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4 Urgent Reasons You Need a Family Lawyer

There may come a time when you realize that the marriage between you and your spouse should be over. Divorce is a complicated and tricky legal process that often leaves those involved exhausted and worn-out. In order to keep some degree of sanity, it can help to have a lawyer working with you every step of the way. If you aren’t sure whether now is the time to hire a family lawyer, here are four urgent reasons why you should:

#1 Your spouse is keeping children from you.

When one parent attempts to keep the children from the other, this is considered parental alienation. A spouse may try to do this hoping that the other will lose their visitation rights. If your spouse wants you to stay away from children you have a right to see, then you must call a lawyer.

#2 Your spouse has been using up your finances.

Leading up to divorce, one spouse may use up the financial resources as a way to prevent losing it when assets are divided. Unfortunately, this is a reckless move for that parent and such behavior is not likely to be taken well by the court. 

#3 Your spouse is claiming false allegations against you.

You will want a seasoned family law lawyer on your side if your spouse has begun making false claims of domestic violence, fraud, child abuse, etc. If the judge believes the other parent, then you risk losing custody and visitation of your children. You must get a lawyer involved to help you navigate how to protect yourself. 

#4 Your spouse has engaged in a criminal offense.

If your spouse is committing crimes, you’ll need to reach out to a lawyer. Illegal behavior can endanger your children. Even if you do not have kids together, your spouse may try to get you in trouble as if you also participated in the crime.

A family lawyer, like one from The Law Office of Daniel J. Wright, can attest that when divorce is on the horizon it can cause any spouses to act out in ways that hurt the other parent and/or children. By recruiting help from a lawyer, a person can be better protected from a tarnished relationship with children, false accusations, and money stealing.

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Military Divorce Lawyer Tacoma WA

If you’re trying to get a divorce in Washington state, you may find that it is very difficult if you are an active service member. The process is considered to be confusing and complicated. This is even more true if you have children or you have been married for a very significant number of years. It is also even more complex if your spouse is deployed while the divorce or family law case is filed.

The military divorce lawyer in Tacoma, WA such as the ones available at Robinson & Hadeed can help you as they have helped hundreds of active service members and their spouses throughout Tacoma, Washington. They have a lot of experience navigating difficult and testing matters of divorce, especially when it comes to being divorced while you were in the military actively serving.

Issues that may come into play for a military service member who is active in deploying when they are seeking to get a divorce are things such as disability, whether it’s a full or partial disability, BAH and even retirement can be complicated depending upon the circumstances that are involved in your case. However, a good experienced military divorce lawyer in Tacoma, WA is going to be able to help you by informing you exactly how everything in your case is affected by everything else tied to your service record.

BAH is your basic allowance for housing, and it can be affected by your divorce especially if you have children because the primary custodial parent will receive benefits for housing with children, and the non-custodial parent can receive a BAH differential is going to be paid out an allowance to the member that lives in military housing or they have their spouse or children living with them but pays child support that is greater than half of the difference.

A basic allowance for housing is a monthly allowance that you see when you are in the military and it offsets the cost of housing when you are not living on base, in case your divorce can impact the amount of BAH that you receive. 

If you are the only parent in the military and you get a divorce you may still receive BAH but it will depend heavily on where you live post-divorce, and sometimes if you are considered single by the government you will be forced to move back on base and live in base housing and you cannot receive BAH because the government is going to pay 100% of her housing at this time

You should reach out to a military divorce lawyer in Tacoma, WA if you have any questions about getting a divorce while in the military and you are worried about how it may affect your benefits and change your living situation. 

 

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Estate Litigation & Bequests

Estate Litigation Appeals Lawyer

Families have disagreements. Families at times also separate. Divorce and familial disputes happen and there are ways to navigate the issues. A family lawyer can help families wade through divorce and separation disputes; however, there are other complex scenarios that come into play for families when a loved one passes. What happens to property and assets? Who is in charge of distributing assets? How are a loved one’s creditors paid? What if there wasn’t a will? All of these questions and more can be answered by an estate litigation appeals lawyer from a firm like Klenk Law, which has provided some insight below.

