What is Family Law?

As the name suggests, any legal matter related to the family falls under family law. Family law comprises all legal aspects that can impact the life of a family member, such as emancipation, prenuptial agreements, alimony, marital community property, divorce, child custody, etc. 

People who are related by blood or married can get into disputes over sensitive issues that fall under family law. Family law is one of the most emotional and complex categories of law, so people often seek legal consultation and support to handle these matters. 

Types of Family Law Cases


When a couple gets married, they enter a legal relationship that can only be dissolved following the regulations of the state's family law. Although a divorce can be filed without hiring an attorney, either party can seek assistance from a family law attorney to complete the legal proceedings of a divorce. 

Divorces are the most complex area of family law, as they can take more than a year to resolve if contested in court. On the other hand, an uncontested divorce can be less complex, and the proceedings can be completed in a shorter time. 

Spousal Support or Alimony

Spousal support or alimony is sometimes an aspect of divorce, depending on the duration and nature of the marriage. In the U.S., each state has distinct family laws regarding alimony. The final judgment on alimony in contested divorces resides with the court. Alimony matters are one of the major reasons why divorces are contested and need a resolution through a court-ordered judgment.  

Child Custody and Support 

Child support and custody issues are covered under family law. Like other family law matters, there can be differences in the law in different states. Child custody and support laws differ across the states. An experienced attorney can inform you about the child custody and child support laws in your area. Child custody and child support cases typically end with either parent getting custody of the children or both parents sharing joint custody. 

The court rules in the children's best interest after reviewing the facts of the case, such as the financial situation of each parent. In most cases, the mother of the children files a paternity case against the father to secure child support payments if the father has been neglectful. The father can also file a paternity case to confirm their relationship with the child or children.  

Adoption and Foster Care 

Adoption can be complicated depending on the laws of the state where you live. People typically hire a family law attorney to guide them on the legal proceedings of adoption in the state. 

Adoption is different from foster care. Foster care is temporary adoption that is funded by the government until the child can be reunited with their biological parents. Legal representation could help adoptive parents battle the revocation period. The revocation period is the amount of time given to the birth parents to take their child back before the adoptive parents become the child’s legal parents.