and there, however, if your lateness becomes a trend it can be something they take into account when deciding custody. This does expand to more than just school drop off and pick up; it can include sports practices or any extracurricular activity your child takes part in.

Do Not Abuse Drugs or Alcohol

Even a suggestion that you may abuse drug or alcohol can be very damaging to your appearance with the court. The single most point a judge will determine custody on is what is in the greatest interest of the child. A parent who abuses drugs or alcohol will almost automatically eliminate themselves from having a chance to win custody of their child. When a child’s well-being is at stake, a court will not hesitate to take a child away from a parent if there is evidence of alcohol or drug abuse.

Paternity Lawyer, How They Can Help You

Posted on: July 14, 2017 by in Family Law
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One of the most complicated things a family can go through is the issue of paternity. If a paternity problem arises, it can become a very complex and possibly costly process. A paternity issue is a confusing and very intimate process. Especially in the state of Florida, it is best to have an experienced and knowledgeable paternity lawyer on your side.

Biological Father Has No Rights

According to the state of Florida, barring certain situations, it is usually in the best interest of the child or children to have both their biological parents in their life. However, the most common of these particular situations when it is not in the best interest of the child is when there is an unfit parent. Being unfit as a parent can include physical or emotional abuse, drug or alcohol abuse, and mental health problems among others. Florida does not recognize the biological father as having legal rights regarding the child. There are only two ways for a biological father to have legal rights to his child when they are born. These two possibilities are the father is already married to the mother at the time of the child’s birth or the father’s name is added to the birth certificate.

This rule, of only granting a father legal rights concerning his child, in these two ways has many critics. The pundits claim it is not fair for a biological father to not have legal rights to his child. Florida does, however, offer a means by which the biological father can establish paternity. This is important because then the father can have the same legal rights to the child as the mother does. That is why it is crucial to choose the correct paternity lawyer if you do decide to go to court.

Paternity Lawyer, Why Paternity Is Important

Establishing paternity is vital for a multitude of reasons. First and foremost it is important for a child to know who both of their parents are. When children know this, they are more likely to feel confident in who they are and where they come from. It is also important for children to know who both parents are because children respond to love from both parents. According to Dr. Paul Amato, Professor of Family Sociology and Demography at Penn State, children who grow up with both biological parents are less likely to develop cognitive, emotional and social problems.

It is also important financially for a child to have two legally responsible parents. Studies have shown that children who only have one legally responsible parent are more likely to end up poor than children who have two legally responsible parents. Furthermore, it is vital to have legal rights to your child because there are certain things that only a child’s legal mother and father can do. These include receiving copies of school, medical, dental, and religious training among other things. Perhaps the most important reason is for your child’s medical records. It is crucial for the child and doctor, or any health care provider to know the child’s family medical history. Any health care provider needs to be aware if the child has possibly inherited any specific health problems or genetic traits from either side of the family.

Paternity is also vital in case the possibility arises of the relationship not working out with the child’s mother. Without establishing paternity, a father can not file a court order for custody or visitation time.

How To Establish Paternity

The state of Florida automatically recognized the paternity of a newborn baby as the woman’s husband. However, if the woman who gives birth is not married, then paternity must be established. This establishment can be either voluntary or involuntary through a court order. In Florida, there is something known as a “Voluntary Acknowledgment of Paternity.” This pact is established when the mother and supposed father agree on who the child’s father is. The parents in this acknowledgment are under oath that the man signing the paper is indeed that child’s father. Once it is signed, there is a sixty day holding period. After these sixty days, neither parents can nullify the agreement. Under Florida law, there are five ways to establish paternity legally.

  1. Being married to the child’s mother when the child is born
  2. Signing the child’s birth certificate when or after the baby is born
  3. Marrying the mother and updating birth records at the Florida Office of Vital Statistics
  4. Obtaining genetic testing
  5. A judge’s order establishing legal paternity

Children are the most important thing to a parent so make sure not to take any shortcuts when looking for the best paternity lawyer possible.

