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I am both a family law attorney and a trained registered neutral with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution in the areas of family and civil mediation. My experience as both an attorney and mediator gives me a unique; yet successful approach to divorce and family law cases; in which I endeavor to resolve issues between divorcing spouses and separated parents in a commonsense and practical way. I am also a trained Guardian Ad Litem (an attorney representing the best interest of children in disputed custody cases). My Guardian Ad Litem training gives me the skills necessary to counsel clients with children to always operate in the light most favorable to their children; keeping their best interest at the forefront. This method is usually far more efficient and at a much lower cost than prolonged court litigation.

A divorce settlement usually has two basic parts: property division and child custody. Many divorces also involve alimony:

Property division — All assets and debts accumulated during the marriage are marital. During the divorce, you and your spouse must divide them between you. All property must be divided equitably. This doesn't have to be a 50/50 division, but that's a common solution.

Child custody — Both legal custody and physical custody need to be determined. I also offer services in child custody modifications.

Alimony — Alimony, also called spousal support or spousal maintenance, is not as common as it once was. Often, alimony is intended to permit a non-working spouse to enter the work force or achieve a higher level of education. Of course, every case is different, and there are cases in which permanent alimony is appropriate. I also assist in modifications to the divorce decree, including alimony.

If there are children involved in the divorce, parents must decide on a parenting plan — unless they want a judge to do it for them. Parents usually know better than a third person what is best for their children. This also applies to unmarried parents. Parents should decide who will become the primary custodial parent, unless, again, they force a judge to make that decision. Issues of paternity may arise, especially when parents are unmarried. Other issues include visitation and child support. Additionally in the future, it may become necessary to modify child support or modify child custody.

In Georgia, unmarried fathers must get an order of legitimation before paternity can be established. Even if a father's name is on the child's birth certificate, legal paternity is not established. Before paternity is established, a mother has automatic physical and legal custody of the child. Both parents can agree on paternity and the father's identity, which simplifies the process. However, if there are still questions regarding the identity of the father, a DNA or paternity test can be administered. Some judges insist on a DNA or paternity test even if the father agrees that he is the parent. Tiffany S. Rowe can assist unwed fathers in establishing their legal paternal rights; given them the opportunity to exercise custody and visitation.

If there are children involved in a divorce, the non-custodial parent must pay child support, and is entitled to visitation. Devising a parenting schedule is part of the divorce process and legitimation process for unwed fathers. It is part of the contract that exists between you and your former spouse once your divorce is final. If you are facing a divorce and you have children, I can guide you through your options and help you make workable decisions. There are many ways to arrange a child visitation schedule. If one parent has primary physical custody, the other parent may get the child every other weekend, every other holiday, and a few weeks during the summer.

Georgia's "Income Shares Model"
Child support guidelines are laid out in Georgia statutes. Effective January 1, 2007, Georgia guidelines for calculating child support have been based on an "income shares" model. This model takes into account the income of both parents. These guidelines apply to child support in contested and non-contested hearings.

Child Support Modifications
It is possible to modify a child support order up or down if circumstances change after your initial order.

Child Support Enforcement
Child support is mandatory. Georgia takes child support recovery very seriously. If you have not been receiving the child support that is due, you have options. Our firm can go over them with you and help you get the support that your child needs.

In these changing economic times, a modification (change) from your original child support or custody order maybe necessary. There are many reasons why modifying child support may be appropriate.

These are a few:
    •  A substantial decrease or increase in income or financial status of either parent
    •  A change in the financial needs of the child
    •  Change in child custody

When a party to a divorce, child support, or custody court order willfully ignores or does not comply with the order; a contempt petition may be necessary to enforce the order. Our firm can assist in these difficult situations.

Reasons to choose Tiffany S. Rowe LLC