Definition of Family Court

Family court is the court which handles all issues related to the family including the dissolution of marriage, spousal support and equitable distribution of assets, child custody, child support and visitation, paternity cases, adoption cases, domestic violence cases, child abuse cases and termination of parental rights cases. The practice of one family, one court and one judge allows many family issues to be consolidated and heard by one court, thus reducing stress for the family.

Because family court hears legal proceedings, a family may decide to hire a family law attorney to represent them in family court, or they may represent themselves without legal counsel. The court may be open to the public, but the judge has the authority to protect the interest of the parties of the court and close the courtroom if necessary.

If you have a case scheduled to be heard in family court it is important to discuss your case with a family lawyer. Make sure you understand how to dress, when to arrive and whether or not the court offers child care facilities. If the judge rules against you in family court you also have the legal right to appeal to a higher court. All family courts are administered according to a state’s specific laws and regulations.

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