 

 

 

Four Ways A Divorce Mediator Can Help A Messy Divorce

Posted on: July 7, 2017 by in Divorce
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Everyone has a dream of growing up and finding a perfect love. However, for some people, this is not always the case. Some people never marry, and some people marry and live happily ever after, some marry and then divorce. A divorce can become a very hostile and adverse situation for both parties. In a divorce, there can be fights over numerous things. Some of the most contentious points are money, property, and child custody. When kids, especially young children are involved, it is not uncommon for visitation rights and scheduling to be the most heated issue when settling the divorce. There are a few different ways for both sides to come to agreeable terms in a cordial manner. Possibly, the most efficient way is to have a divorce mediator.

It is a Much Faster Option

In Florida, if your divorce is uncontested then it should not take you more than a little over a month to get in front of a judge. However, if your divorce is disputed and the courts must make decisions regarding your divorce then you better have a lot of patience. A contested divorce can very well not go to court for six months or longer. In Florida’s busiest counties it is possible to wait over a year to get in front of a judge. By hiring a divorce mediator, you streamline the process instead of waiting an unknown amount of time. This is very important to consider because you honestly do not know how long it could take to go before a judge. When you are going through a divorce all you want to do is move on with your life; you do not want to have the weight of a divorce holding you down for what will most likely by a few months at least.

Takes a Lot of the Emotional Burden Off

Sometimes as a society we forget about how heartbreaking a divorce can be. It has become so standard in society today we forget what’s behind a divorce. Two people who were once madly in love with each other and planning to spend the rest of their lives with each other are calling it quits. That is not a feeling anyone wants to feel. Divorces quickly and often take a contentious route. Having a divorce mediator there to keep the best interest of both parties as the number one priority can drastically change the environment of your divorce. Instead of fighting with your soon to be ex-spouse over issues such as child support, alimony, property, or other assets you can calmly sit down with the divorce mediator and work out a plan that works for both of you. During a time when emotions are running high, any step that can be taken to avoid a hostile environment should be made.

Cost

The cost of going through a divorce mediator is much smaller than if you were to go to court. The biggest contributor is the how much less time it takes. When deciding to go to court over a contested divorce, you are going to wait months to go before a judge and in all that time lawyers can keep charging you. After a while, this starts to build up, and you can end up with a steep bill at the end of the divorce. The second reason is that in a divorce your personal lawyer will always try to get you to keep pushing. This is because as long as you keep pushing and the divorce does not settle they can keep charging you. A divorce mediator has both parties best interest at hand and will work to resolve your issues as fast and easy as possible.

Life After Divorce

This point somewhat feeds off the previous paragraph. Because a mediator can help smooth over a divorce it will make life after divorce much easier; this is especially true when a divorce involves children. Having a friendly relationship with your ex can make a huge difference in your life. It will make things much easier for you, your ex-spouse, the children, and everyone involved. If you have a good relationship with your ex, it creates a much more positive environment for your kids. In a divorce, kids feel as though they need to pick a side which is very unhealthy for any family. This can create even more tension between the two parties in the divorce. Having a healthy relationship with your former spouse makes scheduling the kids much easier. When planning the children’s schedule is easy the rest of the divorce can usually follow suit. This is because children are often the strongest point of conflict in a divorce. A healthy environment is critical for kids as they grow up. If one parent talks badly about the other, it creates an awkward situation for the children.

 

 

 

Do Lawyer Awards Identify the Best Divorce Lawyer?

Posted on: February 21, 2017 by in Divorce
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Trying to find the best divorce lawyer to handle your divorce is never an easy thing to do. There are lots of options to choose from. And many rely on aggressive marketing tactics that make a lot of bold but vague promises. How can you identify the best divorce lawyer with so many vying for your attention?

A lot of people look at the type and number of lawyer awards a potential attorney has won.

