Monthly Archives: August 2016

Best Ways to Adopt a Child

Every homeless child wants a family and a home where he can be loved and cared, and parents who can fulfill his needs. This article contributes a bit towards bringing such parents and children together by clearing the concept of child adoption.

Adoption is a process where the adoptive parents take up the responsibility of a child and nurture him till he becomes independent enough to lead his own life. It brings a lot of happiness and also certain challenges in their lives. Previously, a couple would consider it if they were unable to bear one. However, in today’s times, the ideas and views towards it have changed tremendously. Every couple may have their own reasons to go for it, but the most common reasons could be:

  • Childless couple
  • Parents who love children
  • Single parents who desire to enjoy parenthood
  • Parents who want to contribute to the society
  • Parents who have genetic diseases and thus, choose to consider it

The reasons to why children are homeless, and left for adoption can be plenty, whether it is one’s financial state, family issues, or unwanted pregnancy. Children are innocent and bring a lot of joy and happiness into our lives. Yet, they are left to face the world all by themselves. They deserve love, affection, care, family, and a home, too. They too have the right to lead a good and secure life.

The process of child adoption is slow and tends to get a little irksome. It’s quite a big deal to go for it as it brings a lot of changes in the lives of adoptive parents and the child. They have to create the same relationship bond with him/her as they would have it with their biological child. So, before getting into this, find out whether you really want to consider this option. Adopting a child is a lifetime commitment, and therefore, this decision should be taken carefully. Many interested parents abandon the process involved because of its complexities. Remember that it is time-consuming and takes up all your energy. However, to make it easy, it is advisable that you study the process and create a plan to go about it. There are many options and procedures involved in this process. Couples who are interested in it must be aware of certain types of adoption to meet their needs.

Adoption Practices

Open
In this process, the birth parents and the adoptive parents can share their information with each other. It’s a great way for a child to know their biological parents. However, after the process is complete, both the mentioned parents can choose to stay in contact with each other.

Semi-open
Here, the birth and adoptive parents meet and exchange the information, which is initiated by the respective institute. Once the child grows up, he has a choice to contact his biological parents and develop a relationship with them.

Semi-closed
This is indeed a good option for the biological parents to maintain their privacy. They can contact the couple who are interested in adoption, or choose not to remain in touch with adoptive parents at all.

Closed
In this process, the birth parents hand over their babies to an adoption agency. The parents who are willing to adopt a child do not meet the biological parents. However, the medical information is often shared with them.

Independent
There is no role of any related agency in this particular process. It takes place very rarely and happens when the biological parents and the adoptive parents know each other and make an agreement to adopt the child.

Another way is where the birth mother selects the family for a baby while she is pregnant. During this period, she might choose to bond with the family and get to know the parents better. In these cases, the birth mother is either unmarried, a single mother, or it’s an unwanted pregnancy, and thus, she chooses to put the baby for adoption.

Process

A couple who is interested in it can always contact the orphanage or the social institutes for the same. Child adoption is a great contribution to the society, and there are certain important steps that are considered to check the eligibility of the parents.

Home and Family Check
The concerned agency will assess the house in which the child will be spending his life. During the process of this step, a social worker observes the surroundings and interacts with the family to ensure that the child grows in a safe environment. If there is anything suspicious about the family, the parents do not become eligible for the same, and the procedure is immediately stopped.

Evaluation
The parents have to undergo certain evaluations to check if they are capable of bringing up a child. Every family is not perfect, but certain issues might reveal that the parents are not capable of raising the child. These measures are important to prevent the children from any future harm or danger.

Training on Parenting
Though the parents are excited about getting a new child at home, they still have to be counseled and trained as they have to nurture him/her all their life. When a child is growing up, he/she will begin to learn many new things and would someday want to know about the biological parents. Therefore, the adoptive parents need to be trained and prepared prior to facing such situations with him/her.

