Family Law

Family Law

Is it Hard to Get Divorced in Arkansas?

Posts like this make me fondly remember the days when the Huffington Post actually had interesting things to say. (They don’t anymore.) The article is titled “The Five Best and Worst States for Getting a Divorce,” and while I’ll agree the title is interesting, that’s about all that’s interesting about it. According to the author, Arkansas tops the list of…

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Civil Law, Family Law

Can You Serve Someone Through Facebook?

Apparently so—at least in New York. Here’s the gist of the story from the Socially Aware blog: In a little-noticed decision, Matter of Noel v. Maria, Support Magistrate Gregory L. Gliedman—a Staten Island, New York family court official—recently permitted a father seeking to modify his child support payments to serve process on the child’s mother by sending her a digital…

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Family Law

The One Question a Family Lawyer Must Ask

Questions are underrated. Whether in law or business or relationships or whatever, if you can ask really good questions, you have a lot of power. You’ll get the right information you need to make the right decision—and making the right decisions about the questions that matter most is pretty much the key to success in anything. There are books on…

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Family Law

The Quick, Easy, and Cheap Arkansas Divorce

I talk to a lot of people who need divorces. Everyone wants them to be quick and easy, and most want them to be cheap. To that end, many of these people don’t have much money and want advice about whether they can complete their divorce without an attorney. As it turns out, many of them, frankly, don’t need me…

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Family Law

Grandparent Visitation in Arkansas

  If you want to understand the law, you have to understand this: It’s about striking a balance between competing interests (or rights, as the case may be). The law surrounding grandparent visitation in Arkansas is an excellent example of how this balance works—and why achieving this balance can be so difficult. On one hand, you have parents and their…

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Family Law

Common Law Marriage in Arkansas?

One of the worst parts of my job is that I often have to be the bearer of bad news. Recently, a woman called my office for information about receiving some of her partner’s retirement benefits. She was convinced that because she had lived with her partner for nineteen years, she had a “common law marriage” and should be treated…

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Family Law

How to Establish Paternity

I talk to a lot of dads—many of whom have fathered children outside of marriage. When they ask about their rights (How to set up visitation, Can I keep the mother from moving away, etc.), they are inevitably surprised to learn that they have virtually no rights. Until they go to court and establish paternity, they are about as important…

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Family Law

What is a "Transparenting Class?"

The divorce and child custody process always requires one to navigate two important policy concerns: 1) We don’t want people to have to jump through unnecessary hoops to get divorced. 2) Most people need help in working together to co-parent. There’s no clear answer to this conundrum, but the legislature’s answer is at at least workable: Ark. Code Ann. §…

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Family Law

Emancipation in Arkansas

I haven’t done a formal survey, but there seems to be a lot of interest in minors getting rid of their parents. Unfortunately, however, there doesn’t seem to be much clarity about the details. Perhaps this will help. What is Emancipation? The term “emancipation” is broadly used by Arkansas courts to describe either a) the date upon which one turns…

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Family Law

Covenant Marriage: Why or Why Not?

As an Evangelical Christian who practices family law, I am often caught in a tenuous place when it comes to marriage. On one hand, I strongly believe in an obvious “Plan-A”: people get married, love each other, and stay married forever. On the other, there are practical realities that I cannot change, namely that sometimes a marriage dies long before…

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