Category Archives: Family Law

Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-Hire-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyers-video

A divorce is undoubtedly more gut wrenching when children are involved. While every person wants to do the right thing for their kids, not everyone knows how to do that during a divorce. A part of custody battles include determining where a child will live, how often each parent gets to see the children, who pays for what, and appoints the decision maker. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the immense and difficult decisions that accompany a divorce case. But undoubtedly, there are none so important as how your children’s lives will change.

Making the right decisions for your kids is hard no matter who you are or what you are going through. After a divorce everyone wants their children to have everything they need emotionally and otherwise. Determining what will do that is not simple. It’s important to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer who can educate you regarding custody laws, and guide you in doing what is best for your children during and after the divorce process is finalized.

Custody can not be summed up in one definition. Courts in Missouri define several different aspects of custody for parents following a divorce. The court helps determine the best living situation for children with the help of lawyers, mediators, and of course the parents. Specifics of custody are divided into two categories. There is legal custody physical custody. Legal custody determines the decision maker in relation to education, welfare, and health. The second part covered in custody decisions is physical custody, which determines where a child lives and how contact is divided between parents. A parent can also be granted sole custody. That means the children live with them and they make all the decisions. When sole custody is granted, the other parent typically gets visitation rights or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. Not every couple should have this type of custody situation. Depending on the specifics of the situation, custody will be determined in such a way that protects and benefits children the most. Not every divorced parent can make decisions jointly with another parent. Sometimes parents aren’t financially ready to have their kids live with them. The court seeks to find solutions in custody assigning that help children live happy and healthy lives, seeing both parents, and getting the best living situation possible. Because of this, there is a combination of custody rights granted.

Do what’s best for your kids and find a great lawyer. It’s vital to have your case properly presented. Custody battles can become incredibly emotional, and it can be difficult to reverse a court decision once the divorce is finalized. Talk with a Kansas City divorce lawyer to find out how you can best get your children what they need, both during and after a divorce. Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-hire-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers-video.

 

Video-navigating-the-difficult-waters-of-child-custody-With-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers


A divorce is undoubtedly more gut wrenching when children are involved. Every parent wants what is best for their child, but sometimes the lines and decisions regarding exactly what that is are more complex. A part of custody battles include determining where a child will live, how often each parent gets to see the children, who pays for what, and appoints the decision maker. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the immense and difficult decisions that accompany a divorce case. But undoubtedly, there are none so important as how your children’s lives will change.

These issues are difficult enough to make as a parent. After a divorce everyone wants their children to have everything they need emotionally and otherwise. Determining what will do that is not simple. With the legal complications involved in custody cases, it’s vital to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer help you sort out the implications of each decision made, and the impact it will have on you and your children after.

State law determines custody specifics, and in Missouri, the court establishes custody rights on a number of levels. At the center of the law is the goal to give children the best possible living situation, taking into account the state of each parent and their ability to care for their children respectively. The most important legal divisions involve physical custody and legal custody. Legal custody rights involve decisions regarding the children’s welfare, health and education. Physical custody decides where a child lives, and how much contact each parent has with their kids. Sole custody describes a situation where one parent makes all the decisions regarding the children, and the children reside with that parent. The other parent may have what’s known as visitation or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. Not every couple should have this type of custody situation. The welfare of children is at the center of custody cases. This means that each parent is determined to either be eligible to meet certain needs or not. Although preferred, it is not always possible for divorced parents to make decisions together. There are cases where parents aren’t in a financial or living position to have kids live with them. The specific combination of custody rights is determined based on each parent and their ability to provide for their children.

Do what’s best for your kids and find a great lawyer. It’s vital to have your case properly presented. Once courts have made their decisions regarding custody rights, it is time consuming and expensive to undo those decisions. Talk with a Kansas City divorce lawyer to find out how you can best get your children what they need, both during and after a divorce. Video-navigating-the-difficult-waters-of-child-custody-with-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers.

Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-Hire-Kansas-City-divorce-lawyers.

It’s never easy to get a divorce. But when children are part of your divorce, it’s even more difficult. No parent wants their child to suffer from their choices, but that wish can become more complex during a divorce. The court assists parents in making decisions regarding who children will live with, visitation rights, child support, and who gets to make decisions about the children’s welfare and lives. A lot of legal decisions have to be made before a divorce is finalized. Some of the most important ones will determine each individual parent’s custody rights.