What is a Bequest?

A bequest is a gift that a person receives as an inheritance after the original owner died. There are many types of bequests and a person may inherit in one or more forms. Disputes sometimes arise in regard to a bequest that an individual inherited or expected to inherit, and it may be necessary to hire a lawyer to defend one’s self. The most common types of bequests include:

  • Specific bequest: The decedent may have bequeathed a certain property or amount of cash.
  • General bequest: This is usually a cash sum or type of property that is distributed amongst the heirs. Each bequest may be identical, or there may be an unequal distribution as per the instructions in the will or authorized by the probate court.
  • Residual bequest: Once the estate’s debts have been paid and the specified bequests have been fulfilled, what is left over is considered the residual bequest.
  • Percentage bequest: This refers to a percentage of the estate’s total assets.
  • Demonstrative bequest: When a certain source generates the heir’s gift. For example, the gift may be a percentage of the liquidized funds generated from the sale of stocks and bonds.
  • Executory bequest: After a predetermined or specified event occurs, the heir will receive their designated gift from the estate. A common example is when a child turns of legal age or graduates from college.
  • Charitable bequest: This is a gift from the estate to a registered charity. This includes charities of a community nature as well as educational, religious, political, and scientific, among others.

Note that there are laws governing bequests and what items or assets can be bequeathed as well as the conditions of the bequest.

What Are My Legal Options if There is a Bequest Dispute?

If a will is contested by someone included or excluded from the will, it may cause delays and other issues with regard to the distribution of the estate’s assets. Most likely a hearing will take place in a local courtroom with the goal of resolving any issues surrounding the dispute. Whether you are going through a divorce and have a custody dispute, or defending your rights to inheritance and you are contesting a will, it’s important to reach the results that are best for the family. Even if the will includes a no-contest or anti-contest provision, it may not disqualify the recipient from inheriting assets of the estate. Seek experienced legal counsel for disputes of this nature in order to ensure that the estate is protected and that inheritances are passed on to rightful heirs.

 

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Creditor Harassment: Your Rights and the Fair Debt Collection Practice Act

When a client retains our office to handle their debt and other financial issues, we also set out to determine whether or not they may have been unfairly and improperly treated by a debt collector attempting to collect a debt.

You too can use the following guide to determine whether any debt collector attempting to collect a debt has violated the Fair Debt Collection Practice Act or “FDCPA.”

If you can answer yes to any of the following, then you may have a valid Fair Debt Collection Practice Act claim against a debt collector.  Most credit card companies sent their unpaid debts to collection agencies.

PROPER COLLECTION PRACTICES ARE REQUIRED BY LAW

  1. Do you feel that you have been unreasonably harassed or been the victim of aggressive collection practices by a debt collector
  2. Has a debt collector contacted you at unreasonable times of the day (either before 8am or after 9pm)?
  3. You are entitled to receive verification of a debt within five days of a debt collector contacting you.  Can you think of an attempt to collect a debt by a debt collector in which this has not been the case?
  4. Has a debt collector called a family member other than a spouse or parent?  Has this occurred on more than one occasion?
  5. Has a debt collector called you at work on more than one occasion, and done so despite you asking them not to call you there?
  6. Has a debt collector used threatening or obscene language in their conversations with you?
  7. Has a debt collector falsely led you to believe that they have either commenced a lawsuit against you or that they were going to start a lawsuit against you?
  8. Has a debt collector provided inaccurate information to you about the status or nature of your debt?  You are not required to pay more than you owe on a debt.
  9. Has anyone left you a voicemail seeking to collect a debt and in doing so failed to advise you that they were a debt collector and attempting to collect a debt?
  10. Has anyone attempting to collect a debt from you done so without informing you who they were, from where they were calling and for whom they were collecting the debt?

