The Maine family law attorneys at Drummond & Drummond guide clients through high conflict matters by providing sound legal advice and realistic expectations, while protecting their client’s interests with compassionate advocacy as mediation lawyers in Maine. Our focus is on an individual client’s needs, as every family matter is different. After listening and educating clients regarding options, our goal is to clearly define a client’s desired outcome, and to move forward with that outcome in mind first and foremost.
The family matters we handle include:
- Unmarried Parental Rights & Responsibilities
- Guardian ad litem
- Guardianship of Minors
- Child Support
- Parenting Plans
- Grandparents Rights
- Protection from Abuse and Harassment
- Post-Judgment Motions for Contempt, Enforcement & Modification
Divorce, Parental Rights & Responsibilities, and Mediation
Divorce is the legal process of dissolving a marriage. In Maine, a party typically seeks a divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences without a showing of fault. The resolution of a divorce may involve the division of assets, debt, spousal support, child support, and parenting plans. Maine is an “equitable distribution” state whereby marital property is divided in a fair manner.
A parental rights and responsibilities matter is an opportunity for unmarried parents with children to seek assistance in determining where children should primarily reside, and what a contact schedule should look like for a non-primary parent. Sometimes parents would like to share residency and need assistance with scheduling. The resolution of a parental rights and responsibilities matters may involve drafting a parenting plan and determining child support.
The attorneys at Drummond & Drummond represent individuals in both divorce and parental rights and responsibilities matters. We also mediate these matters for parties who would like to settle their matter outside of the courtroom. In mediation, parties sit down with a mediator/attorney and discuss settlement options together. Since family matters may involve emotions and high conflict, many parties can benefit from discussing outstanding issues in a less adversarial setting. The mediator/attorney listens to both parties, and develops solutions to financial and parenting matters.
Whether you seek individual representation, or mediation services, it is important to consult a family law attorney to understand how Maine law applies to your particular case. Seeking legal counsel in the beginning can prevent problems down the road.
Guardian ad litem, Parenting Plans, and other matters involving children
Drummond & Drummond has the privilege of providing Guardian ad litem (GAL) services. GALs are attorneys who advocate on behalf of, or provide a “voice” for children, in court. GALs are appointed in high conflict divorce or parental rights and responsibilities matters when two parties cannot agree on “custody” arrangements for their children. The term “custody” is not used in Maine law. Instead, a party may seek primary residency of his/her children. Alternatively, parties may seek shared residency of their children. Making decisions regarding the children may continue to be shared after a divorce, or sometimes one party seeks allocated final major decision-making authority. A party may also seek sole decision-making authority. When a GAL is appointed, the GAL assists the court in determining what parenting plan is in “the best interests of the child.” There are numerous factors that go into this determination. A consultation with a family law attorney can better assist you to understand this process in the event that you need GAL services during your divorce.
Parenting plans become incorporated into a final divorce or parental rights and responsibilities order. When two parties have a difficult time co-parenting, a concise, detailed parenting plan is necessary in order to avoid conflict. Parenting plans include contact schedules for parents, transition of children, holidays, vacation time, and extracurricular activities. Child support must also be calculated and incorporated into a final order. The family law attorneys at Drummond & Drummond can assist with the drafting of parenting plans and guide you through the calculation of child support for your particular case. Maine has an established formula for calculating a presumed child support amount, but this amount may be inappropriate in certain circumstances.
We also assist grandparents in family matters when they are seeking visitation with their grandchildren. Similarly, we assist with guardianship of children, when a child may need to be temporarily placed in the care of someone other than their parents.
Post-Judgment Motions, Protection from Abuse and Harassment
Oftentimes you may need an attorney after your family matter has ended. When a party is not following the terms of a final court order, you may file a post-judgment motion with the court and seek sanctions. This is either in the form of a Motion to Enforce or a Motion for Contempt. The family law attorneys at Drummond & Drummond can represent you in these matters.
If you are feeling threatened or being abused by a family member, you can obtain a Protection from Abuse (PFA) or Protection from Harassment (PFH) Order from the court. We are qualified to help handle these difficult and sensitive matters. If you have been falsely accused of domestic violence or abuse, we can defend you.