A Modern Family Law Firm Bullish On Your Future.
205 SE Spokane St, Suite 300
Portland, OR 97202
IT'S THE BIG THINGS IN LIFE THAT MATTER
Sellwood Office Location
Our office is located in the Sellwood neighborhood of Southeast Portland. Call us at any time to schedule a free consultation.
OREGON FAMILY LAW
Everything you need to know about Oregon Family Law
People who need the services of an Oregon family lawyer are often going through some of the toughest times of their lives. Knowing that your marriage is coming to an end and that difficult decisions are ahead of you regarding your children and your property can be a massive source of stress. Thankfully, our family lawyers are here to provide compassionate, straight-forward representation to help you get through these tough times cleanly and efficiently.
Family law is one of the most active practice areas in the State of Oregon. As a result, you might be feeling overwhelmed at the sheer volume of attorneys out there promising aggressive representation to protect your rights. We have a somewhat different approach here.
We believe that custody and parenting time of minor children is something best decided outside of a courtroom. Even though we're experienced and respected trial lawyers who love criminal defense and business litigation, we actually have a much less aggressive view on how to resolve issues with your kids. Check out the custody section below to read more about our approach to Oregon custody and parenting time issues.
When it comes to dividing the marital estate, the finalization of your divorce will be one of the largest financial events of your life. This is where our skill as Oregon Civil Litigators is going to serve you well. Read more below, or just call us up if you'd like to talk. We're friendly and available for free consultations.
Call us at
Filing or Responding to an Oregon Divorce Petition
How much does a divorce cost in Oregon? How long does a divorce take? What is the divorce process like?
Divorces begin with one party filing a "Petition for Dissolution of Marriage" with their local Circuit Court. Oregon is a "no fault" divorce state, so no one needs any specific reason to get divorced except that you have "irreconcilable differences" with your spouse. To file in Oregon, one of the parties must have been a resident of Oregon for at least 6 months prior to filing. The court-mandated filing fee for a divorce in 2018 is $287.
Next, the paperwork needs to be served on the other party. Once the papers have been properly served, the other party is required to file a Response to the divorce petition, and from there a number of court dates and deadlines will be set to move the case through the system.
At this law firm, we always attempt to negotiate with the other side at this point. Negotiation saves time, it saves stress, it saves money, and you can usually do better than you would ever do in court. At this point, if kids are involved in the divorce then Oregon requires that the parents take a parenting class and attend mediation. All of this is explained in more detail in the custody and mediation sections of this page below.
A straightforward divorce with few serious disputes can be resolved in 2-4 months. It is not uncommon for divorces with complicated estates and tricky parenting time issues to take much longer than that. Our goal is always to bring your divorce to a close in an efficient and timely manner, and don't worry - it will end! Patience is essential to maintaining a good attitude during this process.
Call us at
What does a lawyer do in an Oregon Divorce case?
What happens when I hire a lawyer? What do I need to do to be successful?
To be successful in representing you during your divorce, we will need a very comprehensive understanding of your family financial situation. We have to know everyone's income and work history, the history of the marriage, we have to know about the houses, the businesses, the vehicles, the investment portfolios, the art, etc. Armed with this knowledge, we can come up with a case strategy to meet your financial goals.
Sometimes this financial information isn't readily available or we don't know what exactly everything is worth. We might want to request some documents from the other side or subpoena things from a bank or hire experts to help us put a value on things. This whole stage of figuring out what we have and what we want to do with it is called discovery.
In Oregon divorce cases, parties are required by law to exchange a certain set of documents with one another detailing their financial situation. In complicated divorces involving a high number or complexity of assets, this mandatory document production is often supplemented with additional discovery requests being exchanged by attorneys. As part of the discovery process, one or both parties may also be required to give recorded testimony under oath in an out-of-court proceeding called a deposition.
The unfortunate reality is that many lawyers and divorcing parties like to play games with the discovery process. Unscrupulous parties will routinely lie about their income, fail to produce documents in a complete or timely manner, and otherwise maneuver to make their income and assets look smaller on paper than they are in reality.
We won't let them get away with that. It can take some serious legal maneuvering but we always get to the bottom of an unclear financial situation. Like we said, this is the biggest financial event in your life. We want to do it right.
Property Division & Spousal Support
How do you calculate Oregon spousal support? How long will spousal support last? How do we divide our marital property in Oregon?
Oregon family law only requires that the marital estate be divided "equitably". This doesn't necessarily mean evenly - although it often does - but just fairly given all the circumstances. As a practical matter, courts divide things up 50/50 most of the time.
It is also important to define what is and what isn't in the marital estate. Wealthy individuals often own substantial assets prior to getting married and it is important to define what you brought in to the marriage so that you can take it out of the marriage without dividing it. Of course, in a lot of marriages your assets are co-mingled quite thoroughly, and in such cases it can be much harder to argue that something is your separate property.
Spousal Support, also known as "Alimony" in other States, concerns the obligation of one party to make monthly payments to the other. Generally Oregon courts award spousal support in situations where one party has a substantially higher income than the other party. There are no hard and fast formulas here; just as with the division of marital property, courts in Oregon are guided by standards of fairness.
Spousal support awards can be temporary to aid in a party's transition, compensatory to pay one party back for various contributions to the marriage (like working to send the other spouse to school, for example) as well as more permanent "maintenance" support. For very long marriages of 20 or more years it is not uncommon to see an indefinite award of spousal support when circumstances make sense.
Ultimately the assets and the income of the parties are used to determine the outcome of property division and spousal support awards in Oregon courts. For a discussion of child support, read on in the section below.
Call us at
OREGON CUSTODY & PARENTING TIME
How does a court decide who gets custody of children? What kind of visitation or parenting schedule can we expect?
Whenever divorcing couples share minor children then you must make provisions for their legal custody as well for the parenting time or visitation. This is often the most stressful and contentious aspect of any divorce.
We have dedicated an entire page of our website to this topic. Click the following link to learn everything you need to know about Oregon Child Custody and Parenting Time as well as Oregon Child Support.
Call us at