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Los Gatos divorce lawyer for child abuse claimsTragically, more than 2.9 million instances of child abuse are reported in the United States each year, and many more cases go unreported. For children, the long-term implications of abuse can go far beyond the physical harm they suffer. According to numerous studies, children who have faced some form of abuse are less likely to excel academically, socially, or psychologically as they get older. While it is crucial to always ensure the safety of a child first, it is also important to understand that some child abuse claims are false or fabricated. In family law cases involving child abuse, parents should be sure to work with a skilled attorney, whether they have been falsely accused of abuse or are looking to protect a child from an abuser. 

False Accusations 

A child abuse accusation can drastically impact a person’s life. Not only can these allegations lead to potential criminal consequences, but other areas of one’s life can be affected, including their reputation, their family relationships, and their ability to find or maintain employment. Unfortunately, many claims of child abuse are made during divorce. If separating parents are addressing child custody in court, the claim that one parent has committed abuse can have a huge impact on the decisions that are made. In some cases, a parent may make false claims of child abuse in hopes of swaying the court to decide in their favor, or they may do so in an attempt to punish the other parent and restrict their amount of time with the couple’s children.

In California, a report of suspected child abuse will be investigated by a social worker who will examine the evidence and speak to any involved parties. Upon completion of the investigation, the social worker will report one of three findings: unfounded (no abuse occurred), substantiated (abuse was more likely than not to have occurred), or inconclusive. A substantiated finding may result in criminal charges, and it will be considered by the court when making decisions about child custody and visitation. 

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Los Gatos divorce mediation attorney for financial issuesWhen a couple makes the difficult decision to pursue a divorce, unpacking the various complications and issues that must be addressed in order to dissolve the marriage can be incredibly challenging. From child custody to the division of marital assets, it should come as no surprise that many divorces result in heated disputes. However, it is possible to avoid lengthy and costly legal battles by using divorce mediation. Couples who choose this option are often able to reach a divorce settlement that meets their needs while avoiding the financial costs of litigation.

How Mediation Can Help You 

Pursuing mediation as a means of reaching a divorce settlement represents the most collaborative option possible. You and your former spouse will be able to work together to resolve the various issues surrounding the dissolution of your marriage. When it comes to finances, there are a number of reasons why mediation can be the best choice, primarily because mediation can expedite the divorce process, saving you a great deal of time and money. 

Mediation can also enable you and your ex-spouse to work together to address the financial aspects of your divorce. This process will allow you to maintain a greater level of organization, including determining a workable budget for your ongoing income and expenses and addressing the tax issues related to issues such as asset division and child custody. If necessary, the two of you can work with a tax accountant to determine the strategies that will minimize the total amount of taxes that you will each pay after the divorce is finalized. 

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Los Gatos, CA family law attorney for establishing paternityAccording to California law, paternity can be established through one of two legal avenues. In many cases, the parent will elect to sign a voluntary Declaration of Paternity. In other cases, a paternity test may be ordered by the court to determine the identity of a child’s biological father. Unfortunately, establishing paternity can be much more complicated than most would like to assume. In short, paternity means establishing that a person is the legal father of a child. 

In the state of California, paternity must be established through a legal process, and this must be completed before the courts can decide on issues such as child custody and child support. When addressing issues related to establishing paternity, it is important to hire a skilled attorney to assist you throughout the legal process. 

Complications in Paternity Cases 

While many people believe that establishing paternity is fairly straightforward, they are not entirely correct. Paternity cases can be incredibly complicated and difficult to resolve, depending on the circumstances of the birth and the relationship status of the parents. According to California state law, when a married couple (or a couple who have registered as domestic partners) has a baby, they are assumed to be the child’s parents, and they are automatically established as the legal parents at the time of the birth. However, if a couple is unmarried, the father has two options: to voluntarily sign a declaration of paternity or to request a paternity test. Generally speaking, it can be wise for an unwed father to request a DNA test, since signing a declaration of paternity has long-term implications regarding the responsibility to raise the child. 

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Los Gatos post-divorce enforcement lawyer

Separating from a spouse or partner can be emotionally challenging, but a separation or divorce can be even more difficult when it affects a parent’s relationship with their children. Because of this, issues related to child custody are often some of the most contentious matters involved in divorce cases. However, regardless of the decisions made about custody, one parent is often ordered to pay child support. These payments are meant to provide for a child’s needs, and if a parent is not meeting their court-ordered obligations, it is important to understand the legal options available to ensure that children receive the support they deserve. 

My Former Spouse Is Not Paying Child Support 

According to the Federal Government’s report on Custodial Mothers and Fathers and their Child Support, there are more than 13 million single custodial parents living throughout the United States. Just under half of those parents have an established child support agreement with their child’s other parent. Unfortunately, many custodial parents never actually receive the money their children are entitled to. According to the study, throughout 2016, less than 70% of all child support was actually received by the custodial parent. This means that many parents are failing to fully pay their child support obligations, or they are neglecting to pay them altogether. 

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Los Gatos, CA post-divorce changes attorney

When a couple chooses to end their marriage, the process of separating from each other can be incredibly complicated. The vast majority of couples do not only share a life together, but they also share assets, financial accounts, and, in many cases, children. Because of this fact, the decisions made during divorce can have a drastic impact on the lives of both parties. Most notably, decisions involving spousal support and child custody can be significant. However, these critical decisions are not always final. In cases in which one party’s situation has significantly changed, a person can pursue a post-divorce modification

Areas Considered for Modification 

When a substantial change in circumstances occurs for one or both divorced spouses, one spouse may elect to file for a petition for modification, asking the court to modify the divorce decree. The two most common areas in which these modifications are petitioned for are: 

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