FAMILY LAW DIVORCE AND CHILD CUSTODY
Family law, broadly put, involves legal matters effecting the family.
Examples may include :
- Child Custody And Support
- Grandparents Rights
- Family Wealth Preservation
- Family Business
- Marital Planning
- Asset Planning
- Tax Planning
The ability to try family law cases is a unique and carefully crafted skill that the lawyers at the firm have honed and refined through years of representing families and children. Accurate assessment of the issues, effective team building, and incorporation of supporting professionals allow the firm's lawyers to craft innovative and effective solutions for each client's family.
Often, one of the most significant emotional and financial transactions that occurs in a person's life is their divorce. The decisions made during a divorce case impact peoples' relational and financial futures in a way that the unfamiliar will fail to understand until it is too late. Finding the right lawyer for the case is without question the most important decision that a person confronted with the reality of divorce will make. A divorce case combines both a suit affecting parent child relationship, and a property suit wherein the parties' rights and obligations are established by agreement or by court order. Unlike the divorce lawyers of days gone by, the family law attorney of today must be versed in a wide array of areas of the law, as well as key substantive disciplines that effect children and families. Likewise, expertise in financial matters, business structures and operations, and tax is required for clients with substantial estates.
Child custody disputes are among the most complex matters effecting families caught in the legal system. Accurately assessing the situation, creating strategies for success, and working with clients and their families to put children first are all part of a family lawyer's job. Providing parents the tools they need to interpret and understand the roles of the court, and the various people and professionals involved in a child custody case, are part of what family law lawyers do everyday. Family law lawyers have the honor and responsibility of advocating for the best interest of the children who are at the heart of child custody cases. Child custody is more than blind advocacy of what each side wants -- it is applying years of skill and training to craft practical, sustainable solutions that put children first, recognizing that each case presents unique facts and challenges.
Child support serves the very important function of providing for the material needs of children, but it can also have the effect of improving the quality of the family relationship for children who have parents residing in different homes. Scholarly literature and clinical experience relates that parents who are both financially involved in the raising of their children, tend to have more stable, quality relationships with their children. Setting and crediting the child support obligation is a matter for the court, considering each child's needs and the relative financial resources of the parties. Advocating a child support plan that best fits the situation of the parties and children is a matter for the family law lawyer.
Although historically not a cornerstone of the family law paradigm in Texas, alimony now exists for persons meeting specific criteria in a variety of situations. For instance, the court may award spousal support pre-divorce (i.e during the pendency of the divorce case). Court ordered spousal maintenance is also available after divorce for certain types of cases. Of course, alimony may also be contractual, in which case the tax-shifting aspects of alimony may be used to create across-the-board tax savings for divorcing spouses in differing tax brackets.
The attorneys at Marchand & Rossi have helped families grow through the loving process of adoption. Navigating what may seem complicated or confusing rules and regulations, the firm leads its clients through the process, lending comfort and understanding at each step of the way.
In many families, grandparents and other extended family members become involved in the raising of children. In other instances, a grandparent may assume the role of primary parent in a child's life. Grandparents have independent legal rights in regard to their grandchildren. Marchand & Rossi attorneys help extended family members realize and exercise their rights in a manner that enhances the relationship between grandchild and grandparent.
Guardianships arise when a family member is not capable of managing their own affairs. Many times guardianships involve children. Other times, they involve an adult with a mental disability or the onset of an illness. In either case, the lawyers at Marchand & Rossi approach guardianships with the understanding, dignity, and respect needed to provide timely service to establish and maintain an arrangement that protects the best interest of the subject of the guardianship.
Family Wealth Preservation:
Family wealth preservation may involve inter-generational wealth transfers; asset protection; or business reorganizations. The goal of family wealth preservation is to create an integrated plan that maximizes the ability of the family to maintain its wealth throughout a variety of circumstances.
Family businesses are the cornerstone of the American economy, yet many are threatened or fall into non-existence because of a lack of sound legal counsel. Family businesses face their own sets of issues. While a family business could be a "Fortune 100" company, the reality is that most family businesses do not operate nor face the same issues as larger, more impersonal corporations. Counsel that truly understands the intimate structure and managerial concerns effecting family businesses, and who can chart a course for effective resolution of legal matters within the family business framework, is an asset that no family business should be without.
Marital estate planning extends to more than just drafting premarital agreements or simple wills -- it means utilizing all of the legal tools available to protect family assets, clarify property rights, and maximize tax efficiency. Marital estate planning may involve the use of premarital agreements, but can also extend to agreements made during the marriage, or the employment of entities, trusts, or transactional strategies designed to protect the value of the marital or separate estates of the parties from creditors, the government, or others.
Asset planning is a means by which counsel can assist a client in structuring their affairs in such a way as to meet the specific goals of the client.
Tax planning occurs when counsel advises among legal alternatives to assist a client in structuring their affairs in such a way as to minimize the tax consequences of life events, both foreseen and unforeseen. Such events may range from the sale of an asset or business, to the reporting and payment of income or estate taxes. Tax planning is an expert discipline that requires years of technical training and highly specialized knowledge. Knowing when and how to apply the tools available for tax minimization within the ethical frameworks governing tax practitioners is a complicated and challenging matter requiring skilled, experienced counsel.