Family Law

It is important to hire a family law attorney that you can trust. These matters are extremely personal and have a significant emotional impact. Our attorneys know that in many cases, such as a divorce involving children, we will have an on-going relationship with our clients.

Maintenance/Spousal Support & Property Division

Every divorce includes an allocation of property that has been accumulated during the marriage. While the concept of alimony, now known as maintenance, sounds outdated, the fact is that there are still many marriage relationships where one spouse provides for the support of the other. In those arrangements, it is only proper that the courts, if not the couple themselves, find some way to provide for a continuation of that support for some period of time after the marriage ends. Whether or not this maintenance is ordered depends on a number of factors including:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The age of each spouse
  • The health of each spouse
  • The ability of each spouse to be self-supporting
  • The income of the primary breadwinner
  • The standard of living the parties enjoyed during the marriage

Whether or not one spouse receives maintenance payments from the other is only one issue decided in a divorce action. Equally important as what happens to the property that has been accumulated during the course of the marriage. There are varying situations such as joint business ventures. Other couples have based the professional progress of one spouse on the other spouse's willingness to put their career on hold. These financial trade-offs all get sorted out over the course of a marriage; but when the marriage is over, one spouse finds themselves without pension benefits, without savings and without business assets from which they can earn money to provide for themselves. At RIZZO & DIERSEN, we have come into play to ensure a fair and reasonable division of these assets.

Domestic Violence

The most common form of domestic violence occurs when one family member threatens another with physical injury or other violence in an effort to exert control over them. No one should be forced to suffer this type of abuse. This includes such other kinds of conduct as:

  • Malicious mischief
  • Kidnapping
  • Unlawful imprisonment
  • Violation of a Restraining Order, No Contact Order, or Protection Order
  • Stalking

If, on the other hand, you find yourself accused of domestic violence merely as a tool to obtain a better property settlement or in an effort to cut off your rights to visit your children, you need someone who will fight to protect your rights as a parent and have the court see the accusations for what they are.

Adoption and Termination of Parental Rights

As a result of the abundance of divorces and remarriages, there has been an increase in the number of actions brought by stepparents to adopt children from their present spouse's former marriages. In some cases, these proceedings are challenged; but in others, they are not. Whether or not your spouse's children from previous marriages are viewed as your children can determine whether or not they can participate in your work-sponsored benefit programs and whether or not they can legally inherit your property without a will.

Experienced and Consistent Representation through:

  • Divorce
  • Marital property division
  • Child support
  • Mediation
  • Child custody, visitation and placement
  • Paternity
  • Maintenance or spousal support
  • Pre and Post Nuptial agreements
  • Domestic violence
  • Restraining orders
  • Adoption and termination of parental rights
  • CHIPS (Children and Protective Services) cases
  • Contempt and enforcement proceedings