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ADOPTION
DIVORCE
CHILD CUSTODY
CHILD SUPPORT
ALIMONY
PATERNITY
STEPPARENTS' RIGHTS
GRANDPARENTS' RIGHTS
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
SPOUSAL ABUSE
RESTRAINING ORDERS
ASSET DIVISION
PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENT
POSTNUPTIAL AGREEMENTS

ADOPTION

National Adoption Information Clearinghouse
A service of the Children's Bureau, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The mission is to connect professionals and concerned citizens to practical, timely, and essential information on programs, research, legislation, and statistics to promote the safety, permanency, and well-being of children and families.

North Carolina Adoption
Adoption.com is committed to helping as many children as possible find loving, permanent homes. Critical information is available at the decision-making moment to women facing crisis pregnancies. Assistance is provided for adoptees and birthparents to find birth families. There is help for special needs children in the U.S. and around the world, who otherwise wouldn't be able to find families.

Independent Adoption Center - North Carolina
IAC makes open adoption accessible throughout the United States to birthparents, adopting parents and adoptees. Center officials provide information about open adoption for those seeking to start the adoption journey. The Center has adoption counselors located throughout the United States with offices in Pleasant Hill, (Northern) California - Los Angeles, California - Atlanta, Georgia - Indianapolis, Indiana - Raleigh, North Carolina

Foster Child Adoption in North Carolina
Each county in North Carolina has a Department of Social Services that provides or arranges for adoption services. In addition to public agencies, there are private agencies licensed by the N.C. Division of Social Services. Public agencies provide adoption services at no cost to applicants interested in children in the foster care system.

Adoption Services in North Carolina
The agency focuses on matching North Carolina birthmothers with North Carolina adoptive parents. The agency consists of adoption counselors located throughout the state of North Carolina which provides personal counseling to birth parents. The Directors founded the agency to give personalized and compassionate service to birthmothers.

National Council for Adoption
A champion of adoption since its founding in 1980, the NCA is an advocate for state laws that promote sound adoption policy. It also is a resource for federal officials and policymakers regarding appropriate federal adoption initiatives and reform as well as a diplomat for sound international adoption policy. A source of adoption facts and education, NCFA is devoted to serving the best interests of children through adoption.

Adoption-Baby Adoption
A how-to guide to adoption and foster care that provides access to thousands of resources addressing all aspects of the subject including extensive coverage of international adoption issues. Essential subjects include thinking about adoption, becoming a foster parent and foster care.

Adopting a Baby
For those seeking to become adoptive parents, information is available about who can adopt, the home study, procedures, terms, options, costs, facilitators, agencies and professionals for domestic and international adoption. Resources include education and online information for foster parents in the US, Canada and around the world. Resources also are available for parents and expectant parents considering placing a child for adoption.

Christian World Adoption
An active member of the Joint Council on International Children's Services, the Christian World Adoption is fully licensed in the States of South Carolina and North Carolina, placing children throughout the U.S. as well as other countries (call for details for non-U.S. residents). Thousands of children from 15 countries have been placed since 1991 and has active adoption programs in several countries, providing great flexibility.

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DIVORCE

Americans for Divorce Reform
Supporting cultural and legislative efforts to reduce divorce. This site contains discussions, reviewed articles, information about legislation, polls, and current grounds for divorce in all states, to name a few.

Teens Dealing with Divorce
About half the marriages in the United States today end in divorce, so children of divorce are certainly not alone. It may seem hard, but it is possible to cope with divorce - and have a happy family life in spite of some changes divorce may bring. After all, couples divorce one another, not their kids.

Obtaining Divorce Certificates
From the National Center for Health Statistics, information is available on a state-by-state basis on how to obtain an official divorce certificate. These records are filed permanently in a State vital statistics office or in a city, county, or other local office. To obtain a certified copy, write or go to the vital statistics office in the State or area where the event occurred. Addresses and fees are given for each event in the State or area concerned.

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CHILD CUSTODY

Guidelines for Child Custody
Decisions regarding child custody and other parenting arrangements occur within several different legal contexts, including parental divorce, guardianship, neglect or abuse proceedings, and termination of parental rights. Guidelines were developed for psychologists conducting child custody evaluation, specifically within the context of parental divorce. These guidelines build upon the American Psychological Association's Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct.

