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Recent Posts in Child Custody Category

  • What Is a Child in Need of Assistance Case?

    A Child in Need of Assistance (CINA) case is when a court must decide if the living situation around a child is not conducive to their ultimate wellbeing. A court will find a CINA if: a child has been abused and/or neglected; a child has a developmental disability or mental disorder that isn’t being addressed by their guardian; or the child’s guardians don’t give proper care and/or attention to ...
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  • How Can a Grandparent Gain Custody of a Child?

    Grandparents can be heavily involved in the life and child-rearing responsibilities of children; sometimes they even become the primary caregivers. While the majority of child custody cases are between parents, grandparents have the right to seek custody of their grandchildren as well. So, how can a grandparent gain custody of their grandchild? Is it a more difficult process than a biological ...
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  • How to Get Your Child's Passport if You Are a Single Parent

    As of 2001, the United States government requires both parent’s signatures on their child’s passport applications. This rule applies to new passports for children under the age of 14; before this rule, it was possible for only one parent to complete a passport application for their child. If you are a single parent, it is still possible for you to obtain a passport for your child. However, the ...
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  • What Is the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction?

    The Hague Conference on Private International Law is an international organization compromised of several countries (82 States and the European Union). The goal of the Hague Conference is to establish workable, internationally-agreed methods of resolving legal issues between countries with various legal systems and traditions regarding matters such as court jurisdiction and the recognition and ...
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  • What Rights Does an Unmarried Father Have?

    In the 21st Century, it is not unusual for unmarried parents to have children. Perhaps these parents are divorced or have no intention of marrying because they are children of divorce. The reasons for having children out of wedlock vary and are very personal, but regardless of the reasons for having children outside of the institution of marriage, it’s frequency has raised issues in the family ...
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  • Iowa Fathers Fight for 50/50 Parenting Rights Bill

    50 50 Parenting Plan Determining child custody is one of the most contentious aspects of the divorce process. When parents can’t establish a parenting plan on their own, they can turn to the court for guidance. However, Iowa courts tend to pick one parent to be the primary custodian, which isn’t always in the child’s best interest. The purpose of a comprehensive parenting plan is to guarantee that ...
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  • Marital Abandonment & Your Divorce Case

    The divorce process can be a complicated and overwhelming experience even when both spouses are present and accounted for. But what happens when one spouse completely severs ties with the family and runs away to parts unknown? This leaves the other spouse responsible for countless financial and marital obligations. Fortunately, you can still get divorced in Iowa even if your spouse has disappeared ...
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  • Child Custody FAQs

    Every client that walks through our doors has unique personal circumstances and legal goals they want to achieve. Even so, there is one subject that can turn any divorce case into a drawn-out, costly, and high-conflict affair: child custody. Many divorcing parents turn to us because they have countless questions and concerns about the legalities and regulations surrounding child custody ...
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  • Managing the Emotional Trials of Visitation

    Part of your post-divorce life is learning how to share custody with your former spouse. While it’s difficult to watch your children drive away with your ex, you need to learn how to rationalize, accept, and proactively manage your visitation blues. Your Feelings Are Normal Sometimes “out of sight” does not mean “out of mind.” It’s normal to feel a little lost when your children are spending time ...
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  • 3 Gift-Giving Tips for Divorced Parents

    The winter season plays host to numerous cultural and religious holidays that celebrate the concepts of “family” and “togetherness.” Many recently divorced parents paste on bright smiles, whip out their credit cards, and struggle to make this season a special experience for their children. What they don’t realize is that their children can’t wait for December to be over. The Gift-Giving ...
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  • Preventing Visitation Obstacles

    Once a divorce is finalized, former spouses are finally able to start forging the next chapter of their lives. However, not all ties are severed once this legal process is complete. Former spouses often have to construct their new lives while still co-parenting with their exes. This can be a difficult relationship to navigate, especially if the marriage or divorce was particularly contentious. ...
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  • What Are Temporary Child Custody Orders?

