In most firms it is the staff that handles the bulk of your case. You end up dealing with paralegals, assistants, or clerks instead of the attorney you signed up with. At Pacific Family Law Firm, assistants may handle paperwork and occasional informational calls, but most of the time you will be working with your actual trial attorney.
Our office and divorce lawyers have built the firm from the ground up with efficiency in mind. Paperless, custom-built data centers for instant access to all file information, and flexible communication by phone, email, and even secure instant messaging. We want you to be able to participate as part of the team in your case.
Far too many divorce and family law "mills" are simply out to settle your case as fast as possible so they can move on the next one. Pacific Family Law Firm was founded by lawyers who are used to the courtroom and don't run from it. If getting you the right result means taking the matter to a trial, we will do it. If you are ready for a trial, we won't back down either.
When parties have a child together, their lives understandably become more interconnected. Circumstances become more complicated when one parent wants to move to a distant part of the state, or even to another state or country. What happens to the child? Can they move with that parent? What does parenting time look like for the parent staying behind? Oregon child relocation cases are some of the most complicated and emotionally difficult in family law. Generally, two parents love their children, both who want to remain an active part of their children's lives, but two divergent lives in different locations. It then falls upon the court to apply the legal standard of determining what is in the "best interests of the children."
Our relocation attorneys have substantial experience representing and working with parties on both sides of the "move away" issue. The state of Oregon's policy is to promote an ongoing, meaningful relationship for both parents of a child. As a result, the legal burden for the party attempting to move the child away tends to be much more complicated than keeping the child in place. This is because allowing the move almost always results in a reduction of parenting time for one parent, which is often considered not to be in the child's best interest. The success or failure of these cases depends significantly on individual facts and careful application of the law. These cases should not be handled alone and require the careful planning of an experienced Oregon child relocation lawyer.
In any "move away" case, applying the law to the client's specific circumstances is paramount. Our lawyers will review your current parenting plan and expect that you have considered what a parenting plan will look like in the event of a move. We will also request the history of your relationship, want to know the pros and cons of the move's location, and the rationale for the child after any move. Whether you are striving to keep your child's parent from relocating the child out of their current region, or if you are the one endeavoring to move the child, we can help. Contact one of our relocation lawyers today to discuss your options.
Clients always want to know the duration and the price of an Oregon divorce. Unfortunately, this is tough to answer without consulting on the case, although a widespread question.
Lawyers charge on an hourly basis, meaning the price of your divorce is related to the amount of time your lawyer spends working on the matter. There are also some court costs associated with the filing of a divorce, or other family law matters, in the state of Oregon. As a general rule, the higher the number of issues that are in dispute in your circumstance, the higher the fees. This is simply because the attorney will need to spend more time working on your matter.
Couples that can solve all issues may be able to do so without the need of a lawyer. Or, they may simply use a lawyer to draft appropriate paperwork. However, if a divorce goes to trial or has multiple hearings in court, the costs will grow accordingly. Because going to court is comparatively expensive, most cases settle without going to trial.
The length of the divorce also depends on whether the case goes to trial. A complete divorce could be finished as little as two weeks (or even less!) if the parties have agreed on most of the matters and only require the drafting of a judgment. However, when the matter involves court time, the schedule is often at the mercy of the court, which can be lengthy given the court's caseload. While most contested cases resolve within nine months, outlier cases can last more than a year.
Let us evaluate your case at a flat-fee initial consultation. We will attempt to give you a ballpark assessment of how much your matter would cost at every step and discuss the specifics of your case, which could make it more or less costly.
Q: What does a family law lawyer do? What is "Oregon family law?"
A: “Oregon Family law” is an umbrella term that refers to the practice of law that involves common domestic and family issues. While it is often associated with Oregon divorce, "family law" covers far more. Common family law issues include child custody, parenting time (visitation), step-parent adoptions, spousal support, child support, restraining orders and stalking orders, prenuptial agreement, grandparent rights, and far more.
Modern families come in all sizes and arrangments, and the term "family law" simply refers to the practice of law that helps those families within the Oregon court system.
When going through a divorce, tensions are already high. Emotions are high; feelings are hurt. The last thing that helps this circumstance is litigation, where the parties are forced to take positional roles that are adverse to each other, with a judge deciding on "who is right." By contrast, mediation is about building agreements and consensus. Rather than having a judge tell you the decision, a skilled Oregon mediator will help guide the parties to agree on their own. For couples going through a divorce, this is often an excellent way to reduce the level of conflict and create a resolution that works for the family.
