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Overland Park Family Law Blog

Man involved in child custody case may face arrest

Kansas parents who disagree regarding where their children should reside, either in divorce or as never-before married parents, may relate to a current situation as it unfolds in another state. The mother and father of a 4-year-old boy are engaged in a highly acrimonious child custody battle. The situation has escalated to the point that a judge has repeatedly ordered the father to return his son to the mother. 

The judge also says that, as soon as the man arrives at the court-ordered location with his son, he will then be arrested for contempt of court. Although the man was previously granted custody of his child, he was ordered to return from another state to which he and the boy had traveled, and he apparently did not comply. The man gained custody of his son after the boy's mother admitted that she had used methamphetamine drugs.   

Those contemplating high asset divorce in Kansas should know this

Kansas residents who file tax returns will want to be aware of upcoming changes in federal tax regulations. This applies most specifically to anyone contemplating filing for a high asset divorce. The changes are set to take place at the stroke of midnight as the first day of 2019 begins.  

Current tax laws allow those paying alimony to claim their payments as deductions on their federal tax returns. Anyone filing for divorce or seeking modification of an existing court order pertaining to divorce in 2018 can still get a tax break for paying alimony. The impending changes have prompted some to suggest that anyone planning to divorce should do so during this year, especially if that person thinks he or she will be ordered to pay alimony.  

Step-parents and summer: Avoid child custody problems

Many children in Kansas are among others in the nation who no longer live with both parents. Children of divorce face many challenges as they adapt to new lifestyles, especially during summer break. If a non-custodial parent remarries, it adds a whole new dynamic to the situation, one that can lead to serious child custody problems if the adults involved let their emotions or tempers get out of hand.  

There are several things a non-custodial parent can do to avoid problems when children come to visit during the summer. Discussing the issue ahead of time may help prevent disputes down the line. It is critical that step-parents understand that the two key figures in children's lives are their own parents, and decisions regarding custody, visitation and support come through parental negotiation and court approval (or intervention if parents can't resolve their differences). In short, step-parents may not interfere with court orders.  

Reality TV stars battling over property division

Kansas residents who are fans of the reality TV show, "Married to Medicine" are no doubt aware that one of the show's star couples, Quad and Dr. Greg Lunceford, were having some serious marital problems last season. The latter was suspected of infidelity, which may have been a key factor that prompted the former to file for divorce. Not only has Lunceford contested his wife's petition, he has filed a contempt motion that claims she has violated a standing court order in divorce cases regarding property division.  

Lunceford has asked the court to order his wife to return various items, including several television sets, a dining room suite and bedroom furniture, which he claims she removed from their home without his permission. His recent filing requests that the court hand down a contempt ruling against her. Not uncommon in contested divorce situations, Lunceford has also sought reimbursement for any and all costs related his legal filing. 

Child custody battle ends in tragedy

Any Kansas parent currently facing problems relating to divorce, custody or support issues should know that there are many support networks in place to assist them in all capacities, especially concerning litigation. Some parents misguidedly believe they must go it alone and wind up feeling overwhelmed and helpless when serious child custody problems arise. A tragedy that recently occurred in another state emphasizes the point.  

The situation involved a young mother and her 7-year-old son. The mother happens to have formerly worked as a Playboy model. Sadly, the woman was also engaged in a contentious custody battle with her son's biological father. The court recently denied her request to take her child to Europe over the summer. That situation led to tragedy when the mother and her son plummeted 23 floors from a hotel suite to their deaths; authorities believe the situation is suicide-related.  

Could mediation be key to successful property division agreement?

If a Kansas resident is currently preparing for divorce, he or she may be hoping to find the best way to handle everything without going to court. When spouses are still on good terms and can discuss important issues in amicable fashions, they may be able to achieve a fair settlement through divorce mediation. In fact, this alternative dispute resolution process may be the key to successful property division.  

Like most states, Kansas operates under equitable property division laws in divorce. This means the court determines the ultimate division of all marital property, which is to be divided fairly (though not necessarily equally). Marital property typically includes any asset acquired during marriage, with some notable exceptions -- such as an inheritance or gift to one party.  

Child custody battle erupts in the wake of tragedy

As many Kansas residents understand, family situations can be complicated. Especially those concerning child custody, as made evident by a developing story in another state. This particular situation involves a tragedy that some involved say could have been prevented.  

A mother of a 2-year old child is now deceased. Her death is believed to have come at the hands of her own husband. What's more, several parties have filed wrongful death lawsuits, claiming the woman's life would likely have been saved if police officers had done their duty. As it stands, two patrol officers reportedly arrived on site where the woman was being physically attacked but allegedly left the scene without ever exiting their patrol car.   

Preparation is key to successful high asset divorce in Kansas

Most Kansas residents have experienced unexpected situations in life that prompt major lifestyle changes. For instance, sudden loss of income may cause someone to have to sell a home and relocate to an area where employment is more readily available. When unforeseen circumstances involve a high asset divorce, thorough preparation before heading into proceedings may increase the chances of obtaining a satisfactory settlement.  

Hopefully, adequate documentation has been kept throughout the duration of a marriage headed for divorce. When substantial assets are at stake, bank records, investment information and all other financial documents are crucial components of marital property division. Kansas is an equitable division state, which means the court will determine a fair distribution of marital assets, although perhaps not a 50/50 split.  

Don't let child custody problems mess up your parenting plan

Getting divorced does not mean your children's lives will be ruined. In fact, most children in Kansas and beyond are able to come to terms with their parents' divorces and move on to live well-adjusted, productive lives. There are, however, certain child custody issues that can cause stress for parents and children alike; knowing how to avoid them and how to protect your rights if you can't resolve them on your own can help you and your children build as healthy and happy a lifestyle as possible beyond divorce.

When both parents are willing to work together to create a solid co-parenting plan, children see this and feel supported. If your former spouse refuses to cooperate, however, or simply keeps trying to interfere with your relationship with your kids, it can make things difficult. Let's say it's your turn to have your children with you for the weekend, but your spouse doesn't show up at the designated place and time to drop them off to you.

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