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Civil Law

Family/Domestic Law

No one's family is perfect --but sometimes a breakdown in the family relationship requires outside help to resolve. Domestic/Family law governs various issues:

  •      Divorce/Dissolution
  •      Child Custody, Support and Visitation
  •      Alimony/Spousal Support
  •      Division of Assets/Property
          -home/real estate

          -vehicles

          -bank accounts

          -personal property

          -pension/retirement
  •      Division of Debts/Liabilities

          -secured debt (eg mortgage, car loans etc.)

          -unsecured debt (eg credit card debts,signature loans etc.)

          -delinquent taxes

  •      Adoptions
  •      Estate Planning Wills/Trusts

 

Any of the above issues may have an impace on you and your family on a personal and financial level. If you are interested in working with a lawyer who will offer you straight forward advice that is applicable to your unique situation while providing you with the correct temperament of legal representation that is necessary inside or outside of the court room, you have come to the right place. CLARK LAW OFFICES understand the importance of any family law issues and provides the zealous representation suited to these issues.

 

THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN DIVORCE AND DISSOLUTION

Divorce and dissolution are two very distinct and different entities.

A DIVORCE as many people know, is a very litigious civil suit brought by one married partner against the other spouse. It must be filed as a Complaint in the county of the plaintiff's residence. Besides alleging misconduct, the suing party, formally known as the Plaintiff seeks a court order allocating parental rights and distribute assets and debts. The party being sued, known as the defendant, has the right to timely file an answer and/or counter-complaint within the Rules of Ohio Civil Procedure. Because it is a civil action being litigated in a court, a divorce action can be quite lengthy time-wise depending on your local jurisdiction and that court's busy docket. Since most lawyers bill by the hour, this may result in costly legal fees and court costs.

A DISSOLUTION on the other hand is quite different. It is not as litigious. It is basically a written agreement between two married people to dissolve the marriage. In the corporate world, business partners may dissolve their business venture for any reason without necessarily assigning blame or misconduct. Similarly, in a dissolution of marriage, the spouses enter into a "contract" called a Separation Agreement. Therein, the agreement allocates parental rights and divides up assets and debts. Note that it is an agreement. Both parties MUST agree on all issues. Once the parties enter into the written agreement, it is filed with a Petition for Dissolution. Once it is filed with the Common Pleas Court, depending on the court's docket, the hearing cannot be conducted less than 30 days and no more than 60 days after filing of the Petition. Hence, a dissolution is quicker, less litigious and less costly to the parties.

 

ADOPTIONS

Adopting a child is a beautiful time in the life of a family, but it's also a complicated one. If you and your partner are considering adopting, you'll need an attorney qualified to assist you with the complex legal aspects of the process.

John Clark is an experienced family attorney that is experienced in adoption law. We have a wealth of knowledge in the various parameters that govern state adoption laws, and have helped ease numerous parents throughout OH in the adoption process.

At Clark Law Offices, we understand that no two families are alike and that no two adoptions are either. That's why we take a case-by-case approach to every adoption and take the time to understand each unique set of circumstances. Given the sensitive nature of adoption related cases, we strive to streamline the process and ensure that families are united quickly, confidentially and with complete dignity for all parties involved.
The process of adopting a child involves several important legal steps that we will assist you with. The most important of these is to establish a legal relationship with your new family member as that of a parent child and to ensure that the biological parent has seceded their parental rights. These measures can vary depending on the type of adoption you are undergoing. Our experience includes adoption law for cases of:

  •     Closed Adoption
  •     Open Adoption
  •     Stepparent Adoption

WILLS & TRUSTS

We encourage our clients of all ages to think about having a living will and a will for after they've passed. Far from being a morbid exercise, these documents give you the confidence that your wishes will be carried out as you desire.

A living will expresses your wishes in no uncertain terms when you're unable to speak for yourself during an illness. You can stipulate whether or not to be resuscitated, who is to act as your representative in this decision, and includes the relevant language for hospitals and your doctor.


A will is a vastly more flexible and personalized document. You can specify your funeral arrangements, how your property and assets should be disbursed, and what happens to anything you haven't mentioned. You can also name your executor, or the person who will be in charge of following your wishes.

The process of this disbursement and the laws that govern it fall under the area of trusts and estates. If you're looking for advice on your estate planning and the writing of your will, please do not hesitate to contact our experienced and courteous attorneys. We're here to help.

 

Why Choose Us?

  • Over 20 Years Experience
  • Two Offices To Serve You (Chillicothe and Jackson)
  • Payment Plans Available Upon Approval
  • Personal Injury/Wrongful Death Cases On Contingency (We Don't Get Pait Unless You Get Paid)
  • Many Satisfied Clients

Memberships

  • Ohio Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Jackson County Bar Association
  • Ross County Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • Vinton County Bar Association