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10 Important Things to Consider Before Filing for a Florida Divorce

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10 Important Things to Consider Before Filing for a Florida Divorce

It’s the dream of married couples to love each other and stay by one another’s side forever. Unfortunately, not all marriages pass the test of time and fulfill the ‘until death do us part’ vow. Love can turn sour, and a relationship you work so hard to build comes troubling down under your watch.

So, what happens if there is no love between you and your spouse? The best thing to do is to file for a divorce. If you live in Florida, you’ll need to understand the process of Florida divorce and what to expect.

Here are ten things to consider before filing for a divorce in Florida.

1. You Must Be a Resident of Florida

For you to file for a divorce petition in Florida, one of you must prove the eligibility of that state for at least six months. You can also file for a divorce if you’re a military member who lives in Florida but works outside the state. One of you must be residing in Florida before filing for a divorce.

2. You Need to File for the Petition

If you’re the one filing for a divorce, the court may refer to you as the petitioner. You must file the petition in the circuit court and state your reason for divorce. But before this, take time to understand what does a divorce entail.

3. You Must Answer the Petition

After filing the original petition, the respondent, who is the person serving the petition, must compose and file an answer. Whoever responds to your petition has twenty days after being served with a divorce file. In response, there is always a counter-petition where the respondent can agree or deny the petition.

The person served with the petition may contest the petition by presenting additional matters to the court. In this case, the petitioner must file a response within twenty days if the respondent presents a counter-petition.

One party involved in the divorce may ask for protective orders, temporary orders, and restraining orders. These may involve spousal support, child custody, and child support.

4. Any Additional Information

The next step is the divorce discovery process. It involves a range of actions.

This starts with the divorce attorney who has the power to collect key information in determining the outcome of the divorce. This is because there is a possibility of one party refusing to disclose all assets to their partners.

You have to look for a reputable divorce attorney who understands the discovery process. A reputable divorce lawyer helps the court with the comprehensive information they need to make a reasonable decision when allocating alimony and distributing assets.

Florida requires you to present a signed financial affidavit within 45 days of filing your petition. Each party must disclose their income tax returns, income proof. These also include bank account statements, credit card statements, personal financial statements, and any other account reflecting debt in the affidavit.

5. Florida Divorce Mediation

In Florida, divorce mediation may come in if there is no amicable agreement. When there are pending issues in marriage dissolution, you may need divorce mediation. You will not need mediation if you’re divorcing due to domestic violence.

You’ll need the services of a divorce attorney when it comes to the mediation process. A divorce lawyer may protect your rights and opinions in different matters. These include division of property at the time of alimony and negotiation on other relevant areas.

6. Splitting Assets during a Florida Divorce

Assets are the most disputed elements when it comes to divorce.  In Florida, the court only divides marital assets and debts. The Florida divorce court identifies the assets acquired during marriage as marital assets.

The court doesn’t divide separate assets believed to be obtained by one of the spouses. These non-marital assets include any property obtained before marriage. Non-marital assets are also gifts and inheritance the spouses get during the marriage but don’t include gifts between spouses.

7. Managing Alimony and Child Support

A parenting plan is always the final step in a divorce that involves kids. Both parents have to develop a plan on how they’ll raise their children after partying ways. Among the things, the Florida court requires them to consider include sharing time with the kids.

Others include how they’ll be communicating with the children. You’ll also decide on which parent will be filling important forms of health care, school, and any related child enrollments.

When filing taxes after divorce, you’ll have to account for both alimony and child support payments. Remember that you can deduct your alimony payments from your gross income but not the child support payments.

8. Provision of all Documents that You’ll Need

In Florida, the court will need to know about all your assets, but only if you provide them with all the documents. This will help them divide your properties. The documents to present to court include copies of bank statements, tax returns, mortgage documents, and other financial information.

You’ll also save yourself a lot of time by providing these important documents to the court. Remember to carry an inventory of household and family possessions. This will help the court determine the temporary support given and if you and your spouse can afford your marital home on your own.

9. Heading to Trial

The Florida divorce laws allow you to head to the judge and not the jury if there is no amicable agreement. Many disagreements usually concern financial aspects and issues related to children.

When you head to the trial, your attorney will table your rights and opinions before the judge. The divorce attorney will cross-examine the witnesses. The judge will then make the final decision on any problem that was never settled during negotiations.

As a petitioner, you can file an appeal if you feel shortchanged with the judge’s final decision. This can lead to a new hearing.

10. Finalizing the Divorce

Once you’ve negotiated and agreed to marriage dissolution, the judge then moves to sign the order of dissolution. This will be the final judgment that declares you divorced.

Now You’re Ready to Divorce

Florida divorce isn’t that difficult because it’s a no-fault state. You don’t have to provide many reasons to dissolve your marriage. All you need is to show that your marriage is over and reconciliation is no longer an option.

