FAMILY LAW

Divorce • Custody • Father's Rights

Kids Running

DIVORCE

As your divorce attorney, I help you choose a cost-effective and practical strategy for ending your marriage in the least stressful way possible so that you can move forward with confidence and ease.

 This Involves

  • One-on-one, in-depth meetings with you

  • Filing papers with the Court

  • Regularly corresponding with your spouse and their attorney

  • Preparing for and attending any scheduled court appearances necessary to advance your case

  • Organizing and presenting documents requested by the judge

  • Preparing you, your witnesses, and your evidence for a trial  

Real vs Fiction

Courtroom dramas as seen on TV are extremely rare, as most of the work involved in obtaining a divorce occurs between attorneys and behind the scenes.

The judge only conducts a divorce trial as a last resort when all hopes for a settlement fade away. This is why it is important to make sure that your divorce attorney fully understands your intentions from the outset regarding the items you want to keep in the property division part of the divorce, your financial needs going forward, your ideas about homeownership, right down to what you want to do with pets, family photos, etc.

Negotiations can range from both parties agreeing before divorce papers are even filed to numerous correspondence between attorneys to a more formal settlement conference with the Court before a trial date is set. 

Settlements Do Happen

In the event the parties agree to resolve all issues, settlement documents are presented to the judge and a final judgement is signed, without all of the exorbitant expenses of a full-blown trial.

In some circumstances, court appearances are not even required at all.

Although this ideal, it is not always possible when emotions are running high and there are significant financial interests at stake.  It is helpful to have a divorce attorney who is both open and adept at an amicable resolution, but also not afraid or too busy to present your case to the judge in a trial.

Happy Family

CUSTODY

In evaluating your child custody case, I meet with you at length to make sure that you thoroughly understand that it is the best interest of the child standard that ranks first and foremost to the Judge and hopefully to you as a client.  At the end of the day, the Court does not care what you want or desire for your child.  Our job as your custody attorney is to convince the Judge that what you want is also in the child’s best interest in both the short and long run.  If the Judge does not believe that your ideal outcome is also what is in the child’s best interest, you will likely lose your case.  

Younger Children

Cases involving younger children are analyzed more carefully given the risks of placing a younger and more vulnerable child in an unknown risk.  With all other factors being equal, Courts like to award custody to parents with qualities of financial and emotional stability.  If a child has lived with one parent for several years and is balanced, happy and doing well in school, the chances of a Judge rocking this boat are slim.   

Custody Key Standards

To get to the heart of the matter, I like to give my clients a list of the key standards that Court’s use to analyze custody cases and ask you to take it home and write down all of the evidence and supporting arguments that can either hurt or help your case.   Afterwards, we meet again to review the list and I give you my honest opinion of how I think a Court may rule and your chances of prevailing in a custody trial.

 

In evaluating the unique facts that are relevant to your custody case, you and I will formulate a plan that we are comfortable with and that gives you the best and worst possible scenarios and all points in between, before we file our papers and head into court!     

Father & Son

FATHER'S RIGHTS

When it comes to child custody and visitation, a common misconception is that the father always gets the short end of the stick. Actually, this is not the case. Fathers are entitled to the same rights that mothers are, and the Court system has a fairly objective system for determining these rights, which is called the “best interest of the child” standard.

We are the best choice to help you to fight for your child and shift any intrinsic biases and prejudices of the court to your favor and help you secure the rights you deserve.

Fast and Aggressive Tactics

We are serious about helping you win the rights you deserve. An "Emergency Filing" may be the right choice when time is of the essence.

Contempt of Court

If the other parent ignores an existing court order, we help you get it enforced. Parental alienation is a valid concern. This is where one parent uses psychological manipulation, intimidation, and controlling techniques to prevent a child from access to or forming a bond with the other parent.

Custody & Visitation Establishment

If you haven’t yet determined a parenting plan, we can help you put together a schedule that works for all parties involved. If a custody trial is required, we thoroughly prepare for court and present your best case to the Judge. 

 

You have the right to fight for your child, to have solid access to your child, and to be well informed of all decisions affecting your child. 

MODIFYING CUSTODY

We firmly believe in cultivating strong father-child relationships.


Some of the most important factors that a court considers when deciding joint or sole custody are the stability of the school, home and community environment, and the emotional bond between parent and child. 

What Judges Want

What we have learned over the years practicing family law is that, above all, judges do not want to disrupt a child’s routine if he or she is functioning well in school and in the community. Whether you are going through a divorce or ending a relationship where sole or shared custody is at issue, we always advise that the parent seeking custody relocate in the same school district and general locale of the child so the judge does not have to make such a huge mental leap in modifying or awarding custody to a parent.

It is also important to show the court that you are willing to foster and encourage a positive relationship between the child and the other parent and that you have the financial means and psychological stability to care for your child

Research shows children who have strong relationships with their fathers tend to perform better in school, have healthier relationships with others, and make better choices overall than children who don't.

Don’t stress about divorce. Call:  (504) 430-7999

Serving Metro New Orleans, Houma, Thibodaux, the Mississippi Gulf Coast, and Jackson,MS
 

FREE CONSULTATION

Disclaimer:
Any unauthorized use of material on this website is at the user’s risk. Transmission of this information and material is not intended to create, and receipt does not constitute, an agreement to create an attorney-client relationship with  Culpepper & Percy, LLC, or any of its members. 
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