Divorce is a significant life transition and a serious legal matter with important consequences for your future. If you’re going through a divorce, it’s crucial to carefully consider all relevant aspects and make decisions in the best interests of you and your children.

By seeking the guidance of a skilled divorce lawyer, you can navigate the complexities of divorce proceedings and make informed decisions that serve your best interests and those of your children.

The Terms of Your Divorce

No two divorces are exactly alike. While each divorce follows its own path, they all address common issues, including:

  • Child Custody Arrangements: When children are involved, determining custody arrangements takes priority. If you and your spouse can reach mutual agreements, it’s beneficial to avoid court intervention. You have the opportunity to be flexible and creative with the schedule, considering your children’s unique needs and concerns. The court will generally approve arrangements that work for your family.
  • Division of Marital Property: Dividing marital assets is a crucial aspect of any divorce and can often be contentious. Depending on the state, the court divides marital property based on what it deems fair under the circumstances. Marital property generally includes assets acquired during the marriage, except for gifts or inheritances received individually. Separate property, such as premarital assets, should remain separate.
  • Child Support Payments: Child support is determined by state guidelines to ensure both parents contribute to the financial support of their children. It typically involves monthly payments from the noncustodial parent to the custodial parent, aiming to cover the day-to-day expenses of raising the children.
  • Alimony (Spousal Maintenance): Alimony is awarded when the court determines that one spouse has a financial need after the divorce and the other spouse has the resources to provide support. It is often temporary and aims to help the financially dependent spouse transition into a new life.

Regrettably, it’s a common occurrence for homeowners and contractors to forego formal written agreements, instead relying on bids or invoices. This practice has resulted in numerous lawsuits due to misunderstandings that could have been avoided if the parties had clarified their expectations from the outset. To prevent such conflicts, it’s crucial to include specific construction tasks in writing, written change orders for any work beyond the original contract, an attorney’s fees clause, payment dates and schedules, and a total project cost not to exceed. If you’re a homeowner and a contractor took your deposit but failed to complete or poorly executed the work, you can seek legal action against them and their bond if available.

On the other hand, if you’re a contractor and a homeowner refuses to pay you for your agreed-upon work, you can file a lien on the property where the work was carried out to secure payment.

Understanding Child Custody Arrangements

Child custody arrangements involve distinguishing between legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody pertains to important decision-making responsibilities, such as healthcare, education, extracurricular activities, and religious upbringing. Generally, both parents share legal custody, but exceptions exist. Physical custody determines where and when the children reside. It can be joint, where the children spend significant time with both parents, or sole, where one parent has primary custody and the other has visitation rights.

Navigating the Division of Marital Property

Dividing marital property requires careful consideration. Determining what is considered marital property versus separate property can be complex. For example, if one spouse brought a business into the marriage and kept it separate, it is likely considered separate property. However, any increase in the business’s value during the marriage may be subject to division. Understanding these distinctions is crucial, as complications often arise.

Child Support Payments for Financial Support

Child support is calculated according to state guidelines to ensure both parents contribute to their children’s financial needs. The noncustodial parent typically makes monthly payments to the custodial parent, helping cover the costs associated with raising the children on a day-to-day basis.

Alimony to Address Financial Needs

In certain cases, alimony is awarded when one spouse requires financial support post-divorce and the other spouse has the means to provide it, usually for a temporary period. The court examines the financial circumstances of both spouses to determine the appropriate amount and duration of alimony.

Pitbull in a Designer Suit

I hired Ms. Smythe to represent me during my divorce. It was to be a 3 year ordeal. My spouse was a well known doctor in the area and full of confidence that he was going to drag me through the gutter for leaving him after I discovered his numerous affairs and many secrets. And believe me, he tried. Ms. Smythe saw him for what he was and went to work. She was articulate, educated, had integrity for days, was never ever intimidated and had laser focus. She was also very conscientious of my financial plight at the time. She never misled me and was honest about what to expect. We won BIG! Every woman needs a brilliant pit bull in her corner when divorcing a dog. I leave you with this: My ex-husband refers his friends to her if they are in need of a divorce attorney.

Anonymous Client

Highly Recommended

Stacey helped me with my highly contested divorce. She handled several post-divorce and support modification issues for me that were stressful and time consuming. I felt reassured the entire time that she had a handle on all of it. I was relieved to say the least. I would highly recommend her for any Family Law Matter.


What A Relief!

I was referred to Ms. Smythe by a friend after sharing my concerns about my family law matter. I had been told by previous lawyers that I was “fighting an uphill battle” and that they wouldn’t take my case due to the low likelihood that they could achieve an outcome I would be agreeable with. I greatly appreciate their honesty. My friend told me her friend got “exactly what he was looking for” from being represented by Ms. Smythe. I scheduled a meeting with her; after answering the basic questions to establish who was involved in the matter, Ms. Smythe asked me what my ideal resolution would be. I told her what that would be and she explained very frankly what the challenges were. She also shared with me how my goals could be achieved, and, based on her counsel I chose to retain her. Ms. Smythe and her associates took the matter and ran with it. Within 6 months (with very little effort on my end) they were able to get me, literally, exactly what my ideal outcome was.


Above and Beyond!

Jordan went above and beyond to take her time in helping me with a very difficult situation. She was informative, supportive and extremely knowledgeable! She not only listened, but she provided me so much legal advice. I will proudly give her my business and recommend her to others.


A dedicated lawyer and personal advocate

Stacy and her team did an superb job on my divorce case. Succinct and tactful job presenting, during the hearing, the most pertinent particularities of the case. As someone who is easily intimidated and struggles with self-advocacy Stacey and her team were instrumental to it’s overall positive outcome for the bigger whole. My heartfelt gratitude.


Best Outcome Possible

Jordan represented me in a lengthy case. Her representation and expertise made the process less painful and she made sure I received the best outcome possible. I so appreciate her time and expertise and highly recommend her to anyone. 

Anonymous Client

Top Notch Family Law & Probate Attorney

My spouse was going under the knife in two days when I contacted Stacey. She really pulled out the stops to get a durable power of attorney, health care proxy and last will and testament together for us both. I was referred to Stacy by a friend who used her in her divorce case, and who loved her work. She’s fast, reliable, and really good at what she does. I can’t recommend her highly enough.



Stacey was instrumental in getting my Parenting Plan worked out. She walked me through the process and help craft the plan that worked best for me and my son. Very knowledgeable, helpful, and knows how to get things done!


Compassionate, Supportive & Professional

Stacey Smythe was highly recommended by two of my friends who had used her in their divorce. She was very compassionate, supportive and professional at one of the lowest times in my life. All the legal stuff that comes along with a divorce can be very confusing and she took the time to make sure I understood the process. I would highly recommend her to anyone needing a good attorney for divorce, child custody or estate planning.