There is a host of other information you need to learn about divorce and other things that come with it, such as child custody. We’re here to make the entire process easier and stress-free by giving you all the information you may need. Stay on this site for more informative content.

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3 of the United States’ Largest Product Liability Cases Explained

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3 of the United States’ Largest Product Liability Cases Explained

The US has been host to many extremely high-profile product liability cases over the last ten decades. These cases often involved thousands of people being irreversibly damaged, or killed, due to a manufacturer’s negligent behavior. Victims continue to struggle in their fights against giant corporations that would knowingly harm them to make a quick buck. Here are just three of the largest product liability cases that have been filed in the United States:

1. Building Material Toxic Exposure (Owens Corning)

For decades, Owens Corning was perhaps America’s largest manufacturer of asbestos products. This house-warming material is crucial for keeping people safe in the winter, but when manufactured or advertised incorrectly, it can lead people to dangerous exposure to the toxic product. In the modern day, we now know for a fact that continuous asbestos exposure can drastically increase the chances of a person developing mesothelioma cancer (which very frequently leads to death). If you or a loved one have developed mesothelioma or another serious illness due to asbestos exposure, you can contact a product liability lawyer to help you file a suit against the responsible asbestos manufacturer.

In 1998, a high-profile product liability claim was made against Owens Corning claiming that they knew their product was causing major illnesses in thousands upon thousands of customers, and that the company was attempting to suppress information about the dangers of asbestos. The massive, history-making lawsuit ended up growing to include over 237,000 plaintiffs, and Owens Corning lost the case. Unfortunately, the company skirted most of the damages and responsibility by filing for bankruptcy.

2. Defective Automobile Parts (General Motors)

General Motors was once, and is still, one of America’s largest auto manufacturers. Not only do they make full-on vehicles, but they produce parts for a wide range of auto products throughout the US and the world. When auto manufacturers put profits over people, they will knowingly put defective or dangerous products onto the public marketplace, and this is just what General Motors did for many decades. This led to several of the largest product liability cases in United States history being filed against the motor giant.

One of the most infamous of these cases occurred in 1999 when General Motors had a product liability claim filed against them for allegedly releasing a 1979 Chevrolet Malibu vehicle with a knowingly-faulty gas tank. These faulty gas tanks resulted in tank explosions in many vehicles that were struck in the rear. The family of six victims that were severely and irreversibly burned in one of these explosions brought legal action against the motor giant and sought $4.9 million in damages. Thankfully, the victims successfully showcased that GM avoided publicly addressing or correcting the defective products simply because they did not want the oversight to affect their bottom line. It’s unknown just how many lives were taken or irreversibly damaged due to the company’s negligence.

3. Cancerous, Addictive Tobacco Products (Philip Morris)

Perhaps the most well-known lawsuits against major corporations in American history have been filed against tobacco giants. Because such a massive portion of the American populace is advertised tobacco products every day, and so many of them get addictive, product liability claims against tobacco product manufacturers can lead to absolutely gigantic class-action and individual civil cases. Philip Morris is not only the most well-known tobacco company but also the company that had the largest tobacco-related product liability case filed against them in the history of the United States.

Back in 2002, Philip Morris faced serious accusations of product liability in a filing made by a woman who developed lung cancer after smoking Philip Morris’ tobacco products for decades. The case proved that, in the eyes of the law, her tobacco addiction and the illnesses that it caused were the fault of Philip Morris’ negligent communication about the dangers tobacco presented to its users. In a record-shattering settlement, Philip Morris was ordered to pay the woman $28 billion (as well as an additional $850,000 in compensatory damages). That being said, Philip Morris did appeal the case, and after nine years of appeal hearings, the amount was dramatically reduced to only $28 million. Many still see this reduction in the settlement as a slap in the face to Philip Morris’ many victims.

High-Profile Product Liability Cases Remain a Harsh Reality in the US

Unfortunately, many massive companies and manufacturers continue to put profits over people, often believing that they are above the law. Each person who successfully files a case against a negligent manufacturer is doing their part to reign in the destructive actions of these despicable corporations.

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Why Do the Majority of Car Accidents Take Place in Residential Areas?

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One of the biggest killers in America is traffic. Road conditions, driving habits, and traffic volumes contribute to car accidents. These dangers are especially prevalent in residential neighborhoods. In fact, about half of all car accidents that happen in the country take place within a mile of home. This phenomenon is known as the “car crash suburbanization” effect, and it plays a significant role in why so many incidents happen where they do. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the percentage of car accidents that happen close to homes is more than 1 in 4. In urban areas, this number can be even higher. This is because drivers are more likely to speed or drive distractedly when they know they are close to their homes.

Let’s explore further what causes car crashes in residential areas and how you can stay safer from these dangers. 

