Lee’s Summit, MO Divorce Lawyers in Jackson County
If you are going thorough a divorce in Jackson County, Missouri in the Kansas City Area in Lee’s Summit, Missouri or beyond, it is important to have an attorney by your side through this difficult. The effects of these cases can be long-term and impactful on the life of you and your family.
At our law firm, we only practice divorce and family law. We do not practice in other areas of law. No matter whether you have a contested divorce matter, or which to resolve your case amicably through mediation and collaborative law, Stange Law Firm, PC can help.
Stange Law Firm, PC in Kansas City, Missouri in Lee’s Summit helps the residents of Jackson County and the surrounding areas, with a wide range of family law matters, including:
- Lee’s Summit, MO Divorce Attorneys: If you need help with a divorce in the Kansas City Area in Lee’s Summit, our lawyers can help.
- Lee’s Summit, Missouri Child Support Lawyers: If you are interested in finding out more about child support, our webpage has information.
- Lee’s Summit MO Child Custody Lawyers: If you are in need of a child custody lawyer, we have lawyer who can help.
- Lee’s Summit, MO Paternity Lawyers: If you are an unmarried parent in need of a custody or support lawyer, we have lawyers who can help.
- Lee’s Summit, Missouri Father’s Rights Attorneys: If you are a father in need of divorce or family law representation, we have lawyers who can assist.
- Lees Summit Missouri Family Lawyers: We can help with your family law needs in the Kansas City Area in and around Lee’s Summit.
We understand that going through a divorce will be one of the most difficult times in your life. That’s why our divorce attorneys in Jackson County are here to help and fight for you no matter whether your case is contested or uncontested. We can also help if your case must be resolved at a trial or can be resolved through mediation or collaborative law.
Our Lee’s Summit, Missouri Divorce Lawyers in Jackson County
Divorce Attorney Kelly Davidzuk is a Partner at Stange Law Firm, PC over the West Region of the firm. Kelly is licensed to practice law in Missouri and Kansas and has years of family law experience. She received her J.D. from Appalachian School of Law. Among other awards, Kelly is Lead Counsel Rated for Family Law. Kelly has also presented on various family law topics through the National Business Institute.
You can also find out more information about Lee’s Summit here:
- Map to Lee’s Summit, MO: Click this link for Google Map directions to Lee’s Summit, Missouri in Jackson County.
- Government Website for Lee’s Summit, MO: Interested in learning more about the government for Lee’s Summit, Missouri? Click this link to read more.
Our Lee’s Summit, MO Divorce and Family Law Firm Location in Jackson County
Stange Law Firm, PC in Jackson County in Kansas City/Lee’s Summit is located at 256 NE Tudor Road, Lee’s Summit, Missouri 64086. To contact an attorney in Kansas City, Missouri, you can call us at 816-875-4505 or contact us online. We also have an office location downtown by appointment only.
We have offices in both locations because we want to make access to our attorneys and law office most convenient for you. We do not feel as if it should difficult for attorneys to be able to access us, nor do we feel as if clients should have to travel to simply one location.
Further, in Jackson County, Missouri, in the 16th Judicial Circuit, there is a courthouse downtown in Kansas City and in Independence, Missouri. There is also a separate juvenile courthouse. We feel it is important to have locations near both courthouses in Jackson County.
COMMON DIVORCE QUESTIONS IN MISSOURI
Grounds for Divorce in Jackson County
Parties in Missouri can get divorced when a there are irreconcilable differences and there is no reasonable likelihood that the marriage can be preserved. It is not necessary to show fault in Missouri to get divorced, but fault can impact property and debt division and spousal maintenance.
Residency Requirements in Lee’s Summit, Missouri
If you are going to get divorced in the State of Missouri, either you or your wife (or both of you) must be a resident in the State of Missouri, and must have lived in the state for at least 90 days, prior to the filing of the Petition. This action should be filed in the county where the petitioner resides. Whoever is filing for divorce should generally do so in the county in which they live. In some cases, a motion for a change of venue is a possibility.
Name of the Court and Title of the Action/Parties in Jackson County
Here are a few key names for you to make note of. First is the Circuit Court, where the petition for the divorce is filed. The first action is called a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. The final action is called the Decree or Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage. Depending on which party is filing the divorce, you are either called the Petitioner (the party filing for divorce) or the Respondent (the one who gets served).
Legal Separation in Lee’s Summit, Missouri
Making the decision to file for a divorce is difficult for many parties. For those individuals who may not yet be ready to take that big next step, there is another option for you. Missouri divorce laws state that parties may file for a legal separation when there is a reasonable likelihood that the marriage can be preserved. Many of the guidelines remain the same, in regards to things like spousal maintenance, division of property, child support, etc. One or both of the parties must have resided within the State of Missouri for at least 90 days prior to filing this petition. It is important that you consider all options and factors at hand prior to making any legally binding decisions when it comes to legal separation and dissolution because a legal separation can be converted into a divorce.
Spousal Maintenance in Jackson County
According to Missouri divorce laws, the court may grant spousal maintenance to either party. This depends on a finding that the party that is seeking spousal maintenance is not able to support themselves and lacks sufficient property to provide for their own needs; or that the party that is seeking spousal maintenance is the guardian of a child whose condition is such that it would be inappropriate for that party to seek outside employment.
The court will take in and consider the following factors in ruling the amount of spousal maintenance to be compensated:
- The time necessary for the spouse seeking support to acquire sufficient education or training
- The comparative earning capacity of each spouse
- The standard of living established during the marriage
- The obligations and assets of the marriage, both separate and marital
- The duration of the marriage
- The age, physical and mental condition of the spouse seeking support
- The ability of the supporting spouse to meet both his needs and the needs of the spouse seeking support
- The conduct of the parties during the marriage
- And any other relevant factors
The order establishing spousal maintenance must also state whether the award is modifiable or non-modifiable. If the award is modifiable, the court may modify the award only upon a showing that the circumstances have changed so considerably as to make the terms unreasonable.
Distribution of Property in Lee’s Summit, Missouri
Missouri divorce laws call for an equitable distribution of assets. This means that the court will divide the marital property between the parties as it deems equitable and fair, after setting aside each party’s separate property. This essentially means that you get to keep what belongs to you (property you owned prior to the marriage) and all shared property (property you owned during the marriage) will be divided equally between you and your ex-spouse. The court will consider the following factors in dividing the property between the parties:
- The economic circumstances of the parties at the time of the division of property
- The contribution of each spouse to the marital estate
- The value of the non-marital property set apart to each spouse
- The conduct of the parties during the marriage
- Custodial arrangements for minor children
Child Custody in Jackson County
Missouri courts will determine the issue of child custody based upon the best interests of the child. A partial list of aspects that the court will consider in determining the best interests of the child include:
- The wishes of the parents, the need of the child for a frequent and meaningful relationship with both parents
- The interaction and interrelationship of the child with both the parents and any siblings
- The wishes of the child
Prior to awarding custody, the court shall first consider awarding joint physical and legal custody to both parents. If the court decides that joint physical and legal custody awarded to both parents is not in the best interests of the child, the court shall next consider joint physical custody, with one party being awarded sole legal custody. If that arrangement is also found to not be in the best interests of the child, the court shall next consider joint legal custody with one party granted sole physical custody. If that arrangement is not in the best interests of the child, the court would next consider sole custody to either parent, or a third-party custody arrangement.
There will be no preference given to either party based upon the parent’s age, sex or financial status, nor because of the age or sex of the child, in determining custody.
When custody of a child is at issue in a proceeding for dissolution of marriage the court shall order the parents to attend educational classes regarding the effects of custody and dissolution of marriage upon the children. The court may also order the parents to attend an alternative dispute resolution program to resolve any disputes regarding issues of custody or visitation.
Child Support in Lee’s Summit, Missouri
As with every other family law issue, the court will determine the matter of child support. The court may order either or both parties to pay an equitable amount necessary to support their child or children. Pursuant to Supreme Court Rule 88.01 and Form 14, some of the factors the court will take into consideration while determining the amount of child support include:
- The financial needs and resources of the child
- The financial resources and needs of the parents
- The standard of living the child would have enjoyed had the marriage not terminated
- The child’s physical and legal custody arrangements
Legally, your liability to pay child support shall end upon the death of the child, the marriage of the child, the child entering active duty in the military, the child becoming self-sufficient, the child reaching eighteen (18) years of age, or, if the child is enrolled in a secondary school program of education, when the child reaches the age of twenty-one (21) years of age.
You may also be required to provide health insurance for your child. In addition, if you were already paying for health insurance for your children and spouse prior to the divorce, you are obligated to continue paying for it from the time of filing until the divorce is final (meaning you cannot cancel health insurance for your children and spouse during the divorce proceedings).
Name Change in Jackson County
A spouse may request a name change back to their former or maiden name. This request may be granted by the court upon the divorce.
Contact our Lee’s Summit, MO Divorce Lawyers in Jackson County Today for a Consultation
When you have a family law case and need representation at the Jackson County Courthouse in Independence, or in the neighboring areas, our Lee’s Summit Divorce Attorneys are ready and willing to help. The attorneys of Stange Law Firm, PC know how important family is to you. That’s why when you are faced with a family law issue, we want to help you move forward and move on with your life in a positive manner. Contact us today at either of the locations below:
Jackson County (Lee’s Summit), MO Office: 816-875-4505. Click to learn more about this location. 256 NE Tudor Road, Lee’s Summit, Missouri 64086.
We also have an appointment only office downtown:
Jackson County (Kansas City), MO (by appt. only) Office: 816-631-0307. Click to learn more about this location.