Child Support Enforcement, NC
Each year, more than 300,000 North Carolina families struggle to make ends meet because of parents who don't pay their child support. The N.C. Child Support Enforcement Program is committed to it mission to help in securing financial and medical support for the children in these families.

Mediation Prior to Court System, NC
Mediation is a process in which a professionally trained neutral third party assists parents in developing an agreement that provides for the care of their children during and after separation. The goal of the mediation process is to provide the litigant a forum to discuss parenting issues that involve both parents in the continuing care of their children. The agreement focuses on the children's needs as well as the on the rights and responsibilities of both parents.

Win Child Custody
This site contains a series of books on divorce and child custody issues. It includes bibliography, abstracts and tables of contents and on-line purchasing.

Child Custody Issues/Parent Mental Illness
Some state laws site mental illness as a condition that can lead to loss of custody or parental rights. Parents with mental illnesses often avoid seeking mental health services for fear of losing custody of their children. Custody loss rates for parents with mental illness range as high as 70-80 percent.

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CHILD SUPPORT

Child Support Enforcement Abroad
Child support enforcement is a high priority for the United States Government . The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 as amended, strengthened and improved child support collection activities. This site answers such questions as what countries does the US have child support enforcement agreements with at present.

North Carolina Child Support
Here you will find complete child support information and be able to conduct transactions, whether you are a parent, an employer or a child support worker. Other important websites included here are NC Division of Social Services, Health and Human Services, More NC Child Support Enforcement Information Services and Child Support Services in Other States.

UNC North Carolina Child Support
This website is designed primarily for North Carolina judges, child support enforcement agencies, and attorneys who are involved in establishing, modifying, and enforcing court orders for child support, but anyone is welcome to browse the website and use its resources.

Social Services, NC
Child Support Services promotes parental responsibility by locating non-custodial parents, establishing paternity, support and medical obligations, enforcing existing child support orders and collecting child support. This service is available to the general public for a fee of either $10 or $25, which is determined by a sliding fee scale.

NC Office of Administrative Hearings
For filing a contested case if you have received a Notice of Intent to Intercept your taxes for child support from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the notice sets out your appeal rights specifically to the Office of Administrative Hearings.

Child Support Information / State Phone Numbers
This is a referral guide that includes official states' phone numbers to obtain information regarding child support, income withholding, paternity, support order establishment, modification and review adjustment, to name a few.

National Child Support Enforcement Association
NCSEA (National Child Support Enforcement Association) is the nonprofit, membership organization representing the child support community. NCSEA promotes the well-being of children through professional development of its membership, advocacy and public awareness. Membership includes line/managerial/executive child support staff; state and local agencies; judges; court masters; hearing officers; government and private attorneys; social workers; advocates; corporations that partner with government to provide child support services and private collection firms.

NC Child Support Guidelines
Section 50-13.4 of the North Carolina General Statutes requires the Conference of Chief District Judges to prescribe uniform statewide presumptive guidelines for determining the child support obligations of parents, and to review the guidelines periodically (at least once every four years) to determine whether their application results in appropriate child support orders.

Child Support Data
US Census Bureau statistics in reports, briefs, and research papers on child support. How the data is collected and surveys used to obtain child support information.

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ALIMONY

Tax Topic - Topic 452 Alimony Paid
This topic covers alimony under divorce or separate maintenance decrees or written separation agreements entered into by you and your spouse or former spouse after 1984. It explains what is deductible if you pay alimony, and what is taxable if you receive alimony. You may deduct the alimony or separate maintenance payments you are required to make to your spouse or former spouse, or to a third party on behalf of that spouse.

Alimony - Tax Glossary
Information about tax preparation and reporting of alimony. Alimony is money received or paid to a former spouse under a divorce decree or separation instrument. Also called separate maintenance. If you paid or received alimony, you must use Form 1040. The person paying the alimony must also report the Social Security Number of the person to whom alimony was paid.

Deductible Alimony Calculator
When alimony payments decrease substantially or end during the first three calendar years, the so-called alimony recapture rule can come into play. The three-year period starts with the first calendar year that alimony payments are made under a decree of divorce or separate maintenance or a written separation agreement.

