Orlando Lawyer Answers Divorce Questions
Practicing Exclusively Family Law Since 2011
The Five Most Frequently Asked Divorce Questions
As you can imagine, an attorney practicing family law since 2003 has heard many questions about divorce. These are the five most frequent ones.
Divorce Question 1: I've Been Served a Divorce Petition. What Do I Do?
First, remember that your spouse mailing you the petition for dissolution of marriage (divorce), or even handing it to you does not constitute legal service. You must receive "legal service of process". Either a law enforcement officer or a neutral process server must physically deliver you a summons issued by the clerk of court in your county, along with the petition. If you were indeed served with a divorce petition, do not panic. You have twenty days from the date of service to file an answer, and if needed, a counter-petition.
Just call AAA Family Law and schedule your initial consultation. I will not only review what you have been served, but also discuss with you all of the pertinent issues in your divorce and determine what our case strategy will be. By the time you leave the consultation, you will know exactly what your litigation goals are and how we will reach them.
Divorce Question 2: Can I Change My Final Divorce Judgment?
Quite often, a former spouse or parent becomes unhappy with the terms of the final divorce judgment. He or she then hires a divorce lawyer to change it. Keep in mind though, that one's mere dissatisfaction with the final divorce judgment is not nearly enough to obtain a modification. Instead, the party requesting the modification must establish that a "substantial change in circumstances" has occurred since the final judgment.
A Florida family court will not retry your family court case after the final judgment or allow you to reconsider a one-sided settlement agreement. Unfortunately, in order to lure you as a client, some attorneys will manufacture substantial changes in circumstances in order to convince the prospective client that his or her case has merit.
You will never feel like you are shopping at a used car dealership at AAA Family Law. I do not tell my clients just what they want to hear. Instead, I honestly advise them on what realistic legal options are available to them.
However, if genuine substantial changes in circumstances have occurred since your final judgment, I will identify them, and explain how we can use them to obtain the modification or divorce terms such as alimony, child support and child custody that you are looking for.
Divorce Question 3: Can I See My Divorce Attorney When I Need To?
I will attempt to return all phone calls and e-mails from my clients by the end of the day, or if that is not possible, within twenty-four hours. One of the most common complaints about lawyers is their inaccessibility. When you hire AAA Family Law, not only will you receive trustworthy legal advice from an experienced Orlando, Florida divorce attorney, but you will also be informed of every development in your case .
Divorce Question 4: How Much Family Law Experience Do You Have?
I have practiced as a family law and divorce attorney since 2003 (and exclusively since 2011). During all that time, I have represented clients in over fifty trials, hundreds of mediations, countless pre-trial hearings, and dozens of depositions in divorce, domestic violence, paternity cases, alimony, child support modifications, time-sharing (or custody) disputes and dependency matters. I have even completed the appeal of twelve cases, some of them tried in family court by other lawyers.
In short, as a divorce attorney, I have helped clients navigate through every phase of the process, beginning at the initial consultation and ending at the trial or the appeal. While knowledge of the relevant statutes and case law is important, my courtroom experience provides me with insights into family law that many general practitioners lack.
Divorce Question 5: How Else Do You Assist Your Clients?
AAA Family Law represents clients in the Orlando and Central Florida area in family court cases of: (1) divorce, (2) paternity and custody disputes between unmarried parents, (3) the enforcement or modification of (a) child custody time-sharing, (b) child support and (c) alimony, arising from a divorce, (4) child support matters involving the Department of Revenue, (5) child dependency issues with the Department of Children and Family (DCF), (6) domestic violence injunctions, (7) prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, (8) adoptions by family members and (9) appeals of any of these cases to the Florida District Courts of Appeal from anywhere in Florida.
In the Orlando metro area, please, call Eduardo J. Mejias of AAA Family at (407) 260-6001 and schedule an initial 30-minute consultation. There is an hourly charge for additional consultation time. See Family Lawyer Retainer Fee.
At the consultation I will listen to you so as to understand your family law issues and develop a plan of action. I will then assess your situation realistically and not just tell you what you would like to hear. Then I will quote you a fixed attorney retainer fee in advance of signing any contract or making any payment.
Our attorney retainer fee for contested divorce cases up to the mediation stage ranges between $2,400 and $3,600 depending on its complexity. An additional retainer amount is set before the trial if the settlement is not achieved during mediation. For an uncontested divorce the fees range from $1,200 to $1,800.
Please read the range of attorney retainer fees charged by AAA Family Law for each type of case in Family Lawyer Retainer Fees.
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