How to Choose the Best Divorce Lawyer

There are advantages to relying on this approach, but also disadvantages. As you search for the best divorce lawyer, consider both sides of the equation:

Advantages

Lawyer awards are judged by colleagues, peers, and critical observers. That means the winners of lawyer awards stand out from the pack regarding their accomplishments and abilities. And since the awards are judged objectively, they help you cut through all the sales pitches and identify the best divorce lawyer based on real merits. Not all lawyer awards are created equal, and some are for things that are unrelated to your divorce. But they are still a reliable tool for picking out the best divorce lawyer.

Disadvantages

The reason that lawyer awards may not lead you to the best divorce lawyer is that only you can decide what that person looks like. An award-winning lawyer may have a stellar track record and offer well-respected legal services, but that does not ensure they will be everything you want and need them to be during the complicated and consequential process of divorce. You may be wowed by a shelf of awards only to find out that your lawyer either can’t or won’t be the counsel you require. Do not discount lawyer award entirely, but do not use this one factor to identify the best divorce lawyer for you specifically.

The best way to get a sense for a lawyer, along with any award he or she has won, is to sit down for a face-to-face meeting. The conversation you have will tell you a lot more than any plaque or trophy ever could. Have that conversation free of charge by calling Lewert Law at 561-220-0123.

High Income Divorce Attorney

Posted on: January 25, 2017 by in Divorce
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high income divorce attorney

Every divorce creates complicated and consequential legal issues. But when the income or net worth of one or more parties involved in the divorce is especially high, it only makes those issues more urgent. This is where you need a high income divorce attorney.
 
A high-income divorce attorney works with spouses who have a lot at stake as a result of divorce. These attorneys understand what is on the line and how to put the best interests of clients, both personal and financial, at the forefront of the divorce process.
 
If you are thinking about divorce or moving forward with the initial steps, you may want to seek out a high-income divorce attorney. Important information is outlined below. Read through it to ensure you’re doing the right thing for your divorce and your financial future.

Understanding Assets

The reason that clients choose to work with a high income divorce attorney is that dividing up assets becomes much more complicated when those assets are substantial. The state of Florida operates according to the principle of equitable distribution. This means that assets are divided into those possessed before the marriage and those purchased during the marriage. Only the division of the marital assets can be taken up by the courts.

Working with a high-income divorce attorney is important for either party. It is often the case that one party will try to hide assets, or that the other party wants to keep more of what they feel is fair. Even in a perfect situation, the value and volume of the assets involved create a lot of unexpected issues. A high income divorce attorney will have seen these before and know how to proceed with the divorce in a way that puts the priorities of the client first.

High-Income Concerns

A high-income divorce is immediately more complicated because income is available from multiple streams. The total value of a person’s assets or net worth may be tied up in multiple financial mechanisms. Each will take the time to investigate, unpack, and understand, which is why a high-income divorce attorney is such an invaluable resource. These are the kind of assets and income sources to focus on:

  • Ownership of a small business
  • Real estate investments
  • Commercial real estate
  • A professional practice – doctor, lawyer etc.
  • Partnership holdings and stocks
  • Private equity funds
  • Hedge funds
  • A stock portfolio
  • An executive compensation plan
  • A financial settlement

Whether your goal is to protect these assets or get the portion of them that you feel fair, you will want to let a high-income divorce attorney offer you advice and counsel.

Alimony and Child Support

The division of assets becomes the primary focus of many high-income divorce proceedings. But alimony and child support are both frequently a part of the process as well. And without a high-income divorce attorney offering you guidance, these issues may work against you in ways you do not expect.

Take alimony, for example. When one member of marriage has a much higher income or net worth than the other, the courts may grant an extremely high rate of alimony to “bridge the gap.” That will be a priority for one party and a major point of contention for the other. Both will want to have a high income divorce attorney in their corner.

Child support is another area where sums can inflate unexpectedly. The laws in the state of Florida dictate how much child support should be paid based on the payer’s income and the number of children to support. But the court has leeway to adjust this figure either up or down. Depending on your interests, a high income divorce attorney can work to swing the sentiments of the court.