Alimony News - Topics - NY Times
News about alimony, including commentary and archival articles published in The New York Times. The site includes a list of subjects that are directly and indirectly related to divorce and alimony actions that were reported.

Feminists on Alimony
This site called the "Liz Library" contains articles, reviews, research, commentary and opinion on motherhood, divorce and alimony from a women's perspective. There are a host of topics under the theme of maternal feminism.

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PATERNITY

Paternity Information Page
Created to present paternity information for fathers from a father's point of view. A frank and revealing presentation of paternity information by and for fathers is made. Currently paternity is strongly linked to child support; therefore, child support and its link to paternity is discussed.

Genetree DNA Testing
GeneTree is committed to providing highly service-oriented DNA analysis and counseling for researching biological relationships. The company works with a number of other corporations to provide high quality DNA testing services such as paternity testing, DNA banking and more.

NC Child Support Enforcement - Paternity
When the location of a noncustodial parent (NCP) is known and confirmed and paternity is at issue, the local CSE agency is responsible for proceeding with attempts to establish paternity. This site addresses policy and procedure on paternity enforcement in North Carolina.

Frequently Asked Questions - Paternity
Utah Department of Human Services website provides general definitions and specific information about the most common issues surrounding the subject of paternity. Additional data include employer information, child support calculator, financial data match program and public policy issues. There also is a helpful glossary of terms.

FCIC: Handbook Includes Establishing Paternity
From the handbook on Child Support Enforcement comes section III. Establishing Fatherhood: Paternity. All states have programs under which birthing hospitals give unmarried parents of a newborn the opportunity to acknowledge the father's paternity of the child. States must also help parents acknowledge paternity up until the child's eighteenth birthday through vital records offices or other offices designated by the state.

MedicineNet - Paternity Tests Back Dads Claims
Medical article: Ninety-eight percent of men raising children they believe to be their biological offspring are right to think so, according to the largest review of paternity and genetic test data ever conducted. Even men who actively seek out paternity tests because they doubt their paternity turn out to be wrong most of the time, the study found. "Only about 30 percent of those men aren't the father," said researcher Kermyt Anderson, an assistant professor in the department of anthropology at the University of Oklahoma.

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STEPPARENTS' RIGHTS

Stepfamily Association of America
According to common law, stepparents do not have a direct financial responsibility for the health, education, or welfare of their stepchildren. However, if the remarriage ends in divorce, the court notes two possible exceptions for direct financial responsibility to stepchildren by the stepparent in the custodial household: (1) in loco parentis and (2) the "estoppel doctrine." The Stepfamily Association of America (SAA) is a national non-profit organization dedicated to providing support and guidance to families with children from previous relationships ... stepfamilies.

Stepparents Rights: Custody and Visitation
The very first issue a stepparent must face is whether he or she even has standing to request custody or visitation of a stepchild. The question of standing may arise in a variety of judicial forums for resolving custody disputes between parents and non-parents. Guardianship proceedings, habeas corpus proceedings after a parent has died, and the civil child protection system all establish judicial authority to consider the custody of children.

The Duty of Stepparents…
SupportGuidelines.com article on "The Duty of Stepparents to Support Their Stepchildren." With the growing number of stepchildren living in married couple families comes the growing number of statutes and cases concerning the rights and responsibilities of stepparents to their stepchildren. Quite importantly, the law is now beginning to recognize that severing the psychological-parent/child relationship can be just as damaging as severing the biological parent/child relationship.

Law for Kids: What Rights Do Stepparents Have
A project of Arizona Foundation for Legal Services & Education, this site provides legal statement and invites commentary from the public on the issue. Stepparents have no specific rights over their stepchildren. The biological parent has decision-making authority over the children in all matters related to the child's health and upbringing. If the stepparent is a custodian of the child, that adult can make certain control / discipline decisions affecting the child in the absence of a biological parent.

Resource Guide… Includes Stepparents Rights
Given the number of divorces, it's no surprise that many thousands of divorce organizations exist around the US. Some are for single parents and some just for singles. Some cater to the needs of parents without custody, others to the political agendas of divorced moms or divorced dads. The broad spectrum of national groups presented will enable you to link, either directly or through referral, to the information, support, and friendship that you need.

