4 Common Types of Family Law Cases

4 Common Types of Family Law Cases

Family law cases vary with each state.

Obtaining proper representation to protect your legal rights is essential. Without a good attorney, you can struggle to receive the proper custody, dissolution of marriage, adoption, or restraining order you need.

An attorney is familiar with the local court rules, and will be able to help represent you properly. Filing paperwork, appearing in court, and several other things are essential to your case. Here are the common family law cases and what an attorney will do to help you navigate the process.

Child Custody

Child custody cases are never an easy battle.

Most parents will want to obtain full custody of their children. If child abuse has occurred by the other party, this can be easier to obtain. However, custody cases can come back to the court room several times.

Child support payments can be a challenging area to deal with, especially if one party is unwilling to pay and accept the terms of the agreement.

If you are seeking to win sole custody of your child, you will need to prove that you provide an environment better-suited for the child (or children). Custody is based on the “best interests” of the child, meaning the court will consider two things: the physical well-being of the child, and the psychological well-being of the child

As a parent or guardian seeking sole custody, you will be required you to show the judge how you have a routine for your child that includes healthy eating habits, social interaction, a positive living environment, and a method to support the influence of the other parent in the child’s life.

Your attorney will be able to advise you on different tactics to use to gain full custody. If you are planning to seek joint custody, you will need to work with the attorney since this area can pose a lot of disagreements with the days that you want your children to live with you.

Divorce (Dissolution of Marriage)

Many people think divorce cases will be an easy process.

This can be the case if you do get along with your soon-to-be ex and you plan on splitting things nicely.

However, you may run into trouble if you want a fast divorce thanks to “no residency” laws. This means that you need to reside in the state for at least six months before you are able to file for a divorce.

You must get divorced in the state where you live—not in the state where you were married. However, if you do not meet the residency laws, you can still file for a legal separation. If you are dealing with a difficult partner, you may also end up losing a lot of your assets in a divorce case.

Always hire an attorney with proper experience in divorce cases to protect your assets, and make the process as go as quickly and smoothly as possible.


While adding a new addition to a family is always a pleasant experience, adopting a child can still be a long, expensive process for most families.

There are several state laws and regulations pertaining to U.S. adoptions. It is important to speak with an attorney in your state regarding your adoption and the legal process. They can help you with frustrating situations, and will help to prevent problems with people that sign adoption papers only to ask for their child back in the future.

The State Statutes Search from the Administration for Children and Families can help you find an attorney, and understand adoption laws in your state.

Restraining Order

Family law cases can also, unfortunately, deal with domestic violence.

Oftentimes, one partner will file a restraining order against another, though a restraining order can also be filed against a party with no affiliation (in cases of harassment or stalking, for instance).

A restraining order legally bans one party from contacting the petitioner, or from being within a certain proximity from where the petitioner lives and works.

Depending upon your situation, you can seek out a temporary or permanent restraining order. If someone has taken out a restraining order against you, there is a small window of time that you have to reply to it.

An experienced family law attorney can help you both file for a restraining order, or work to challenge a restraining order that has been filed against you.