The Right Way to Approach Divorce with a High Income Divorce Attorney

There are two points that are essential to stress to anyone involved with a high income divorce. First, it is never a smart strategy to assume that someone who is not qualified to call themselves a high income divorce lawyer is capable of handling your case. While some of the issues may be the same, the way they play out in high income divorce proceedings is much different. When one partner decides not to work with a high income divorce attorney, the divorce rarely works out the way they would have liked.

Second, either party in the divorce can benefit from working with a high-income divorce attorney. One party wants to keep more of what they consider to be their property. The other party wants to access more of what they believe to be shared or earned property. Each side has a compelling case that only a high-income divorce attorney will be able to present in court.

When you are ready to consult with a high income divorce attorney in a private setting, contact Lewert Law by calling 561-220-0123.

Boca Ration Divorce Lawyer: Lewert Law: Is Mediation Valuable in Divorce?

Posted on: January 22, 2017 by in Divorce
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The single best piece of advice anyone going through a divorce can hear is to consider all of your options carefully. Lots of people want to rush headlong into divorce. And considering the emotions involved, they are often thinking about things with a less-than-rational state of mind, instead of mediation.

If you have decided that divorce from your spouse is the only possible option, be sure to consider mediation as an alternative to divorce court. There are a lot of benefits to choosing mediation, but many couples either overlook or discount it as an option.

That is unfortunate, because for a surprising number of couples, mediation is the preferable way to accomplish the goals of a divorce. It effectively and responsibly brings a marriage to an end. Better still, it is able to eliminate or bypass a lot of the bitter feelings and vicious fighting that attend the divorce process.

Before you move forward with your divorce, take the time to learn more about what mediation involves and why it is valuable. It mediation turns out to be the best option for you, your spouse, and your whole family, you will be glad that you didn’t make the divorce process any harder than it has to be.

What is Mediation?

The mediation process is really quite simple and open-ended. Both spouses typically work with a divorce lawyer who specializes in mediation. Then both parties agree on a neutral third-party who will give guidance and oversight over the mediation process. Finally, all parties meet to discuss through and resolve the major issues involved with divorce like the division of assets and child custody agreements.

The mediator is there to offer objective insights and keep the process on track. But it is not the mediator’s ultimate decision how the details of the divorce are resolved. The couples have to come to a mutual agreement. Plus, they are free to bring any issue they would like to the table. Obviously, important issues about property and children will be discussed. But the focus of the process will not be nearly as narrow as divorce court.

It helps to think of mediation as a kind of structured conversation. The goal is not for one side to beat the other. Rather, the goal is to air the issues, reach compromises, and come to amicable agreements. There is some helpful structure and momentum built into the process. But for the most part, the couple themselves dictates both the substance and the outcomes of the process. That is not the case at all in divorce court.

What are the Benefits of Mediation?

Mediation can potentially benefit all couples and improve any kind of divorce proceeding. But for a certain kind of couple and a certain kind of divorce, it is really the best available option.

It is often the case that divorce is necessary, but that the spouses do not viciously hate each other or want to punish the other party over the long term. They simply want to bring their marriage to an end and split their lives up as quickly, effectively, and peacefully as possibly. Mediation is the option for couples who do not want to turn divorce into a battle.

The process also tends to be both faster from beginning to end, and less expensive in total than going through the divorce courts. Many couples are not interested in lingering on the divorce process. They are simply ready to begin building a new life separately. Mediation is a way to focus on the right issues and reach the right conclusions with a lot less necessary hassle.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, mediation is a lot more open than the divorce courts ever are. Couples can interact as intimately or formally as they want. They are free to bring up as much or as little as the deem necessary. And, for the most part, the process is not bogged down by procedures and protocols. Every divorce is different, and the best way to end a marriage is organically. Mediation offers the kind of adaptability that many couples are looking for at this difficult and confusing time.

Decide if Mediation is Right for You

For some couples, it is the best possible choice and a truly exciting and unexpected option to consider. But the truth is that for some other couples, going though divorce court is absolutely the better option. The same features that make mediation ideal for some couples make it a disastrous choice for others.

