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Home >  Blog

Why Minor Children Should Not Testify Against Their Parents – A personal Opinion

The opinion presented in this blog is representative of Family Law Attorney Grant Gisondo who practices in West Palm Beach, Florida. Questions were asked to Dr. Julia Meldau, Ed. D, majoring in Child and Youth Studies, who has worked professionally with young children for many years both as teacher and school administrator. There were numerous times when minor children in her professional care were a part of a court litigation such as a custody dispute, divorce contention, and/or a child abuse or criminal allegation against their parent(s). While it would seem the best way to obtain first hand information regarding...

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What is a Forensic Accountant’s Role in a Divorce?

Most frequently a forensic accountant’s role in a divorce (now termed dissolution of marriage) is in the courtroom as an expert witness. As an expert witness the forensic account is allowed to testify in his/her area of expertise even though never having, been witness to any occurrence relating to the lawsuit. The areas of expertise of a forensic accountant include accounting, auditing, and investigative skills involving monetary considerations and concerns. And, when it comes to a divorce, there are a number of monetary considerations and concerns where the expertise of a forensic account can often prove or disprove an issue...

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The Use of Expert Witnesses at Trial (Forensic Accountants and Psychologists)

While, in most instances, someone who is to be a witness at a trial must have, by the use of one or more of their five senses, experienced some aspect of the case they will be testifying for. There are however exceptions and these people are called “expert witnesses”. An expert witness is defined as” a person who is a specialist in a subject, often technical, who may present his/her expert opinion without having been witness to any occurrence relating to the lawsuit or criminal case”. Further, Wikipedia goes on to say, “An expert witness in England, Wales, and the...

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Knowing When to Settle and When Not to Settle

Settling, in the legal sense, refers to deciding that the outcomes desired to culminate a case, such as a divorce, have reached the place where no more can or should be done to litigate the issues under consideration. At this point, be it at mediation or in an attorney’s office, a settlement agreement will be executed then presented to the judge for scrutiny at a final hearing so that the Judge can turn the parties agreement into an order of the Court. It is highly unlikely either party will be 100% happy with the outcome but a settlement indicates both parties were willing to compromise and...

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Setting Aside Prenuptial Agreements in Florida

Prenuptial agreements made in the state of Florida are, for the most part, accepted by the court in the event of a legal separation or divorce. There are certain instances, however, when a judge will set aside a prenuptial agreement, which he/she is allowed to do under the Florida Family Law statutes. If you are looking to create a prenuptial agreement, that is an agreement made before you marry, deciding, if a divorce happens, specific outcomes for such issues as assets, debts, alimony, retirement funds, and inheritance (especially in regards to children from prior marriages) you need to be very...

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A Mediator’s Role in Family Law Cases

Mediation is an alternate form of trying to resolve a dispute with the help of a third party who is referred to as a “mediator”. In the case of Family Law matters, mediation is offered in hopes a settlement between two parties can be reached without having to go to court where a judge will resolve matters and set forth the final decree. In most states this method of negotiation has been successfully used for a number of years and in some states is a requirement before a Family Law matter can be put before the court. The issues often...

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How is Debt Handled in a Florida Divorce?

Debt, is money or services owed to a company, bank, individual, or other organization, usually secured by a signed agreement or contract outlining the terms of repayment both in time and money. Most people have, at one time or another incurred debt and sometimes, as is common in a marriage, incurred debt together, or jointly as it is referred to. When a marriage is going well, debt, though sometimes in contention, is worked out between the two parties. However, when a divorce appears to be eminent, debt will suddenly become a very important issue. While much attention will be focused...

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How to Prepare Financially For a Divorce

Whether your marriage has finally wound down to where both parties realize a divorce is what they both deem necessary or whether your spouse suddenly tells you there is to be a divorce, it is vitally important you begin to think about and plan for the inevitable financial changes the future may bring. Emotions will no doubt be running high, especially if you have not suspected divorce was coming, but to salvage as much as possible for your post divorce life you must immediately begin to plan for the divorce. And, finances will play a huge role in how you...

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Why You Need An Attorney… Even If Your Case Is Uncontested or Simple

In today’s world of seemingly complicated legal maneuvers, it hardly seems possible that a case could be considered simple.Or commonly called, uncontested, when both parties agree completely on all issues to be resolved and adjudicated by the court, but hardly simple. The very definition of “simple” states “simple refers to something that’s easy and uncomplicated, without too many steps.” speaks to a modern day court system which can hardly be found to be “simple”. While it is true some cases are very forthright with all necessary proceedings, paperwork, and desired outcomes neatly tied together; there are still numerous steps to...

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Retroactive Child Support

As each state has their own set of Family Law guidelines (statutes), for the purposes of this blog, guidelines for the state of Florida Child Support Laws, which include retroactive situations, will be used. In Florida Family law, the term “in the best interest of the child” is used frequently and in a sense becomes the goal or mission of the Florida Courts. It is important to note that child support in Florida is a legal requirement for all parents, living or not living together, married, divorced, or never married. When a child is born, unless custody is signed over...

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