MOST COLLECTIONS VIOLATIONS INVOLVE CREDIT CARD DEBT

If any of these events has occurred to you, do not be afraid to take down the contact information from whomever it was you spoke to.  Rest assured that debt collectors have certain rules by which they are to abide and if they fail to do so, you may be entitled to recover damages.

ONE REMEDY FOR COLLECTIONS VIOLATIONS IS DEBT ELIMINATION.

Here in Connecticut, we have been helping debtors and working to protect their rights since 1983.  If you are in the state, call us at 203-23-2233 to speak to an experienced and caring debt relief and creditor harassment attorney.  Otherwise, we urge you to seek experienced assistance in your home state for problems with aggressive collection tactics. Aggressive collection tactics can be overwhelming and it is why we suggest seeking the help of a creditor harassment attorney like the ones at The Law Offices of Neil Crane for assistance.

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Legal Considerations for Prospective Parents Considering Surrogacy

The surrogacy process allows for prospective parents to engage in family formation with the assistance of, at minimum, a surrogate mother who carries the child of the prospective parents – most often after an embryo transfer has taken place. Once the child is born, the prospective parents assume their full parental rights with regard to that child. If you are considering family formation via surrogacy, it is important to understand that this arrangement is both a “social” one and a “legal” one. Meaning, that you and your surrogate will each have significant control over the social aspects of your arrangement, but in order for that arrangement to be both legal and legally enforceable, certain standards and contract protocols will need to be strictly observed. 

The Law Protects Prospective Parents and Surrogates Alike 

Both your interests and the interests of any surrogate with whom you may choose to work with will be protected via a surrogacy contract. Just as it is with any legally enforceable contract, the expectations of your arrangement will be articulated within the contract’s terms. If either you or your surrogate violate these terms, you will be able to seek a legally-enforceable remedy for that breach. Essentially, once your surrogacy contract is finalized and signed, you’ll be able to breathe much easier, knowing that everyone’s rights have been protected and everyone knows what to expect from the process. 

Surrogacy Laws Vary by State

Whether you live in Nevada or New Jersey, your state’s laws will dictate how your surrogacy contract must be constructed, what terms it may/must contain, and how it may be enforced. As a result, you’ll want to speak with our firm as soon as you can about your state’s surrogacy laws so that you know what you can expect from your arrangement. 

Parental Rights 

Per the terms of your contract, you – as the intended parent(s) of any children born as a result of your arrangement – will have parental rights over those children. Unless you choose to specify otherwise, your surrogate will have no parental rights over those children. 

Legal Assistance Is Available

If you are considering family formation via surrogacy, schedule a risk-free consultation with the experienced Nevada legal team at Contemporary Legal Solutions today to learn about your rights and options under the law. As surrogacy regulations vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, it is important to avoid making any assumptions about your unique situation until our trusted legal team has evaluated your particular circumstances. Once you have asked any questions that you may have and have voiced your concerns, our team will provide you with an objective analysis of both your rights and your options. You can then make whatever informed decisions are right for you and your family accordingly. 

Know that you will never be pressured by our team to make any particular decision. It is our privilege to educate prospective parents about their rights and options and to provide them with necessary support if/when they choose to move forward with surrogacy – when you meet with our firm, both you and your situation will be treated with the utmost respect. We look forward to speaking with you.  

 

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Legal FAQs: The Surrogacy Process

If the “ins and outs” of the surrogacy process sound confusing to you, you’re certainly not alone. What’s the difference between gestational surrogacy and traditional surrogacy? Do surrogacy contracts protect both surrogate mothers and prospective parents? How are surrogates reimbursed for their services? What happens if one or more parties to a surrogacy contract wants to “back out” of the arrangement? Chances are good that many – if not, all – of these questions (and many, many more) are bouncing around your brain if you are new to the surrogacy process. Thankfully, experienced attorneys specializing in family formation law have answers to most – if not, all – of the questions you’re contemplating now and that will arise, should you choose to move forward with the surrogacy process. Here are a few of the most common questions that our team fields from prospective parents on a regular basis:

Are Surrogacy Laws the Same Across the U.S.?

