Family Law

ATTORNEYS




Legal issues that arise within domestic relationships require special care and consideration. The counsel of a qualified attorney can help you to avoid unnecessary confusion and anxiety and prevent long-lasting regrets. The lawyers at RISEN & RYAN, P.A. in Fort Walton Beach have the combined experience of more than 40 years counseling people through life’s most difficult challenges – and fighting for the rights of our clients in thousands of court hearings.

Our friendly staff will be happy to provide information about costs, to “point you in the right direction” and/or to schedule an appointment to review your case with a lawyer and to answer your questions about the many issues that arise in domestic relationships including:

Divorce

Divorce cases are generally categorized into those cases that are contested and those that are uncontested. An uncontested divorce case is one in which both parties remain in agreement on all aspects of the dissolution of the marriage throughout the entire proceeding. Contested divorce cases… 

Spousal Support

Florida imposes a duty on each spouse to support one another, and this mutual obligation may extend even beyond the dissolution of a marriage. Under some circumstance, the court may order a party to pay spousal support even where divorce proceedings have not been initiated at all… 

Child Custody

The overaching principle guiding all decision a Florida court enters regarding a child is that which is “in the best interest of the child.” In analyzing custody disputes, the court begins with the presumption that maximizing each parent’s contact with the child is in that child’s best interest…

Child Support

In Florida, each parent has an ongoing duty to provide financial support to their child. Generally, this responsibility continues until a child reaches the age of majority (or until the child is 19, if the child is still enrolled in high school)…

Adoption

There are approximately 19,000 children living in Florida’s foster care system

Paternity

Parenthood has certain rights and protections that arise under both the federal and state constitutions. For mothers, these rights and protections are, typically, automatic and absolute. However, biological fathers may find themselves in circumstances that require establishing fatherhood (i.e. paternity) through the legal system… 

Dependency (D.C.F. cases)

Florida’s Department of Children and Family Services (D.C.F.) is a state agency responsible for initiating law suits against parents where child abuse, neglect, or abandonment has been alleged… 

Frequently Asked Questions

In order to qualify to be divorced in Florida a party to the marriage must continuously reside in Florida for six (6) months before the filing of the petition for dissolution of marriage. Residency is proved by: Florida Driver’s License; Voter Registration; or a Third-Party Affidavit. Special rules apply in some instances involving military members.
Yes. However, you must first show the Court that you have made a “diligent search” to locate and notify the other party that you have filed for divorce.
Maybe. If parties to a divorce reach a settlement agreement, chances are the Court will be more than glad to ratify the agreement and enter a divorce judgment based upon it – at least insofar as the parties’ rights (as opposed to those of the children) are concerned. In this way parties are free to divide assets unevenly and to waive valuable rights by agreement. However, if a divorce case goes to trial, the marital estate will be equitably distributed. Presumptively, this means that all assets acquired and all debts incurred, from wedding day to divorce-filing day, will be subject to division by the court and, more often than not, such division will be equal (though it is not always the case as the law calls for “equitable” not “equal” distribution). The parties may also prove that particular assets and/or debts are not “marital” at all and therefore not subject to division at this stage of trial. However, as a rule, retirement benefits that accrued during the marriage are marital and subject to equitable distribution along with the rest of the estate. This rule applies to military as well as civilian retirement benefits. Beware misinformation about the “ten year rule”! and note that only the portion of retirement benefits that accrued during the marriage is subject to equitable distribution. Military retirement and other benefits, such as health insurance and the Survivors Benefit Plan (SBP), are unique and subject to strict, technical rules. It is critical that parties to a military divorce seek qualified legal advice.
Maybe. If parties to a divorce reach a settlement agreement, chances are the Court will be more than glad to ratify the agreement and enter a divorce judgment based upon it – at least insofar as the parties’ rights (as opposed to those of the children) are concerned. In this way parties are free to divide assets unevenly and to waive valuable rights by agreement. However, if a divorce case goes to trial, the marital estate will be equitably distributed. Presumptively, this means that all assets acquired and all debts incurred, from wedding day to divorce-filing day, will be subject to division by the court and, more often than not, such division will be equal (though it is not always the case as the law calls for “equitable” not “equal” distribution). The parties may also prove that particular assets and/or debts are not “marital” at all and therefore not subject to division at this stage of trial. However, as a rule, retirement benefits that accrued during the marriage are marital and subject to equitable distribution along with the rest of the estate. This rule applies to military as well as civilian retirement benefits. Beware misinformation about the “ten year rule”! and note that only the portion of retirement benefits that accrued during the marriage is subject to equitable distribution. Military retirement and other benefits, such as health insurance and the Survivors Benefit Plan (SBP), are unique and subject to strict, technical rules. It is critical that parties to a military divorce seek qualified legal advice.

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436 Green Acres Road

Ft. Walton Beach, FL 32547

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Monday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Tuesday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Wednesday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Thursday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Friday: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

NOTICE: This website is for informational purposes only. Using this site or communicating with Risen & Ryan, P.A. through this site does not form an attorney/client relationship. This site is legal advertising. This website is for informational purposes only. Using this site or communicating with Risen & Ryan, P.A. through this site does not form an attorney/client relationship. This site is legal advertising.

Contact Us

Find Us

436 Green Acres Road

Ft. Walton Beach, FL 32547

Hours

Monday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Tuesday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Wednesday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Thursday: 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

Friday: 9:00 am – 1:00 pm

NOTICE: This website is for informational purposes only. Using this site or communicating with Risen & Ryan, P.A. through this site does not form an attorney/client relationship. This site is legal advertising. This website is for informational purposes only. Using this site or communicating with Risen & Ryan, P.A. through this site does not form an attorney/client relationship. This site is legal advertising.