St. Louis Family Lawyer
Representing Families in MO for Decades
Family law proceedings have the potential to be stressful, scary, and emotionally draining. These are issues that have a profound impact on you and your family, and they are likely foreign to you. It can be difficult to know what to do – and what not to do – in a divorce, custody dispute, adoption, or other family law matter to give yourself the opportunity of reaching a beneficial result with the least amount of financial and emotional disruption. A St. Louis family lawyer at Cavanagh & Associates can help you navigate legal family problems.
Why You Should Choose Cavanagh & Associates:
- Confidential consultations
- 50+ years of legal experience
- Every legal matter is handled personally
- One-on-one attention for each and every client
Read our lawyer reviews to see why clients choose our law firm when they need the best family lawyer in St. Louis.
Discuss your case with an experienced family law attorney in St. Louis who will provide straightforward insight that applies to your case. Call (314) 309-2799 today to setup a case review!
You Deserve Personalized Attention from our Experienced St. Louis Family Law Attorneys
Through our experience, we have discovered legal matters involving families are best handled with a compassionate and personalized approach, combined with zealous legal representation inside and outside the family courtroom. If you are looking for an attorney who can provide caring customer service along with dedicated legal counsel, consider Cavanagh & Associates.
We represent clients in these areas of family law:
- Divorce (dissolution of marriage)
- Marital misconduct
- Mediated and collaborative divorce
- Prenuptial agreements
- Paternity proceedings
- Child custody
- Child support
- Spousal support (alimony)
- Post-divorce modifications and enforcement
- Paternity and custody counsel for unmarried parents
- Division of property, debt, and assets
- Child protection orders
We also offer a pre-divorce consultation to provide invaluable insight before you file for divorce. This can help you make the right initial approach to ending your marriage and can save you time, money, and stress.
What Is Family Law?
When you get married or have a child, you must sign legal documents. If any issues arise within these relationships, the documents may have to change. Family law is the field in which these changes take place. The changes also take place in a special court, known as family court. Family law attorneys, judges, and other professionals work within this field.
A good family lawyer will be compassionate about your situation and help you get through legal processes such as divorce, adoption, and child custody. Family courts always act in the best interests of children, but they can also help couples without children divide property or help establish legal parentage via paternity suits and other processes.
Family law can also intersect with other practice areas, including criminal defense in domestic violence and child abuse cases, estate planning, immigration, and even business law.
What Do You Need to Prepare for Divorce?
If you are considering divorce in Missouri, there are a few things you should do to prepare yourself.
First, it's important to understand the laws related to divorce in Missouri. The state has specific regulations on residency requirements, division of assets and liabilities, spousal support, alimony, and more that must be followed for a valid divorce.
Once you've familiarized yourself with the laws governing your case, you'll need to collect financial information about yourself and your spouse. This includes records such as income tax returns from the past three years; bank statements; credit card statements; real estate documents; retirement accounts; life insurance policies; pay stubs; loan documents; deeds of trust or mortgages; car titles/registration; and any other documents that show what assets you have.
It is also important to start planning for your post-divorce life, including looking into different types of housing and creating a budget based on your expected income. You may want to speak with financial advisors or lawyers who can help you make decisions about how best to manage your finances during the divorce process.
How Long Does a Divorce Take to Finalize in Missouri?
In Missouri, the amount of time it takes to finalize a divorce depends on several factors.
In most cases, the process should be completed within 30 to 90 days from when the filing spouse serves their partner with the petition for dissolution of marriage. However, if there is significant disagreement or complexity in your case, the timeline may be longer, perhaps months or even years.
Some issues that could prolong a divorce include: child custody disputes, division of assets or debts, spousal maintenance (alimony), and paternity. If you are unable to reach an uncontested agreement with your spouse on matters related to your divorce, you may need to go through mediation or receive a court ruling.
As with many legal processes, the best way to ensure your Missouri divorce is finalized in a timely manner is to be prepared and organized. Gathering all of the necessary paperwork, understanding what matters need to be discussed and decided upon, and having access to an experienced attorney can help make the process run as smoothly as possible.
Ultimately, how long it takes for your divorce to be finalized depends on how cooperative you and your spouse are during this difficult time.
How is Child Custody Decided in Missouri?
Child custody is determined in a variety of ways in Missouri. If parents are able to agree on an arrangement outside of court, they can do so through a written agreement called a parenting plan. This plan should detail the rights and responsibilities that each parent has regarding the child's care and welfare.
If parents are unable to come to an agreement before going to court, then it is up to the judge to decide what arrangement works best for the child. The court will consider several factors when making this decision, including: each parent’s fitness as a custodial parent; any history of domestic violence or abuse; the child’s relationship with both parents; and any special needs of the child. Ultimately, though, courts will always seek to make a decision that serves the best interests of the child.
How a Family Lawyer Can Help You
Hiring the right attorney for your family law issue can make or break your case. While there are many lawyers that practice family law, there are only a select few that have over 50 years of experience. Along with vast knowledge, our attorney can provide you with:
- The human element – You are not a number here. We treat you and your family like our own.
- Consistent communication – Our attorneys provide themselves in being accessible to their clients, as communication and trust is prioritized.
- Expertise with complex issues – Legal issues surrounding divorce, custody, or support can become complex. Our attorneys have the expertise to guide you in the right direction.
At Cavanagh & Associates, we know what you are going through. Our St. Louis family law lawyers have the skill and experience to properly represent your interests in your family law case, and we can provide considerate support when you need it most. Practiced lawyer Jack Cavanagh has more than 50 years of legal experience, including hundreds of judge and jury trials, which he can apply to your case. He leads our team in our commitment to providing superior family law counsel in St. Louis, St. Charles, Chesterfield, and throughout the surrounding areas.
Call our practiced St. Louis family law attorney at(314) 309-2799 to arrange a consultation with the our knowledgeable and compassionate legal team.
Our Clients Mean Everything to UsRead Stories Directly From People We've Helped
“I would recommend Mr. Cavanagh as well as use him again in the future.”- Former Client
“Truth will always prevail.”- Mr. Callaway
“Great Team! Highly Recommended.”- Donald Salisbury