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family law Archives

Understanding settlement conferences

In the past, if you and your spouse decided to get divorced in Montana, you had few options available to you besides going to court. However, due in part to the high costs involved in litigation, both in terms of time and money, as well as the desirability of maintaining cordial relations between spouses, alternative dispute resolution options are increasingly available to help you reach a divorce agreement. We at Cunningham Law Office understand that you may feel confused or overwhelmed by the choices available to you. In this article, we explain a term with which you may not be familiar: settlement conference.

When only one parent wants to modify the parenting plan

It is common for divorced parents in Montana to find that changing circumstances make their current parenting plan impossible to adhere to. However, the difficulties that arise for one parent may not be acknowledged by the other. Even when one parent does not agree to a change, the other can request that the court approve a modification to the original parenting plan. 

How a settlement conference may help you avoid family law court

People who are planning to take their family law case before a Montana court may worry that the judge will make a decision without fully understanding the facts. You may wonder if there is an alternative to litigation. At Cunningham Law Office, we often help clients come to a peaceful resolution through settlement conferences.

Divorcing during your senior years: What do you need to know?

If you and your spouse wish to obtain a "gray divorce" in Montana, there are several considerations you both need to make before you file. Though you may not have to deal with child custody, which is often the most contested aspect of any divorce, your situation may present unique challenges with which younger divorcing couples do not have to deal. 

Custody disputes and mediation

Working through a dispute involving child custody can certainly be difficult any married couple. Aside from worries about how much time you will be able to spend with your child once you have split up with your spouse to concerns about how these changes could affect your child, there may be various worries on your mind. As a result, you should try to resolve this situation as efficiently as possible, prioritizing your child’s best interests and carefully reviewing the details of your case. In doing so, you may be able to ease some of these concerns and for some people, turning to a mediator is a great way to resolve these issues.

How are a child’s best interests defined?

If you’re involved in a child custody dispute in Montana, you’ve likely heard the term “best interests of the child” quite a bit. But how is this consideration actually defined? The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services explains how the court determines best interests when it comes child custody and other matters.

All about alimony

Even if a divorce happens by mutual decision, it can be overwhelming to face the prospect of suddenly having to provide for one's sole support. Regardless of the circumstances under which the divorce occurs, Montana law provides a safety net for divorcing individuals who may be unable to support themselves. It is commonly known as alimony, sometimes also referred to as spousal support or spousal maintenance.

Discussing custody matters with your children

From child support to property distribution, all sorts of family law matters arise. Some can be especially emotional, however, such as those involving the custody of children. To make things even more complicated, court decisions related to custody can have a significant impact on a child's future and their ability to spend time with a parent. If you have anxiety over a custody dispute you are involved in, or are worried about how the outcome of your case will affect your children, it is critical to be prepared and go over all relevant details. You may also find it helpful to talk to your kids about these issues.

Preparing for court, from a family law perspective

There are a lot of reasons why people experience stress when they are anticipating court, but this is often particularly true for those who are facing family law issues. From filing for divorce to modifying a child support order, people who are going through this often have much at stake. For parents, this can be an incredibly stressful time and all sorts of concerns may cause them to toss and turn at night. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to increase the chances of a favorable outcome, such as carefully preparing for court.

Do custody laws vary from state to state?

If you are working your way through a divorce, have already split up with your spouse, or are in the early stages of planning the end of your marriage, various family law matters may be causing you to feel stressed out. However, disagreements or concerns about the custody of a child can be especially hard for parents and it is crucial to find answers to any of your questions and do what you can to protect your child’s future. By understanding various factors that courts look into while making custody decisions, you may be better positioned to safeguard your child’s best interests.

Cunningham Law Office is a family law-focused firm in Missoula, Montana. We serve Missoula, Ravalli County, and the surrounding area.