Few fields of law affect people as deeply as Family Law. Family Law impacts the most sacred and intimate bonds a human being can have with others, after all it deals in the division of marriages and families. For parties to a family law matter – such as a Divorce – the proceedings can be an extremely emotional and painful time. In many cases, there is a temptation to use the proceedings as a mechanism for revenge as opposed to resolution. The fact that one’s children, heartstrings, and financials are involved does not temper emotions. With so much at stake and emotions running at full throttle, there are plenty of opportunities to make rash decisions and mistakes during the legal process. It is for this reason, among others, that one is best advised to consult the cooler heads of qualified family law attorneys. A family law attorney can provide objective and informed counsel to help navigate you through the process and obtain the best outcome for your case.

Annulment, Divorce, & Legal Separation

New Hampshire law provides for the annulling of marriages. An annulment effectively voids the marriage, meaning that after an annulment the marriage is as if it never happened. Some examples of grounds for an annulment are: bigamy (where you or your spouse is already married to another), where the marriage was obtained without consent from a parent/guardian when such consent was required by law; where you and your spouse share too close of a blood relation; or where the marriage was brought about by the use of threats or coercion.

A divorce is the legal dissolution of a marriage. New Hampshire permits one to seek either a fault based divorce or no-fault divorce. A fault based divorce is a divorce upon grounds such as impotence, infidelity, or extreme cruelty inflicted by one spouse upon the other, while a no-fault divorce is one obtained on grounds that irreconcilable differences have caused the irreversible breakdown of the marriage. The type of divorce pursued will have cognizable impacts upon the nature, character, and conduct of the subsequent divorce process.

A legal separation can be thought of as a married ‘divorce’. It has the effect of a divorce in that the parties live separately and the court may exercise the same powers as it would in a full divorce. (eg. property division, alimony, parental rights and responsibilities etc.) However, each spouse is not permitted to marry another.

Whether you are seeking a divorce, annulment, or legal separation, the process will likely involve the resolution of items such as property and debts division, child support, child custody, visitation rights, and alimony, among others. Given the intimate nature of the bond being voided or dissolved and the complexity of the law involved, it is highly advised that you seek the legal counsel of a qualified family law attorney. Attorney Rogers is a skilled family law attorney who can help navigate you the legal processes involved.

Modification of Orders & Decrees

A divorce decree will often also involve orders for spousal support or alimony and orders relating to parental rights and responsibilities. In New Hampshire the law recognizes that circumstances change and because of this permit modification of such orders under certain circumstances. For example, the court is empowered to order one spouse to make payment of alimony – temporary or permanent and for an indefinite or definite period of time – to the other. These orders are modifiable on the basis of a change in circumstances. For instance, unanticipated consequences of changes made to federal tax legislation or regulations may be grounds for modifying an alimony order. Orders relating to parental rights and responsibilities can also be modified. For example, one can petition the court to modify an existing order of Child Support at any time for a substantial change in circumstances. Absent a substantial change in circumstances, one may petition the court for the modification of such an order three (3) years after entry of the last order of support without the need to show a substantial change of circumstances.

Modifications, as with most of family law, will depend on the applicable law and the facts and circumstances involved in your specific case. Successfully achieving what you intend to accomplish by a modification will require an informed understanding of the applicable law and will likely require the guidance of a skilled family law attorney. It is highly advised that before you seek any modifications to any existing court orders that you consult the advice of a New Hampshire family law attorney.

Contact a New Hampshire Family Law Attorney Today

The attorneys at McDonald, Rogers and Lorman, P.L.L.C. are “big picture” thinkers, allowing them to see where you are as well as where you are potentially headed, and are able to provide you with the legal advice and support necessary to help you get the best outcome for your case. Whatever your family law needs might be, you are best served by first discussing them with a family law attorney. Contact the attorneys at McDonald, Rogers and Lorman, P.L.L.C. today for a FREE consultation to learn more about family law or to discuss your options, questions, and/or concerns.