Beverly L. Brennan, P.A. Attorney & Counsellor At law Naples Florida

239.963.8895 | 1.877.482.5176

3033 Riviera Drive, Suite 202 Naples, FL 34103

┬ęPhillip C. Wilkerson

Helping families and individuals since 1986
Helping families and individuals since 1986

Naples Family Law Blog

Talking with your child about custody issues

From back child support to raising the topic of divorce with your marital partner, family law can be challenging for families in different ways. However, some people find that matters which involve their children, such as a custody dispute or child support, are particularly tough. Moreover, family law matters can be especially hard on children, which is why you should try to ease any concerns your child has. Our law firm knows the different ways in which children can be affected by divorce, custody rulings, and other family law outcomes, which is why we believe it is essential for parents to firmly grasp an understanding of their rights and strive for healthy outcomes for their children.

Often, parents find that talking to children about these topics can be tricky, particularly with young children. Having said that, there are different strategies that could prove helpful. For example, a parent might be able to relieve some of the concerns their children have by thoroughly answering any questions their children present and doing their best to reassure children that they will continue to be loved. With family law, it is crucial to bear in mind that no two cases are identical, so an individual approach is necessary and parents should remember that the unique needs and concerns that their children have need to be addressed.

Establishing paternity in Florida

Children who are born to an unwed mother in Florida do not have a father who is legally recognized. In these situations paternity, or legal fatherhood, should be established for a number of reasons that are beneficial to both the child and the dad.

According to TX Access, the benefits related to determining paternity include:  

  • The child knows who the father is and is legally connected to him
  • Access to the medical history of the father's family
  • Establishes rights to inheritance or death benefits
  • The birth certificate includes the father's name
  • Potential health insurance coverage through father's insurance

Don't miss out on special days with your child

Sitting down to make a parenting plan with the child's other parent could be an emotional strain. However, Mom and Dad are likely to be better off putting aside their differences and focusing on the task as a team. The Florida Courts warn that when parents are not able to create a time-sharing agreement on their own, the matter is placed in the hands of a Florida judge, instead. 

Although most people immediately bring up Christmas, Thanksgiving and major school breaks when working on their parenting plan agreement, CustodyXChange points out that it is important to widen the scope of the holiday schedule discussion. Parents should come prepared with more than just a short-list of the year's major celebrations. They should also be ready to divide the following three-day weekends:

  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Presidents Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Labor Day
  • Columbus Day

What you need to know about Florida alimony laws

If you are considering divorce, you are probably concerned with how the split will affect you financially. You will no longer have your husband's wages to pay the bills or other living expenses. Furthermore, since you have not worked for many years so that you could focus on managing the household and raising the children, you may have difficulties finding a job that pays enough for you to support yourself. In addition, you might experience a drastic change in the lifestyle you are accustomed to living.

While a fair settlement will give you access to a substantial amount of assets, most of them are not liquid. This means that it will either take a significant amount of time to sell off the property or convert it to cash. In addition, converting some assets, such as retirement accounts, to cash come with heavy penalties and tax liabilities that you will have to pay, further reducing the amount of money you will have available to support yourself. On the bright side, you might be able to receive alimony, or spousal support, from your soon-to-be ex-husband. Read below to find out more about alimony laws in Florida.

Infidelity, emotions and divorce

Couples make the decision to terminate their marriage for diverse reasons. Sometimes, two people are simply incompatible, while others may decide to split up as a result of infidelity. Divorce can generate strong emotions, especially in cases where one person cheated on the other. However, it is very important for those going through this to do what they can to find a favorable outcome. Often, this involves keeping emotions in check and trying to stay cool during the divorce process. At the Law Offices of Beverly L. Brennan, we know this can be quite hard for some couples in Florida.

If your spouse cheated on you, or if you have been accused of infidelity by your spouse, there may be different emotional hurdles you find yourself facing. From anger to depression and an incredible amount of stress, divorce can be tough, especially when it involves allegations of infidelity. If at all possible, you could be able to help your case and improve your chances of an end result that is in your best interests by managing your emotions well. Unfortunately, anger and other emotions can get in the way of the divorce process and further complicate things.

Looking at divorce from a woman's perspective

Whether you are a woman who is facing divorce-related challenges or you are preparing to split up with your female spouse, it could be helpful to look at divorce from a woman's perspective. During a divorce, all sorts of emotions can arise and people may experience or worry about financial problems, difficulties with children, relocation and a host of other matters. At the Law Offices of Beverly L. Brennan, we know how tricky it can be for people to work through the divorce process and other legal issues involving family law.

Sometimes, there are unique circumstances that can make divorce even more difficult for women. For example, a pregnant woman may have a particularly hard time during a divorce because of the uncertainty it may generate or because of challenges she is facing due to pregnancy. Or, a mother may be granted custody of her children, but the non-custodial parent may refuse to pay child support, which could cause financial havoc.

What are the penalties for back child support?

From custody disputes to property distribution, the end of a marriage can be challenging in different ways. Sometimes, non-custodial and custodial parents run into hurdles related to child support. In Naples, and all over the state of Florida, it is essential for parents to do what they can to resolve child support issues appropriately. On the one hand, a custodial parent may be experiencing financial difficulties because they are not receiving the child support they are owed. On the other, a non-custodial parent may be unable to pay what they owe, which could lead to harsh penalties.

According to the United States Department of Justice, there are harsh penalties for failing to pay child support. Typically, child support cases are handled at the local and state level. However, there are certain times when unpaid child support leads to federal prosecution. For example, if someone owes more than $10,000 or has two years' worth of back child support, they may face felony charges. On top of financial penalties, they could be sentenced to prison for two years.

Back-to-school and working through divorce

Parents encounter an array of challenges involving their children, but back-to-school season can be especially difficult. For those who are in the middle of a divorce, this time of year can be even more complicated. As a result, if you are a parent it is pivotal for you to prepare yourself and your child for some of the hurdles that may arise when it comes to divorce during back-to-school season. We understand the unique challenges that parents in this position may face.

From buying clothes to purchasing school supplies and preparing your child mentally, there are many different reasons why it can be stressful when you and your child are preparing for school to start up again. However, if you and your spouse are ending your marriage, this can have an additional impact on your child, so it is important to speak with him or her about the changes that will come. By trying to ease your child’s concerns and make them feel more comfortable, you may be able to reduce the emotional toll of divorce, which is especially important when they are trying to adjust to a new schedule because classes have returned.

4 tips for putting your kids first and reining in your emotions

Divorce can be hard. You may argue with your ex. You may fight. You may hate each other. It happens.

The problem, though, is when that spills over and impacts your children. Remember, you and your spouse are still going to be parents even when the divorce is finalized. Nothing changes that, and it's important to put your kids first.

Can ending my marriage affect my taxes?

Whether you are worried about paying spousal support or child support, are unsure of how your marital property will be split up, or are afraid that you will not be able to spend enough time with your child, divorce can bring all sorts of questions and worries. Moreover, there are other divorce-related matters that you should realize. For example, splitting up with your spouse could result in a number of tax-related changes.

The Internal Revenue Service states that there are various ways divorce can affect your taxes. After you split up with your spouse, you may change your last name. In order to avoid your tax refund from being delayed, it is pivotal for you to make sure the Social Security Administration has your correct name. Moreover, if you receive spousal support, you need to pay taxes on it. On the other hand, you will be able to deduct spousal support payments that you make. Child support, however, is not deducted or taxed.