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Family Law Frequently Ask Questions (FAQs)

After you have been served with divorce papers in Kentucky, you have 20 days to file a response. You should contact an experienced family law attorney for assistance in filing your response.

Before you can file for divorce in Kentucky you must live in the state for at least 180 days.

When couples in Kentucky are going through a divorce the parties typically have to pay their own attorney's fees. However, if there is a large disparity in income, one of the parties may be responsible for the other party's fees. You should contact a family law lawyer to discuss whether your situation would justify an award of attorney's fees.

In Kentucky, spousal support, also known is alimony, is called maintenance. Whether or not your situation will result in an award of maintenance depends on a variety of factors, some of which include the length of the marriage and the earning capacity of both parties. You should contact a lawyer to discuss whether maintenance may be awarded in your case.

Parties filing divorce in Kentucky must be separated at least 60 days before the divorce can be granted. "Separated" in this sense does not mean "living apart," but rather the "date of last intimate contact." As long as the parties have been separated for 60 days, and do not have children, the length of the divorce depends on how quickly the parties can come to a settlement, or have their case heard before a Judge.

For couples who have children and have filed for divorce, a waiting period of 60 days must elapse from the time the divorce is filed until it can be granted. The parties must also have their Families in Transition classes completed before the divorce can be granted.

Yes. Both parents have a right to see their children during and after a divorce. It is important to get a vitiation schedule set so that you can be certain of the days and times you will be able to see your children. Contact a family law attorney to discuss your children and the divorce to ensure your rights are protected.

Child support is set based on the income of both parties, the number of children, the cost of health insurance and child care. Contact us today to discuss what your child support obligation may be.

In a legal separation, the parties still address all issues of property and debt like they would in divorce. However, in a legal separation you can still continue to cover your spouse on insurance, and the parties are prohibited from getting remarried. Contact your Louisville family lawyer today to discuss which option is best for you.

No. In Kentucky marital property and marital debts are equitably divided. Both spouses are entitled to a division of the marital property, and both spouses will be responsible for a portion of the marital debt.Contact Durrett & Kersting today to discuss the division of your property and assets.

In Kentucky, marital property is considered to be any property acquired during the marriage that was not a gift or inheritance. In order to ensure you receive all of the property you are entitled to in your divorce, Contact Durrett & Kersting today.

In Kentucky non-marital property is anything that was acquired before the marriage, given by gift or inheritance, or can be traced from other pre-marital assets. To ensure that you receive all of your non-marital property, contact an experienced divorce lawyer today.

In Kentucky martial debt consists of any debt taken out during the marriage. Each spouse is responsible for a portion of the marital debt, no matter whose name the debt is taken out under. To ensure that your marital debt is fairly divided, contact us today.

While going through a divorce, not all cases require that the parties go before a Judge. The cases can often be settled outside of Court in settlement negotiations or in mediation. If settlement negotiations and/or mediation do not resolve your case, you will likely need to appear at a hearing or a trial. contact us Durrett & Kersting today to discuss your case.

Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution in which the parties to a divorce or other proceeding meet with a mediator (a neutral third party) and attempt to resolve the issues of their case. Mediation can be a great tool for the settlement. If you would like more information regarding mediation, or need representation at mediation, contact Durrett & Kersting.

When a couple going through divorce owns their home, they have a few options regarding the property. One of the spouses can retain the home for their sole use, but will likely have to refinance any mortgages on the property. The other option is to place the home up for sale. In the event that there is equity in the home, each party will be entitled to a share of the equity in the home. Contact your Louisville Family Lawyer to discuss your divorce today.

Often one or both spouses contribute to a 401K or IRA, or participate in a work related pension program throughout the marriage. The martial portion of most 401K, IRA, pension, and other retirement accounts are subject to division. Typically a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) will need to be prepared to effectuate the division of the account(s). Contact Durrett & Kersting for additional information.

Barring unusual circumstances, the Court will not grant a divorce while the wife is pregnant. While the Court will not grant the divorce, the parties may still come to a settlement agreement, and wait until the child is born to file a divorce decree. Contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your options.

The settlement reached in a divorce is typically adopted as an Order of the Court, whether it is incorporated in to the divorce decree or the Judge signs the settlement itself. Court Orders are enforceable through the Contempt power of the Court. If your spouse is not complying with a Court Order Contact our office today to discuss the best course of action.

