Lafayette Divorce Lawyer

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Lafayette Divorce Attorney

Divorce is a difficult choice for spouses to make, and it should not be made lightly. The process of a divorce can be handled in or out of court, can be no-fault or fault-based, and may include many complicated aspects, such as the determination of spousal support and decisions regarding minor children. If you are considering or have filed for divorce, you need a skilled and compassionate Lafayette divorce lawyer on your side.

Going through a divorce may be one of the most stressful challenges you and your family ever faces, imparting a lasting impact on your children, family structure, and finances. While the process may be difficult, it is essential to handle divorce with care and efficiency. By enlisting the aid of an experienced attorney, you can ease this trying and often traumatic process, reduce stress, and provide yourself with a sense of security.

The Law Office of Joshua S. Guillory: Protecting Your Interests

It can be hard to trust someone with a case as important and impactful as your divorce. You may be worried that an attorney will be unable to understand the unique needs of your family. When you are looking for a divorce attorney, you need to find a caring and capable attorney with years of experience in family law. At The Law Office of Joshua S. Guillory, we have this knowledge and compassion. We use our experience to help our clients, but we also understand that every family has a different situation and different needs.

There are several options for obtaining a divorce, and our team can help you determine the right one for your family. Whether you have minor children, complicated marital assets, or spousal support needs to maintain your way of living, our attorneys can advocate for your interests and those of your family. We are proud to help the people within our community protect their rights and interests as we work to find the right solution for a divorce.

Types of Divorces in Louisiana

Louisiana is a no-fault divorce state. This means that the spouse requesting a divorce can do so without providing evidence that the other spouse did something wrong. A no-fault divorce can only be filed after spouses have lived separately for a significant period. Louisiana also allows spouses to file for an at-fault divorce, and this does not have the same separation period.

There are certain grounds that would constitute an “at fault” divorce. Even though you may qualify for an “at fault” divorce, it may be in your best interest to proceed with a “no fault” divorce. Depending on your circumstances, it is vitally important that you have a legal consultation with a family law attorney to discuss your options and to determine what is in the best interests of you and your family.

Essentially, we have three grounds for divorce in Louisiana, in addition to living separate and apart:

  1. Adultery,
  2. Physical or sexual abuse against the spouse or a child of the spouse, or
  3. Conviction of a felony with a sentence of imprisonment with hard labor or death.

Filing a fault-based divorce enables a spouse to immediately file without living separately. The spouse must be able to prove the grounds for their divorce to obtain one. Felony conviction requires documentation, while abuse may require significant evidence, such as a restraining order that was filed. Adultery is much more difficult to prove, and this is why it may be beneficial to file for a no-fault divorce.

To satisfy the grounds of living separate and apart, the parties must live separate and apart for 180 days (with no minor children) or 365 days (with minor children). There are different rules that apply to a divorce by way of living separate and apart, as it is considered a no-fault divorce. This separation must be voluntary by at least one spouse, and the separation must be stated to the other spouse.

These differences between fault and no-fault divorces pertain to certain time delays, procedural requirements, and a variety of other rules that may apply to your case. Each approach has potential benefits and risks. If you are living separate and apart from your spouse, you should contact a dedicated divorce attorney immediately to see which option is best for you.

Important Aspects of Divorce Proceedings

There are many other family law issues that are frequently part of divorce cases. These include:

  • Property Division: Nearly every divorce requires the division of marital property. Louisiana operates under community property laws, which means that nearly all assets a couple obtains during their marriage are split 50/50. Spouses can divide their assets differently if they negotiate an agreement outside of court or have an existing marital agreement.
  • Spousal Support: Spousal support exists to provide both spouses with the same standard of living that they enjoyed during their marriage. It includes both interim and final periodic spousal support. Support is not a required part of a divorce, and the court will review certain factors to decide whether to award it.
  • Child Custody: Custody decisions are made in the child’s interests, and the court assumes that joint custody is in the child’s interests. This assumption can be overturned based on reviewing several factors, such as the stability and safety of each parent’s home environment and the relationship between each parent and their child.
  • Child Support: Both parents have a financial obligation to their child. Child support in Louisiana follows a specific formula, which ensures that both parents provide for their child’s needs while separated.

If spouses can reach an accord on these aspects of their separation agreement, their divorce is considered uncontested. If they cannot reach an agreement on one or more aspects, it is contested. Even contested divorces can sometimes be negotiated outside of court. Your attorney can help you decide when it is beneficial to navigate these proceedings in or out of litigation.

FAQs

Q: How Much Does It Cost to Get a Divorce in Louisiana?

A: The cost of a divorce in Louisiana may range from several hundred dollars to thousands or much more. The cost varies based on:

  • The type of divorce
  • The complexity of legal issues associated with your case
  • If you and your spouse can discuss the separation agreement outside of court

Filing fees in Louisiana vary throughout the state, but they generally range from $200 to $600. There may be additional paperwork costs. If a divorce is contested or is handled through court, the process will take longer, and more court hearings will be more expensive.

Q: Does It Matter Who Files for Divorce First in Louisiana?

A: If you are getting an uncontested divorce that you and your spouse are negotiating out of court, it does not matter who files first. If your divorce is a fault-based divorce and is litigated, there may be some advantages to filing first.

Although it will not affect the court’s ruling, it enables you to file based on fault grounds. Even if your divorce is no-fault-based but litigated, filing first enables you to choose where the divorce is filed and allows you to present your case to the court first.

Q: Can You Get a Divorce in Louisiana Without a Lawyer?

A: Legally, you can get a divorce in Louisiana without a lawyer. However, this is not recommended. Working with a divorce attorney can ensure that your rights are protected and that you know your responsibilities. An attorney can help you determine if you and your spouse can limit the costs of a divorce by mediating the separation agreement or if your interests are better protected in litigation.

Divorce is a very financially draining and emotionally complicated process, and an attorney can help protect your financial stability.

Q: How Long Do You Have to Be Separated in Louisiana Before You Can Get a Divorce?

A: To obtain a no-fault divorce in Louisiana, spouses must have lived separately and apart for either 180 or 365 days. The waiting period is 180 days if the couple has no minor children, but it is 365 days if the couple has minor children. If a spouse is filing for a fault-based divorce in Louisiana on the grounds of adultery, abuse, or felony conviction, there is no required separation period. A spouse can obtain a fault-based divorce immediately.

It’s your life…Call someone you can count on.

Acadiana Family Law Attorney Josh Guillory has years of experience dedicated to handling divorce cases and resolving issues pertaining to divorce. He has taken on cases ranging in complexity, pulling from his knowledge and experience to secure a fair and favorable resolution for his clients. Josh and his staff can assist you in resolving your divorce case in an objective, timely, and stress-free manner. The Law Office of Joshua S. Guillory is ready to help you and your family during this tough and pressing time. Contact our office today at (337) 233-1303 or click here to arrange a divorce consultation with Louisiana Family Law Attorney Joshua S. Guillory.

Questions About a Divorce

In addition to handling family law matters, Attorney Joshua S. Guillory is prepared to help individuals with a wide range of legal matters, such as criminal defense, estate planning to include wills and trusts, business law, and personal injury. Do not hesitate to contact The Law Office of Joshua S. Guillory, LLC at (337) 233-1303 or click here to send a message to our firm.

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