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Lafayette Family Law Blog

Striking a proper (fair) property division balance

Our last post looked at the possibility of psychological differences between men and women that could leave women at something of a disadvantage in settling for divorce. This could be in Louisiana, or any other state for that matter.

But, you may ask, how is that possible in a state where the concept of community property is the standard? Legal theory would suggest that all community property is supposed to be subject to equal division between the couple. Is it possible for one side or the other to come out ahead in such a situation?

Does psychology matter when dividing property in divorce?

The process of dissolving a marriage can have a certain "checklist" feel to it. In Louisiana, the rule of family law is one of community property. What that means is that the spouses own assets, debts and property acquired during the marriage equally. That being so, the objective of the court is to see that property and debts are divided equally, either physically or by virtue of an equal division of money based on valuations. Obviously, this requires a certain level of business-like detachment.

As much as marriages are considered contracts under the law, emotions cannot be dismissed. Human psychology is such that emotions need to considered to so that individuals don't act against their best interests and their rights are protected. To that end, consideration may have to be given to research suggesting that psychological differences between men and women may need to be balanced.

Violation of child custody has dad indicted on federal charges

Civil court is where family law disputes are to be resolved. This is true for Louisiana and every other state. Unfortunately, there are times when the circumstances of a case escalate beyond that arena. Then the criminal courts may have to be turned to.

Different things can trigger such jumps in jurisdiction. One that all experienced family law attorneys have come across is when a parent chooses to violate provisions of child custody and visitation orders. If a parent feels he or she can't achieve the outcome they desire, they may feel pressed to take actions that expose them to criminal charges. Few would consider that a good situation.

To help domestic violence victims it's important to know facts

Did you know that there are 245 active missing persons cases now ongoing in Louisiana? That's the word from an official with the Forensic Anthropology and Computer enhancement Services Laboratory at LSU.

These are outlier cases in one way. According to the official, who spoke as part of a recent community event in Breaux Bridge aimed at raising public awareness about missing persons, hundreds of people go missing in the state every month. Fortunately, most are found within a week. That sets the long-term cases apart and organizers of the event say they don't want those cases falling off law enforcement radar.

Emancipation: When parents and children seek to separate

The general rule of law in Louisiana is that parents and children are bound to each other in some way until the children reach the age of adulthood. Children have a right to expect a certain level of support from their parents and parents have an obligation to provide for the child. There's also some expectation that the parents will take appropriate steps to raise the child to become as productive a member of society as possible.

Things don't always work out according to the ideal. Just as two adults who marry sometimes wind up divorcing, there are situations in which children and parents might begin to consider whether it wouldn't be a wise idea to separate from each other. No legal basis exists for minor children to divorce their parents, but they may be able to petition for legal separation by seeking emancipation through the courts.

Parents advised to avoid child custody conflicts after divorce

Louisiana parents who end their marriages often face continued legal battles afterwards. Unfortunately, such battles often involve issues regarding their children, such as child custody or visitation agreements. In order to help children adjust to new family lifestyles after divorce, many family advisers say it is crucial for parents to avoid conflict, especially in front of their children.

It can be very difficult to maintain an amicable relationship with a former spouse who refuses to cooperate regarding the upbringing and raising of children following divorce. A parent facing such difficulty may find it helpful to retain legal representation in the matter. Experienced family law attorneys are often skilled negotiators who can help a concerned parent obtain a peaceable resolution to legal problems surrounding parenting issues after divorce.

Baseball star, Bartolo Colon, in court dispute over secret family

Whether in a quiet Louisiana neighborhood, or in the limelight of a professional baseball team, it is never easy to become engaged in a drawn out court battle over child support. Major League Baseball pitcher Bartolo Colon is currently involved in such a dispute, however. The incident arose when a woman who is not his wife filed a lawsuit against him.

Colon is known as "Big Sexy" by  baseball fans and reporters throughout the nation. His 6'11", 285 pound frame is a force to reckon with on the pitcher's mound. Apparently, his 21-year marriage that brought forth four sons was not the only "family" relationship in which he has been involved.

Create a positive impression at child custody hearings

Divorce is rarely easy, and, even after a settlement, former spouses often face ongoing legal problems. Continued discord may be associated with child custody or other matters concerning the care and upbringing of children. Louisiana parents are advised to keep in mind the apparent importance of creating a positive first impression when appearing at a court-ordered hearing to discuss such issues.    

More than 60 counties in another state require parents to attend alternative hearing procedures before the court rules on custody-related issues. Known as a "custody conciliation conference," such a hearing is designed as a pre-trial mediation meeting. The officer overseeing the hearing then has the authority to make recommendations to the court. 

Louisiana child support guidelines may vary from other states

It is not uncommon for those who divorce in Louisiana to worry about facing further legal challenges regarding issues that pertain to the care and upbringing of their children. Matters such as child custody, child support and visitation can cause both parents and children to undergo some difficult lifestyle changes that may affect finances, schedules and other daily life experiences. Avoiding contentious debates and protecting a child's best interests is often made easier through effective legal representation.

At the Law Office of Laura L. Davenport, we represent clients seeking trusted legal advice in a wide variety of family law issues. It has often proved beneficial to take a proactive stance when facing continued legal challenges after divorce. Child support guidelines vary by state; in Louisiana, the court takes the incomes of both parents into consideration when making such decisions. Typically, each parent is required to pay a certain percentage toward a combined amount, as determined by the court.

Government may end funding for domestic violence shelters

Various types of altercation may be grounds for criminal charges, as well as civil lawsuits in Louisiana. Domestic violence encompasses a wide range of potential incidents, including but not limited to physical abuse, emotional trauma and/or sexually related issues. Such situations may be difficult to pursue in court without help from experienced legal advisors.

The issue of domestic violence is said to be ranked number one regarding current health concerns in the United States. Some say the actual number of cases is probably much higher than reported events, due to the intensely personal, and often frightening nature of such circumstances. In addition, those involved need not to be biologically related to one another in order for an instance to be categorized in this manner. 

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