Family Law Reporter - Stepparents Rights
This is the Index-Summary to the Family Law Reporter, a BNA weekly publication offering comprehensive coverage and expert analysis of important developments in federal and state family law. This subject index is arranged alphabetically word-by-word and updated monthly, the index cumulates for a year. Page references direct subscribers to the exact location of the desired information in the print publication.

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GRANDPARENTS' RIGHTS

Grandparents Rights Organization
The Grandparents Rights Organization is a national volunteer non profit organization founded in 1984. Its purpose is to educate and support grandparents and grandchildren and to advocate their desire to continue a relationship that may be threatened with loss of contact or amputation usually following the death or divorce of the grandchild(s) parents.

Grandparent Visitation Rights
Gone are the days when your children and grandchildren lived down the block or around the corner and you could visit them whenever you wanted. In our mobile society, many children live half way across the country and grandparents are lucky to see their grandchildren once or twice a year. Today, even that seldom is better than what an increasing number of grandparents are facing: a court fight for the right to see their grandchildren.

NewsHour Report: Grandparents Rights
The U.S. Supreme Court recently decided that grandparents do not have an automatic right to visit their grandchildren. That decision was based on a Washington State case involving the grandparents of two sisters, ages 8 and 10. The Supreme Court said a state law giving the grandparents visitation rights actually violated the US Constitution.

Grandparents Rights and Responsibilities
An informative PDF article from Wisconsin on grandparent's rights and responsibilities. Editors field a variety of general and specific questions and offer books, articles, websites and organizations as resources for further study. This information is not intended to substitute for legal advice, nor does it cover all issues.

Grandparents Magazine - Rights
Katrina Hayday Wester, founder of Grandparent's Magazine says, "In April 2003 after over 3 years of working on iGrandparents.com they closed their doors and the site which served so many was gone. After establishing a relationship with hundreds of thousands of grandparents I decided to launch Grandparents Magazine™. I believe that there should be a fun, free place on the internet for grandparents." The site hosts Grandparents Resources from the US and Canada.

Grandparents Rights Survive
ABA Journal article on the subject being reviewed by states' courts. When the U.S. Supreme Court declared Washington State's grandparent visitation law unconstitutional in Troxel v. Granville about five years ago, some feared that Granny couldn't ask a judge for help. But as state after state examines the constitutionality of their nonparent visitation statutes, it turns out the predictions were wrong.

AARP: Visiting the Kids Gets Harder
Michigan and New Jersey are the latest players to weigh in on one of the most significant trends in family law-testing the legal right of grandparents to sue for visits with their grandchildren. The high courts in the two states are sites of the latest skirmishes between grandparents and parents in a highly charged legal battle that has intensified nationwide-and one that has led some states to restrict, and even abolish, grandparent visitation laws.

NC Grandparents…Raising Grandchildren
A state fact sheet for grandparents and other relatives raising grandchildren. In North Carolina, there are 135,158 living in grandparent-headed households. In North Carolina, 79,810 grandparents report they are responsible for grandchildren living with them: 47% are White, 47% are African American, 2% are Hispanic/Latino, and 2% are Native American.

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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Printable Domestic Violence Protective Order 

National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
The Mission of the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence is to organize for collective power by advancing transformative work, thinking and leadership of communities and individuals working to end the violence in our lives. Therefore, it is the mission of NCADV to work for major societal changes necessary to eliminate both personal and societal violence against all women and children. NCADV's work includes coalition building at the local, state, regional and national levels.

National Domestic Violence Hotline
We believe that every caller deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. We believe that every family deserves to live in a world free from violence. We believe that safe homes and safe families are the foundation of a safe society. 1-800-799-SAFE (7233). Help is available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for victims and anyone calling on their behalf to provide crisis intervention, safety planning, information and referrals to agencies in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

MedlinePlus: Domestic Violence
This site contains a large volume of information, questions and answers on diagnosis/symptoms, coping, and prevention/screening for domestic violence cases. There are several related issues and a list of organizations on the subject. A service of the US National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health.

Family Violence Prevention Fund
A site that provides step-by-step guideline on what you can do, organizations, resources and information for dealing with domestic violence. If you are in a violent relationship, one of the most important steps you can take is to make a safety plan for your home and the workplace. These plans contain simple but critical steps you can take to increase your safety while you deal with the violence you face in your personal life.