While certainly not free, mediation can also be an excellent investment if it cuts a lengthy and far more costly litigation cycle of trial preparation and trial. Further, the reduction of tension and faster resolution, if successful, can have many longer-term benefits for families with children. By improving the ability to communicate at seem level, it may foster an environment that parents can work on other conflicts in the future to resolve issues involving the children.
Every county in Oregon is required to offer some divorce mediation to litigants. These mediation processes are connected to the court process. Still, they are outside the routine litigation that occurs within the court process itself. All mediation requirements may be satisfied by utilizing a private mediator independently hired by the parties.
In the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area, each of the three counties has its own mediation services required during a divorce: - Multnomah County Divorce Mediation: Under Multnomah County Supplementary Local Rule 8.031(1): In any domestic relations case, all parties are required to participate in some form of appropriate dispute resolution, including mediation, arbitration, judicial settlement conference, or a neutral-assisted settlement conference… - Clackamas County Divorce Mediation: Divorce mediation is voluntary - Washington County Divorce Mediation: Washington county Supplementary Local Rule 12.011 require: Mandatory Mediation: Any action filed in the court involving a controversy over custody or parenting time of minor children shall be subject to mediation - Outside the trip-county metropolitan area, each county has it’s own requirements which can be evaluated in the county supplementary local rules.
Mediation and arbitration are both alternative dispute resolution methods ("ADR") but are very different processes. Arbitration is more like a less formal trial and does not take place in a courtroom. In arbitration, an "arbitrator" fills the role of a judge in a courtroom and makes decisions about the case. By comparison, mediation is a process where a mediator facilitates negotiations and helps bring about agreement on disputed issues. Unlike an arbitrator, a mediator does not have any decision making authority in the case. While a good mediator can facilitate an agreement, they cannot force a resolution.
Minimizing conflict both during and after a divorce should be essential for parties, particularly those with children. Mediation provides a useful tool for resolving disputes without the need to enter a public forum (a courtroom) and inflame tensions by leveling allegations at each other. Mediation allows the parties to take part in the development and agreement of their resolution. This lowing of strains can have long-term benefits for the parties' emotional well-being and foster a better co-parenting relationship after the divorce process is complete. Similarly, or utilizing mediation after the divorce process is complete before returning to court for later disputes, the parties may continue to resolve future issues without costly or hurtful litigation.
Conflict reduction during and after divorce Minimizing conflict is a primary benefit of mediation during a divorce. The ability to do this can not only make the divorce itself less complicated, but it can set up a more positive atmosphere for after the divorce. For people who must co-parent after the divorce, this can be highly beneficial and in children's best interests.
This question is standard, though completely subjective and fact-specific. It is certainly possible for people to do divorces independently, and the court even provides paperwork to the public to do so. However, unfamiliarity with legal forms can confuse the inexperienced, and mistakes can result in more considerable legal fees in the future to correct the errors.
When there are more complex issues involving children, custody, and real property or more extensive assets, getting the expert legal opinion from an experienced Oregon divorce lawyer is almost certainly a good idea.
While not an exhaustive list, experience has shown that the best Oregon divorce lawyers consistently display a handful of traits. These are the hallmarks that tend to create the client's best knowledge and are most likely to lead the client to their goals. It is common for people to want a "pitbull" or some other cliched characterization of a lawyer to represent them. However, these are the traits that, in practice, are the most likely to obtain positive results.
Child custody is one of the most contentiously and contested issues in Oregon family law cases. Misconceptions about what "custody" actually means tend to meld with advice from well-meaning friends and family and with conflicting information from web sources that might not even reflect Oregon law.
Legal "custody" of a child in Oregon is not nearly as sweeping a status as many tend to believe. It is not a "super parent" status that allows a custodial parent to make unilateral moves for the child that involve relocation or schedule changes. In short, legal custody refers to decision making authority on three significant issues: 1. Education - for instance, if there is a dispute regarding which of two available public schools a child would attend, the custodial parent would have the final "tie-breaking" vote. 2. Healthcare - in non-emergency circumstances, the custodial parent may determine major medical questions, like selecting which primary care pediatrician the child uses. 3. Theological training - again, for example, this would entail determining as to whether a child went to a religious school or a public school. (Note that this custodial decision says nothing about the who would pay for a private religious school.)
There are two separate types of custody in Oregon: full legal custody and joint custody. Full custody is where one parent has the entire "tie-breaking" decision making authority, as referenced above. In joint legal custody, neither parent has any more power than the other; all determinations as to primary education, healthcare, and religious training must be by agreement of the parties. Joint custody can only come about by agreement of the parties. The court cannot force it.