Each state has its own laws concerning the surrogacy process. Therefore, it is important to speak with an attorney who is licensed in the state where you plan to draft your agreement. Some states do a better job than others of protecting the rights of both prospective parents and surrogates. Additionally, variations in state laws concerning surrogacy mean that the terms of any contract that you may enter will need to be adjusted accordingly. 

Who Has Parental Rights to a Child Born Via Surrogacy?

When surrogacy contracts are drafted and executed properly, only the prospective parents – not the surrogate – will have parental rights in re: any children born as a result of the family formation efforts governed by said contracts. 

Are Surrogates Compensated for their Services?

For a contract to be legally enforceable, all parties to that contract must have “consideration.” Meaning, that each party must be granted some benefit within the contract in exchange for whatever they are providing, giving up, etc. As a result, surrogates are – in nearly all cases – compensated for their services. Rates of compensation and conditions of compensation should be outlined clearly within the body of the contract in order to ensure that everyone affected understands the expectations of the arrangement. 

Legal Assistance Is Available

No two surrogacy journeys are exactly alike. Therefore, it is both normal and productive to have “a million” questions and concerns when contemplating the surrogacy process. Not all questions and concerns about this process can be met with concrete answers and solutions, simply because this process is somewhat different for all who experience it. However, most legal aspects of this process are fairly clear-cut. Therefore, if you have not yet scheduled a risk-free consultation with the trusted Nevada legal team at Contemporary Legal Solutions to discuss your legal questions and concerns, please do so now. It will be our privilege to provide you both with an objective analysis of your rights and options under the law and with any legal support that you may require as you start your surrogacy journey. We look forward to speaking with you. 

 

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What to Do if Your Surrogacy Contract Has Been Compromised?

 

It is not uncommon for contracts of any kind to become compromised in one way or another. Most of the time, any potential breach or violation of a contract can be remedied fairly easily. However, there are times when the expectations articulated within a contract may be breached significantly. If you have entered into a surrogacy contract and you are concerned that the terms of your contract are either not being honored or are otherwise becoming compromised, don’t panic. Seek legal guidance now to better understand your rights, options, and opportunities for remedy. With the assistance of an attorney experienced in the area of law known as “family formation,” you can seek a resolution as efficiently and as effectively as possible under the circumstances. 

Surrogacy Contract Violations

When one or more parties to a contract violate the terms of that agreement, the offending party is said to be in “breach” of the contract. Some breaches are minor while others may be considered “material.” It is understandable that a breach of ANY term of a surrogacy contract may make prospective parents anxious. After all, everything that a surrogate mother does – from the foods that she eats to the potential toxins in the air that she breathes – can affect the development of a pregnancy. With that said, material (very serious) breaches of surrogacy contracts are exceedingly rare. Far more common are relatively minor breaches that can be remedied with clarification of expectations, positive and proactive communication, and compassion. 

This isn’t to say that prospective parents should do nothing if they learn that the terms of their surrogacy contract have been – in any way – compromised. In fact, reaching out to an attorney proactively when any breaches in question are minor can help to ensure that no additional breaches of expectation occur in the future. Additionally, if your contract has been breached in a material way, know that we can help. It may be appropriate to demand enforcement of certain provisions or to cancel the contract. 

No two surrogacy contract scenarios are ever exactly the same, so it isn’t always easy to know what your options are before you’ve spoken with an attorney. If you’re unsure of what a violation or compromise of your surrogacy contract means for your rights and options as a prospective parent, connect with us as soon as possible for helpful clarification and a trusted source of legal guidance and support. 

