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Crestview Hills Divorce Law Blog

Proficiency of English not basis for granting child custody right

When a family court is charged with the responsibility of determining which living arrangements will best meet the needs of a child, there are numerous factors that play a role in a court's decision. Recently, a mother alleged that her ex-spouse's greater command of the English language was taken into consideration for granting child custody rights. Though the case was not heard in Kentucky, the findings of an appellant court could provide an example for other cases.

In this particular case, the mother had alleged that she was a victim of domestic abuse in the past. She believed that her ex-husband should not be granted any custody rights based on the potential threat he may pose to their young child. However, a court ruled that the father should be granted partial custody, as his ability to speak and understand English would be an asset for helping to raise their child.

The divorce process is not one that comes naturally

The effort of sustaining a marriage or dissolving one is not one that comes naturally. Just as marriage takes much time and effort, a divorce also takes time and energy. Kentucky residents who believe that a divorce is their best option may feel confused as to how to begin the process.

The first step is to be sure that a divorce is the best way to resolve the problems that are making the marriage untenable. If a divorce is the definite solution, then one must decide the best manner to pursue to obtain the divorce decree. There are three main options for a divorce: mediation, collaboration or litigation. It depends upon one's particular circumstances as to which option is the best fit. Once that has been decided, spouses will need to seek out legal representation.

Woman files paternity suit against law enforcement officer

Regardless of one's occupation, no one is immune from engaging in actions that may result in consequences for other parties. One of these is becoming involved in relationships that may not have been intended to last long term. Unfortunately, sometimes, these relationships result in an unplanned child. In the event that a Kentucky resident finds him or herself in a situation that includes a future child, he or she may choose to seek paternity testing to prove parentage of said child in order to establish who will be responsible for providing for the child's needs.

Recently, a sheriff found himself facing the prospect of being a father after a relationship with a woman. The woman filed a paternity suit against the man, seeking sole custody as well as child support in order to provide for the baby's needs. The man recently responded to the lawsuit by requesting that a paternity test be conducted to establish that he is the biological father. He has further requested that he be granted shared custody if he is the father. 

New trend of divorce coaches may provide certain benefits

Traditionally, the term coach referred to a person who helped athletes train in order to perform at their best. More recently, coaching has also referred to offering specialized advice to people in a variety of disciplines. Kentucky residents who are preparing to end their marriages may benefit from the services that a divorce coach can offer.

Only an attorney can provide legal services during the divorce process. However, for those who may feel overwhelmed and unsure of how to approach the proceedings, an experienced divorce coach may provide the emotional support and experience that can help ease the stress. A well-trained coach can assist with gathering all relevant information, including financial documents that are needed by the attorneys and in court. They can help facilitate conversations and work with an attorney to ensure that all information is collected.

Jurisdiction isn't a given in military divorces

Military service members make sacrifices in their service to the United States. They may move around a lot and be deployed to a hostile area. For many soldiers, this is just part of the job, and they accept it because they honor their commitment to the country.

A soldier's spouse makes sacrifices as well. Time apart puts a strain on many military marriages, which is why the divorce rate in military families continues to remain high. When the civilian spouse files for divorce, determining the jurisdiction in which to file may not be quite as easy as it is for non-military couples.

During the divorce process, some parents may try "nesting"

The decision to end a marriage is seldom an easy one, and the presence of children only makes it more difficult. One way some parents are helping to ease the transition is by making it possible for the children to remain in their family home. Kentucky residents who are preparing to file for a divorce may be unsure of how to approach co-parenting in the future. 

One of the newer trends for divorcing parents is referred to as "nesting." This concept allows the children to remain in the marital home while the parents take turns living there with them. On the off weeks, the other parent resides in an apartment that is shared between the spouses. This method helps ensure that children maintain a sense of normalcy, at least during the initial stages. Having a stable home life can prevent some children from dealing with the added anxiety that may accompany the changes that come with a divorce. 

Grandparents with child custody of grandchildren increasing

The idea of children being raised in homes headed by their grandparents is not a new phenomena, but it is becoming more prevalent. There are many reasons why a grandparent may have child custody, but recent figures estimate that approximately 3 million households consist of grandparents raising grandchildren. It is unclear how many of these families reside in Kentucky, but the challenges facing these elderly caregivers may be different than those facing other caregivers.

One of the leading factors leading to grandparents stepping in as caregivers is the opioid crisis and the alarming number of overdoses. Along with addictions, divorce, abuse and military deployment may result in these older relatives finding themselves raising the next generation. Though this situation can cross any social and economic levels, many of these households tend to be headed by lower income and minority individuals.

Divorce and kids: sons and daughters process it differently

When parents come to the realization that a marriage is no longer viable, the emotional fallout impacts all family members. Research shows that sons and daughters process their emotions after a divorce differently. Kentucky parents who are going through the process may be able to help their children easier if they understand how boys and girls experience a divorce.

Studies suggest that daughters will recover quicker from their parents' divorce if they are permitted to reside primarily with their mothers, who help facilitate a healthy, ongoing relationship with their fathers. Girls are more inclined to seek to please both parents while turning blame for a divorce inward on themselves. Girls whose parents' divorce was full of stress and animosity may experience an early onset of puberty and the health risks associated with early menstruation. Girls may also be more inclined to become a teen mother and engage less with school activities and sports. They also tend to develop eating disorders and trust issues.

Mother works to change how child custody cases are handled

When parents decide to part ways, one of the most difficult decisions is how to best raise their children. In situations where it is appropriate, child custody will be decided in such a way that a child will spend time with both parents. Kentucky residents who are struggling to resolve these matters in the manner that will best serve their children may seek the advice of a neutral party.

Sadly, not every case ensures a child is protected from an unstable parent. One mother, whose child died at the hands of her disturbed father, worked tirelessly to ensure that other parents do not suffer the devastating loss of a beloved child through domestic violence. She stated that she tried to inform the family court and other personnel that her former husband was a threat to her daughter's well-being, but even the court-appointed advocate for her 2-year-old child dismissed her concerns of domestic violence.

Hoping for a conflict-free divorce? Consider collaboration

Many people expect to experience conflict and confrontation when going through divorce. Because you recently made the decision to end your marriage, you may worry about the proceedings and whether you will have to deal with a considerable amount of contention. If you have kids, you may feel particularly concerned about how to get through the process with as little strain for them as possible.

If you have decided that you want the process to go as smoothly as possible, you have already taken an important step. Entering into the legal proceedings with the right mindset could help you have a less-contentious divorce than if you wanted to go in with guns blazing. Fortunately, legal options also exist that could help lessen conflict for your case.

Tasha Scott Schaffner, PLLC - Attorneys at law

505 Centre View Blvd.
Crestview Hills, KY 41017

Phone: 859-491-1011
Fax: 859-491-1899
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