By contrast, sole ("full") legal custody, if not agreed to, must be decided on by the court. When doing this, the court must take the child's best interest or children into account and apply factors as prescribed by Oregon law. In determining custody, Oregon law specifies what factors the court must evaluate and consider when deciding who should be the sole custodial parent at ORS 107.137: - a) The emotional ties between the child and other family members; - (b) The interest of the parties in and attitude toward the child; - (c) The desirability of continuing an existing relationship; - (d) The abuse of one parent by the other; - (e) The preference for the primary caregiver of the child, if the caregiver is deemed fit by the court; and - (f) The willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child. However, the court may not consider such willingness and ability if one parent shows that the other parent has sexually assaulted or engaged in a pattern of behavior of abuse against the parent or a child and that a continuing relationship with the other parent will endanger the health or safety of either parent or the child.
When the parties cannot agree on joint custody, the court has no option but to decide on one parent to be awarded sole custody by applying these factors. If a case goes to trial, a court will often recite the statutory factors they considered when making their ruling and awarding custody. However, not all cases go to trial. Most do not. If parties agree on a custody arrangement, without the need for a judge to weigh the custody factors, the court will honor that decision in any final judgment. Parties can come about an agreement by themselves, with the help of attorneys, or even through a mediated settlement.
Once custody is decided, or agreed-to for one parent, changing custody is substantially harder than establishing it. The court requires a "substantial and unanticipated change in circumstances," generally, which are to the detriment of a child.
Custody issues are tricky and require knowledge of the law to present the relevant evidence in a contested case. If you need help with your Oregon custody case, contact an experienced Oregon custody lawyer at brittle.law to set up a consultation.
Overview of Pacific Family Law Firm divorce and family law services.
"Domestic abuse" is defined by Oregon law. Generally, the law states that it is abuse when a family or household member: 1. Attempts to hurt you physically; 2. Actually hurts you physically (intentionally, recklessly or knowingly); 3. Intimidates or makes you afraid of serious physical injury (intentionally, recklessly or knowingly); OR 4. Makes you have sex against your will by force, or threat of force.
Family or household member” means any of the following: 1. An adult related by blood, marriage or adoption; 2. Someone you are living with or have lived with in the past; 3. Someone you have been in a sexually intimate relationship with, within two years immediately preceding the filing of a restraining order petition under; OR 4. Someone with whom you have a child.
Child support in Oregon is simply money paid by one parent to another to support a child or children. The amount of support is determined by a calculator based on Oregon law. The Oregon Child Support Calculator is a tool used to calculate the "presumptively correct" amount of child support that a parent is to pay or receive. The calculator uses a set of guidelines established by the state and the legislature to determine the correct amount of child support under Oregon law. Absent deviations for other factors determined by the Court, the amount that the calculator provides given the correct inputs will likely be the amount ordered by the Court.
To use the Oregon Child Support Calculator, you must input certain information about both parents, including their income and parenting time. The calculator is available to the public online for free, and will use this information to determine the amount of child support payments one parent must make to another. Custody is not a factor in the calculator, so depending on the financial and parenting time inputs, a custodial parent could still end up paying support non-custodial parent.
The Oregon Child Support Guidelines use a formula that considers the gross income of both parents, the number of children involved, and the amount of parenting time each parent has. Other factors used in the calculation include childcare, health insurance, union dues and non-joint children.
The guidelines are designed to ensure that the child's needs are met while also considering the financial situation of both parents. The goal is to provide a fair and reasonable amount of child support based on the specific circumstances of each case.
Though the amount output by the formula is considered presumptively correct, the Oregon Child Support Calculator does not guarantee a specific amount of child support. The Court has authority to adjust the final amount of support based on stipulation of the parties or by numerous other factors that may be considered the Court. These "rebuttal factors" are provided in the Oregon administrative rules in the Child Support Guideline Rules 137-050. It's essential to consult with an attorney or other legal professional if you have questions or concerns about your child support case.
In Oregon, child support is predominantly through payroll deduction, with employers withholding the support amount from parents' paycheck and then forwarding it to the Oregon Child Support Program. Alternative payment methods include: - cash - check/money order - credit/debit card - electronic check - electronic payment withdrawal Payments on behalf of someone else require a child support case number and the name/address of the paying parent. Adults in custody who owe past-due child support can make payments through the Department of Justice and Department of Corrections interface, with 15% of eligible deposits being withheld for court-ordered financial obligations. This percentage is split into 5% deposited into a transitional savings account and 10% collected for court-ordered financial obligations, with priority given to restitution and civil judgments, then child support obligations. Once the savings account reaches $500, the entire 15% is collected for court-ordered financial obligations.
