Personal injury law covers a wide spectrum of cases, from a drunk driver causing an accident to a loose dog biting a stranger in the park. The number of specific circumstances are endless. If you have recently been involved in a situation that you believe falls under personal injury law, the first step is becoming educated in the legal process and your rights. An attorney like those at Spooner and Associates can help guide you through the process, beginning with a free legal consultation.
Most parents financially support their children, through child support or other means. Unfortunately, there are some parents who do not take their obligations seriously and fail to provide for their children. Despite media reports about “deadbeat dads”, both parents can be guilty of neglecting their financial responsibilities. If you find yourself in a situation where you are left as the sole supporter of your child or children, the attorneys of Spooner & Associates can help.
We find that the failure to provide support typically occurs in two situations: 1) when there is no court order requiring support or 2) the non-supporting parent is violating a court’s order of support (a divorce order or other support order).
Mediating a divorce settlement can be an effective and efficient way to resolve your divorce action. For a mediation to be successful, it helps to put aside emotional and personal issues in order to come to terms with your spouse. Reaching a mediated settlement can speed up an otherwise lengthy litigation process. When both parties make an effort to give full disclosure and act cordially despite differences, mediation can be a helpful way to resolve your case. If a case does not get settled, a divorce litigation can turn into a boxing match with punches being thrown from both sides due to raw and unsettled feelings. In addition, it can hurt family members indirectly involved in the process.
When child support is set after a divorce, the court typically considers the incomes and financial situations of the parents at that time. In many instances, circumstances change as the children get older. For example, the children’s financial needs increase, the parents’ incomes change, the amount of time children spend with each parent changes, etc. When there is a change in any one of these situations, either parent can file for a child support modification. However, filing for a modification doesn’t necessarily mean the judge’s ruling will be in favor of the modification. The parent seeking child support modification must petition the court and prove that there has been a material and significant change of financial condition.
On July 1, 2014, new legislation (OCGA 33-24-53) went into effect in Georgia that prohibits attorneys and physicians from using “runners”to obtain prospective clients. A “runner” is someone that solicits business from accident victims or their families on behalf of unethical accident attorneys. “Runners” would obtain personal contact information from police accident reports or approach victims and families in hospital rooms, waiting areas or cafeterias. Runners may have also been unscrupulous employees of wrecker or ambulance companies.
These accident attorneys and their “runners” have given the legal profession a bad reputation, because they are the “ambulance chasers”. While hiring “runners” has been unethical and a violation of Georgia bar rules for some time, It is now a crime in Georgia for attorneys to use “runners” to solicit clients. In addition, the new law provides additional protections for your personal information in police records of car accidents.
Divorce can be hard on a family, especially when kids are involved. Between one parent moving out, custody battles and getting used to a new home situation, children can feel lost and confused when it’s all said and done. Finding ways to connect with your children throughout the divorce proceedings and after is important for their health and happiness. Whether you have the kids full time or just on weekends, having quality time together and making fun memories is a great way to make your kids feel more comfortable in spite of familial changes. There are countless things to do in Georgia that are perfect for spending quality time with the kids. Not sure where to start? We’ve done the legwork for you and have found some of the most exciting things to do in the Suwanee area in our list below.
In Georgia, there are several types of restraining orders. The two most common are Temporary Protective Orders (TPO) and Mutual Restraining Orders (MRO). While both are called restraining orders, they are used in very different situations.
At Spooner & Associates, we encounter MROs frequently. This type of restraining order is often put in place automatically in the event of a divorce, custody modification or other domestic action. Mutual restraining orders are used to keep the status quo between the parties. For example, most MROs provide that neither party can cancel health or auto insurance policies, sell marital assets, or remove the children from the county, state, or country.
Alimony, or spousal support, was a concept originally implemented when employment options for women were more limited. After a divorce, men were responsible for their ex-wives support. Now, alimony in Georgia and other states is maintained to protect economic fairness in the event of divorce. Understanding how alimony in Georgia is awarded and what types are available is important when discussing divorce proceedings.
A post-divorce checklists offer a way to organize all the to-dos that come after a divorce is finalized. A divorce decree is unfortunately not the last step in your divorce process. There are a number of different agencies that must be contacted with your name changes, insurance policies will likely need to be adjusted, loans, and all other joint efforts must be addressed quickly to save you trouble in the future.
- Social Security Card: If your name was changed in the process of the divorce you’ll need to contact the Social Security Administration to update your card and file with them.
The process of divorce is a complicated one. Navigating it alone is not easy, which is why hiring a divorce attorney should be a priority. To find a divorce lawyer, you’ll need to do your research. Here are a few suggestions from the attorneys of Spooner & Associates.
- Ask around: Contact people in your community who have used a divorce attorney and ask them about their experiences. Often the best source is a friend or neighbor. The more information you have about an attorney before meeting him or her, the better.
- Search online: The internet can be a valuable resource for finding an attorney near you, but you should have an open mind. Nice websites and good reviews reflect positively on a law firm. Negative reviews can also provide some insights. However, given the anonymous nature of reviews, negative comments could have been posted by a person that the firm had success against. You should also browse the attorney’s website to learn more about the attorney’s background. At this point, you may want to make contact with an attorney to discuss their experience with family law, typical clients, as well as general rates, both hourly and a retainer. Use this information to narrow down the field.
- Schedule a consultation: Find your divorce lawyer by meeting a few, face-to-face. Some consultations are free of charge and provide a great opportunity to ask many questions. Good questions to ask include: