We sincerely hope that you and your loved ones are doing well, health-wise.
As we all know the Coronavirus pandemic, in combination with falling financial and economic markets, has had a considerable “family law side-effect” on a large percentage of the population, especially when children are involved.
Our office has already received numerous calls and questions on a variety of concerning issues. Adding to the stress of the times, is the fact that children are now home full time and the stay-at-home procedures have forced family members to be closed in together with minimum opportunity for any relaxing escape.
Almost every area in family law is now being challenged, some areas more than others such as support payments (whether child support or alimony), timesharing issues, domestic violence, etc..
As jobs are being lost, salaries reduced, and/or work hours cut, alimony and child support are major concerns to those involved. This can have significant hardship consequences on both the payor and the payee. We are here to help.
Children and/or ex-spouses need income to live, as does the payor. In many cases, right now, there simply are not enough funds to go around. We understand that and will work with you to help.
During these difficult times we highly recommend you do not keep your children from their other parent. In fact, there is an Administrative Order in Broward County stating that the court will not look kindly on this behavior and that the other parent will absolutely have make-up time sharing with the children. Unless you know for sure that the other parent has tested positive for this virus or, has just returned from traveling and is “quarantined”, do not withhold the children from the other parent.
The courts are conducting hearings every day, via Zoom. We have attended many hearings this way and things are running quite smoothly, and relief is being administered. Due to the efficiency of all these new systems, hours billed to clients are considerably reduced.
We are also meeting with clients, taking depositions, attending mediation, etc., all via FaceTime, Zoom, and other media sources. There have been no disruptions in our business.
The reality of the health pandemic has created serious concerns for protecting our loved ones in the event of seriously declining health or even death. Many are contacting us about preparing or updating their wills and living wills. We will prepare those documents for you, along with health care surrogate and power of attorney documents, necessary during these challenging times.
We certainly sympathize with all client concerns but please remember that we must all work together to make the solutions viable. Now, more than ever, it is extremely important for the children to feel the love of both parents. Even though the children may not show it, they are feeling the stress that has been created by our changed world.
In order to abide by current state and federal guidelines our office staff is working both in the office and virtually. Our office is always and readily available to assist, guide, and answer questions in all matters and concerns via telephone: (954) 776-2320.
Court houses are physically closed, except that you can go there and follow instructions to file for a restraining order. When you call us, we will assist you.
In closing, let’s all stay strong, diligent, compassionate and patient, to everyone’s needs through these unprecedented times. Please continue to be caring towards your friends, neighbors, and of course, loved ones. We wish everyone good health and safety.