Personal injury cases can be complicated, emotional, and time-consuming. When you add divorce into the mix, things can quickly become even more complicated. Divorce can have a significant impact on the outcome of a personal injury settlement, so it's essential to understand the potential implications.
If you're going through a divorce and have received a personal injury settlement or are in the process of settling a claim, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Here are some of the most important factors to consider:
The type of settlement you receive can impact how it is divided in a divorce. For example, if you receive a lump sum settlement, which has been incorporated into other marital assets, it may be subject to equitable distribution in a divorce. On the other hand, if you receive structured settlement payments, those payments may be considered separate property and not subject to division in a divorce.
The timing of your personal injury settlement in relation to your divorce can also impact how it is divided. If you settle your personal injury claim before filing for divorce, the settlement may be considered marital property subject to division in a divorce. If you settle your claim after filing for divorce, the settlement may be considered separate property.
Insurance companies can complicate matters even further. If your personal injury settlement includes compensation for medical bills paid by your health insurance company, your health insurance company may be entitled to a portion of your settlement.
Given the potential complexities involved in personal injury settlements and divorce, it's crucial to work with an experienced personal injury attorney. Your attorney can help you navigate the process, understand your legal rights, and ensure that you receive the best possible outcome. You should seek the help of an experienced personal injury attorney in addition to your divorce lawyer. For example, if you were injured in a car accident, you need an attorney who is skilled in helping clients injured in car accidents, not just family law matters.
An experienced attorney can also help you avoid common mistakes that could cost you significant amounts of money. For example, failing to consider the tax implications of your settlement or agreeing to a settlement that doesn't account for future medical expenses could be costly mistakes.
Personal injury settlements and divorce can be complicated, but they don't have to be overwhelming. By working with an experienced personal injury attorney, you can ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you receive the best possible outcome.
If you're going through a divorce and have received a personal injury settlement or are in the process of settling a claim, don't wait to seek legal guidance. Contact a reputable personal injury attorney today and get the support you need to navigate these complex legal matters.
Sometimes not knowing is the most stressful part of a divorce or family law case.
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(a) A party may apply to a court for a temporary protective order of restraint by filing with the court an affidavit or a declaration under penalty of perjury in the form required by ORCP 1 E, conforming to the requirements of ORS 109.767. (b) Upon receipt of an application under this subsection, the court may issue a temporary protective order of restraint restraining and enjoining each party from:
(A) Changing the child’s usual place of residence;
(B) Interfering with the present placement and daily schedule of the child;
(C) Hiding or secreting the child from the other party;
(D) Interfering with the other party’s usual contact and parenting time with the child;
(E) Leaving the state with the child without the written permission of the other party or the permission of the court; or
(F) In any manner disturbing the current schedule and daily routine of the child until custody or parenting time has been determined.
(1) In any proceeding to establish or modify a judgment providing for parenting time with a child, except for matters filed under ORS 107.700 (Short title) to 107.735 (Duties of State Court Administrator), there shall be developed and filed with the court a parenting plan to be included in the judgment. A parenting plan may be either general or detailed.
(2) A general parenting plan may include a general outline of how parental responsibilities and parenting time will be shared and may allow the parents to develop a more detailed agreement on an informal basis. However, a general parenting plan must set forth the minimum amount of parenting time and access a noncustodial parent is entitled to have.
(3) A detailed parenting plan may include, but need not be limited to, provisions relating to:
(a) Residential schedule;
(b) Holiday, birthday and vacation planning;
(c) Weekends, including holidays, and school in-service days preceding or following weekends;
(d) Decision-making and responsibility;
(e) Information sharing and access;
(f) Relocation of parents;
(g) Telephone access;
(h) Transportation; and
(i) Methods for resolving disputes.
ORS 107.105 is a huge statute that provides detailed provisions governing not only the provisions of a divorce or separation judgment but also provisions regarding attorney fees. Rather than quote select parts, the statute may be reviewed in its entirety at the link below.
(1) The court may at any time after a judgment of annulment or dissolution of marriage or of separation is granted, upon the motion of either party and after service of notice on the other party in the manner provided by ORCP 7, and after notice to the Division of Child Support when required under subsection (9) of this section:
(a) Set aside, alter or modify any portion of the judgment that provides for the appointment and duties of trustees, for the custody, parenting time, visitation, support and welfare of the minor children and the children attending school, as defined in ORS 107.108 (Support or maintenance for child attending school), including any health or life insurance provisions, for the support of a party or for life insurance under ORS 107.820 (Support order as insurable interest) or 107.830 (Physical examination may be ordered);
(b) Make an order, after service of notice to the other party, providing for the future custody, support and welfare of minor children residing in the state, who, at the time the judgment was given, were not residents of the state, or were unknown to the court or were erroneously omitted from the judgment;
(c) Terminate a duty of support toward any minor child who has become self-supporting, emancipated or married;
(d) After service of notice on the child in the manner provided by law for service of a summons, suspend future support for any child who has ceased to be a child attending school as defined in ORS 107.108 (Support or maintenance for child attending school); and
(e) Set aside, alter or modify any portion of the judgment that provides for a property award based on the enhanced earning capacity of a party that was awarded before October 23, 1999. A property award may be set aside, altered or modified under this paragraph.