Commission on Domestic Violence - ABA
The ABA Commission on Domestic Violence has prepared a brief summary of the legal provisions of VAWA 2005 that impact the provision of legal representation to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, dating violence, and trafficking. It is not intended to be a comprehensive analysis of these provisions, but rather a reference tool for attorneys to ensure that they are incorporating VAWA 2005 provisions into their representation of survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, stalking and trafficking.

Domestic Violence Handbook
If this booklet applies to you, you just need to remember two things: first, abuse is never okay; second, you are not alone. Help is yours for the asking. If you know someone whom you think is being abused - a friend, family member, co-worker, client, patient or parishioner - please consider contacting one of the agencies listed below to discuss ways to safely help them.

Men and Women Against Domestic Violence
Sponsored by the Paladin Group, this site contains a large source-bank of information, definitions, guidelines, legal advice, statistics and articles on the subject of domestic violence and what can be done about it. It also lists domestic violence counseling agencies and shelters-by-state on the internet. It also includes a national toll-free hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).

NC Coalition Against Domestic Violence
A state-wide web source for information and counseling on domestic violence. We believe that it is important to provide services to all women - women of all races, ages, classes, religious and ethnic groups, as well as lesbians and women who are differently abled. It is not enough to say, "Everyone is welcome", but we must intentionally and actively create safe places for all women.

NC Council for Women/Domestic Violence Commission
This agency staffs the Domestic Violence Commission, and advises the governor, the North Carolina legislature and the state departments on the special needs of women in North Carolina. Issues covered include: identifying and assessing needs; collecting and distributing information about the status of women; identifying and assessing statewide needs, including domestic violence; and assuring that necessary services, policies, and programs are provided to those in need and strengthening existing programs.

NC Department of Justice
If you are a victim of domestic violence, Victims and Citizens Services is here to help you understand your rights and the protections that North Carolina law affords you. We can also help you learn where to go for shelter and support in your community. Domestic violence is against the law in North Carolina (N.C. General Statutes 50B). Victims of domestic violence have the right to take legal action to end the abuse.

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SPOUSAL ABUSE

How to Identify a Victim of Spousal Abuse
This site provides a wealth of information and definition of the subject. Spousal abuse may take the form of physical, emotional, sexual or financial abuse and verbal threats of violence. Just ask someone who shows the signs if they are being abused. Often, no one will ask and the victims are reluctant to bring the topic up themselves. Often victims say "No one asked me if I was being abused."

Police Response to Spouse Abuse
There have been major changes in the police response to spouse abuse since the 1976 International Association of Chiefs of Police directive stated that "wife abuse should not be considered a victimless crime" (Browne 1987, 168). In fact, many police departments have adopted pro-arrest or mandatory arrest policies for dealing with such incidents. In 1984, a report published by the United States Attorney General's Task Force on Family Violence recommended that arrest be the preferred policy in dealing with domestic violence incidents.

Study Links Heavy Drinking and Spousal Abuse
Domestic violence is a significant and preventable cause of injury to women. The majority of cases involve violence perpetrated by a male partner, and heavy drinking has also been implicated as a risk factor. A study in the December 2004 issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research looks at alcohol consumption and perpetration of spousal abuse by male U.S. Army soldiers.

Spousal Abuse: Assessment, Detection and Intervention Strategies
Course content copyright 2005 by William E. Adams, Ph.D. This is a beginning to intermediate level course. After taking this course, mental health professionals will be able to: identify abuse in relationships…, discuss the available community resources…, explain the relevant cultural issues…, describe basic clinical intervention strategies …, and teach clients to use the author's model.

NCPA - Rethinking Spousal Abuse Laws
Some legal experts are warning that spousal abuse laws are having unintended consequences. Prosecutors are going after husbands who may only have tried to restrain their wives during a domestic dispute. And some law enforcement authorities say the laws force them to prosecute, even if a wife takes her husband's side and refuses to file charges.

Spousal Abuse and Joint Legal Custody
From the Legislative Reference Bureau of Wisconsin: 2003 Wisconsin Act 130, passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Governor Jim Doyle on February 27, 2004, allows a court to refuse to award a parent sole or joint legal custody if that parent has engaged in spousal abuse. The parent may rebut the court's findings.