Legal Assistance Is Available

Whether you have already entered into a surrogacy contract or you are concerned about the potential limitations and liabilities of entering into such an arrangement, our firm can help you to make an informed decision about your situation. The trusted and reputable Nevada legal team at Contemporary Legal Solutions has extensive knowledge about family formation law and the contracts that govern both traditional and gestational surrogacy. Once we learn more about the unique details of your situation, we can provide you with objective guidance as to how you may move forward in the furtherance of your surrogacy-related goals. We look forward to meeting with you. 

 

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Surrogacy Contracts – The Basics

When properly drafted and executed, contracts serve as legally enforceable agreements that protect the interests of the parties involved and articulate clear expectations and remedies for the arrangement in question. Surrogacy contracts are like any other contracts in these respects. They allow prospective parents and gestational or traditional surrogates to set legally-enforceable expectations for their arrangements that protect the interests of all involved. 

With that said, drawing up a surrogacy contract properly in one jurisdiction (say, Utah) is going to look different than the process of drawing up a surrogacy contract properly in an alternative jurisdiction (say, New York). As a result, it is important for both prospective parents and surrogates to speak with attorneys experienced in the nuances of family formation law before making any assumptions about what their surrogacy contract will “look like.”

Terms Will Vary by Jurisdiction 

State law governs most aspects of surrogacy contracts. Therefore, certain terms will vary based upon where you choose to draw up your contract. However, some general concepts governed by surrogacy contracts are the same “across the board” in the U.S., even if the language associated with these concepts varies by state. For example, no payment can be made for any child born of surrogacy. But, surrogates can (and generally should) be reimbursed for the service they provide in carrying any child in question. The structure of this reimbursement – and the amount of reimbursement required/allowed – will vary by state. Our legal team can explain how your state’s laws will affect the structure and terms of any agreement that you may enter. 

Considerations Addressed

Surrogacy contracts may govern many aspects of both the social and legal arrangements traditionally associated with surrogacy. Commonly, these agreements address how surrogate mothers will be reimbursed for their services, how the prospective parents will go about asserting their parental rights once any child born via the surrogacy process has arrived, how medical costs will be addressed, and what – if any – restrictions will be placed on the surrogate mother’s daily approach to her life in advance of becoming pregnant and once she becomes pregnant. The agreement may also detail whether the prospective parents and the surrogate will have any contact once their arrangement is terminated, and any other expectations that anyone involved sees fit to address in a legally-enforceable way. 

Legal Assistance Is Available

If you are interested in learning more about what the surrogacy contract process consists of, please connect with the reputable Nevada legal team at Contemporary Legal Solutions today. Our legal counsel has extensive experience with both gestational and traditional surrogacy legal contracts, as well as alternative assisted reproduction and family formation contracts. It is critical – for all involved – that surrogacy contracts are drawn up in legally enforceable ways that set clear expectations and that protect the rights of each party. Before making any assumptions about how your surrogacy contract should/will be constructed, please seek experienced legal guidance. Doing so will empower you throughout the process to make whatever informed decisions are best for you and your family at this time. We look forward to speaking with you. 

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How Does the Law Protect Parents Who Choose Surrogacy?

The idea of entering into a surrogacy contract can be both exciting and unnerving. Just as it takes a great deal of courage and compassion to become a surrogate, it takes a great deal of courage and compassion to become an “intended parent” within the surrogacy process. One of the most challenging aspects of family formation via surrogacy is – at the start of the process – being unsure of exactly what your rights as an intended parent are. After all, it is difficult to set one’s expectations and to process one’s experience when unanswered questions serve as a nagging reminder of one’s uncertainties. Rest assured that when you schedule a risk-free consultation with our reputable firm, we’ll answer any questions that you may have while clarifying your rights and options. That way, you’ll be empowered to make whatever informed decision is best for you and your family moving forward. 

Surrogacy Contracts and the Law

The area of the law that governs family formation efforts via surrogacy is contract law. Meaning, that the same kinds of rules that apply to other contracts generally apply to surrogacy contracts. As a result, when a surrogacy contract is properly drafted and legally enforceable, you can trust that its terms will protect your rights as an intended parent. 

