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F.A.Q.2023-05-19T12:08:29-04:00

Frequently Asked Questions.

Frequently Asked Questions.

Some of the most common questions asked by clients

Family Law FAQ’s

What are non-marital assets?2023-02-24T10:18:04-05:00

In Florida, there are two classifications of assets ~ marital and non-marital assets. Generally speaking, non-marital assets are those owned by a spouse prior to the marriage, as well as those assets acquired by a spouse during the marriage through gift or inheritance. It also could be property acquired during the marriage in exchange for property acquired before the marriage. Of course, non-marital property could also be property that is defined as non-marital through a valid agreement of the parties, including a premarital agreement or a postnuptial agreement.

How much does a divorce cost?2023-02-24T10:08:30-05:00

A divorce can cost thousands of dollars or it can cost less than $10,000, depending on how reasonable the litigants are in terms of negotiating a deal. Most divorce attorneys in Florida bill hourly and require an initial retainer which is then offset against the time spent on the case. If there is a retainer amount remaining at the end of the case, it is refundable.

Irreconcilable Differences2023-02-24T10:01:46-05:00

Florida is a no fault divorce state, which means that if a couple no longer gets along they can file for a dissolution of marriage. A spouse may file for a divorce without his or her spouse having committed any fault. In Florida, you must only prove your marriage is “irretrievably broken” to petition for a divorce.

Mediation FAQ’s

Where Does Mediation Take Place?2023-02-07T11:32:58-05:00

The mediation conference can take place at the mediator’s office, at the courthouse, virtually, or at an attorney’s office.

Who Attends Family Mediation?2023-02-07T11:32:58-05:00

Anyone who has family issues that need to be resolved. At the settlement conference, only the parties who will be making decisions should attend. However, if both parties are comfortable, other friends and family members may attend the mediation conference for comfort and support. It is not usually a good idea for either party to bring children to the settlement conference. The parties should discuss who they want to bring to mediation with the mediator before the conference takes place.

Mediation is a settlement meeting where a neutral, impartial third person, called a mediator, helps the parties to come to agreements about their family issues. The mediation conference is informal, confidential and non-adversarial. The conference takes place in a private conference room where the parties meet together or in separate rooms. The purpose of mediation is to open up lines of communication and to explore all possibilities of settlement in order to resolve family issues. The role of the mediator includes helping the parties identify issues, fostering joint problem solving, exploring settlement options and finding creative solution to family matters. If the parties reach a settlement in mediation, the mediator can draw up a written agreement for the parties to sign.

What are the benefits of Mediation?2023-02-07T11:32:58-05:00

Settlement discussions are private and confidential in a comfortable and informal setting.  The process of mediation is affordable and cost effective.  The parties maintain control over their individual and family’s future.  The mediation process is less stressful and has less animosity.

What is Mediation?2023-02-07T11:32:58-05:00

Mediation is a settlement meeting where a neutral, impartial third person, called a mediator, helps the parties to come to agreements about their family issues. The mediation conference is informal, confidential and non-adversarial. The conference takes place in a private conference room where the parties meet together or in separate rooms. The purpose of mediation is to open up lines of communication and to explore all possibilities of settlement in order to resolve family issues. The role of the mediator includes helping the parties identify issues, fostering joint problem solving, exploring settlement options and finding creative solution to family matters. If the parties reach a settlement in mediation, the mediator can draw up a written agreement for the parties to sign.

When Should Mediation Happen?2023-02-07T11:32:58-05:00

Parties can mediate their family issues at any time. Often parties have a settlement conference before either of them file papers in the court. After the filing of a divorce, paternity action, custody dispute or post-judgment matter, the courts in Florida usually require the parties to go to mediation before any routine hearings are scheduled. Parties cannot address issues with a judge regarding custody, timesharing, child support, alimony, their home or their finances until they attend mediation.

Criminal Defense Law FAQ’s

What is the difference between a felony and a misdemeanor?2023-02-26T18:35:26-05:00

Misdemeanors are less serious crimes, and a conviction may result in a prison sentence of no more than one year or other penalties, such as fines, probation, or community service. More serious crimes may be charged as felonies, such as murder, sexual assault, possession or delivery of controlled substances, theft of high-value items, multiple DUI offenses, robbery, or burglary.

