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St. Louis Missouri Legal Blog

An uncontested divorce still deserves careful consideration

Ending a marriage without fighting about who gets what -- is that possible? Yes, actually it is. In fact, numerous couples in Missouri file uncontested marriage dissolutions every year. Don't be fooled by how easy and simple it sounds, though. An uncontested divorce still deserves careful consideration before you sign those papers.

You've done it. You and your spouse decided to go your separate ways and even worked out a settlement that you both feel is fair. Congratulations! That is not a feat that everyone can accomplish. Before you file, though, you may want to consider having an attorney look over everything first.

A closer look at gray divorce

It’s a constantly changing world. That doesn’t change in retirement. Technology and jobs are always changing – even marital status is subject to change at any time in life. Recent years have shown a grown in “gray divorce,” a term for divorce among couples over the age of 50.

There are unique challenges to divorce the closer one gets to retirement. Children tend to be adults, assets have more value and retirement plans are on the horizon. While 50-plus divorce has grown, it’s still half the rate of younger couples, according to a report by the Institute for Family Studies (IFS). It’s more common now than it was in 1990, but is still only about one percent of marriages over the age of 50.

What types of child custody are recognized in Missouri?

When going through a divorce that involves children, it can be a challenge to figure out which custody arrangement will work best. Every family is different, so what works for one may not necessarily work for another. Thankfully, Missouri recognizes various types of child custody arrangements so that every family can put together a plan that works specifically for them.

There are four basic types of child custody that are recognized by the state: physical, legal, sole and joint. Physical custody refers to with whom a child will reside. Legal custody, on the other hand, refers to a parent's decision making powers. When sole custody is awarded, only one parent will be given physical and legal custody. In joint custody situations, however, both parents will be given equitable access to their child, and share in raising and making important life decisions for their child.

Claiming gut fermentation syndrome as a DUI criminal defense

Can a person's blood alcohol level rise without consuming alcohol? Can a person be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol even if he or she has not had a drop of an impairing substance? Apparently the answer to both of these questions is yes. How is this possible? What criminal defense options are open to Missouri residents who find themselves in such situations?

Gut fermentation syndrome, also known as auto-brewery syndrome, is a medical condition that researchers are still trying to figure out. A person with this disorder produces far more yeast than the body needs. The excess is then fermented in the gut and turned ethanol. This in turn causes the blood alcohol level to rise on its own.

Divorce season is coming once again

According to a study, in March and August there is a spike in marriage dissolution filings. With June practically done, that means there is only one more month until more couples in Missouri and across the country take the plunge and file for divorce. Is that really true? Is there such a thing as divorce season?

Researchers at a leading university fully believe that there is such a thing as divorce season. While their findings are specific to their northwestern state, after looking at numbers in other states, they believe this to be a trend nationwide. March and August simply see more divorce filings than other months of the year. Why?

How can a family law attorney help with adoption?

You did it! You made the decision to grow your family through adoption. This is an admirable choice, one that will forever change your life and the life of a child. Now, how do you get started? This is where a Missouri family law attorney may be able to help.

You would think that because there are so many children who need good homes and loving parents, the adoption process would be pretty simple. Unfortunately, this is not the case. There is so much more to it than filling out paperwork and waiting for the right child. Caseworkers get involved, and you will have to endure home studies, court hearings and even have to part with a good sum of money -- among other things.

Can I get my child support payments reduced?

Years ago, when you were going through your divorce, you agreed to pay a certain amount of money for child support. There was no argument – financially supporting your children was a no-brainer. The courts determined the amount based on the standard calculations. You’ve never missed a payment, and you’ve never felt resentful about paying it. You love your kids, and they deserve it.

Recently, though, you’ve found yourself under different circumstances. The company you’d been with for your entire career restructured, and your position was eliminated. After some time spent without a job, you finally found one – but the salary is nowhere near what you were making previously. The last thing you want to do is take money away from your children, but you can’t afford to make ends meet right now.

Let a criminal defense attorney help you fight repeat DUI charges

Do you have more than one DUI on your record? If you are convicted of another one, you could face severe penalties. Repeat DUI offenses are not something that the state of Missouri takes lightly. Let a criminal defense attorney help you fight for the best possible outcome.

Why are DUI offenses treated so harshly? Too many people are injured or lose their lives in drunk or drugged driving accidents every year. In an effort to reduce the number of people negatively affected by such behavior, tough laws and strict penalties have been put in place.

The economically struggling can benefit from divorce protections

To be young and in love -- it can be a great thing. When the topic of marriage comes up, there are a lot of things to discuss. Potential divorce and protecting assets should be on that list. Unfortunately, for most couples in Missouri and elsewhere, these two topics get overlooked.

When one is young and struggling economically, a prenuptial agreement is not likely at the top of one's list of important things to have. Most people think that these documents are only meant for the wealthy. This is not true, however. Anyone, even the young and broke couples in the world, can benefit from prenuptial agreements.

Let your divorce attorney help you deal with an oppressive spouse

Whether your reside in Missouri or elsewhere, working to dissolve your marriage can be a difficult task, especially if your spouse is being a bully throughout the process. Sadly, this happens a lot. You do not have to face an oppressive spouse alone, though. Your divorce attorney can help you take the steps necessary to deal with the behavior and still seek a fair and balanced dissolution settlement.

Not much about the divorce process is easy. It is emotionally challenging to get through, and this does not tend to bring out the good in people. Stress and anger often wins over thinking logically. This can turn even the nicest individual into a bully and can make an already oppressive spouse act out even more than usual. This is why having legal counsel at one's side is so important.

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