Making the right decisions for your kids is hard no matter who you are or what you are going through. After a divorce everyone wants their children to have everything they need emotionally and otherwise. Determining what will do that is not simple. It’s important to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer who can educate you regarding custody laws, and guide you in doing what is best for your children during and after the divorce process is finalized.

In Missouri, there are several forms of custody that parents get through a divorce. The court helps determine the best living situation for children with the help of lawyers, mediators, and of course the parents. Specifics of custody are divided into two categories. There is legal custody physical custody. Legal custody rights involve decisions regarding the children’s welfare, health and education. Physical custody decides where a child lives, and how much contact each parent has with their kids. A parent can also be granted sole custody. That means the children live with them and they make all the decisions. The other parent may have what’s known as visitation or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. It’s important that the particulars of each custody case are taken into consideration. This allows for a workable and realistic custody solution for both parents. A court will examine the various needs of the children, and assess which parent can provide for the children the way they need. People can’t always collaborate in decision making regarding their children. Sometimes parents aren’t financially ready to have their kids live with them. The goal is to find the right combination of custody rights based on each situation, the parents, and what will benefit the children both now and in years to come.

It’s vital that you have the representation you need when you are going through a divorce, but especially to ensure your children get the absolute best from both parents. Once courts have made their decisions regarding custody rights, it is time consuming and expensive to undo those decisions. Kansas City divorce lawyers understand custody laws, and can help you do what’s best for your kids now and in the year to come. Make-sure-your-kids-are-well-cared-for-Hire-kansas-city-divorce-lawyers.

Do-Not-Go-To-Court-for-custody-without-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer

Divorce is complicated as it is, but when kids are involved, it is that much harder. Every parent wants what is best for their child, but sometimes the lines and decisions regarding exactly what that is are more complex. The court assists parents in making decisions regarding who children will live with, visitation rights, child support, and who gets to make decisions about the children’s welfare and lives. It’s a difficult part of divorce to face, but one that is necessary to ensure children get what they need after parents are no longer together.

These issues are difficult enough to make as a parent. When people are trying to ensure their children receive everything they need to grow up as healthy and happy individuals after a divorce, it is that much harder. It’s important to have a Kansas City divorce lawyer who can educate you regarding custody laws, and guide you in doing what is best for your children during and after the divorce process is finalized.

Custody can not be summed up in one definition. Courts in Missouri define several different aspects of custody for parents following a divorce. Each custody case is different, but the goal of the court is the same; to give children the best in regards to their living situation and emotional needs. To determine the specific rights of each parent, the court determines legal custody and physical custody of the children. Legal custody determines the decision maker in relation to education, welfare, and health. Physical custody decides where a child lives, and how much contact each parent has with their kids. The court grants sole custody at times, which means one parent has all the decision making rights and the children live with them. The other parent may have what’s known as visitation or temporary custody.

Joint custody is the most ideal situation, with equally shared decisions made by both parents working together, as well as meaningful interaction with each parent and the children. As much as this usually benefits children, it is not always the right situation. Depending on the specifics of the situation, custody will be determined in such a way that protects and benefits children the most. Not every divorced parent can make decisions jointly with another parent. Sometimes parents aren’t financially ready to have their kids live with them. In each case, a combination of custody rights are determined based on what is in the best interests of the children in the long term.

The last thing you want is to go into a custody case without representation. You need a legal professional to present your case to the court. Not only is custody emotional and difficult to determine. It’s also hard and expensive to undo what was first determined at a later time. Kansas City divorce lawyers can help you understand and make decisions so that your children can get everything they need during and after a divorce. Do-not-go-to-court-for-custody-without-a-kansas-city-divorce-lawyer.

Get-Whats-Rightfully-Yours-With-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer

It’s impossible to see whether or not our choices will pan out in the end. No one can know what obstacles they will face. As we get older, get married, and have children, the stresses and unexpected situations seem to increase. Although nearly half of the population goes through divorce, it stands out as one of the most intensely stressful parts of a person’s life. The legal implications, difficult division of assets and emotional turmoil are incredibly overwhelming for the majority of people facing separation and divorce. In addition to the personal loss and pain, there is so much to know regarding legal proceedings and your rights.

