When family relations begin to unravel, a sense of insecurity is often a consequence. We restore the security and well-being of our clients by working diligently in pursuit of their rights and interests. In family law cases, the Oregon system of justice is based upon fairness and the facts of the case. For over 30 years, we have been pursuing justice for our clients.
Hiring an experienced lawyer in family law cases is essential. In our 30 years in practice in all counties in Oregon, we have come to know the judges and can predict, with a fair amount of certainty, what the likely rulings will be on a given fact pattern. Along the same lines we will most likely know the opposing counsel and can predict the strategies that they will likely pursue. This is why experience can make all the difference.
Fees and Costs
We try to be as transparent as possible about the fees and costs a client can expect in a family law case. Hourly work is charged at $300 an hour. Retainer amounts are set based upon the projected work involved in the case. Our initial one hour consultation charge is $300. Prospective clients may call for a free telephone interview before making an appointment.
- Divorce: A divorce case does not have to be an expensive and time consuming process, but it will quickly become one if both parties begin the process without a full understanding of their legal rights. After 30 years in practice, we have the experience to advise you how your case is going to be resolved before it is ever filed. Let us share our experience with you.
- Legal Separations: For a variety of reasons, divorce is not always the right solution to a broken relationship. When appropriate, we assist clients in obtaining legal separations. We will work with you to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of each approach.
- Mediation: When used properly, mediation is a valuable dispute resolution tool. But too often it is misused when parties don’t fully understand the process. Before we advise our clients to mediate, we first work to identify the issues we hope to resolve in mediation. Then we assess whether or not there is a likelihood that the issues can be resolved in mediation. Mediation works best when both sides are prepared to compromise their positions to get the case settled.
- Child Custody: This is often a needlessly contentious issue. Legal custody is often confused with parenting time. Legal custody really means decision making authority and which parent will make decisions for the children going forward. Generally speaking, the courts award custody to the parent who has historically been the children’s primary care parent. A court cannot order joint legal custody of children unless both parents agree.
- Parenting Plans: A breakup in the family most often triggers a need to establish a new plan for when the children will be with each parent. Oftentimes, a parent will insist upon excess overnight parenting time simply as a way to reduce or eliminate a child support obligation. We help parents establish safe and realistic parenting plans that truly are in the best interests of their children.
- Child Support: The support of children is the responsibility of both parents. In most instances, the parent who has the most overnights with the children is entitled to collect child support from the other parent. The monthly amount of the obligation will be determined under the Child Support Guidelines. Let us help you in calculating an appropriate amount of child support for your children.
- Alimony/Spousal Support: Oftentimes in divorce, one party is not able to support him/herself without financial assistance from the other party. We advise clients on whether or not payment of alimony is appropriate in any given case, and if so, in what amount and for what duration.
- Property Settlements: In every divorce case, Oregon law calls for a fair and just distribution of all of the property of the parties. This includes their real estate, retirement accounts, automobiles, and the contents of their home. In other words, all property interests must be distributed. But a fair and just distribution is not always an equal distribution. Let us assist and advise you in dividing all of your various property interests.
- Modifications: Oregon law allows for the modification of judgments in certain instances. A parenting plan can be modified whenever it would be in the best interests of the children. To modify child custody, child support, or spousal support, there must be a substantial change in circumstances. Let us advise and assist you in deciding whether or not a modification of your prior judgment would be appropriate.
- Domestic Partnerships: When people live together, they often intend to own property jointly as domestic partners. But when the relationship ends, there is a need for an orderly dissolution of the partnership. We represent clients in both forming and dissolving domestic partnerships.
- Adoptions: The adoption of a child is a wonderful thing. The process is highly technical because it involves not only the best interests of the child, but also the constitutional rights of the parents. We have 30 years of experience in advising clients regarding adoptions, step-parent adoptions, and open adoptions. Let us guide you through this process.
DISCLAIMER: The Attorneys at Martin, Elliott & Snell, P.C., are licensed to practice in the state of Oregon. Our principal office is located in Tualatin, Oregon. We also have an attorney who is licensed in the state of Washington. The information provided on this website is offered for informational purposes only. It is not offered as legal advice and does not constitute legal advice. Martin, Elliott & Snell, P.C., nor any of its attorneys, does not seek to represent you based upon your visit to or review of this website. This website may be considered advertising under the applicable rules of professional conduct. You should not make legal hiring decisions based upon brochures, advertising, or other promotional materials.
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