First and foremost, surrogacy contracts articulate the expectation that you – and your spouse or romantic partner, if applicable – will have legal parental rights to any child born of the surrogacy process. Similarly, unless you wish that they should have such rights, the contract will articulate that the surrogate will not have any parental rights to any child born of this process.

Secondarily, the terms of this contract will protect your interests in other ways. For example, you may be concerned that your surrogate will demand more money than you agreed upon or will not take care of her physical health during a pregnancy. The terms of your contract will set limits, expectations, and specify how violations of those limits and expectations will be remedied. 

Legal Assistance Is Available

Opting to engage in family formation via the surrogacy process can be an intimidating prospect. It is, therefore, important to understand all of your rights and options under the law before committing to a specific plan of action. Whether you are ready to begin your surrogacy journey or you are still contemplating whether this approach to family formation is the right one for you and your circumstances, please consider scheduling a risk-free consultation with the experienced Nevada legal team at Contemporary Legal Solutions. Once we learn about your circumstances, goals, concerns, and priorities, we will be able to provide you with an objective analysis of both your rights and your legal options. 

Entering into parenthood via surrogacy can be simultaneously joyous, nerve-racking, frustrating, overwhelming, and confusing. Empowering yourself by seeking experienced guidance concerning your legal rights and options can help to mitigate the stresses traditionally associated with this process. We look forward to speaking with you about your situation and to providing any legal support that you may require as you move forward. 

 

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What Laws Apply to Drowning Accidents?

Wrongful Death Lawyer

Did you know that around 4,000 people a year unintentionally drown in non-boating related accidents? 20% of all drowning victims are under the age of 15. This means that there are roughly 10 drowning fatalities each day, and 2 of those are children. This means that drowning is the second leading cause of death in children under the age of 15. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, otherwise known as the CDC, reports that for each child that dies from drowning, 5 other children receive treatment in emergency rooms for non-fatal incidences of near drowning and injuries associated with near drowning.

More than half of the victims who survive near drownings require hospitalization and care after. The injuries that are sustained in near drown incidents are serious and may cause health complications that affect the person for the rest of their life. Often a common injury is that oxygen flow to the brain was lost, and the brain may lose cognitive functions, memory functions, or reasoning. There are physical injuries involved with drowning too, like traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and broken bones.

­So you’re getting the picture, we hope, that drowning and near drowning incidents cause severe physical, mental, emotional and financial strains on victims and their families. Any good wrongful death lawyer in Washington DC, such as the ones available at Cohen & Cohen Attorneys, wants you to know what laws a drowning incident falls under and how it may be approached in court.

Negligence

The first and perhaps most obvious court-cited cause of drowning incidents is negligence. Here’s a brief overview of some examples that may be used to show that negligence can cause drowning.

Your pool is not secured with a locked gate or fence, the pool has not been managed and there are many hazards, such as uncovered drains, tools, low water levels (or high water levels), no indicators between the different depths in the pool. If you fail to post safety warnings regarding the pool and various hazards that may lead to drowning, you be also be held liable for negligence. If your pool staff are not properly trained, you’ll be held for negligence.

Negligence isn’t the only law category used in drowning cases, though.

Liability

Did you know that liability can be applied to drowning cases? Pools use many products, so product liability is a no-brainer. In fact, pumps can cause suction entrapment, which is where an occupant of the pool becomes stuck when their hair or swimsuit is sucked into the pump. Defective drains can do similar as well. Pool filters may malfunction and then explode due to compressed air; this may lead to “shrapnel” launching through the pool area at occupants. Accessories like diving boards, slides, ladders can also be installed incorrectly or malfunction.

But that’s not the only type of liability that may affect a case like this. Premises liability may come into effect too. The pool is a piece of property, so the property owner must maintain the pool and ensure it does not cause an unreasonable hazard to those around it or who are using it.