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Lafayette Family Law Blog

Irregular work schedules and child custody

There are certain lines of work that have work schedules associated with them that are very different from the typical work schedule. For example, individuals who work on offshore oil rigs can have irregular work schedules. Military jobs can also have unusual work schedules attached to them, particularly when it comes to active deployment.

When a person has a job that has an irregular work schedule, there are several different areas where special considerations may be required due to the odd work schedule. One such area is the area of child custody.

Divorce timing and ex-spouse Social Security benefits eligibility

There are many different things for which timing can be a very important element. Divorce is one of these things. When specifically a divorce occurs can impact many different things. One thing divorce timing can potentially impact is what sort of Social Security benefits a person is eligible for.

When a person gets a divorce, and their ex-spouse is eligible for disability or retirement benefits from the Social Security program, they too may qualify to receive Social Security benefits in connection to the work record of their ex-spouse, if they meet certain requirements. A couple of examples of these requirements are that a person seeking benefits based on an ex-spouse's work record must not currently be married and must be 62 years of age or older. 

Can courts in Louisiana custody matters order drug tests?

There are many different things that can impact what is in a child's best interests when it comes to child custody. Thus, there are many things that can be potentially impactful issues in Louisiana child custody matters. One is the issue of whether or not one of the parents has a substance abuse problem. If a parent in a child custody matter is concerned that the other parent may have a substance abuse problem, one question they may have is: can the court order the other parent to take a drug test for the child custody proceedings?

Here in Louisiana, state law does allow courts in child custody cases to order a parent to take drug tests under certain circumstances. These circumstances are when a contradictory hearing has been held and the court has found that there is good cause to order the tests.

Tips for making a first post-divorce Thanksgiving less stressful

Stress is something we all face. However, there are certain things that can expose a person to a much greater degree of stress than they are used to. Divorce can have the potential to be one of these things.

There are many different potential sources of stress for individuals who are going through a divorce. One are the legal proceedings related to the divorce. Such proceedings can be rather complex and can sometimes have some confusing aspects.

Divorced parents and gender differences in communication

It is well-known that good communication is very important for married couples. However, good communication can also be very important for divorced couples, particularly for divorced couples with kids. When parents divorce, there generally are many matters regarding the kids that they will need to communicate with each other about, such as custody exchanges, joint parenting decisions or the kids' holiday plans. Good communication between divorced parents when having conversations about these topics may be able to help such parents prevent minor issues from becoming major disputes.

Now, there are some things that can be potential sources of communication problems between divorced parents. One is any animosity and emotional hurt they feel over the divorce. Thus, keeping one's emotions in check can be important when talking with one's ex about matters regarding the kids.

Does a big age difference make a couple more likely to divorce?

One question that a great deal of societal focus is put on is: what sorts of things make a married couple more, or less, likely to divorce? Recently, a study took a deep look into this question by analyzing the results of a survey of over 3,000 people to see what effects different factors have on divorce likelihood.

One factor the study looked at was age difference within a couple. The study found that, generally, the bigger the age gap between the two members of a married couple, the higher the likelihood that the couple will divorce. The divorce likelihood increase was rather large for big age gaps; for example, having a 30-year age difference was associated with a 172 percent divorce likelihood increase over having no age difference.

The financial impacts of property division in a divorce

There are many different worries a person may have going into a divorce. What effect will the divorce have on my personal life? What will my relationship with my kids and my time with my kids be like following the divorce? What sort of financial state will I be in after the divorce?

One of the things in a divorce that can have major impacts on the answer to that last question is the division of property.

Compensatory visitation for military members in Louisiana

The obligations of active-duty military service can be incredibly demanding on a service member. Such obligations can sometimes cause service members to miss events that they otherwise would never have allowed themselves to miss. For example, sometimes, the obligations of active-duty military service will cause a service member to miss a visitation period with their child that they were granted under a visitation order.

Loss of some visitation time with their child due to military obligations can be a heart-breaking thing for a service member. One thing they may wonder is: is there any way I can get any of the lost visitation time back so I have the time with my kid that I need to continue to have a strong relationship with them?

Extracurricular activity expenses and child support

Many children and teens here in Louisiana participate in extracurricular activities at their school. From sports, to after-school choirs or bands, to theater, to art clubs, to academic clubs, there are all manner of different after-school activities kids can be a part of.

These extracurricular activities can be a great deal of fun for kids, can help them develop valuable skills and can teach them a variety of important life lessons. Kids often care quite a bit about the after-school activities they participate in, and participation in such activities is something parents often want to encourage as much as they can for their kids.

When can a Louisiana court deny a parent visitation rights?

When a child custody arrangement that a court put in place has one of a child's parents not being granted custody, the issue of what visitation rights that parent will have generally comes up.

When a parent is not given custody of their child, reasonable visitation rights are something they are typically entitled to under Louisiana law. Thus, in visitation cases involving parents, the central issue is often not whether visitation rights will be granted, but rather what the visitation arrangement will look like. 

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