A felony conviction can result in a jail sentence of one year up to life in prison.

What is an arraignment?2023-02-26T18:34:26-05:00

In this hearing, the formal criminal charges will be presented against the defendant. The defendant will make a plea, and they will typically plead “not guilty,” although this plea may be changed at a later date.

The defense attorney may make a motion for discovery to ensure that all information used by the prosecution during the case will be available to the defendant.

The court may also impose restrictions on the defendant, such as requiring them to submit to electronic monitoring during the course of the case. The defendant will also be required to appear at any future court hearings.

What happens after a person is arrested?2023-02-26T18:31:20-05:00

Following an arrest, a person will typically be taken to their local police department, where they will be booked and processed. In some cases, police officers may conduct interrogations or obtain personal information about a person’s criminal history.

Following a DUI arrest, a person may be asked to take a chemical test of their blood alcohol content (BAC), and refusal to take these tests will result in the suspension of their driver’s license.

Depending on the charges filed and other factors in the case, a person may be required to pay bail before they can be released.

What is a preliminary hearing?2023-02-26T18:33:26-05:00

This initial hearing will determine whether police had probable cause to arrest a defendant. Witnesses may be called to testify, including the officer that made the arrest, and these witnesses may be cross-examined by the prosecutor and the defendant’s attorney.

If the judge determines that the testimony shows that there is a preponderance of the evidence to show probable cause, then the case may proceed, and the prosecutor may officially file criminal charges against the defendant.

Do I have to speak to the police after I have been arrested?2023-02-26T18:32:24-05:00

You are not required to answer any questions asked by police officers or provide anything other than basic information about your identity. Police officers will typically read you your “Miranda rights,” which state that you have the right to remain silent, that anything you say to police officers may be used against you in a criminal case, and that you have the right to be represented by an attorney.

In most cases, it is advisable to avoid speaking to police or answering any questions without having an attorney present.

Personal Injury FAQ’s

What type of case is considered personal injury?2023-02-26T18:51:39-05:00

Personal injury cases are civil cases. A personal injury lawsuit seeks to assign fault to another party and make that party pay money to the victim.

Some criminal and personal injury cases can overlap (for example, a drunk driver hits another vehicle and causes severe injuries; they will be tried criminally first, but they can also be tried civilly).

Several types of cases can fall under the “personal injury” umbrella:

  • motor vehicle accidents
  • public transportation accidents
  • slip and fall accidents
  • dog bite accidents
  • defective products
  • and many more
What are damages?2023-02-26T20:03:57-05:00

Any loses or expenses you or anyone else incurred as a result of an accident involving injury are considered damages which can often be recovered in a settlement.

Do I need to hire a personal injury lawyer?2023-02-26T18:55:29-05:00

It is always a good idea to work with an attorney if you were injured in an accident. Plaintiffs who hire personal injury lawyers to represent them have a higher likelihood of payout, settle cases faster, receive higher amounts of compensation, and are typically more satisfied than plaintiffs who attempt to negotiate or recover damages on their own.

When you are injured, it is difficult to focus on healing and deal with insurance companies and medical bills at the same time. If your case involves many factors, or if there are large costs involved, or if you just want sound legal guidance, hiring a personal injury lawyer is the way to go.

What constitutes pain and suffering?2023-02-26T20:06:03-05:00

Pain and suffering is a legal term that refers to a host of injuries that a plaintiff may suffer as a result of an accident. It encompasses not just physical pain, but also emotional and mental injuries such as fear, insomnia, grief, worry, inconvenience and even the loss of the enjoyment of life.

How do I know if I have a personal injury case?2023-02-26T18:47:57-05:00

Unfortunately, simply being injured in an accident does not mean that you have a personal injury case.

You must be able to prove three things:

  1. Another party was negligent
  2. Their negligence caused your injury
  3. The injury resulted in compensatory damages

Depending on your specific circumstances, proving negligence and causation can be quite complex, so it is important to consult with an attorney before making any assumptions about your personal injury case.

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