If you are contemplating divorce, you will want to get in touch with an experienced attorney as soon as you can. With the help of counsel you can explore the issues at play, learn more about mediation, and determine the best course of action for you, your future, and your family. To get the answers you seek, contact Lewert Law at 561-220-0123 at your earliest convenience.

Why a Specialist Matters in Your Divorce

Posted on: January 16, 2017 by in Divorce
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why a specialist matters in your divorce

Unless you have investigated the issue specifically, you are probably unaware why a specialist matters in your divorce. That is understandable, but also troubling if you are planning to or already going through a divorce. In order to make sure that your interests and future are fully protected, learn why a specialist matters in your divorce.

Divorce Raises Complicated Issues

A big reason why a specialist matters in your divorce is because there are so many complicated and specialized issues that come up. For instance, if you are trying to divide up complicated assets or determine the best living arrangement for a child, you will not want to let assumptions and emotions rule your decision making process. With the help of a specialist, you can get the insights, experience, and expertise you need to reach the outcomes that you want.

A Divorce Lawyer is Not Enough, Why a Specialist Matters in Your Divorce

Having a great divorce lawyer on your side is essential. But part of why a specialist matters in your divorce is because the range of assistance a divorce lawyer can provide only extends so far. The last thing you want is to discover that you do not have all the resources you require after it is too late. To prepare yourself fully, understand why a specialist matters in your divorce and whether you need to have one on your side.

Divorce is a Consequential Process

The outcomes of your divorce will affect you and your family for the rest of your lives. Depending on how things go, your finances could be significantly enhanced or significantly compromised. You may end the process feeling confident that your children are well cared for or filled with worries about their well-being. These are the sorts of issues that you can’t afford to gamble on. The biggest reason why a specialist matters in your divorce is because you don’t want to leave anything up to uncertainty.

Now that you know why a specialist matters in your divorce, it’s time to get the right ones on your side. Work with the team at Lewert Law by calling 561-220-0123.

The Best Time to Get a Divorce in Palm Beach County

Posted on: January 4, 2017 by in Divorce
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Divorce should not only be a heart-felt decision, but a collective decision. This is why timing is everything. Florida still continues to be one of the top 10 states with the highest divorce rate, with the rate of divorce in Palm Beach County being no exception.

If divorce is something you have put much thought into and have your mind set on, plan your steps and present the divorce papers after you have done your research and taken the proper action in preparation.

A divorce in Palm Beach County will entail a Florida Law “no-fault” divorce statute meaning that a spouse is not required to prove that the other caused the breakdown of the marriage. In plain English, you can obtain a divorce even if your spouse does not consent, which can help expedite the process more so than other states.

According to Forbes, January is the ideal time to start taking steps to prepare for divorce for both emotional and practical reasons. Holidays are the worst time to add the stress of a divorce announcement amidst the hustle and bustle of shopping and family visits. January is a time for new beginnings and also a time to file your previous year’s taxes and get your financial affairs in order.

Since there is a period of preparing the paperwork within a 2-3 month period, rates of divorce surge in January and continue to peak through March according to a study conducted by Market Watch. For divorce in Palm Beach County, Florida Family Law states that the final judgment for dissolution of marriage can’t be entered until at least 20 days after the filing date for divorce.

Here are the most common reasons why January is the best time of year to start the process of divorce filings according to Huffington Post:

  • New Year, New Beginnings – Not too many people are so ruthless as to present their spouse with the ambush of a divorce during the holiday season. New Years symbolizes a fresh slate and an optimistic outlook on starting a new beginning. This gives enought time and more likelihood that by the next holiday season, children and family members are better adjusted to the new arrangement.
  • The Bonus Check is in the Bank – If your spouse is expecting an end of year bonus, you are ensured to accrue the martial property before he or she can deny it from your finances. This helps to divide the previous and current year’s finances between you and your spouse so that you are entitled to the shared finances you had when you were married.
  • Time to Plan the New Tax Year – As stated above, clearing out your previous year’s tax obligations before proceeding with the new endeavor of divorce will ensure that the two will not intermix. Since you will most likely be in the mode of thought where you are preparing your personal finances, considering the outcomes of your divorce will come to mind in a clearer manner.

