• What to Expect from Divorce Mediation

    Many marriages end with a prolonged divorce case contentiously argued in court, but not all divorces have to take this route. Your family law attorney in Owings Mills may recommend that you give mediation a try, especially if you’re interested in getting the case finalized quickly and retaining some control over the outcome. Divorce mediation is particularly helpful for resolving child custody issues. This is because it establishes a foundation of working together for the best interests of the children. Your divorce lawyer will help you prepare for your mediation session. divorce - mediation

    Preparing for Your Appointment

    You can get the most out of each mediation session by arriving prepared. Organize all of your divorce-related paperwork and keep it in one folder. You should bring paperwork that details your assets, debts, retirement funds, and income. The mediator may send a packet of materials to you that you should review in advance. You might be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement, for example.

    Identifying the Issues

    After explaining the purpose and format of mediation, the professional mediator will establish the rules for speaking. When one party is given the floor, the other person is expected to refrain from interrupting. You’ll each have an opportunity to identify the issues that need to be resolved. These generally include child custody, child support, spousal support, and property division. Within those categories, it’s helpful to work on one specific issue at a time, such as who will live in the family home, how the parties will communicate with each other, and how household rules will remain consistent across both of the child’s residencies.

    Discussing Concerns and Proposals

    As the group works through each issue in mediation, both spouses will have an opportunity to clarify his or her concerns, goals, and proposals without interruption. After each person finishes speaking, the mediator can help him or her elaborate on these concerns. The other spouse will then have an opportunity to ask questions and respond. The mediator helps each spouse, together or separately, develop a proposed solution. The other spouse may choose to accept part or all of the solution, or offer a counter-proposal. In this way, the group works toward solutions that are mutually agreeable.

  • Common Questions About Supervised Visitation in Maryland

    During a divorce in which the spouses share children in common, a family law attorney in Owings Mills can help the parties develop a proposed visitation plan. Normally, visitation occurs at the parent’s house. Occasionally, a judge may order supervised visitation, in which a neutral third party is present for the entire visitation to ensure the safety of the children. If you have concerns about your children’s safety when they are with your ex, talk to your custody lawyer about requesting supervised visitation. supervised - visitation

    Can I request supervised visitation for my ex?

    Maryland family courts generally only require a parent to have supervised visitation if there is a reasonable belief that a child has been neglected or abused by that parent. It is not sufficient to request supervised visitation because you’re concerned the other parent might not help the kids with their homework or enforce limits on TV time. But if you do have reason to believe that your kids are not safe with the other parent, don’t hesitate to voice your concerns to the divorce lawyer.

    Where does supervised visitation take place?

    This is determined on case-by-case basis. Occasionally, the judge may allow supervised visitation to take place in the home of another relative. Alternatively, supervised visitation may occur at a family services center under the direction of a court-appointed facilitator.

    Is supervised visitation the same as a monitored exchange?

    Family service centers may also provide monitored exchange programs, but these are not the same as supervised visitation. A monitored exchange program allows the parent to drop off the child at the center and then leave. The other parent then picks up the child for unsupervised visitation.

    Is there a fee for supervised visitation?

    Some family service centers do charge fees, while others offer free services. Some centers require both parents to pay an upfront intake fee and the visiting parent to pay the hourly charges.

    How will I know that my child is safe?

    When your child is at a supervised visitation, you can rest assured that he or she will be closely watched by the staff. Staff members are trained to intervene whenever it is necessary to promote appropriate interactions between the parent and child. These staff members have experience working with children affected by divorce and separation, and they can help your child feel safe and secure.

  • An Introduction to Co-Parenting

    As difficult as divorce can be for parents, it is far more disruptive to a child’s life. However, responsible co-parenting is a way to limit the negative effects of a divorce on children and help them adjust to the new arrangement. Talk to a child custody lawyer in Owings Mills about creating a parenting plan that is in the children’s best interests.

    You can learn more about co-parenting by watching this video. This life coach clears up common child custody issues such as finding a mutually agreeable communication method with the other parent and getting on the same page with regard to chores, discipline, bedtime, and extracurricular activities. This life coach stresses the importance of never saying disparaging things about the other parent where the children can hear.

  • Mistakes to Avoid After a Car Crash

    Car accidents can occur in the blink of an eye. Due to their unpredictable nature, it’s essential to be prepared with the basic knowledge of what to do and what to avoid following a crash. For example, did you know that two simple words might jeopardize your claim? For guidance on this issue and many others, you can consult a personal injury lawyer near Owings Mills. car - crash

    Apologizing for the Crash

    Those two simple words that might compromise your case are “I’m sorry.” It’s human nature to apologize as a way of clearing the air, even if the problem was not the fault of the apologizer. But after a car accident, you need to resist the temptation to apologize to the other driver or to speculate as to the cause of the crash. The other driver may use this apology to claim that you were at fault for the crash. As a result, your compensation may be reduced or denied.

    Neglecting to Document the Scene

    Hiring an accident lawyer is an effective way to get the most money for your case, but even the most accomplished lawyer needs evidence to substantiate claims. The building of your case begins right after you call 911 and check for injuries. First, exchange information with the other driver. The basic information you need to exchange includes full names, contact information, insurance carriers, policy numbers, vehicle makes and models, license plate numbers, and driver’s license numbers. Next, take pictures of the crash site. Be sure to get pictures of the damage of both cars, the injuries of every involved party, and other evidence of property damage such as broken mailboxes or downed street signs. Then, write down a few notes about the weather conditions and traffic patterns. Write down what you were doing immediately prior to the crash.

    Delaying Medical Care

    If you are not seriously injured, you might be tempted to go about your daily routine and see the doctor later. But the insurance carrier may point to your delay in medical care as evidence that your injuries could have been caused by something other than the crash. Always get a medical evaluation as soon as the police clear you to leave the scene. Your lawyer will need a copy of your medical records and documentation of your medical expenses.