Most of the time, a divorce means that nothing will be the same. At least one person has to move out during a separation, you can lose out on things that you own, and you face taking on debt and losing property that once belonged to you. Sometimes couples can agree on how to divide their property and money, and make a decision on what should happen to their home. If you’re like the majority, its incredibly difficult to agree on what is fair during a divorce. Missouri divorce law gets very specific regarding how property and assets are divided, but the specifics of each situation require an attorney’s expertise to sort out. Leaving it to the courts to decide may result in you losing valuable property or belongings.

Individuals can lose everything in a divorce, an already emotionally hard time. You need legal protection during a divorce, which is why Kansas City divorce lawyers are a must. Their experience in court, knowledge regarding the law, and expertise in getting a fair division of assets is invaluable to you. Forget trying to understand the law on your own. Find an attorney with a good reputation to work you case and help you get what is rightfully yours.

States are divided in how divorce is handled. That means that your specific rights will vary depending on where you live. Only ten states divide a 50-50 split of all property obtained during a marriage, and Missouri is not one of them. Equitable Distribution is what is done in Missouri as opposed to Community Property. In Equitable Distribution, everything obtained during the course of a marriage is considered marital property unless proved otherwise. A Kansas City divorce lawyer can help you keep assets and property that are rightfully yours and yours alone, despite the fact that they were acquired during marriage.

There are many complexities involved in each divorce. These are individual relationships with distinctive roles and parts played by each partner. Part of the legal involvement in divorce is to ensure that couples who can not agree on how to fairly divide everything up get the mediation they need. In Missouri, the court process will not leave you with an equal half of the assets. It might seem easier to just let it go. But doing so may mean you end up losing assets you worked hard for, your pension, your home equity, and even deeply personal or sentimental belongings. It’s incredibly smart to get the legal support you need. Hire a Kansas City divorce lawyer to help you get what is rightfully yours and gain peace of mind throughout the process. Get-whats-rightfully-yours-with-a-kansas-city-divorce-lawyer.

Infomation-Video-Our-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyers-Put-Together


Infomation-Video-Our-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyers-Put-Together

Great Video On Equitable-Distribution

How will the state do equitable-distribution watch the  video

Video On Equitable-Distribution

Getting-your-fair-share-with-a-Kansas-City-Divorce-Lawyer-Equitable-Distribution-in-Missouri equitable distribution by kansas city divorce lawyers

Getting-your-fair-share-with-a-kansas-city-divorce-lawyer-equitable-distribution-in-missouri

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Legal Separation, Divorce, and Taxes: Can I claim my children as dependents?

What if my divorced or separated spouse and I disagree over who will claim our children as dependents?

Determining which parent can claim the children as tax dependents can be a volatile issue in a divorce or legal separation.  And for obvious reason — the tax code rewards parents of dependent children with lucrative tax deductions, and tax credits.  The bottom line is that the ability to claim your child can make the difference between thousands of dollars saved during tax time.  So what are your options if your divorced or separated spouse disagrees with which of you will claim the children as dependents?

Qualifying Child –

To answer the question, it’s important to know that in order for a child to be claimed as a dependent, Federal tax law requires that the child must be a “qualifying child.”  Parents who are separated, divorced, or getting a divorce, need to know that the IRS definition of a qualifying child is fairly clear.  The child must live with the taxpayer for more than half of the tax year.  The child must receive more than half of their support from the taxpayer.  And the child must be either under 19 years of age at the end of the year, under 24 years of age and enrolled full time in school for at least 5 months during the tax year, or any age and permanently disabled.

Custodial Parent –

Assuming a qualifying child exists, the general rule between separated or divorced parents is that the parent designated as the custodial parent in a divorce or legal separation has the right to claim the tax benefits.  But in most cases, if the custodial parent agrees, those rights can be shared, and essentially negotiated for during the settlement phase of a divorce or legal separation, and made a part of the final Court Order.  Parents who are not the custodial parent, but that are granted the ability to claim a child as a dependent should be careful to obtain IRS form 8332 signed by the other parent prior to filing their taxes.  A special rule allows parents of divorces that finalized between 1984 and 2009 the option to be able to provide qualifying pages from the divorce decree instead of a signed form 8332.  Be sure and seek legal advice from your tax attorney or divorce attorney about this option.

