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Author: Tessmer Law Firm

Just like physicians, attorneys specialize in different areas of practice where it pertains to the law. An attorney who specializes in criminal matters may not be the best choice for a family law matter, and vice versa. An experienced divorce attorney will have knowledge about asset protection and the issues that are likely to be important in your situation, such as child and spousal support and division of marital property. Sometimes clients believe that the best lawyer is one that is “tough” or “ruthless”. The truth is, your lawyer is your advocate and is hired to represent you to the...

Certain issues are more likely to present themselves in a divorce that is dealing with a large marital estate, such as: Business valuations; Determining the worth of assets such as stock options, art or antiques; Division of a business or professional practice; Division of investments and retirement plans; Tax implications and property settlements; Accurately accounting for and exposing any hidden income or diverted assets; and Evaluating standards of living to determine child and/or spousal support. ...

Generally, a high asset or high net worth divorce means exactly that: one or both parties have a net worth over a certain threshold. The exact figure varies with opinion, but for us it is one million dollars ($1,000,000.00). This figure can consist of the total worth of several different things: cash, investments, property, businesses, or other assets....

What is a high asset divorce? Isn’t it the same as a regular divorce?   A high asset divorce is just like any divorce in many ways. No divorce is pleasant, regardless of the terms or circumstances. No matter the amount of assets, in a divorce they still must be equitably split. If there are children, arrangements for custody, visitation and child support must still be made. In any divorce, couples find that they agree on some things, but not on others. Consulting an attorney is well worth the time. Good legal advice pays for itself many times over. In a high...

The severity of a child’s disabilities can vary greatly. In some cases, the child’s disabilities are so extreme that there will be no debate, even if the child is still very young, about the continuing need for support after the child becomes an adult. In that event, child support is likely to be ordered to continue indefinitely. It will be up to the obligor to seek a court order terminating support in the event the child/adult becomes capable of self-support.   However, it is not always possible to determine whether the child will need support beyond the completion of high school. If...

Medical treatments and therapies are often part of the daily routine for parents who have a child with a disability. For children with medical conditions such as cerebral palsy, orthopedic impairments, or serious health conditions, critical decisions include obtaining ongoing medical care, administering medication, making periodic appointments with health care professionals to monitor physical conditions, and granting consent to invasive procedures. Because needed medical services may be more frequent and involve additional expense, parents need to agree about who makes decisions involving invasive procedures, how each parent is included in the decision-making process, and how information is shared when needed...

Divorcing parents of special needs children should determine which parent will make educational decisions, or how disagreements between the parents will be resolved.   Children with disabilities should be afforded the same opportunities as children without disabilities when it involves educational programming and the ability to be as independent as possible. Families often struggle to overcome barriers that serve to exclude a child with a disability in school and social settings. To promote inclusion, parents must work together to seek opportunities for the child to participate in school and social events.   The task of finding appropriate educational supports is often a challenge for...

Divorcing parents of special needs children require customized visitation agreements that address transitions between homes.   If you do not know, for example, that transitions can be very difficult for persons with autism, you would not understand why a visitation schedule in which the child sleeps in one parent’s house for a couple days and then the other parent’s house for a couple days would be a nightmare for this child. If the lawyers and judge do not realize that a 200 pound teenager with cerebral palsy requires special lifting and transfer equipment which is only located at one parent’s house, a...

Every year, parents of a million American children get divorced. This is most difficult for children with special needs. When custody and support orders involve children with special needs, decisions regarding “the best interests of the child” become even more complex.   Clients who have children with special needs should focus on resolving certain critical issues, some of which we will discuss this week at our Tessmer Tips blog.   Our attorneys and staff have experience dealing with cases that involve special needs children, including divorce and guardianship. If we can assist you with additional information please contact us at 210-368-9708.  ...

#1 - Secure several Certified Copies of your Final Decree.  Review all paperwork carefully with your attorney and be sure you understand all that is required of you in the final agreement.   #2 - Take care to change any personal and/or financial information needed.  For example: open new checking and savings accounts, update any automatic payments taken from your accounts, change your passwords to all online accounts and your email, open a new safety deposit box in your name only.   #3 - Revoke any Powers of Attorney naming your ex and make new ones.  Create a new Estate Plan (Will, Medical Directives,...