Children and divorce can be a tough subject and it is just one of many different issues that attorneys may have to deal with if they choose the area of the law that covers all aspects of the family. It’s not a legal specialty that’s for everyone, but for those who do choose to go this route it can be particularly rewarding, and not just monetarily.
Divorce, custody and adoption are all covered under the umbrella of family law. This is the area that deals with any legal matters involving the creation or dissolution of families. Whether it’s determining custody after a divorce or establishing guardianship by a person other than the parents of a child, these are legal procedures that directly affect the lives of both adults and children.
As a result, this can be one of the more challenging of legal specialties. Just in terms of children and divorce, there are many legal details that a family attorney must know. The laws covering child support and custody can vary from state to state and you need to be on top of them as well as understand the specifics of your client’s case in order to bring about the best outcome.
Another aspect of practicing family law is working to help clients determine parentage and gain parental rights if they have been lost through adoption or divorce, or establish parentage if it was never done in the first place, so that a legal parent can have the ability to be a part of his/her child’s life.
Many areas of this type of law can be difficult to deal with from a personal as well as legal standpoint, none more so than cases of child abuse and neglect. Sometimes these charges come up in connection to children and divorce proceedings, other times it’s an offshoot of an abusive relationship between parents. Either way, your job as a family attorney is to speak up for the children and get them the help they need.
Other parts of family law that can directly involve the welfare of children include guardianship, adoption and emancipation proceedings. Legal guardianship is when someone who is not a parent is granted custody of a child. Adoptions involve legal proceedings that can sometimes be complicated and a good family attorney can make a big difference.
Emancipation happens when a child under the age of 18 wants to be declared legally responsible for their own needs. In cases involving children and divorce, this can sometimes be part of the domino effect. At any right, these young clients will be in particular need of good legal representation. So too are at risk kids facing charges of juvenile delinquency, another part of the law covered by a family attorney.
As you can see, there are many opportunities for good lawyers to carve their niche in the area of family law. It’s not an easy field to enter but it is a necessary one and it can be emotionally charged. But if you lean toward this kind of practice, there is nothing that can equal the feeling of knowing you’ve made a real difference in the life of a child.
The author of this blog is not an attorney and the information contained in these blogs should not be considered legal advice. The information provided here is based on the experience of the author and some of her clients whose actual names are not mentioned. Do not hesitate to seek the advice of an attorney if you have any legal questions.