Emotionally, there is no “best time” to get a divorce, no matter what month of the year it is. However, you should never file for divorce until you are fully ready to do so. Jeff Landers, a CFDA is the author of Think Financially, Not Emotionally brand of books, webinars and seminars and eLearning courses that guide support people before, during and after divorce. He illustrates the four bases of time-frame preparation when filing for divorce:

  • Assemble your paperwork – When you gather the paperwork, make sure your spouse will not see it. Keep it in the possession of a trustworthy loved one or a safe deposit box at a bank. Review the Financial Information Checklist if you are not sure what financial and legal documents you need. (Conveniently, this checklist is written by the Bedrock Divorce Advisors in West Palm Beach, which bears in mind the nuances of divorce in Palm Beach County).
     
    This will take a long time, and there will be details you will need that have not even crossed your mind in years. Bear in mind that you will need certain documents from your spouse and they may not be willing to cooperate and may even attempt to thwart the process. Family Florida Law uses an equitable distribution structure for dividing property.

    Bear in mind that divorce in Palm Beach County is more successful in your favor if you create an inventory of all property currently and previously owned because it will determine whether or not the asset is marital or the separate property of one spouse. For more information on obtaining the specific forms for divorce in Palm Beach County, click here.

  • Establish your own credit – Now is the time to establish your foundation as someone who is filing as single. Obtain a copy of your credit report and correct any blemishes or errors. Open up credit cards, checking, and savings accounts using your own name without your spouse’s name. Preferably use a bank where you and your spouse does not currently use.
  • Save enough money to fund your divorce, or make alternative arrangements – Having a secret fund that your spouse does not have access to puts you way ahead of the game in terms of establishing financial independence once you are divorced. With the key word being secret, this means that you go out of your way to make sure that your spouse does not find out about it.
     
    Otherwise, you can be accused of hiding assets or charged with dissipation of marital assets. If your spouse is the breadwinner, you will need to make sure that credit card bills and expenses are paid in case they cut you off before your settlement is final.

    Be aware of how expensive your divorce is and know that the more complex the financial structure of your marriage is, the more lawyers, financial advisors, forensic accountants and experts you will need to employ.

  • Put together a top-notch professional divorce team – Shop around for the best attorney before choosing one. Choose them based off of credentials rather than personal chemistry and make sure they are specialized in the required expertise. If you can afford it, hire a team of professionals: an attorney, a divorce financial advisor and a therapist to take care of the emotional distress that your divorce will cause.
     
    With a divorce in Palm Beach County, a Florida attorney will advise you to take on one of the three types of divorce that you can file: 1. Simplified Dissolution of Marriage 2. Uncontested Divorce 3. Contested Divorce.

With the occurrence of divorce in Palm Beach County being so common, it is not a cynical idea to stay informed about the best methods of approaching the beginning proceedings of divorce. Even if you are just contemplating and do not necessarily follow through with a divorce, it is better to approach the idea with finances in mind rather than emotions if that is the final decision.

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Kelley Ms. Lewert never lost sight of the practical realities of my divorce. Although she listened compassionately so that she understood what she needed to, she did not let me lose sight of my goals and what was acheivable within the system even when things got emotional. She protected my financial interests and my personal interests. Thanks to Ms. Lewert, I no longer have to deal with a difficult ex-. She didn't always tell me what I wanted to hear, but because of that, my case did not drag out longer than it should have. I never felt that she put her own interests ahead of mine. Her judgment was reasonable and her advice sound. She and her staff were good at dealing with difficult and unreasonable people in a professional and ethical way. Thanks to Ms. Lewert, I never got drawn into senseless battles, recovered as quickly as possible from my divorce and was able to move on and enjoy a better life. I have recommended her repeatedly to others who need an excellent family lawyer.

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