Saint Louis City, Missouri Divorce Lawyers Serving Individuals Throughout The Area
At Stange Law Firm, PC , our Saint Louis City divorce lawyers have the qualifications and ability to properly handle your case. We understand how overwhelming it can be to face unfamiliar legal issues with so much at stake. We are here to help you rebuild your life.
As set forth in their biographies, a number of our attorneys have received awards for divorce and family law. For example, Founding Partner Kirk Stange has been on the list of Super Lawyers by Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers Magazine since 2015. Multiple attorneys at the firm have also been recognized by the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys.
From our offices in St. Louis City downtown (by appointment only) at 100 S. 4th Street Suite 549, St. Louis, MO 63102, you can count on us to be there with you at every step with your St. Louis City Divorce, constantly working to put you in the best possible situation as you move into this new phase of your life. No matter where you live in St. Louis City, Stange Law Firm, PC can help you.
To learn more about the St. Louis City Family Court, please visit the following links:
- St. Louis City Court on Missouri Judiciary: Click to view more information about the St. Louis City Court on MO Judiciary.
- St. Louis City Juvenile Courthouse: Have questions about the St. Louis City juvenile courthouse? Click this link.
- St. Louis City Local Court Rules: St. Louis City local court rules and regulations are listed here.
- St. Louis City Civil Court Directions: Google Map directions to the St. Louis City Civil Court.
St. Louis, MO Divorce Attorneys Available To Help You With Your Dissolution of Marriage
Our attorneys focus their practice on divorce and family law. Others in the legal community know that we prepare every case for trial unless a settlement is reached. While we always work to reach a fair settlement without the need for a resolution in court, we are ready to zealously advocate for your interests should that not be possible.
We can help with a wide range of divorce and family law matters, including:
- High net worth divorce in St. Louis City, MO: Our attorneys at Stange Law Firm, PC are fully capable and ready to help you with a high net worth divorce matter. Contact us today, or click here for more information.
- Annulment downtown in Saint Louis City, MO: We provide you experienced family law attorneys who are able to handle family matters of all kinds, annulments being one of them. Find more information here.
- Saint Louis City, MO Uncontested divorce: We are here to help you with your uncontested divorce matter whenever you need us. Click the link provided to learn more.
- Saint Louis City, MO Contested divorce: Our attorneys can help you with your contested divorce matter, find out how here.
- St. Louis City, Missouri divorce lawyers: Find divorce attorneys who represent clients in downtown St. Louis City.
- St. Louis City, MO child custody and visitation attorneys: Our attorneys at Stange Law Firm are here to help you with any child custody and visitation matters you may have. Find out more here.
- St. Louis City, MO child support lawyers: Our downtown St. Louis City, Missouri family law attorneys are experienced and ready to assist you with your child support matter needs.
- Spousal maintenance and alimony in downtown St. Louis City, MO: Are you looking for more information about spousal maintenance and alimony? Let our attorneys answer your questions. Click here for more information.
- Division of property and debts in downtown Saint Louis City, MO: We can help with your division of property and debt issues while you’re going through your divorce.
- Post-divorce modifications in St. Louis City, MO: Are you in need of a modification after your divorce? Our attorneys representing clients in Saint Louis City, MO can assist.
- St. Louis City, MO dissolution of same sex marriages: We represent clients in the dissolution of same sex marriage in downtown Saint Louis City, MO. Discover more information here.
From our webpage, you can also read articles about family law, view informational videos, seminar videos, listen to our podcast, download our mobile application or view support calculators for Missouri. You can also get more information at our St. Louis Divorce Law Blog.
COMMON DIVORCE QUESTIONS IN MISSOURI
Grounds for Divorce in St. Louis, Missouri
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 St. Louis, 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 St. Louis, Missouri
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 St. Louis, 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 St. Louis, Missouri
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 St. Louis, 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 St. Louis, Missouri
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 St. Louis, 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 St. Louis, Missouri
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 Saint Louis City Divorce Attorneys in Missouri To Assist You With Your Case
Please note that we also have a location nearby in St. Louis County in Clayton. However, if you need help downtown at the St. Louis City Courthouse, contact us online or by phone to schedule a consultation at our St. Louis City location. Information about this location is below:
Saint Louis City, MO Office (by appointment only): 314-499-8340 Click to learn more about this location. 100 S. 4th Street, Suite 549, St. Louis, Missouri 63102.