To discuss the specifics of your case and determine if uncontested divorce is right for you, contact Durrett & Kersting today. It is possible for any couple to do an uncontested divorce, however couples who do not have children, couples who have only been married a short period of time, or couples who do not have many assets or debt are more likely to be able to do an uncontested divorce. Contact the attorneys at Durrett & Kersting to discuss the specifics of your case. 

For couples who do not have children, an uncontested divorce can be completed as quickly as the parties can reach their agreement and get the papers signed. For couples that have children, 60 days must pass after the filing of the case before a divorce decree can be signed. The parties must also attend Families In Transition classes if they have children. Contact your Louisville family

If you are seeking information regarding spending time with your child, please refer to our visitation and child support page. If you have never been to Court regarding your child, and you are not living with the child's other parent, you will need to establish paternity of the child, either through a DNA test or an acknowledgement of paternity. Once paternity has been established you can petition the Court for legal rights, visitation time and child support. If you need assistance with the Custody of your child, Contact our office today

A Custody Petition is a Circuit Court action, typically filed between unmarried parents who live in separate households. The parent filing a Custody Petition is seeking to have the Court make a determination of sole or joint custody, establish a visitation schedule, and set child support. Whether you need to file a Custody Petition, or have been served with a Custody Petition, contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your case.

If your child's other parent currently has sole custody you can file a motion with the Court asking for joint custody. When considering filing such a motion, a range of facts must be considered including if there has been a significant change in circumstances and how much time has passed since the original determination of custody. Because of the complex nature of custody modifications, it is important to speak with an experienced family lawyer about your case. Contact us today.
If you currently have joint custody with your child's other parent, you may be able to get sole custody, depending on the circumstances and the amount of time that has passed since the last determination of custody. Contact an experienced family law attorney at Durrett & Kersting to discuss your case and your options.

If you already have a visitation schedule, but it needs to be changed, you will need to file a motion with the Court in your existing case. Once the motion has been heard, a new visitation schedule will be set by agreement of the parties, through mediation or by Court order after a hearing. If you need to modify your visitation schedule, contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your case.

If you have a visitation schedule and the other parent is not following it, you can seek relief from the Court by filing a motion for contempt, and ask them to enforce the current Order.

If you do not have a visitation schedule and the other parent will not allow you to see the child you will need to start a Court case or make a motion for a visitation schedule.

Contact the experienced family lawyers at Durrett & Kersting to discuss your visitation rights and ensure you get a schedule that works best for you and your child.

It is best if a holiday visitation schedule is included in a visitation agreement. If you do not currently have a written holiday schedule, you will need to motion the Court to address specific holidays, or establish an overall schedule. Contact our office today for additional information.

If there has been a change in circumstances since the Court last established your child support, you may be entitled to a modification of your child support amount. A motion for modification can be filed with the Court if there is a 15% change in the amount of child support that would be paid. If you believe you are entitled to a reduction in your child support, contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your case.

If you are not getting the child support that is owed to you, you can motion the Court to hold the other party in contempt for failure to pay child support. You can also motion the court to deduct the child support directly from the other party's paycheck through a wage garnishment. If you are not receiving your child support payments contact Durrett & Kersting.

A Domestic Violence Order is a long term Order of protection put in place for up to three years. When a no contact Domestic Violence Order (DVO) is issued, the Respondent is prohibited from contacting the Petitioner, going near the Petitioner, or going within a certain distance of specific locations. The Respondent is also required to surrender all firearms. If you have been served with an Emergency Protective Order (EPO), contact Durrett & Kersting today to discuss having a lawyer represent you at your hearing.

An Emergency Protective Order (EPO) is a short term Order of protection that is put in place until the Court can have a hearing with both parties to determine if a long term Order of protection should be put in to place. If the Judge determines that domestic violence has occurred, and is likely to occur again in the future, a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) will be issued. A Domestic Violence Order (DVO) is a long term Order of protection put in place for up to three years, and prohibits the Respondent from contacting the Petitioner. If you need representation at an Emergency Protective Order (EPO) hearing, contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your case.

A Domestic Violence Order (DVO) or Emergency Protective Order (EPO) prohibits the Respondent in the case from contacting or coming in to contact with the Petitioner. It does not technically restrict the Petitioner from contacting the Respondent. If you have questions regarding your Domestic Violence Order (DVO) contact our office to speak with one of our experienced attorneys.

