What, when, and why you would need a family lawyer.
First off, you need to know What is "family law"? In general, family law is specifically catered for all family conflicts that may arise. This touches on marriage, civil unions, spousal abuse/conflicts, adoption, paternity issues, child abduction, surrogacy, divorce, separation, legal separation, prenuptials, annulment, child or spouse alimony, divorce settlement, child support, visitation, custody, property settlements, felonies, etc.
Family law touches on all areas of the family unit. Litigants/parties can come from any and all social-economic backgrounds. Each has a right to have their cases heard and their litigation issues settled.
The general idea is that family lawyers deal with divorce only. This is partly because this is the most sought after service from the lawyers. This, however, is not true.
When do you need a family lawyer?
Depending on the situation that you are in, you could need a family lawyer's services for several reasons.Family lawyers are needed in cases of divorce. This also includes separation, which is technically not divorce. When one spouse/partner is being abused, this victim through the family lawyers can seek legal action. This is dire if there is the involvement of the children in the abuse. Upon separation/divorce, family lawyers are needed to settle property issues. The lawyers are also present when negations for child alimony and visitation rights are being discussed.\ Adoption (a legal process involving various parties) is also another area where the expertise of the family lawyers will be needed.
The above is not an exhaustive list of the situations when a family lawyer will be needed.
Apart from the mandatory law degree, family lawyers need to have experience and training in counseling. This is because the lawyers work in an emotionally charged field. Parties involved are at times vengeful, confrontational, irrational, sad, or depressed to the point of clouding their judgment. The lawyers need to be able to handle the emotional parties.
Family lawyers also handle pecuniary issues when a party defaults on payments for child support, and act as support for those that need it (e.g. abused spouses raising a child). Family lawyers are well versed in family law and some specialize in certain fields of family law (divorce).
What to do when you need a family lawyer?
First, you should only seek professional, competent, certified assistance. This will ensure that you are well informed about all your options. Failure to get good representation can spell problems for you in the future (in cases of divorce).
The second thing you should do is to rely on the assistance, advice, and legal representation that your family lawyer will provide you. The lawyer has a legal obligation to represent your interests to the best of their ability. (This can become complicated if there is the involvement of children, and/or shared property)
The emotional rollercoaster involving family issues requires that you seek detached-expert assistance to help you. Under the constitution, we all have rights thus a family lawyer is the best decision for you when it comes to family law/litigation.