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Punta Gorda Family Law Blog

Florida residents won't learn more about Abedin/Weiner divorce

High profile political couple Huma Abedin and Anthony Weiner have made headlines for many years. The couple was recently in the news over their decision to withdraw their divorce petition. While many Florida readers may be shocked at that news, the withdrawal is not an indication that the couple plans to reunite. The move is simply an attempt to secure a measure of privacy for their young son.

Once a respected congressman, Anthony Weiner has been the center of various sexting scandals dating back many years. His long-suffering wife, Huma Abedin, stood by his side through many of those scandals, even after Weiner admitted wrongdoing. Most recently, Weiner was sentenced to a 21 month prison sentence for sending sexually charged messages to a teenage girl.

The importance of following the rules in Florida courts

Parents faced with contentious child custody cases are often highly emotional. It can be easy to let those emotions take over, but it's very important to try and avoid that outcome. Emotion tends to easily overpower reason, and that's when things can quickly take a turn for the worst, especially for Florida parents who take their custody battles before a court of law. 

An example is found in a man from another state who now faces prison time after he decided to break the rules in a county courthouse. During a child custody conference with his former wife, he decided to use his cell phone to record the meeting. There were signs posted in the area stating that cell phone use was not permitted. 

3 important considerations when getting a late-in-life divorce

Divorcing is difficult at any age, but there are unique concerns when you separate in your senior years. Ending your marriage later in life, often referred to as a gray divorce, has specific implications on your emotions, finances and property.

U.S. News states that the divorce rate for people 50 and older doubled from 1990 to 2010. If you are considering calling it quits, here are some things you should know before you head to divorce court:

Questions on tax changes? Ask a spousal support law firm

Most Florida residents are aware of the recently passed Republican tax bill. Some of those changes will go into effect in the new year, while others have a delayed start. One of the biggest changes in the new tax structure is the fact that spouses who pay alimony will soon lose the ability to deduct those payments from their taxable income. That is expected to change the focus of a spousal support law firm in order to offset tax losses. 

Currently, spouses who pay spousal support are allowed to deduct that expense from their taxable income. That means lower taxes on their end, while the receiving spouse is expected to claim spousal support as income. The receiving spouse, therefore, has a larger tax obligation than he or she would have if alimony was not a factor. 

Divorce is not the only time a child custody battle may arise

Not every Florida parent facing contentious disputes regarding who should have custody of his or her children happens to be married. In fact, sometimes, child custody battles involve two parents who were never married to each other but have one or more children together. Rising NBA star Bryn Forbes' current situation is an example of this.

The 24-year-old basketball player is the father of two young boys. He is not (and never was) married to the boys' mother. The 25-year-old mother wants her children to live with her; however, they are currently residing in another state with their father.

A family law attorney can help when divorcing a narcissist

Many spouses are difficult, especially during the course of a divorce. There are some instances, however, when a Florida spouse is a clinical narcissist. Divorcing a narcissistic spouse is an even more harrowing experience, and one that can be improved by working with a skilled family law attorney

A narcissist is unable to see things from another person's point of view. He or she will go to great lengths to avoid taking any personal responsibility for the events that led to the end of the marriage and will not cooperate during the legal end of the union. Expect and prepare for an uphill battle. 

Florida parents lose custody based on religious beliefs?

In most child custody matters, parents can be certain that their religious beliefs and practices will not come into play. However, there are cases in Florida and elsewhere in which concerns over religious practice do play a role. An example is found in what may be the first child custody case in which one parent is accusing the other of indoctrinating a child into extremist Muslim beliefs.

The mother claims that, during the course of her marriage, her husband began embracing an extreme interpretation of their Muslim faith. He allegedly demanded that she wear traditional clothing and also planned to bring a second wife into their home. They divorced, and the man began spending time with his children during visitation periods.

Child custody attorney argues for same-sex parental rights

Florida readers will not be surprised to hear that another custody battle is underway involving same-sex parents. Although the Supreme Court legitimized same-sex marriage, matters of child custody and parental rights remain somewhat unsettled. A child custody attorney faces an uncertain outcome in these matters as families struggle with these difficult decisions.

In the case at hand, two women married and decided to use a sperm donor to bring their son into the world. When the relationship fell apart, the woman who gave birth to the boy took the position that she, and only she, had a right to parental status. What makes this case unique is the fact that the sperm donor was also afforded parental rights.

Should you keep the marital home in a divorce?

If you and your spouse are in a stalemate in your divorce, it is probably because you cannot decide on who should get the house. The marital home is arguably one of the biggest marital assets that many divorcing couples in the Punta Gorda area must split. It has more than just financial value. It is full of memories, and you have invested a lot of time, money and effort into it. 

You may not realize how much divorce changes things regarding the ownership of the home. It is important for you to consider the following issues about divorce and the marital home

A Florida child custody attorney can help you find solutions

If you are currently navigating or have recently gone through the divorce process in Florida, you are likely no stranger to challenge and stress. Depending on your individual circumstances, your experience may be somewhat benign or something akin to a living nightmare. Hopefully, it is the former, not the latter. In either case, a child custody attorney may be a great asset if the problems you are facing have to do with your new parenting plan.

If you and your former spouse are on fairly good terms, you may be able to devise your own parenting plan, merely seeking the court's approval once you have both agreed upon all the terms. If, on the other hand, you can barely speak to the other parent, it may be best to ask the court to intervene. A judge can decide who should have custody of your children, where they will spend their holidays and who, if anyone, will pay child support.