Family Law

  • Dissolution of Marriage – This action can be filed by a married person to end a marital relationship.
    • Summary Dissolution –  This action is very limited and can only be used by a married couple which meets the following requirements:
      • The parties have been maried less than five (5) years as of the date the action is filed.
      • The parties have no children together born before or during the marriage, including by adoption; and the wife, to her knowledge, is not pregnant as of the date the action is filed.
      • Neither party has any interest/ownership in real estate.
    • Divorce –  Along with restoring the parties to single status, the court will issue orders for custody and visitation of the minor children of the marriage, child support, spousal support, and confirm or divide community and separate property assets and debts.
  • Legal Separation – This action can be filed by a married person who wishes to maintain the marital status but separate and resolve all other issues of the marriage. The court will issue orders for custody and visitation of the minor children of the marriage, child support, spousal support, and confirm or award community and separate property assets and debts.
  • Nullity of Marriage – This action can be filed by a married person to restore the parties to the status of unmarried persons, as if they were never married. Certain conditions must be met before the court will consider the marriage as void or voidable. Regardless of how the case proceeds, the person who initiates the case, will have the burden to prove to the court that one of the conditions for nullity has been met before the court will grant the nullity of marriage. The court can also issue orders regarding property and debt division, custody and support.
  • Spousal support – Once an underlying action for dissolution or legal separation of marriage or domestic partnership has been filed, either spouse can ask the court to order spousal support. In limited situations, the court can order spousal support in a nullity action.
  • Child Support – If the parents are married, either the mother or the father must first file an action requesting a dissolution of marriage, legal separation, or nullity. If the parents are unmarried, either the mother or the father must file an action to establish the parental relationship.  There is no legal obligation to pay child support from one parent to the other until there is a court order.
  • Child Custody and Visitation – If the parents are married, either the mother or the father must first file an action requesting a dissolution of marriage, legal separation, or nullity. If the parents are unmarried, either the mother or the father must file an action to establish the parental relationship.