I was asked today, what is family law and what does a family law attorney do?
Family law includes pretty much anything and everything that has to do with the family as it relates to the law. Think of marriage relationships and parent child relationships and grandparent relationships. Anytime there is something that happens with regards to those rights, a family law attorney is where you need to go.
Some of the more common things that people think about when they think of family law is:
Child Visitation Rights
DCFS cases (Utah Department of Child and Family Services)
Domestic Violence cases
and Restraining Orders.
All of these main types of cases exist in the family law arena. Now, there are other types of cases that we do that include family law, these are just the main areas and those that you will hear about all the time.
Think of divorce cases. There are also what we call annulment cases. A divorce is when a married couple dissolves the bands of matrimony that bind the couple together legally. In essence you have to go to court and the court, by a Decree of Divorce will terminated or end the marriage. As a part of divorce, the court will divide assets and debts, if there are minor children, address what is in the best interests of the children as it relates to custody and parent time. The court will address all of the other corresponding issues relating to the marriage in a divorce case.
However, an annulment is different than divorce. An annulment is when we have the court declare the marriage null and void. Meaning that the parties technically were never married. It undoes the marriage in reverse. Legally speaking if your marriage is annulled, then it is just like you were never married. Your legal status would be “single” and not “divorced.” Depending on the facts of your case, you may or may not want to get divorced and you may prefer an annulment. Not everyone can qualify for an annulment, so it is best to speak with a competent family law attorney to discuss this type of situation.
Here is a video that discusses annulment:
As to the other areas of law, I hope to address each one in detail in a future blog post. The most important thing you need to know is that if you need legal help in your family, you should call a Utah attorney who regularly does family law. Our law firm has several competent attorneys who are in court each week doing these types of cases. Families are the most important things to us – it makes sense you’d want to do whatever you can to protect your family and your loved-ones.
For more information about Divorce, Child Custody, Child Visitation Rights, Grandparents’ Rights, Adoptions, Guardianship, DCFS cases , Domestic Violence cases or Restraining Orders. Please give me a call. I’m more than happy to help you and your family to the best of my ability –
Thanks for visiting –
Michael R. Anderson, JD