If my Divorce or Legal Separation isn’t final, should I  race to file my taxes before the other parent does?

If you’re asking this question, then you already know that only one taxpayer can claim a dependent for any given tax year.  And while the temptation may be to race to file your taxes, in hopes of claiming child dependents before the other parent does, this may not be the best move.  Regardless of when you file your return, if two parents claim the same child dependent on separate returns, the IRS can and will do a file review to determine which taxpayer has the right to claim the dependent.  In such cases, they will look to see which household the child lived with the longest during the tax year.  If the length of time is equal between the parents, then the IRS will grant the dependent status to the parent whose adjusted gross income is higher for that tax year.  Be aware, that the taxpayer who incorrectly benefited from claiming the dependent must pay back the benefit to the IRS, most likely with interest and penalties.  In general it’s always better to determine beforehand who can claim the children as dependents.  But if agreeing on this point isn’t an option, make sure you seek legal advice before you act, and risk making a tax-filing mistake that could cost you.

My Divorce or Legal Separation is final, but my ex-spouse isn’t abiding by the Court Order that states I get to claim the children as dependents.

While Federal law and State law operate together, they occasionally come into conflict.  That truth is no clearer than when talking about taxes and divorce.  Because the state Courts in Missouri view what is in the best interests of the children as such a high priority, issues dealing with children are often fluid – even post divorce.  It is not uncommon for parents to successfully petition the courts months or even years after a divorce or separation to modify custody, support, and even tax dependency status.  With that in mind, it’s important to know that the IRS (federal law) may not always rely on what the language of your divorce decree (state law) says to determine who claims the children as dependents.  Notwithstanding the special tax rules for divorces finalized between 1984 and 2009, often a state court judge, or average family law attorney has little to no experience in tax law, and may not include an adequate clause in the decree that the IRS can look to for guidance.  For those divorces that occurred during or after 2009, or for divorces that have been modified, or for divorces with inadequate tax treatment in the decree, it is often true that if a parent otherwise qualifies by the IRS standards to receive the benefit (regardless of what the decree says), that parent will have the right to claim the child.  Keep in mind a parent given a right by the state court to claim a dependent that is not allowed to do so by the IRS may still have a legal remedy.  In such cases, the state courts may be able to protect your provisional property rights as a parent (not as a taxpayer), and may hold the other parent in contempt for disobeying the Court ordered divorce Decree.

Other Considerations —

Remember, it may make sense to allow the other parent to claim the dependent if you make too much money to receive the child tax credit.  Often couples will use this financial benefit as a negotiating chip in their divorce.  While this is common, beware that issues relating to children can always be modified, and are therefore not permanent.  So be careful not to negotiate away permanent rights, like property division, for ones that can be modified later, like issues regarding the children.

Remember, this post is not meant to be comprehensive legal advice.  If you have legal concerns, please seek legal advice before making any decisions.  Our tax attorneys, and family law attorneys are available to answer your questions.  At Reneau & Shernaman, LLC Attorneys at Law, we make the complicated less complicated.  Call now for a free consultation – (816) 287-8080.

Making the Complicated World of Law Less Complicated

At Reneau and Shernaman, Attorneys at Law, our goal is to make the complicated, less complicated. We know the law can be confusing and unclear without a professional to help you sort through the legal terminology and get to the point. That’s where we come in. Not only are we experienced, we are excellent at listening. We sit down with you and get the details so we can understand your goals and show you the easiest and fastest way to achieve them.

All of the areas we focus on are sensitive. People considering bankruptcy are usually in an unpleasant place in their lives. Personal injury victims can be experiencing a great deal of pain and suffering. Family law usually involves strong emotions. And if you need a criminal lawyer, you may have made some unfortunate decisions that got you into trouble. No matter what kind of legal representation you need, Reneau and Shernaman can provide it and make it as painless as possible.

We take the time to explain everything clearly to you so you are aware of the legal consequences and choices. We do everything within our power to make the law work in your favor. We even make house calls for personal injury clients who are unable to get to our office as a result of their injuries. RS Law doesn’t stand for Really Simple, but it could. When you want a lawyer who takes the time to make sure you understand the law and who will make the law work in your favor, call us at Reneau & Shernaman. We make the complicated, less complicated. Making-the-complicated-world-of-law-less-complicated.