Batterer's Intervention Program, also know as "BIP" are classes the Respondent in domestic violence cases are often ordered to take by the Court. The BIP classes' addresses similar topics as anger management, but focuses on additional issues involved with domestic violence situations.

Once you have been served with an Emergency Protective Order (EPO) you are prohibited from contacting or going near the Petitioner. The Summons in the Emergency Protective Order (EPO) will list a date for a hearing, at which time the Court will hear evidence from both parties and determine if acts of domestic violence did in fact occur, and may occur again in the future if a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) is not issued. If you have been served with an Emergency Protective Order (EPO) contact the experienced lawyers at Durrett & Kersting today to discuss representation at your hearing.

An Emergency Protective Order (EPO) is a short term Order of protection that is put in place until the Court can have a hearing with both parties to determine if a long term Order of protection should be put in to place. If the Judge determines that domestic violence has occurred, and is likely to occur again in the future, a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) will be issued. A Domestic Violence Order (DVO) is a long term Order of protection put in place for up to three years, and prohibits the Respondent from contacting the Petitioner. If you need representation at an Emergency Protective Order (EPO) hearing, contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your case.

The Petitioner can motion the Court to amend a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) from a no contact Order to a no unlawful contact Order. If you need to amend your Domestic Violence Order (DVO) contact Durrett & Kersting today.

Domestic Violence Orders (DVO) can be put in to place for up three years. Near the end of the third year the Petitioner can motion the Court to extend the current Order for an additional period of time. If you need to extend a Domestic Violence Order (DVO) contact our office today.

In Kentucky, having your name on the birth certificate does not indicate legal paternity of the child. Paternity must be established as part of a Court action, which can be done through a DNA test, or an acknowledgement of paternity. If you have questions regarding your legal rights as a father, contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today.

If you are questioning whether a child is yours, you should always have a DNA test done before accepting any legal responsibility or holding yourself out as the father. If you are not married to the mother of the child, you can request a DNA test in a Paternity or Custody case. If you are married to the mother of the child, there is a rebuttable presumption that you are the father of the child. In order to have a DNA test ordered the father must be able to demonstrate that there is doubt of his paternity, and ask the Court to Order a DNA test. If you are questioning if you are the father of the child, contact an experienced family lawyer before assuming any legal responsibility.

A father can be awarded equal parenting time and, in some cases, more parenting time than the mother, depending on the facts of the case. The court looks at the entirety of the situation and determines a schedule that is in the best interest of the child. If you are establishing a new parenting schedule, or need to modify an existing parenting schedule contact the lawyers at Durrett & Kersting to speak with a passionate advocate experienced in working with father's rights.

If you do not have a Court Ordered visitation schedule and the mother of your children will not allow you to see them, you will need to initiate a Court case and get a written schedule, enforceable by the Courts. If you already have a schedule, but the mother will not follow it, you will need to motion for contempt and have the Court enforce or modify your existing schedule. If you need assistance in establishing or enforcing a visitation schedule contact your Louisville family lawyer for a free consultation.

When you are contacted by Child Protective Services (CPS) you should cooperate with the investigative worker and contact the lawyers at Durrett & Kersting to discuss your case.

When children are removed from the home by Child Protective Services the case worker will develop a case plan to insure the safety and wellbeing of the children. In most cases the ultimate goal of the case plan is reunification with the parent(s). Contact our attorneys today to discuss your case.

The state of Kentucky does not currently allow for second parent adoptions, which means gay and lesbian couples cannot adopt their partner's child without terminating your partner's parental rights. Although you cannot adopt your partner's child you can take steps within the Court system to obtain joint custody of the minor child. Contact your Louisville Family Lawyer today to discuss your options.

Gay and lesbian parents face additional difficulties when they separate. Even if the parties have not taken any previous action to memorialize their intention to raise the child together the non- biological parent may be able petition the Court for parental rights. Contact an experienced attorney at Durrett & Kersting today to discuss your case.

Because Kentucky still does not recognize same-sex marriages the question of whether or not to travel out of state to get married is a complex issue that must be assessed on a couple by couple basis. The decision will result on the potential federal benefits available to the couple, as well as the potential risks of being married in a state where your union is not recognized. Contact an attorney in our office today to discuss your specific case.

Although Kentucky does not recognize same-sex marriages, gay and lesbian couples can protect themselves through a variety individualized solutions. Because of the complexity of these relationships, and the law surrounding them, it is important to discuss your needs with an attorney who is familiar with the specific area of law. Contact Durrett & Kersting for a free consultation.



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