A holistic and principled approach to law
Getting married and having kids is easy. Getting divorced — splitting assets and “dividing” children — is another story. It can quickly get bitter and costly, but there are ways to make the process less painful and the outcome more agreeable. Once your divorce is final modifications may need to occur in your parenting plan or child support. Scott Kalkwarf can make sure that your rights are protected in all matters, also including adoptions and guardianships.
If you are thinking about divorce or have been served with divorce papers, it is critical to speak with an attorney who can advise you of your rights. Scott Kalkwarf offers experienced and responsive legal service in a wide range of family law matters, including divorce.
At your initial consultation, Scott Kalkwarf will provide you with key information about the legal process of divorce, including key mistakes people make in a divorce that adversely affect their property rights and parental custody and visitation rights. After meeting with Scott Kalkwarf you will be prepared to move forward with your case with a greater sense of confidence and with critical knowledge that can assist with your case.
When a marriage breaks down, it’s hard to be confident about what will happen in the immediate future. The decision whether to seek legal separation vs divorce and the advantages and disadvantages of each can be made easier by consulting with a family law attorney. An action for legal separation is very similar to an action for a Washington State divorce. When considering legal separation vs divorce, the major difference is that at the end of a legal separation case the parties remain legally married, but with court orders in place, (e.g., parenting plan, child support order).
Contested Child Custody Modifications
Contested child custody modification actions are among the most difficult actions in family law. When one parent asks a court to make a change of custody determination without the agreement of the other parent, generally speaking, there must be some problem with the parenting of the other parent. Naturally, such a process can potentially be emotionally difficult for any family. However, there are times when a change of child custody is truly in the best interests of the children.
Child Support Lawyers
When children are involved, child support is a necessary issue in Washington State family law actions. For parties with children, child support must be determined before a decree of dissolution may be entered. The state legislature has designated “support guidelines” that must be followed. These guidelines use the net income of both parents to determine how much child support should be paid. Having an attorney is crucial in determining what your net income is and whether or not you can qualify for an upward or downward deviation.
Child Support Enforcement
Sometimes a Washington State child support order needs enforcing. Scott Kalkwarf is an experienced child support attorney who handles child support enforcement actions, contempt actions, and negotiates and litigates on behalf of parties seeking back support judgments, as well as those defending against such actions. While a child’s well being cannot be reduced merely to the amount of financial support he or she receives, supporting a child at a level that is fair to all of the parties is important to a child’s growth and development.
Washington State child support law also provides for the payment of expenses other than just daily needs. Scott Kalkwarf represents clients in cases involving post secondary educational support, education expense contributions, extraordinary expense payments, support deviations, and travel expenses. He is also familiar with cases brought by the state through the prosecutor’s office or the Department of Child Support.
Child Support Modifications
Under Washington State family law, child support may be periodically adjusted to account for changes in circumstances between the parties in a child support modification action. Child support obligations may be modified based on a number of factors including the age of the child(ren), changes in residential schedule, a child wishing to attend college after high school, or changes in the income of one or both parties.
Ending a long-term relationship is a difficult process whether the partners are married or not. Various laws and legal techniques have developed over the years to address the issues that arise for unmarried heterosexual couples and same-sex couples which include the following:
Co-habitation agreements are used to acknowledge the intentions of unmarried partners with respect to ownership of property acquired during the relationship. These agreements may provide for other terms as well. The purpose of the agreement is to try and prevent litigation in the event the relationship ends.
Meretricious Relationship Law
The law of Meretricious Relationships was developed by Washington State courts to provide unmarried couples a way to reach a fair and equitable distribution of the property and debt acquired during the relationship. This body of law is available to both unmarried heterosexual couples as well as same-sex couples who have established a Meretricious Relationship. Now that the Domestic Partnership bill has been signed into law, same-sex couples and couples over the age of 62 can use Meretricious Relationship law to assist in resolving property and debt related issues at the end of their relationships.
Paternity or Parentage cases
The Parentage Statute (RCW 26.26) provides the law for establishing the legal parentage of a child born between a heterosexual couple who were not married at the time the child was born. Typically such cases are referred to as Paternity cases. The statute provides a way to establish child support and a parenting plan. In recent cases, the court has held that parentage can be established through application of common law under certain circumstances.
As our economy becomes more mobile and companies and jobs change location more often, it is becoming increasingly more common for a custodial parent to relocate children away from a non-custodial parent. Under Washington State family law, if a custodial parent wishes to relocate out of the school district where the child attends, the relocating parent must give notice of his or her intent to relocate. The noncustodial parent then has the opportunity to answer and try to block the relocation.
A paternity action is brought when the parents of a child are not married in order to establish paternity, custody parenting plan, and child support. Paternity actions can involve an agreement between the parties as to who is the child’s biological father, or they can involve blood testing. Sometimes a birth certificate can be amended to name a father once that has been established. At the end of a paternity action, a declaration of parentage will be entered by the court once all the facts have been established. A parenting plan that is fair and is in the child’s best interest will be entered by the court.
Let’s get in touch
Phone: (360) 876-4016
Fax: (360) 876-0556
817 Sidney Avenue
Port Orchard, WA 98366