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.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Is it Okay to Spy on Your Spouse When Going Through Divorce?

When spouses are getting a divorce, there are a number of things they might do that they never imagined doing while they were married. One of these is spying on the other spouse. It may seem crazy, but it happens more than one would think. If you are considering divorce, or are in the middle of one, you might even be thinking about spying on your spouse, too. So, will this hurt your divorce settlement? Is there ever a time when spying on your spouse during divorce is considered okay?

The answer is that yes, there is. Before you start trying to guess online passwords and lurking around corners though, it is important to determine why you want to spy on your spouse. This will offer a lot of input as to whether or not you should be engaging in the practice.

When It Is Okay to Spy

The only time it is okay to spy during your Florida divorce is if it will help your case. For example, if you think your spouse is hiding assets because they do not want them divided under Florida’s equitable division laws, then gaining access into their separate bank account, acquired during the marriage, might be okay.

Additionally, if you think your spouse is having an affair, it might be okay to snoop on them as well, but only under certain conditions. For example, if you believe that your spouse used marital funds or that your income contributed to the affair it is important that you are aware of that. It may help you get more in the settlement in terms of property division or spousal maintenance.

Although in these instances, it may be considered okay to snoop on your spouse to gather information that could help your case, it is always best to take the matter to your divorce lawyer. An attorney will ensure the snooping is done legally, and in a manner that will not ultimately hurt your case. For example, instead of trying to guess the password to your spouse’s secret bank account, an attorney will issue a subpoena asking for those records.

When It Is Not Okay to Spy

If you simply want to learn if your spouse is seeing someone new, or if they have kept the job you have been urging them to get out of, it is not advisable to snoop on your spouse. These are not circumstances that will help your case and if you start spying just for the sake of spying, it could actually hurt your case.

In these instances, if you start snooping, you could unknowingly break privacy laws and possibly, face criminal penalties. If you ever want to spy on your spouse, first clear it with our divorce attorney. If they advise against it and will not conduct an investigation for you, the chances are good that spying is not a good idea, and you should avoid it.

Need Advice With Your Divorce? Call Our Florida Divorce Attorneys

There are many things that may come up in your divorce, and spying is just one of them. If you are considering divorce, or the process has already begun, call our Tampa divorce attorneys at All Family Law Group today. We can advise on all aspects of your divorce and ensure it goes as smoothly as possible. Call us today at (813) 672-1900 for your free consultation to learn more about how we can help.

Resource:
leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0061/0061.html

leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?App_mode=Display_Statute&URL=0000-0099/0061/Sections/0061.075.html

https://www.familymaritallaw.com/the-steps-in-a-florida-divorce/

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

What are the Steps in a Florida Divorce?

When going through a divorce, one of the most difficult aspects is that people typically do not know what to expect. Simply eliminating this fear of the unknown is enough to make people feel better about the process, particularly when they are the ones that want to initiate divorce proceedings in the first place. If you are going through a divorce, or considering it, it is best to work with a divorce lawyer that can fully explain what will happen during each step. In the meantime, below is a guideline of the steps your divorce may take, and what you can expect during each of them.

Filing the Petition

In Florida, divorce is known as the “dissolution of marriage” and the process begins with one spouse filing the petition for dissolution of marriage with the courts. The spouse that files this petition is known as “the petitioner” throughout the rest of the case. Within the petition, the person filing for divorce must state that the marital relationship has broken down and that there is no hope of reconciling.

Filing the Answer

After the petition is filed with the court, the other spouse has 20 days to file their answer. This time limit begins from the day they are served the petition. In their answer, the non-filing spouse must tell the court if they agree to the petition, which parts of it are true, if they deny anything stated in the petition, and if there are any parts of the original petition that they are unaware of. Within their answer, the non-filing spouse can also raise additional issues with the court. The petitioner can then respond to this reply.

Filing Additional Paperwork

There is a great deal of paperwork associated with divorce. In every divorce in Florida, a financial affidavit must be filed within 45 days of the original affidavit being served. Additionally, a Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) Affidavit must also be filed if the divorce will involve minor children.

Discovery

During the discovery phase, both sides must present the other side with the financial documents pertinent to the divorce. This includes tax returns, proof of income, statements regarding debt, bank accounts, retirement accounts, and more.

Mediation

Most divorces in Florida that involve minor children must go through mediation. The only exception is when one spouse is the victim of domestic violence. During mediation, both sides will meet with a mediator to try and come to an agreement without going through litigation.

Parenting Plans

In any divorce that involves minor children, the court must agree to a parenting plan that the two spouses have prepared. When the spouses cannot come to an agreement, the court will draft and finalize a parenting plan that the two spouses must comply with.

The Trial

Not all divorces will reach this point. However, if the couple cannot agree to even one term of their divorce, they will have to move to litigation and go through a trial. During the trial, both sides will make their arguments and ask the court for certain things, such as assets. At the end of the trial, the judge will make a decision and each of these decisions is legally binding.

Need Help with Your Divorce? Call Our Florida Divorce Lawyer

It is natural to be worried about what the divorce process will entail. At All Family Law Group, our Tampa divorce lawyers will not only fully explain it all to you, but also help you through every step of the way. If you are considering divorce, or the process has already started, call us today at (813) 672-1900 for your free consultation so we can review your case and help you through the proceedings.

Resource:
ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/ojjdp/189181.pdf
https://www.familymaritallaw.com/myths-surrounding-mediation-during-divorce/

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