Psychiatric Services - Subspecialty Collections: Spouse Abuse
Journal collections of articles, commentary on the subject of spouse abuse. This website is sponsored by the American Psychiatric Association and includes a series of abstracts, full text and PDFs from various authors and scholars. For example, there is an article on "Emergency Psychiatry: Emergency Assessments of Domestic Violence, Sexual Dangerousness, and Elder and Child Abuse."

Identification of Victims of Spouse Abuse by Family Practitioners
Objectives: This study seeks to describe the behaviors of family practitioners toward victims of spouse abuse. It examines the frequency with which physicians ask their patients about experiences of spouse abuse, and the criteria by which they decide women may be at risk. The study also explores the relationship of demographic and training characteristics to the frequency of screening, amount of identification, and screening criteria.

VAWnet: Spouse Assault Replication Program
This paper summarizes studies sponsored by the National Institute of Justice on arrest policies for misdemeanor domestic assault. Studies were conducted in Omaha, Nebraska; Charlotte, North Carolina; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Metro-Dade (Miami), Florida; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Atlanta, Georgia. The studies attempt to replicate the Minneapolis Domestic Violence Experiment conducted in 1984 which found that arrest was almost twice as effective as other police actions in reducing batterer recivism (the relapse into abusive and/or criminal behavior).

Support Network for Battered Women
The mission of the Support Network is to empower our diverse community to live free from domestic violence. Our services include a 24-hour toll-free crisis line, an emergency shelter, counseling, information and referrals, support groups, safety planning, legal services and community education presentations. Staff and volunteers also contact police reported victims of domestic violence to inform them of their rights and resources. All Support Network services are completely confidential, are either free or low-cost and are offered in both Spanish and English.

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RESTRAINING ORDERS

File a Restraining Order
Learn how to file a restraining order. When you have been abused or assaulted, one of the best ways to protect yourself is to file for a restraining order with the courts. Visit a crisis center or domestic abuse prevention facility in your area and talk to an advocate about your restraining order. Get the forms necessary for filing the restraining order in your jurisdiction and read them carefully along with your advocate.

Can a Domestic Violence Restraining Order Help Me
Part of a domestic violence prevention program in California, this article of questions and answers is of a general nature to deal with the subject. Restraining orders are recognized by most states even if it is issued in another jurisdiction. The site explains the definition of a restraining order, how to obtain one, and purpose.

NC Department of Crime Control and Public Safety
Q: What does a temporary restraining order do?
A: A restraining order requests the court to forbid an action or threatened action of a defendant. After a hearing, a preliminary injunction may be issued. A restraining order is issued without a hearing whereas an injunction follows a hearing.

NC Magistrates Association - Domestic Violence Protective Order
North Carolina General Statutes Chapter 50B provides that victims of domestic violence can get an order of protection from the court. Domestic Violence Restraining Orders ("50B", restraining orders, or DVPO's) are civil orders limiting the contact a person may have with a victim and the statutes provide for two types. An emergency order, also called an ex parte order, is available if there is a danger of serious and immediate injury to a qualifying adult or to a minor child. The other calls for a hearing.

New Jersey Coalition for Battered Women
Getting a restraining order is a two-part process. First you obtain a temporary restraining order which is good for a maximum of ten days, unless the court extends the time. In order for the temporary restraining order to be made final, a hearing must be held before a judge of the Superior Court within the ten-day period. If you are in immediate danger, call the police.

Workplace Restraining Orders
Several states have imposed or enacted laws allowing employers to apply for restraining orders to prevent violence, harassment or stalking of their employees. In most states, employers seeking protection need only show that the employee has experienced violence or a credible threat of violence that can reasonably be construed to have taken place or to be carried out at the worksite.

Protection Orders Do Not Protect by Charles E. Corry, PhD
Unfortunately, as was vividly illustrated in a front-page story on repeat abusers in the October 24, 1999, Denver Post, and many times since, protection orders consistently fail to actually provide protection for women who truly need it. Arrests and protection orders often escalate the level of violence, particularly when used in divorce or custody battles. Feminists are fond of stating that the most dangerous time for a woman is when she leaves a relationship.

