What Exactly Does Family Law Entail
Family law is a subset of legal proceedings that focuses on all legal issues that have to do with to families—whether it involves parenting, children, or same-sex issues. You may be aware of divorce lawyers or child custody battles, but family law actually covers a lot more than this. Here is a list of some of the major areas of family law.
- Marriage and Divorce
As marriage is the beginning of starting a new family unit, it is an essential part of family law. Experienced family law attorneys are needed to draft prenuptial agreements and even handle cases of common law marriage or domestic partnerships. You would be wise to consult with a family law attorney before taking this big step in your life. On the other hand, if a marriage fails, family law also includes the attorneys that handle divorce proceedings. This is a growing and popular branch of the law, as divorce attorneys are needed to settle issues such as spousal and child support, child custody, and who gets what when two people part ways.
A smaller, somewhat less utilized part of family law has to do with adoption. A family who wants to adopt a child needs to undergo several court proceedings to be able to legally go through with the adoption. Attorneys will also go through negotiations with the biological parents, when necessary, to discuss what rights they still hold and to come up with an agreement between both sides. This subset of family law also encompasses foster parents and any and all issues that may arise from their situations, including their rights when it comes to adopting a child in their care. Family law is always concerned with the needs and rights of the child first and foremost, and making sure they will be well taken care of in the situation they end up in.
- Children’s Issues
Apart from adoption, family law still covers many other issues that have to do with children. As a part of divorce, child custody battles are common, and attorneys must work with both sides to figure out what is legal and best for the children involved. Occasionally, a child under the age of eighteen will fight for emancipation from their parents to terminate their parental rights. Paternity battles are also common, as the court must use scientific results to discuss who is responsible for the care and financial needs of a child. Family attorneys are essential in these cases to ensure the needs of the child are met and that both sides are paying for and supporting their offspring.
Family law also covers many miscellaneous topics, such as same-sex marriage, domestic violence, juvenile proceedings, and name changes. Anything and everything that has to do with a family, personal issues, or individuals is a part of family law.
As you can see, family law pertains to many more issues than just marriage and divorce. If you are planning to choose an attorney to help you out in your family law case, be sure to give yourself time to properly research and plan on what is needed. Look at the experience and ability of the lawyer who will be representing you in these important cases.