Dothan Family Law Attorneys
Family legal issues are some of the most contentious and difficult to resolve. Many of these issues are emotionally charged, creating a lot of stress for those involved. Each family is unique and has its own set of dynamics, and because no two families are alike, each legal matter requires a personalized solution. A successful result is often much more than just “winning” a legal battle. There are also emotional issues and delicate family relationships that must be taken into account. If you have a family matter that may require a legal solution, you need an experienced Alabama family law attorney by your side who understands your individual needs and is dedicated to protecting your best interests.
At M. Adam Jones & Associates, we have in-depth experience representing clients in Alabama for all types of family law matters. Our attorneys work closely with our clients to provide skilled and personalized guidance during difficult and uncertain times. We understand the emotional and financial toll these types of issues take on those involved, and we do everything we can to make the legal process smooth and stress-free. We take the time to listen and thoroughly understand your needs so that we can develop the most practical, effective, and cost-efficient solution. Our experience, knowledge, and unique insights allow our clients to see all the options they have available to them and make fully informed decisions
We provide advice and representation for clients on numerous family law issues, including but not limited to:
- Legal Separation
- Child Support
- Child Custody
- Visitation and Parenting Time
- Pre-Nuptial Agreements
- Post-Nuptial Agreements
- Modification and Enforcement of Court Orders
- Orders of Protection
- College Expenses
- Removal of Children from Alabama
Legal Separation vs. Divorce in Alabama
When a married couple is going through difficulties and decides that it is time to live apart, divorcing is not the only option. In Alabama, couples can file for a legal separation rather than a divorce. Legal separations accomplish much of the same objectives as a divorce without the permanency of dissolving the marriage.
There are several reasons a couple may choose to file for a legal separation rather than a divorce. Some of the most common include:
- There is still a chance of getting back together, so they don’t want to permanently end the marriage;
- The couple wants to split up and live separately but opposes divorce for religious reasons;
- The couple wants to stay married for financial reasons, such as maintaining health benefits, meeting the 10-year marriage requirement to collect Social Security benefits, or meeting the 10-year marriage requirement to collect military-related benefits under the Uniformed Services Former Spouse Protection Act.
Filing for a formal legal separation that is approved by the court is similar to filing for an uncontested divorce, and most of the same issues can be addressed, including:
- Spousal Maintenance
- Child Custody
- Visitation and Parenting Time
- Child Support
- Division of Property
Deciding to separate without formalizing the separation in court can be risky, because there is no enforcement mechanism to ensure that the spouses are fulfilling their obligations to each other. For example, if you decide to live apart and one spouse agrees to pay spousal maintenance and child support and you have not filed for a formal legal separation, there is no legal recourse if they decide to stop making the payments.
While legal separation can be a good option for some couples, it is not for everyone. Because the spouses are still legally married, neither can get remarried to someone else, which could be problematic if one of the spouses is in a serious relationship. Another important thing to consider if you decide on legal separation is the terms and conditions of the separation agreement. If you decide to get divorced later on, the terms and conditions of the divorce agreement are likely to be the same or similar to what is spelled out in the legal separation, so be sure this is an agreement you can live with.
The question of whether you should enter into a legal separation or divorce is complex and depends on each couple’s specific circumstances. Our experienced Alabama family lawyers have extensive knowledge of both processes and when each is appropriate. We consult with our clients to help them fully understand the implications of each option and how it may impact their future.
Pre-and-Post Nuptial Agreements
Before getting married, many couples enter into a prenuptial agreement. Also referred to as a “prenup”, prenuptial agreements are used to determine the rights of the spouses should the marriage end in divorce. Prenups have been used for a long time by wealthy individuals who want to protect their assets. In recent years, however, a growing number of couples from all income levels have begun using these types of agreements to settle issues such as division of property, business ownership, and addressing the needs of children from previous marriages.
Post-nuptial agreements are similar to prenups except that they are entered into after the couple has been married. Post-nuptial agreements are common in situations wherein there are significant financial changes during the marriage. One example is if one of the spouses starts a business with outside partners and wants to ensure that the other partners’ interests are protected and that the ex-spouse has no interest in the business if the couple is divorced.
Pre- andpost-nuptial agreements can give spouses greater peace of mind knowing that important issues are already settled in the event of a worst-case scenario. However, it is important to make sure these agreements are carefully worded and in-keeping with all statutes and legal guidelines. Our lawyers work hand-in-hand with you to thoroughly review all important issues and make sure they are legally addressed within the agreement in a way that fully protects your interests.
Speak with a Results-Oriented Alabama Family Law Lawyer
When legal issues arise within a family, you need an attorney by your side who has an in-depth understanding of these issues and is willing to take the time to tailor a solution that addresses your unique needs. At M. Adam Jones & Associates, we have helped numerous clients successfully resolve their family legal matters. We adopt a personalized and flexible approach, and we explore every available legal avenue to ensure a favorable result for our clients.
For legal help with any type of family law issue in Alabama, contact our office today at 334-699-5599 for a personalized consultation.
Back to Practice Areas