Family Court Lawyers: What Does Family Law Mean, Anyway

Are you facing a family issue? Do you need a lawyer? Wondering about family court lawyers?

If you are going through a family relationship issue, your emotions are probably running high and you should consider finding a family court lawyer. Each year, millions of Americans try to navigate the court systems without the help of a lawyer and face frustration and added stress.

Let’s learn more about family law and how you can find family court lawyers to assist you with your personal matters.

What Is Family Law?

Family law focuses on family relationship issues such as divorce, adoption, child custody, and more. Family law attorneys represent clients to help with negotiations, drafting legal documents such as property arrangements and court petitions.

There are some pro bono family court lawyers and also attorneys that specialize in matters not related to divorces such as paternity, emancipation, and adoption. There are also areas of family law that involve domestic partnerships, same-sex relationships, and civil unions.

Assistance from Family Court Lawyers

Divorce cases are the most popular areas of family law. While divorce involves the legal dissolution of marriage, there are other areas that fall under family law involved with the divorce.

Other areas involving family law and divorce include:

  • Property settlements
  • Distribution of assets
  • Child support
  • Legal separations
  • Child custody
  • Alimony (or spousal support)
  • Paternity cases
  • Visitation
  • Parenting plans

Here are some of the things a family law service can do for you and give you non stop justice. You want someone on your side to help navigate the legal system. Check out family law attorneys in fort bend county.

When you search “family court lawyers near me,” be sure you read reviews. You may want to meet with a few lawyers to make sure you find one that can help you even if you are looking at free family court lawyers—they should be on your side.


Divorces are one of the most stressful events in life, and no one intends to not have a happy ever after.

Divorce is the civil lawsuit ending a marriage. Most divorce cases end with an agreement. A proposed divorce decree is presented and signed by parties.

After a hearing, the judge approves the agreement. If the parties do not come to an agreement, the judge or magistrate determines the agreement.

Emotions run high during a divorce and it can be an exhausting procedure. A family law attorney can also help by acting as a mediator to help approach issues lawfully and rationally. This way a couple can settle in a fair manner and not even need to go to court.


A dissolution involves both parties mutually agreeing to end the marriage. No spouse has any grounds to prove to end the marriage. The spouses sign a petition and jointly file the separation agreement in regards to property, division of assets, support payments, and any child-related issues.

The court holds a hearing to review the agreement within 90 days and then determines if both parties are satisfied. The court will then grant the dissolution if both parties agree.

Legal Separation

A marriage does not legally end with legal separation. However, the court issues orders with regards to spousal support, allocation of parental rights, and property division. The parents remain married but live separately.

Spousal Support

Alimony, or spousal support, considers factors such as earning ability, the health of parties, and the standard of living during their marriage. The court then decides the amount of support based on salary, bonuses, wages, living expenses, medical expenses, and more.

The court may review or modify spousal support if there is a change in circumstances.

Prenuptial Agreements

A prenuptial agreement is a contract that a couple signs before marriage or civil union. Its main goal is to spell out any provisions of support or division of property in the event of a divorce or breakup. Family lawyers can assist with drafting this agreement and handling any legal matters that arise from this contract.

Child Custody

When parents separate, one of the hardest decisions involves the children. Couples have to put differences aside to figure out the best way to parent the children and create a schedule if both parents want to be involved.

In every case with children, the court orders parenting time of specific schedules for visitation. The main consideration is what is in the best interest of the child, so the court looks at the emotional ties of the child to each person along with other family members. Other things considered include:

  • Interest and attitude toward child from parents
  • Child’s preference of primary caregiver
  • Desirability to consider a relationship
  • Abuse of a parent
  • Willingness and ability of the parent to continue the relationship between the child and the other parent

The court will make recommendations based on all these factors.

Child Support

Courts calculate child support based on the number of children, combined gross income of both parents, and other factors. Then the court factors the average cost of raising children.

The court can deviate from basic tables if the support is not equitable or in the children’s best interest. The court also orders any healthcare insurance and payment for the children.


Paternity establishes the biological father. If the father and mother are not married, paternity also gives the biological father rights as the legal father. 


Adoption is complex. There are also several forms of adoption in family court. Each type of adoption has specific requirements. They typically involve background checks, home visits, and interviews.

Various state and county probate courts have different procedures and requirements, so this is where a family law attorney can provide a great deal of guidance to finalize an adoption.

Related Areas to Family Law

Oftentimes, family law can intersect with other legal practice areas especially when there are children involved. For example, child abuse and domestic violence involve criminal investigations. The family courts then determine how to protect the victims and ensure safe environments for all.

Other areas that may work with family law include estate planning, mediation, and immigration and naturalization law.

Get Help Today

All of these issues can wreak havoc on a family and your life. During these stressful times, experienced family court lawyers can help you navigate through this process with compassion. They can help families look at issues rationally and determine solutions that aren’t crowded with emotions.

Looking for more family advice? Keep checking out our site to find ways to protect you and your family.

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