A fresh new face for Family Law in New Orleans and Metairie
Going through a divorce can be a very difficult time; it can take a tremendous toll on your mental, emotional, and even physical wellbeing. However, if you and your spouse have made the decision to end your marriage, you should call to talk to a knowledgeable New Orleans family law attorney who will be able to tell you all about your rights and the options available to you, given the specifics of your particular circumstance.
Candice Bennatt has the best interests of your family in mind during these troubling times. Let her walk you through all the aspects of divorce, child support, alimony and any other area of need.
What are grounds for divorce in Louisiana?
Many states have divorce laws specific to the state, and Louisiana is no exception. For example, did you know that under certain circumstances Louisiana places blame on one spouse or the other? If you and your spouse have been living apart for a certain amount of time established by law, you may be able to file a “no fault” divorce, where blame is not placed on either spouse.However, if you or your spouse:
- Habitually used or abused alcohol or drugs
- Engaged in an extramarital affair
- Were physically cruel to the other person
Blame may come into play. Furthermore, that blame may come with repercussions, such as an ineligibility to receive alimony (also referred to as spousal support). When you talk to an attorney, they will be able to tell you more about the specific grounds for divorce and, depending on your situation and reasons you’re seeking divorce, how they can impact you and your former spouse.
Hiring a New Orleans Family Law Attorney
Deciding to get a divorce can be a tough decision, but once you’ve made it you’ll have another difficult path to take — the whole process of getting divorced. An experienced divorce lawyer can help save you time in addition to the physical and emotional energy it takes when carrying out a divorce.
Having someone there who is not only educated but has years of experience to help you along this arduous process that will undoubtedly include a lot of legal paperwork, some of which may be beyond confusing to you, will save you so much!
As soon as you’ve decided that you want to file for divorce, you should hire a New Orleans family law attorney to help you complete and submit the appropriate legal documents; in this case, it’s called a Petition and Citation, and it will need to be filed in family court. Having a New Orleans family law attorney do this for you will be immensely helpful, and well worth the expense.
How will the Louisiana court divide our assets?
Building a life together can be far easier than dividing your assets in court; if you and your spouse can decide to cooperate and separate your debts and assets on your own, that can make that part of the process much easier for both of you.
While it might seem easier to separate everything equally, but that’s not always the case in a divorce. Judges and attorneys take a variety of elements into consideration, including:
- Duration of the marriage
- Value of marital property
- How much each spouse contributed (given each individual’s earnings)
These factors can greatly impact divorce proceedings; you should know that judges and attorneys will consider them as they make a decision regarding how much each spouse will get. Keep in mind you may feel some level of vengeance toward your former spouse, so each of you may feel the need to make the process take longer and be more painful. In the end this will only hurt both of you — the longer it takes, the more you’ll spend on attorney’s fees, which only serves to leave you with less money in the end, so consider your moves carefully.
What factors will a Louisiana judge consider when determining custody?
If you and your spouse had children together, the attorneys and judge will consider the custody and visitation of those minor children. There are extenuating circumstances that come into play in some situations, but if you and your former spouse can work together to find a custody and visitation schedule that works for both of you, your attorneys can present your agreement to the judge. That way, you’ll save time in court and money on attorney’s fees.
If you’re unable to come to any consensus on these matters, the family law judge may consider the following factors in his decision, as they apply to the particulars of your situation:
- The parents’ ability and willingness to care for the child
- The child’s needs and wants (taking into account their age and maturity level)
- Parents’ relationships with their children
- Parents’ behaviors
- Parents’ physical proximity to each other’s permanent residences
Louisiana courts will consider all relevant factors in determining the best interest of the child.
(1) The love, affection, and other emotional ties between each party and the child.
(2) The capacity and disposition of each party to give the child love, affection, spiritual guidance and to continue the education and rearing of the child.
(3) The capacity and disposition of each party to provide the child with basic material needs.
(4) The length of time the child has lived in a stable, adequate environment, and the desirability of maintaining continuity of that environment.
(5) The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes.
(6) The moral fitness of each party, insofar as it affects the welfare of the child.
(7) The mental and physical health of each party.
(8) The home, school, and community history of the child.
(9) The reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of sufficient age to express a preference.
(10) The willingness and ability of each party to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the child and the other party.
(11) The distance between the respective residences of the parties.
(12) The responsibility for the care and rearing of the child previously exercised by each party.
How does Louisiana calculate child support?
Most states have a formula they use when calculating a proposed judgment for child support. This includes Louisiana and you can find out more about the elements that factor into it at http://www.dss.state.la.us/ or ask your New Orleans family law attorney for more information. Generally, a guideline calculation takes into consideration the following:
- Parents’ incomes
- Number of children and their ages
- Costs, including healthcare and daycare
What affects alimony in Louisiana?
In some cases, a spouse may not be eligible to receive alimony, for example if they committed adultery and the adultery was at least a contributing factor in the divorce. If that’s not a factor in your divorce, the family law judge will consider other elements, including:
- duration of the marriage
- each spouse’s income history
- earning potential
- child custody
Call a New Orleans Family Law Attorney Today!
Candice Bennatt will help guide you through this challenging time in your life. At this time, you should have someone to stand by you and fight for what you deserve; she will work hard to do all of that. Contact her today at (504) 777-3500.