Marital property is property acquired after the parties are married. Property acquired before the marriage is considered the individual and separate property of the acquiring spouse and the court will have no authority to distribute individual property when the marriage is dissolved.
family & personal matters
The relationship between blood relatives where one is a direct descendant of the other. For example, a person has consanguinity with her mother, grandmother, and daughter. (See also: consanguinity)
1) Legal, proper, or real. 2) A child born to parents who are married.
The legal status of living apart while remaining legally married. Parties who legally separate may petition for property division and support rights, and in all ways end their marital relationship while retaining the status, usually for religious reasons or to retain insurance benefits.
A type of adoption in which the child is placed with the prospective adoptive parents before the birth parents have legally given up their rights or had their rights terminated. If the termination of rights doesn't occur, then the adopting parents must give the child back. This is a risk for the adopting parents, who may lose a child to whom they've become attached. Legal risk placements are sometimes used in the case of foster children when the expectation is that the parents' rights will be terminated.
The right and obligation to make decisions about a child's upbringing, including schooling and medical care. Many states typically have both parents share legal custody of a child. Compare: physical custody
The age of legal majority, at which a person becomes responsible for his or her own actions. In almost all states the basic legal age is 18. State laws vary as to legal age for drinking or buying alcoholic beverages, marriage with or without parental consent, driving, prosecution for crimes, the right to choose an abortion, and liability for damages.
An arrangement by which parents who do not live together share the upbringing of a child. Joint custody can be joint legal custody (in which both parents have a say in decisions affecting the child), joint physical custody (in which the child spends a significant amount of time with both parents), or both.