    During the divorce process, parents need to work together to establish an equitable child custody agreement that reflects the best interests of their child. If they can’t come to a unanimous agreement, it’s the court’s responsibility to establish a fair and comprehensive parenting plan on their behalf. But child custody determinations are only one part of a larger marital settlement agreement that ...
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  • Why You Shouldn’t Stay Together for the Kids

    Filing for divorce is a big decision that no couple chances lightly. After all, for better and worse, the transition from marriage to singlehood ultimately affects every aspect of a person’s life. Divorce, in and of itself, can also be a complicated and stressful experience. Spouses need to hire attorneys and negotiate debt allocation, asset division, and child custody; they may even need to go to ...
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  • Child Custody: Determining the Best Interests of the Child

    When child custody and child support decisions are being negotiated, the court often makes its final determinations based on a child’s “best interests.” In the context of family law, this means that any decisions relating to custody, visitation, and financial support payments are made with the intention of benefitting the child first and foremost. Even if parents agree on a custody arrangement out ...
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  • Will a Collaborative Divorce Benefit My Children?

    To children, divorce is the end of the world. This may seem dramatic, but there is no denying that divorce changes a child’s life irrevocably. While a divorce may benefit your family in the long run, it’s important to remember what an emotionally complicated experience it can be for your child. If you have an amicable or courteous relationship with your spouse, you may want to consider a ...
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  • When Can I Seek a Child Custody Modification?

    Most child custody arrangements aren’t built to last, and if you’ve reached a point where your parenting plan no longer works for your family, you need to understand how to seek a modification. Whether you’ve relocated, are working new hours, or your child’s medical needs have changed, it’s understandable that these life changes might affect your custody arrangement. However, the way in which you ...
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  • What Factors Influence Child Custody?

    Whether you are going through a divorce, legal separation, or another type of split from your child’s other parent, dealing with the issue of child custody can be tricky. Parents are typically encouraged to try to find a solution amongst themselves, without the interference of the court system, and sometimes this works. However, if the parents are unable to come to an agreement on their own, they ...
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  • How Do I Protect My Rights as a Father?

    Whether you are going through a divorce or are an unmarried father, your parental rights are still important and should be respected. Unfortunately, it can be a challenge for fathers to receive the appropriate recognition in their child’s life and may find themselves fighting to protect their rights. As Des Moines family law attorneys, we understand the difficulties you may be facing, and we can ...
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  • Relocating with Your Child After Divorce

    Most people think the divorce is the hardest part of the end of a marriage. While this may be true for some, for parents, the hardest part is continuing to speak with your ex to maintain custody visits and visitation. The court will order parents to keep a specific schedule of visitation and custody until both parents decide to make a change or one parent wants to make a change regardless of ...
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  • Co-Parenting Tips for Divorced Couples

    Very few things are quite as difficult as struggling to co-parent with your ex-spouse, as there is obviously a reason why the two of you chose to end your marriage. Whether there is a vast difference in parenting styles, or you cannot simply get along with each other, co-parenting will be a challenge until your children are old enough to take care of themselves, and even then you will still have ...
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  • Tips on Planning Child Custody during the Summer Months

    Children are always excited for the summer. School is out, they have the freedom to play from dusk until dawn, and they usually go on some kind of vacation with their family. However, after a divorce , the summer can become quite a complicated ordeal for ex-spouses to find agreement upon. Oftentimes, divorced parents who have limited custody during the school months hope to see their children for ...
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  • The Most Important Divorce Tip for Parents

    Family counseling specialists and divorced parents agree: one of the most important goals for any divorce is to impact the children as little as possible. Whether your kids are toddlers or teenagers, they are vulnerable to what you say or do. While divorce often brings out the most emotional and painful issues people ever face, parents need to value their children’s health above all else. ...
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  • Custody Dispute Tips for Fathers

    In a very "traditional" family model, the mother is primarily responsible for the care of the children and the home while the father works long hours to provide financially for the family. The father relies on the mother to inform him of their kids’ schedule and needs. When a divorce occurs, and child custody is disputed, the mom can demonstrate how she handles taking the children to the doctor ...
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  • What Can Make Divorce More Expensive?

    In most cases, divorces can be expensive. Some require complex child custody , child support , alimony , or property division , while others are pushed to the brink of hostile court litigation. It is imperative to completely understand the issues you face in a divorce and allocate your finances accordingly to have the most cost-efficient divorce possible. Common issues that typically make divorces ...
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  • Iowa & Child Custody Matters

    How are child custody cases decided in Iowa? Every state has its own particular set of guidelines. However, the polestar factor in any child custody case continues to be what is in the best interests of the child. How Do the Courts Decide? Sometimes parents can work out many of their matters without needing to bring the matter to court. Mediation, for example, provides a confidential platform for ...
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