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Grant J. Gisondo, P.A. – Family Law Attorney

Legal Advice

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What is a Supportive Relationship to Terminate Alimony (fla. state 61.14)

In Florida, there are six kinds of alimony or, as now termed, spousal support. The change to the term spousal support is largely due to the fact support during and following a divorce can be awarded to either spouse, husband, or wife. For many years, alimony was almost always given only to a woman, and so a new term helps identify that either party is eligible to be considered for financial help. One kind of alimony awarded is termed permanent alimony as it is awarded for life until either party dies or the party receiving alimony payments remarries or enters...

How to Efficiently Communicate with Your Attorney

Communication, likely one of the most important social skills related to the human (and animal) species, is not something a person should take casually or for granted. How to use speech, emotions, and body language to effectively share information between two or more persons becomes a powerful tool, whether for a positive or a negative outcome. Such concerns as taking into account the communication style of those listening, finding empathy with the listener, and hearing what the listener has to say in return are all necessary components of efficient communication. And, efficient communication with your attorney is vitally necessary if...

What Happens When You Don’t Follow Your Lawyer’s Advice?

As with any professional whom you seek out and retain for advice, and in the case of an attorney, representation on a legal matter, it is wise to follow the advice given. Before retaining the professional, you should feel confident he or she knows about and has experience in the field of expertise you need. In the case of a lawyer, you can check on his or her website and contact the state Bar for information. On the website, you can determine the educational background, years of experience, services offered, areas of representation, marital status, community involvement, professional awards, and...

How to Dress for the Courtroom

Dress for success. This can be said emphatically for those who are having their day in court, be it attorney, client, or witness. So often, people form judgments based almost entirely on their first impression of another person and can be a plus or a minus depending on the opinion formed. For example, should a client be dressed in poorly fitting, unpressed clothes with unshined shoes to match or an attorney dressed in a suit that doesn’t quite button over the midsection, a judge or jury could form the opinion of the person not being serious about the issues at...

Did You Know? The Court Must Approve All Parenting Plans

All parenting plans in the state of Florida must be approved by the court. This fact is important as not only must the parenting plan be approved by the judge when shared parenting, parental timesharing case is heard in court but also when a parenting plan is part of a marital agreement signed following a mediation. Parenting plans created during mediation are usually accepted as written, but a judge does have the right to make changes as he or she deems necessary. A parenting plan is a written plan to determine how a number of issues involving the care and nurturing...

What is a No-Fault Divorce?

According to Wikipedia, the definition of no-fault divorce is “a divorce in which the dissolution of a marriage does not require a showing of wrongdoing by either party. Laws providing for no-fault divorce allow a family court to grant a divorce in response to a petition by either party of the marriage without requiring the petitioner to provide evidence that the defendant has committed a breach of the marital contract.’ For many years there needed to be a reason such as proven adultery, abuse, abandonment, or mental cruelty for a couple to obtain a divorce. Now, in every state, including Washington...

Fla. Stat. 61.13 child custody factors

In Florida the term “child custody” is not used except in special cases such as when a parent is in jail, a parent cannot care for a minor child due to severe mental or physical illness, a parent has been adjudicated guilty of child abuse, sexual abuse, or domestic violence, or a parent has an active history of drug or alcohol abuse. If one or both parents are found to have the above strikes against them, then Family Court will give full care “custody” to the non-offending parent. If both parents are proven unable to care for the minor child,...

How Florida Family Law Presumes Parental Love

Parents love their children equally, and there is no presumption in favor of the mother or father. These words are the premise on which Florida Family courts build their statutes regarding the care and nurturing of minor children following a dissolution of marriage (divorce) or separation of parents not married. What this statement means is that presumably a father and mother, or parents of the same sex, love each of their minor children with precisely the same amount of mental, emotional, and intellectual fervor. In reality, this is likely not quite the case for in many families one parent cares...

Factors for the Calculation of Child Support

In the state of Florida, the awarding of child support is mandatory whether the parents have been married or even have lived together. When paternity is proven, a child is born during a marriage, ora child legally adopted, the issue of calculating child support will become a part of a dissolution of marriage (divorce), separation of parents, or when a child is born to a couple. Child support can also be given to a third party who is given legal custody of a minor child when the court rules neither party is able to parent effectively. A side note, child...

Save Those Text Messages: Electronic Evidence

Electronic evidence is fast becoming a vital part of testimony in a courtroom. In fact, cases have been lost or won on the basis of electronic evidence. These facts may sound scary, especially to those over 60, but they are a reality and must be taken seriously. Evidence, once it has been authenticated, can be used in the court. However, if a judge deems that the e-mail or phone text message is not able to be authenticated, or is hearsay, the resulting messages will be ruled inadmissible. So what precautions should a person take to avoid having electronic evidence tossed...

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