Affordable Washington Family Law Attorneys
Legal issues involving families are some of the most difficult and emotionally-charged problems to resolve, even more so when children are involved. At Affordable Family Law Center, our goal is to minimize the emotional damage caused by a split in the family.
Our dedicated attorneys help all of our clients seek resolutions that consider not only the welfare of the parents, but also that of any involved.
Within family law we handle cases pertaining to:
- Divorce/Legal separation
- Child Custody
- Child Support
- Parenting Plans
- Meretricious/Intimate committed relationships
- Equitable Division of Property
- Non-Parental Custody
Read the sections below or visit our click the title links for more information about how Affordable Family Law Center can help you and your family solve your legal problems.
Divorce and Legal Separation
When two people get married, they form a legal bond that is recognized as a community entity in the state of Washington. So when a couple gets divorced, their shared benefits such as community ownership of their home, cars, trucks, motorcycle, health insurance, real estate and other personal properties are also splintered. However, in the case of legal separation the parties may be able to maintain benefits, such as joint health insurance. Is divorce or legal separation the more appropriate choice for you and your spouse? Speaking with a qualified Washington divorce lawyer can help answer all your questions.
Affordable Family Law Center recognizes that for most parents, the needs and welfare of their children come first. In many circumstances, child custody can transform into one of the most contentious issues when parents decide to go their separate ways, even if they both have the intent to keep everything amicable. Minor disagreements about the time and place of a child exchange can devolve into major issues about holidays and vacations. Unfortunately, in most cases the damage of changing the family structure has already been done. But having an attorney skilled in negotiation both in and out of the courtroom can help you find solutions to these emotional and logistical challenges.
If the parent who holds custody over the children decides to make a move out of state, the non-custodial parent has rights to object to the move if he or she believes that staying will be in the child’s best interests. The parent intending to relocate must provide proper notification to the other parent, generally 60 days before the intended move. At this point the other parent has 30 days to file either an Objection to Intended Relocation form or a Modification of Parenting Plan form.
The lawyers at Affordable Family Law Center are highly experienced in Washington relocation laws, and have skillfully handled many cases over the years. If your child’s other parent is attempting to relocate or you are wishing to take your children out of state, contact us today to discuss your situation in a free phone consultation.
Child support is often tagged as being an unnecessary obligation, a means for the other party to take money that he or she is not entitled to or even as a weapon to be used against the other person. In reality, child support is essential to ensuring the needs of the child or children are being met, and to make sure that they have all the necessary resources to lead a healthy and fulfilling life following a stressful and difficult change in the family. At Affordable Family Law Center, we embrace the true nature of child support and will help you get the support you need for your children to grow and thrive. Our attorneys are experienced in establishing child support and support modifications, and will provide our best work at a reasonable price for you and your family.
Meretricious and Intimate Committed Relationships
If you have been living with a significant other for a substantial amount of time, designated this person as your domestic partner, blended your money into a joint or shared account, share joint credit cards and/or other forms of debt, purchased property with this person and/or have children together, you may meet the criteria for what Washington state recognizes as an intimate committed relationship (formerly known as a meretricious relationship). Certain laws apply to these defined relationships in case of a split, in which the courts may be able to help compensate you for the losses that might accompany the end of a serious long-term relationship.
General Tip: If you have joint financial accounts or if you or a family member makes a large contribution to something, say, the purchase of a house, you should document the transfer of money. Even a photocopied thank-you note that is signed by both parties acknowledging the exchange of the funds can help you in the event the relationship ends.
Children Outside of Marriage
When children are born outside of marriage, your status as “parent” is already established if you are the biological or adoptive parent of the child. However, if your bond to the child is based more on a long-term commitment of acting as a parent, it’s possible to petition the courts and gain legal recognition as the “de facto” parent for that child. The criteria for determining a de facto parent is complicated, so it’s best to have a conversation with an attorney to determine if you or another person might qualify for such recognition.
General Tip: Motherhood is determined by giving birth to or adopting a child. Fatherhood, or “paternity” is generally established by being married on or around the time of the child’s birth, adoption, court action or an affidavit of agreement, such as a paternity test or agreement between parties.
Division of Property, Assets and Debts Outside of Marriage
If you and your significant other are not married but have purchased different types of property (a house, cars, boat, RV, household items, items of other significant value, etc.) together, or have shared in his or her retirement or benefits earned during the time of the relationship, the courts may be able to help you retain some of these assets in the event the relationship ends. Call Affordable Family Law Center to discuss your situation in a free phone consultation, and we’ll go over your options together.
Offering Flat Fee Cases
We are very aware of the extreme costs that family legal issues can bring. As a result we offer a flat fee system that is flexible to your needs in many circumstances, making it easier for you to have an attorney help protect your rights. You should never have to abandon your rights or the rights of your children because the price tag for suitable representation is unreasonably high.
Get Started With a Free Phone Consultation
Affordable Family Law Center has assisted families with life-changing legal family issues since 2003. Our attorneys are practiced in various aspects of Washington family law, and whether you’re facing a divorce or legal separation or are dealing with child custody, child support or relocation struggles, we can help. Along with our free phone consultations, we offer inexpensive flat fee programs for most situations. Supporting your family and seeking legal help shouldn’t break the bank or your spirits – call Affordable Family Law Center today to get started.