At The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas LLP, we understand the gravity of family law issues. For most clients, these concerns aren’t just legal. They are life-changing issues that make or break familial and co-parenting relationships for years. That’s why our attorneys consider the complex emotional and long-term aspects of family law while advising our clients.
Our Arkansas family law attorneys team strives to minimize conflict and encourage mutually beneficial solutions in all your family law matters.
We specialize in multiple Family Law services, including:
- Child Custody
- Legal Guardianship
Child Custody Agreements in Arkansas
Custody is often the most challenging part of a divorce. Some couples immediately agree to a fair co-parenting schedule that has the children’s best interests in mind. Others find themselves in a tug-of-war for primary or full custody or how to work out the details of joint custody.
A custody battle can weaken both parents’ relationship with their children and make it challenging to establish a healthy co-parenting partnership. With these facts in mind, our Arkansas family lawyers strive to find a custody agreement that meets both parents’ needs while, most importantly, serving the children’s best interests.
Forms of Custody Agreements
Our team of attorneys has worked with parents in a wide range of situations, including:
- Those who prefer one parent to take on a primary caretaker role
- Those who are comfortable with a 50/50 split
- Those with atypical work schedules and commitments needing a creative co-parenting plan
We Develop a Comprehensive Custody Plan
Child custody is an issue that requires intense negotiation, cooperation, and compromise. Our goal is to develop a comprehensive custody and visitation schedule that addresses common parenting concerns and situations that occur periodically or rarely.
For example, consider your children’s school schedule. Even if they are not in school yet, addressing school year and summertime parental needs is essential. By looking at both parents’ work obligations and schedules, a family lawyer helps make sure that your children are adequately cared for year-round. Our law office also considers holidays, birthdays, and vacations while negotiating and advocating for your custody schedule.
Alimony or Spousal Support
Another point of contention among families is child support. Several different factors influence child support payments. Arkansas has child support guidelines that give a rough idea of an individual’s monthly payment. However, required payments could be more or less, based on:
- A child’s activities
- Tuition expenses
- Medical needs
- Division of parenting time
- Each parent’s earning ability
We help clients who expect to pay or receive financial support. Our family law attorneys help you understand the process, advocate on your behalf, and ensure that you and your children are treated fairly by the Arkansas family court system.
Modifying and Enforcing Child Custody and Support in Arkansas
There may come a time when your existing child custody or support order is no longer effective. Your needs, and the needs of your children, are likely to change over time. When the paying parent loses their job or has a pay cut, they can seek a decree modification to accommodate the new earning level.
Other factors that might initiate a decree modification:
- A significant increase in earnings
- One parent relocating
- Children reaching an age where they can decide who they want to live with
By pursuing a modification, your attorney can ensure that all custody changes are legal and enforceable.
Laws Regarding Relocation in Arkansas
Relocation is a relatively common issue in family law. If one parent wants or needs to relocate outside the agreed-upon area due to marriage or a career change, they must inform the court.
In general, Arkansas courts uphold a custodial parent’s right to move with their minor children. If parents share custody, the situation becomes more complicated. A noncustodial parent can contest the move by showing that the action will cause harm to the children in question.
Adoption is one of the more exciting and joyous aspects of family law. Your family law attorney in Arkansas can assist you throughout the adoption process. To adopt a child in the state of Arkansas, you must have been a resident for a minimum of six months. Additionally, a birth mother has the right to withdraw her consent to an adoption after the child’s birth, and that timeframe can change based on how the adoption documents are drafted.
If you want to adopt a child older than ten, they will need to consent to the adoption for the court to grant your request.
Stepparent adoptions typically occur when one biological parent does not support the child or maintain meaningful contact. These adoptions allow a stepparent to take on a parental role, but only when both parents agree to the stepparent adoption.
Suppose you suspect your child’s other parent will contest a stepparent adoption but proceed anyway. In that case, you’ll need a dedicated family law attorney to help advocate for the best interests of your child.
Non-family adoptions require a substantial amount of documentation. Parents interested in adopting must undergo a background check and home study before being approved to adopt.
It is crucial to work with an attorney with extensive experience in adoption cases. We know the common pitfalls that can hold up an adoption case and how to avoid them. We are ready to guide you through this process so you can bring a child into your family
Things to Know About Paternity in Arkansas
Paternity is the process of establishing that an individual is a child’s biological father. In some cases, the mother might name the father in pursuit of child support. In others, the hopeful father might petition the court to have them established as the child’s biological father.
Ways to Establish Paternity
The easiest way to establish paternity in Arkansas is by signing a VAP or voluntary acknowledgment of paternity.
Here, both the biological mother and father agree that the father in question is the only possible biological father of the child. The court may order genetic testing to establish paternity.
Arkansas Legal Guardianship Laws
We have a deep knowledge of state legal guardianship laws. Our lawyers help you through the process of guardianship for a minor child or an adult with severe mental incapacity or disability that renders them unable to care for themselves physically or financially.
You can request to become a legal guardian in Arkansas if you’re:
- Of a sound mind
- Eighteen years of age or older
- An Arkansas resident
- Not convicted of a felony
A legal guardian is responsible for the care and safety of the minor or adult. Anyone found to have violated these responsibilities can be sued by the ward’s estate.
Your Arkansas Family Law Attorney Will Keep You Updated
Call The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas LLP Today
The decisions you make about your family law case can affect you for the rest of your life. Make sure you hire an Arkansas family law attorney you can trust.
Our team at The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas LLP is dedicated to practicing law the right way. We provide our clients with the support they need during difficult times. Schedule your free, no-risk consultation today by calling us at (479) 316-3760 or filling out our online contact form.