Distracted Driving

The dangers of distracted driving are well-documented. After all, as we discussed above, they make up one-half of all car accidents that happen in the country. This is because distractions like phone use, texting, and eating are common while behind the wheel. 79% of drivers admit to regularly engaging in some form of distracted driving. People are often distracted when they reach their home street, leading to car accidents in residential areas.

Speed and Unsafe Lane Changes

In many cases, excessive speed is also a critical factor in causing car crashes. This is especially true when driving too fast in adverse road conditions. In terms of car accidents outside of residential areas, this issue often occurs in rural areas that lack traffic control. Excess speed also leads to unsafe lane changes. This is due to your decreased reaction time while driving. It’s easy to make a careless lane change when you’re in a hurry or simply not paying attention to the road. This is a significant cause of car accidents in residential areas.

Road Conditions and Weather

Bad road conditions and wet weather are also common factors in car accidents in residential areas. These two factors can cause dangerous car accidents anywhere, not just the residential area. Poor road conditions, for example, can lead to tire blowouts, which endangers you and other people on the road. Wet weather also plays a role in car crashes in residential areas due to the increased risk of hydroplaning. This happens when the tires are not sufficiently hydrophobic to keep them from sliding on wet roads. Bad weather conditions, like heavy rain or black ice, are the leading cause of car accidents in residential areas.

Bad Traffic Behavior

Finally, you should be aware that bad traffic behavior, like aggressive driving and excessive speeding, is also a significant cause of car accidents in residential areas. This is especially true when driving outside of your typical driving patterns.

As you can see, many potential causes of car accidents exist in residential areas. With this in mind, it’s vital to be aware of the dangers and practice defensive driving. This can help you stay safer on the road and limit the likelihood of being involved in a car crash.

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Why Work With Legal Recruiters and How To Find the Best Ones

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Why Work With Legal Recruiters and How To Find the Best Ones

Legal recruiters are an invaluable resource for attorneys, paralegals, and legal assistants. They have the expertise to assist you in finding the right job or the perfect candidate for an open position.

Their industry knowledge can help you find a position to make the most of your skills and experience. Additionally, their connections can get you in front of hiring managers who might have yet to hear of you.

Why work with a legal recruiter?

Working with a legal recruiter offers many benefits if you’re a law firm or organization looking for top-notch candidates. The same is true if you’re a lawyer wanting to be part of a company’s legal team.

Advantages to the Job Hirer

Legal professionals are in high demand, and finding top-tier applicants suited to your company’s needs can be challenging. You need to find the right person fast to move your business forward. However, there’s so much competition for these positions that it could be an uphill battle.

Luckily, there is a solution: hiring with the assistance of a legal recruiter. With this, you’ll be able to focus on your business matters most. You can do this while still getting the best possible candidates. You’ll get access to experienced recruiters helping companies like yours find the perfect fit for their open positions.

Advantages to the Job Searcher

If you are a job searcher, you may need help figuring out where to start looking for new opportunities. You may know what kind of work you’d like to do. However, you may need to find exactly what type of firm or company is suitable for you.

You may need clarifications about the area of the legal profession you want to specialize in. You might also require some ideas on what would be best for your career.

Working with a legal recruiter can help take some guesswork out of this process. You will also have more control over your career path.

How To Find the Best Legal Recruiters

Finding the best legal recruiters can take time and effort, as many options are available. If you’re thinking about working with one, there are several things to remember.

Reach Out to Different Recruiters

You can reach out to different recruiters by using LinkedIn or other social media platforms. You can also ask your colleagues if they know any excellent legal recruiters.

It’s essential to check their credentials before you hire them. You can check their website and look at their testimonials from previous clients. You should consider them one of your top choices if they have many positive reviews.

Go for recruiters who listen intently to your needs, goals, and vision. Ensure that you’re on the same page to avoid misunderstandings and hiring issues along the way.

Consider Local Legal Recruiters

Local recruiters have a strong understanding of the local market. If you’re hiring, they can help you find the best candidates who can better serve your target market. A local lawyer recruiter will be able to tailor their search to your specific location and needs.

Local legal recruiters can also offer more personalized service than larger firms. They have easier access to a wealth of information about the law firm or company you’re interested in working for.

Request for References

Legal recruiters work with people and maintain various relationships. When you ask them for references, you’ll want to know more than just names and numbers.

Ask for clients who have recently worked with your potential recruiting partner. Call those people directly and ask about their experience working with the recruiter.

You’ll also want to talk to the recruiters about the process of finding candidates. Ask them about the length of time it took them to find candidates or whether they were successful in hiring.

Find What You Need With the Help of Legal Recruiters

Working with legal recruiters can save job seekers and hiring law firms time, money, and effort. These recruitment firms have qualified human resources who can fill positions in the hiring organizations.

Apart from that, these firms understand the local market. They know where to search for candidates to fill their applicant pool. With them, you’ll make hiring and selection decisions easier.

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