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What is the purpose of family law?

They say you can choose your friends, but you cannot choose your family. This is not entirely true, since many Florida families choose to open their homes to new members every day through the avenue of adoption. Others opt to extend hospitality to people in need who eventually become like brothers and sisters.

Do Florida grandparents have visitation rights?

If you live in Florida and have a grandchild who has separated, divorced or imprisoned parents, a time may come when you want to pursue legal visitation with your grandchild. Perhaps your child’s other parent is hesitant to allow you to spend time with your grandchild, or maybe you fear for your grandchild’s well-being when he or she is in the company of his or her parents. Regardless of your reason for pursuing visitation, though, your situation must meet certain criteria for your quest to prove successful.

Is it a good idea to represent yourself in family law court?

Florida family law covers a wide range of legal issues, from alimony and child support to property division and post-divorce modifications. If you find yourself in a situation that requires lawful intervention, why not forego the hassle of attorney meetings and fees? Why not represent yourself, Pro Se, as they call it? 

What is cyberstalking?

If you are a Florida domestic abuse victim, you probably have done and are doing everything you can to protect yourself and your children. This may include getting an order of protection against your abuser preventing him or her from coming near you. However, in this day of ever-increasing technology, determined abusers have other ways of harassing you and keeping track of your comings and goings. One of these is by cyberstalking you.

Do family courts still mainly side with mothers in custody cases?

It used to be that almost any custody case heard in family court would end with the mother getting custody. This was due to a few factors. First, family units in Flordia usually had a father who worked and a mother who raised the kids. The courts believed since the children were raised by the mother, they should stay with the mother. Another reason is that there used ot be a belief that children age seven and under needed to be with their mothers for proper development. All of these ideas are outdated, and family courts now operate under new rules.

How does remarriage affect your child?

After a divorce in Florida, you and your children may get used to spending a lot of time together. This can be great for bonding and rebuilding after the division of your family. Whether you have custody or you get parenting time while the kids live with your ex, things can change quite a bit if you decide to remarry. For some children, this can be very difficult to handle. For your sanity, the health of your marriage and the health of your relationship with your children, it is essential to plan ahead and prepare your kids for the marriage.

Under what circumstances can alimony be altered?

Florida alimony payments are not set in stone. Even after a court has ordered one party of a divorcing couple to pay alimony, Florida statute 61.14 lays out several circumstances that allow for a court to alter the alimony terms after the initial terms have been set.

Options for growing your family through adoption

According to the USA Today, the Children's Network of Southwest Florida and other champions of families celebrate National Adoption Day in district courtrooms each year. You may have been considering bringing another child into your family. The Law Office of Philip J. Schipani often helps families navigate the legal adoption process so that they may one day participate in the celebration.

What are some same sex couple custody issues?

Same sex couples may have gained the right to marry, but as with any marriage, there will come a time when some of those marriages may end. If you find yourself in this situation, you should be aware that some courts in Florida may not be well adjusted to determining custody for children in this situation. Because same sex couples use various different methods to have children, there are cases where only one of you may be the actual legally recognized parent. 

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Law Office of Philip J. Schipani
1605 Main Street, Suite 608
Sarasota, FL 34236

Phone: 941-549-8981
Fax: 941-366-7331