Common Terms Used in Family Law

It’s not unusual for people to have heard of family law but not understand exactly what it encompasses. Family law is an area of practice that involves legal issues surrounding adoption, child custody and divorce, domestic violence, paternity establishment, among other family matters. Attorneys who specialize in family law handle divorces and their legal matters. Some of these attorneys further specialize in adoption, emancipation or paternity. Not all family law matters are related specifically to divorce.

State laws dictate how family law cases are handled. Each state has its own set of rules and regulations with regard to divorce procedures and other family law matters. To help you understand more about family law, here are some terms that frequently arise.

Prenuptial Agreement: This is a contract drawn up between a couple before they get married. The contract dictates how assets will be divided, if they are divided, during a divorce. People may have a prenuptial agreement drawn up in order to protect assets they are bringing into the marriage.

Adoption: This is the process of taking legal custody of a child that is not one’s biological child. A man or woman may decide to adopt their spouse’s child, or a couple may choose adoption as the path to growing their family.

Marital Property: This is property secured during the course of a marriage. Marital property is divided upon divorce in a way that is equitable to both parties.

Paternity: This is the course through which the biological parent, typically the father, is determined. It is most often used in cases where child support is in question or where a spouse wants to adopt the child of their partner.

These are just a few of the terms used in family law. An attorney can provide more information about terms that are specific to your case.

When to Hire a Family Law Attorney in Orlando

A family law attorney can offer a variety of services, though there are common reasons in which people find that they require this type of lawyer.

Divorce: It is rarely advisable to proceed with a divorce without the assistance of an attorney. A legal professional will assist a person in dividing marital assets, securing alimony and planning for child custody.

Adoption: The adoption of a child is a complex process. Laws can differ depending on the state in which the adoption will take place, where the child is located and more. If a couple is planning on adopting a child, it is important that they at least consult with a family law attorney.

Child Support: Child support and custody will be determined during a divorce, but situations arise in which support needs may change. An attorney can assist a parent in making legal changes to any orders in place.

If you need assistance with family law matters in Orlando or the surrounding area, reach out to our office. We will review your situation and advise you of your legal options. Call our office today to schedule a free case evaluation and discover how we can assist you.