Our Practice Areas
Divorce, Dissolution, and Mediation
A long, drawn out divorce is not the only option out there if you wish to end your marriage. Yes, some situations require that we file for divorce, but in many cases, couples don’t want to fight. All they want to do is bring the marriage to an end as quickly and as painlessly as they can.
Mediation, Dissolution, and Collaborative Divorce are all excellent options. You and your spouse have the right idea if these options sound appealing. Our job is to turn that good idea into a smooth and worry-free process.
Custody and Parenting Time
Many people refer to a custody and parenting time case as a “custody battle.” Looking at it as a “battle” is not quite the best way to view things. The law in Ohio directs the Courts to decide these cases based upon the best interest of the children. What might be in mom or dad’s best interest probably won’t even be on the Court’s radar. Though it may be difficult at times, working cooperatively with the other parent will likely work out much better in the long run than working against the other parent. No matter what the situation, every custody and parenting time case will result in a Parenting Plan or Shared Parenting Plan. There are five major sections to a Plan:
1.) Custody (aka – who makes the decisions for major issues like education, healthcare, religion and extracurricular activities). If both parents are legal custodians, they discuss these issues and make decisions together as a team. This is called Shared Parenting. If only one parent is the legal custodian, that parent makes the decisions. That is what many know as Sole Custody.
2.) Parenting Time schedule which covers the school year, summer vacation, and the holidays.
3.) How the parents plan to financially support the children (aka – child support).
4.) Which parent covers the children with health insurance.
5.) How the parents will claim tax exemptions, deductions and credits.
Guardian Ad Litem
There are custody and parenting time cases which are hotly contested. Many times, the parents or the Court will have a Guardian ad Litem appointed to conduct an evaluation of the case. The GAL will interview the parents, the children, and any other people who may have insight into the matter, like teachers, neighbors or relatives. There are a variety of other investigative techniques used by GAL’s as well.
At the end of the evaluation, the GAL files a report with the Court along with recommendations for custody and parenting time, based upon the best interest of the children involved. Our evaluations are comprehensive, which is not only good for the children we represent, but it has also provided us with an incredible insight that we impart upon our clients going through a case involving custody and parenting time.
Ohio law requires that an attorney or adoption agency arrange the adoption of a minor child. Yes, most of the work involves stacks of forms and the collection of birth records, but there are a number of little-known rules and requirements that can either delay an adoption or throw it off the rails. Having an attorney explain the lay of the land as you begin your adoption case will help avoid the usual traps and errors, and allow your family to enjoy the process instead of fret over it.
Juvenile Traffic Matters
Everyone knows that teen drivers are wet behind the ears. Parents would like to think their kids are following the traffic laws, but occasionally there is a lead foot or lack of attention that results in a ticket. These tickets could negatively impact the teen’s license and increase mom and dad’s insurance premiums.
If eligible, there are programs teen drivers can take advantage of to reduce the impact of the ticket, but every Court is different. Sure, every Court follows the same laws, but the Magistrates and Judges all have unique approaches to how they handle Juvenile Traffic Tickets. Having a lawyer who knows these nuances could mean the difference between a slap on the wrist or a wallop to the wallet.
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If you would like to book a consultation, contact me today. I will be more than willing to answer your inquiries immediately.