(1) Except as provided in subsection (6) of this section, in determining custody of a minor child under ORS 107.105 (Provisions of judgment) or 107.135 (Vacation or modification of judgment), the court shall give primary consideration to the best interests and welfare of the child. In determining the best interests and welfare of the child, the court shall consider the following relevant factors:
(a) The emotional ties between the child and other family members;
(b) The interest of the parties in and attitude toward the child;
(c) The desirability of continuing an existing relationship;
(d) The abuse of one parent by the other;
(e) The preference for the primary caregiver of the child, if the caregiver is deemed fit by the court; and
(f) The willingness and ability of each parent to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child. However, the court may not consider such willingness and ability if one parent shows that the other parent has sexually assaulted or engaged in a pattern of behavior of abuse against the parent or a child and that a continuing relationship with the other parent will endanger the health or safety of either parent or the child.
(1) If a child is born to an unmarried person and parentage has been established under ORS 109.065 (Establishing parentage), or if a child is born to a married person by a person other than the birth mother’s spouse and parentage between the person and the child has been established under ORS 109.065 (Establishing parentage), either parent may initiate a civil proceeding to determine the custody or support of, or parenting time with, the child. The proceeding shall be brought in the circuit court of the county in which the child resides or is found or in the circuit court of the county in which either parent resides. The parents have the same rights and responsibilities regarding the custody and support of, and parenting time with, their child that married or divorced parents would have, and the provisions of ORS 107.094 (Forms for restraining order and request for hearing) to 107.449 (Transfer of proceeding under ORS 107.135 to auxiliary court) that relate to custody, support and parenting time, the provisions of ORS 107.755 (Court-ordered mediation) to 107.795 (Availability of other remedies) that relate to mediation procedures, and the provisions of ORS 107.810 (Policy), 107.820 (Support order as insurable interest) and 107.830 (Physical examination may be ordered) that relate to life insurance, apply to the proceeding.
From dividing assets and debts, to support and child custody, we have you covered.
Family law is more than divorce. It is an umbrella of practice areas.
A lot goes into figuring out spousal support. We've done it all before.
Moving a child away from a parent is always difficult. Let us help with the law.
Custody is one of the most contested and least-understood parts of family law.
Sometimes there's no dispute, you just need somebody to draft the right documents.
Sometimes a change in circumstances warrants a change in custody.
Oregon takes child support seriously, and we can help you navigate the process.
Learn about when Oregon child support can be modified.
When there's only select things you need legal help with, we offer "unbundled" services.
Grandparents and other third parties can develop rights to see children under Oregon law. Let's discuss your circumstances.
More assets generally means more complicated divorces. We have the experience to assist with all levels of estate.
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Mediation can be a great way to resolve disputes without a trial or courts.
Becoming legally responsible as a father requires establishing paternity. We can help.
Like estate planning, financial clairity prior to marriage builds trust. Let us assist with your plan.
Restraining orders provide a fast means to get help for domestic violence in families.
Times change, jobs change, circumstances change. Spousal support can too.
Oregon stalking orders are serious business. If you need help with Oregon stalking law, we have experience.
Sometimes the best outcome is the one you design yourself. We can help your create a binding agreement.
The Oregon Child Support Calculator is a tool that uses a set of guidelines to determine the "presumptively correct" amount of child support a parent is to pay or receive. The calculator considers factors such as the gross income of both parents, the number of children involved, and the amount of parenting time each parent has. Although the amount given by the calculator is considered presumptively correct, the Court has the authority to adjust the final amount based on other factors. In Oregon, child support is mainly paid through payroll deduction, but other payment methods are available.Read More
"Domestic abuse" is defined by Oregon law. Generally, the law states that it is abuse when a family or household member takes certain actions.Read More
Personal injury cases can be complicated, emotional, and time-consuming. When you add divorce into the mix, things can quickly become even more complicated. Divorce can have a significant impact on the outcome of a [personal injury settlement](#), so it's essential to understand the potential implications.Read More
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