About Our Firm

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Founded in 1997 we are experienced and knowledgeable Tampa attorneys practicing exclusively in Divorce, Family, Stepparent/Relative Adoption, Criminal Defense, and Personal Bankruptcy. We practice primarily in the cities of Tampa, Riverview, Brandon, Valrico, Lithia, Carrollwood, Northdale, North Tampa, Plant City as well as Hillsborough County, Pinellas County and Pasco County. We have offices conveniently located throughout Tampa Bay. Our lawyers have extensive experience practicing in contested and uncontested divorces, including military divorces, and family law, child support, child custody and visitation, relocation of children, alimony, domestic violence, distribution of assets and debts, retirement/pensions (military and private), enforcement and modification of final judgments, paternity actions, adoptions and name changes as well as criminal defense. We offer a free consultation to discuss your options. Please call us at 813-672-1900 or email us at info@familymaritallaw.com to schedule a consultation. Our representation of our clients reflects our dedication to them. We look forwarding to hearing from you! Se habla EspaƱol.

Friday, October 18, 2019

What is Criminal Return Fraud?

When most people think of retail theft, they first think of shoplifting. However, there is another offense that has become more common recently. That is return fraud. This type of fraud has been around ever since there were retail stores. Now that the Internet has entirely changed the way people shop though, it’s becoming even more popular. According to a study conducted in 2018 by the National Retail Federation, 11 percent of all retailers’ yearly sales were returned. Eight percent of those involved fraudulent activity. So, what is return fraud? Can you go to jail if you’re convicted of the crime?

Return Fraud in Florida

The Florida statutes define return fraud as obtaining or using a receipt in a fraudulent manner. Although this definition is somewhat vague, there are many instances that could be considered return fraud. The most common type of return fraud is when a person makes a purchase and uses the receipt from that item to return an item of lesser value.

People that engage in ‘wardrobing’ or ‘free renting,’ are also committing return fraud. This is when a person makes a purchase, uses it for a short time, and then returns it for a full refund. Returning stolen merchandise for a refund is also considered return fraud.

Switch fraud is another type of return fraud. This is when someone owns a product that has broken. They purchase another identical product, and then return the broken one to the store. The customer receives a full refund and gets the new purchase for free.

These are just a few of the instances that could constitute return fraud. Any time a receipt is used fraudulently, it is considered a crime.

Penalties for Return Fraud in Florida

Using a receipt in any way other than the manner it was intended may seem harmless enough. After all, many consider it a victimless crime. However, the state of Florida takes this crime very seriously. Those convicted of it face harsh penalties.

In Florida, return fraud is considered either a first-degree misdemeanor or a second degree misdemeanor. For a first offense of a first-degree misdemeanor charge, a person faces up to one year in jail, a fine of $1,000, and is usually ordered to pay restitution to the retailer they defrauded. If the person is charged with a second-degree misdemeanor, they face up to 60 days in jail, a fine of $500, and often a requirement to pay restitution to the retailer.

Were You Charged with Retail Theft? Call Our Tampa Florida Criminal Defense Attorneys

As it becomes more common, retailers are becoming increasingly frustrated with those that commit return fraud. As such, they are often very aggressive in pressing charges when they believe someone has committed the offense. If you have been charged with return fraud, or any other crime, call our Tampa criminal defense attorneys at All Family Law Group, PA today. We will provide you with a solid defense to give you the best chance of preserving your freedom, and to keep your permanent record clean. Call us now at (813) 672-1900 for your free consultation.

Resource:
nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/organized-retail-crime-losses-reach-all-time-high

https://www.familymaritallaw.com/the-dos-and-donts-after-an-injunction-is-issued-against-you/

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

What to Know About Emergency Child Custody Orders?

Florida, like all states, have laws that protect children from dangerous situations. These situations are unfortunately many. A parent could kidnap a child, or abuse or neglect their child. Sometimes, both parents are deemed incapacitated or they may both suddenly pass away. In any of these unfortunate situations, and more, an adult may petition the court for an emergency child custody order to place the child in temporary care. What are these orders in Florida, and who can ask for one? You’ll find the answers to these questions pertaining to emergency child custody orders, and more, below.
What is an Emergency Child Custody Order?

Emergency child custody orders are covered under The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, or the UCCJEA. All states, with the exception of Massachusetts, follow this law. This Act not only governs the rules for child custody, but they also determine the jurisdiction of the court that has the right to issue an emergency child custody order.
For example, a parent may wish to leave their home state for the welfare of their child, such as if the other parent is abusing them. Under the UCCJEA, that parent must file for child custody in the state they’ve lived for at least six months. However, the UCCJEA also states that if a parent has had to leave their home state with their child for safety reasons, the courts in the new location may issue an emergency child custody order until a more permanent solution can be reached.  Click to see more.  

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

During a Divorce What Happens with Children and Property?

When a couple divorces, they often understand that the courts will divide their property and make decisions on child custody matters. The courts make this decision by issuing final orders that both spouses must follow. However, how are property and child issues handled until that time? What happens while the divorce is ongoing and a judge has not yet made a final order?  After a couple files for divorce in Florida, a standing family law order is issued. This order provides guidance on how the spouses should conduct themselves until the divorce is finalized. A standing family law order can help reduce and resolve a number of conflicts that, without an order, would likely present themselves. Click here to read more.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

How is Property Divided in a Florida Divorce?

In a Florida divorce, assets and debts acquired by the couple are divided fairly between the two spouses. If the two parties can come to an agreement on their own and it is fair, a judge will likely approve that agreement. When the couple cannot agree how assets and liabilities are split, a judge will listen to each side and make a final decision. Understanding Florida law on property division, as well as the factors a judge will take into consideration, is important for anyone going through a divorce.  Click here for more.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

What Is the Purpose of a Deposition in Divorce?

The divorce process is scary and overwhelming for many spouses because they do not understand the legal procedures that go along with moving a petition through the court system.  The mysteriousness of the legal process often increases during the discovery stage of a divorce case, which is the period each side may request documents, testimony, and other evidence to help to support her or his argument.  Click here to read more.

Saturday, June 15, 2019

The Role of DNA in Paternity Cases

With more couples choosing to skip the bonds of marriage in favor of living together in a less formal arrangement, more children are born outside of wedlock. This situation does not have the stigma formerly imposed on the children of unwed parents, but it can create some legal difficulties that need to be addressed. The most prominent issue unmarried parents encounter is establishing paternity. Paternity is needed to be considered a child’s legal father, and without this designation, the man has no rights to seek time or information about the child. Married men are automatically presumed to be a child’s father, but unmarried fathers must go through several steps to receive this status.

Click here to read more.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Is Your Spouse Hiding Money in Advance of Filing for Divorce?

Filing for divorce starts a long and complicated road of decisions that will affect the rest of a couple’s life, much of which is driven by the fact that marital property must be divided. No one enjoys giving up their property, least of all a spouse who wants out of a marriage, but avoiding this outcome, without a prenuptial agreement, is not possible. As a consequence, some spouses, thinking of divorce in the long-term, will start to find ways to conceal income and other assets with the intent of not sharing them with the other spouse as part of the divorce settlement. This tactic is also used to reduce the child support and alimony obligations a spouse may face. Click here to read more.

What is Criminal Return Fraud?

When most people think of retail theft, they first think of shoplifting. However, there is another offense that has become more common rece...