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Melissa A. Featherston

family law Archives

Single parent adoptions are often possible

Long gone are the days when only couples could adopt a child. Now, single parents are turning to adoption to provide a loving home for a child who would otherwise be stuck in the foster care system. These men and women should be sure that they are prepared for the process and for the responsibilities that come with these adoptions.

When does a domestic partnership end?

The ending of a domestic partnership might not be that different from the ending of a divorce. In this sense, partners will need to make decisions and come to agreement with regard to asset division, child custody and other divorce-related concerns. Domestic partners, however, will not have the same kinds of legal protections that the partners in a marriage have.

Learn about how alimony can impact your finances

Alimony payments are often a part of high-asset divorce cases and cases that involve a spouse who opted to remain home to raise the children. When these payments are one of the factors in the divorce settlement, things can turn contentious quickly. It is imperative to understand how Missouri laws cover alimony payments so that you can be prepared for what might happen if alimony is likely to come up in your divorce.

Missouri lawmakers consider change to legal marriage age

Teens in Missouri can currently get married at a fairly low age when compared with other states, especially if they have parental consent. If a parent is signing off on the marriage, someone as young as 15 can get a marriage license with very little other requirements. Someone of any age can petition the Missouri courts for a marriage license, though that's a rare occurrence.

Find out the options you have during an adoption

We recently discussed what you should expect during the home study for an adoption. This is only one part of the process that you should be prepared to deal with if you are planning on adopting a child. We can walk you through the process from the initial application through the final adoption hearing.

Appeals court upholds decision in Missouri frozen embryo case

Justices in the Missouri Court of Appeals have upheld a lower court ruling that a divorced St. Louis couple's frozen embryos are "marital property of a special character" as opposed to human beings. The couple, who stored the embryos conceived via in vitro fertilization in 2007, will have joint custody of them. Neither of them can use the embryos unless they have their ex-spouse's consent.

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