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ASSET DIVISION

Asset Divisor
Asset Divisor is an online tool designed to create equitable distribution scenarios automatically. Equitable distribution is basically a three step process that can take place prior to the final divorce decree or after (if you have preserved your rights by filing your claim before the divorce judgment). Asset Divisor helps you to deal with the 3rd step: Distribution of the marital property is equally divided between parties.

How to Limit Divorce's Financial Sting
When a marriage fails, the biggest issues in a divorce usually come down to a question of money. Emotions and finances don't mix, especially in divorce. Here's how to stay in the black though you may be seeing red.

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PRENUPTIAL AGREEMENT

Prenuptial Agreements: The Basics
Nothing can kill romance faster than the word "prenup," the often-misunderstood agreement that is becoming more and more common. But with about one in three of all first marriages ending in divorce, and 50 percent of second or third ones hitting the skids, a prenup is smart financial planning, legal and financial experts say.

Creating a Prenuptial Agreement
It is particularly important to create a prenuptial agreement (also referred to as premarital agreements and marriage contracts) that reflects equality in financial matters. Asking each other serious questions about how you see finances in the marriage partnership may save you pain and money later - and might even save your marriage. The "nuts and bolts" of prenuptial agreements are compiled to become more familiar with what a prenuptial agreement is, what states they are valid in, and what to include in one.

Prenuptial Agreements the Second Time Around
Because 40% of marriages involve persons who have been married before, thinking about signing a prenuptial agreement prior to saying "I do" is becoming more commonplace. Although many people look at a prenuptial contract as rather "unromantic," the reality is that individuals in middle and later life are likely to have more assets than younger couples, financial obligations in the form of alimony or child support payments, hard-earned estates they wish to leave to their children and emotional baggage from their previous relationships.

Wedding Planning: Consider a Prenuptial Agreement
A prenuptial agreement is a legal contract between the bride and groom itemizing the property each brings into the marriage and explaining how those properties will be divided in case of divorce or death. Although you can write your own agreement, it is advisable to have an attorney draw up or review the document. The two of you should be represented by different attorneys.

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POSTNUPTIAL AGREEMENTS

Creating Postnuptial Agreements
Marriage is an emotional and legal union. It's never too late to define and protect your own partnership. The process of creating a postnuptial agreement, a marriage contract created anytime after the wedding, can be a positive influence on both the emotional and legal dynamics of your relationship.

Postnuptial Agreements Redefine Finances
What is a postnup? As its name implies, it's any written agreement entered into between spouses after they say "I do." Like the prenup, the primary purpose of a postnuptial agreement is to stipulate ownership and division of financial assets in the event a couple divorces.

Postnuptial Agreements
It's the latest trend in promoting harmony in marriage. Used by some marriage therapists and attorneys to promote harmony in a troubled marriage, here's the definition of a postnuptial agreement, reasons for obtaining a post nuptial agreement, and the validity of a postnuptial agreement.

Sealing a Contract After the Marriage
They enjoyed life as carefree newlyweds, with two paychecks and no children. But a decade later, they were quarreling spouses in a suburb of Boston; their marriage to be on the brink of collapse. Their relationship rebounded after the two tried an unusual approach: they worked out a contract agreeing to separate many of their finances and to delineate family obligations to reduce tension.

A Good Postnuptial Can Cover Your Assets
Article: Like prenups, postnuptial agreements deal with the tricky issues of how to divide money and property if a marriage goes sour. Some couples use them to update their prenups if they have "sunset" clauses that automatically make the agreement expire after a predetermined period of time. If it is not updated, a high-net-worth individual could become exposed to a big liability in the event of a divorce.

Practical Money Skills - Postnuptial Agreement
Postnuptial agreements are often created when one partner comes into wealth. If you're already married or your wedding is coming up quickly, but you still want some kind of financial agreement, a postnuptial agreement is an option.

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LEGAL LINKS
* We provide these lawyer links as a courtesy. We have no compensated referral arrangement with these firms and make no representation as to the experience, nature or quality of any legal representation you may receive from these firms. You should evaluate your attorney and the law firm in which that attorney practices along with the terms and conditions of a written engagement agreement prior to retaining them. New Jersey Health Care Law Lawyer - New Jersey (NJ) based law firm, Archer & Greiner serves businesses and individuals throughout the region including Philadelphia (PA), Pennsylvania and in an increasing number of other states and jurisdictions.

Charles R. Ullman & Associates

 

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