Court Validation
After the parents clear the previous steps, they have to go through the last step of court validation. In this step, the court finalizes the adoption, wherein the biological parents have to agree on giving up the responsibility of their child completely. The child is then placed into the new home under the supervision of a social worker for around 6 months.

The cost involved in this process varies as it depends on various factors. Adopting a child within one’s country might be cheaper than going for the one internationally. In case you consider the former option, then it might cost you around USD 5,000 to USD 40,000, or it might be even more depending on the services provided by these agencies. For the latter alternative, the price may range from USD 7,000 to USD 30,000.

Adoption is a great deed as it gives a chance to children to lead a better and secure life. But, before taking a step towards it, it is essential for the parents to be familiar with all the factors related to it, and consult a lawyer for right guidance.

Ways to Deal Sadness and Loneliness After Your Divorce

Divorce is traumatic, and the broken relationship signals the loss of all your commitments and promises you had made together for your future. You may or may not have wanted it to happen, but the chain of agonizing events it triggers can be hard to deal with. When you got married, you always thought you would spend the rest of your lives together. Never once did you believe that the union would end in a bitter breakup. But life doesn’t always turn out to be a bed of roses. Divorce can be all the more painful when children are involved, for them the absence of a parent from their lives can be very hard. A negative outcome of divorce can be insecurity and the inability to put your faith in the persons you love. This means harboring a twinge of resentment in your heart, and keeps you from opening up to the people who want to help you out in your time of need. This will only plunge you deeper into depression and not help you in getting on with life.

Recovering from a separation depends on your will power and courage. If you think that this is a permanent phase and that you have no way out of it, it won’t help matters. There is no need for you to feel that the happy days of your life are all over. This is just a temporary phase, and it’s solely up to you on how long you want to make it last. The sooner you deal with your problems, the faster things will start taking a turn for the better, and you will be able to start life anew. Here are some guidelines on how to overcome the sadness after your marriage has ended.
Dealing with Sadness and Loneliness After Divorce

Do not mask your feelings. The intense anger and pain built up inside needs to be shown the way out. Cry and scream if you want to. Talk to your friends and family, confide in them. Write a diary if you want. Rid yourself of all the conflicting emotions huddled inside. Get it over with. Negative feelings bottled up inside can be mentally and physically draining.

Getting over a divorce does not happen in a flash. It can be a lengthy process. It’s not wrong to mourn the loss of your spouse. Give yourself time to compose your feelings. Have patience. Forgive yourself and your spouse. Whatever happened is water under the bridge. It’s time to pick up the pieces of your life, plan for the future, and move on.

Surround yourself with the people you love and care for. Do not sever any relationship with your friends and family. Don’t forget you will need all the support you can find to get through this turbulent phase in your life. Do not hesitate to discuss your problems with them. Plan activities with them just as you did when you were happily married. Initially, it will prove tough. But you will realize that a day spent in the company of friends can seem surprisingly wonderful, and you may even realize you did not think about your spouse or the divorce when you were with them!
Get rid of all your spouse’s personal belongings in the house and return them or just discard them. The more you see those things lying around in the house, the sadder you will feel. Rearrange the items in the house. Or even better, move into a new apartment. A change of scene can work wonders to uplift your mood and view life from a different perspective.

Pursue a hobby. Maybe it was something you never had time to do when you were married. Now that you are on your own, take it up again and immerse yourself in it. Or cultivate a hobby which will keep you busy for hours at a stretch. Join a hobby group, and find others who share the same interests as you do. An added benefit, apart from learning a new activity, is you get a chance to meet new folks and make friends!

Go back to work as usual. Spending the day with your coworkers and doing your office work may seem mundane and not appeal as much, but it’s a sure shot way to keep your brain and mind occupied elsewhere, other than the recent breakup. Your marriage has ended, doesn’t mean your job has to end too! Moreover, getting back to a routine you were used to will help in reorganizing your life, bringing back a sense of normalcy.

Join a divorce support group. Meeting people going through the same emotional turmoil will give you a chance to know more ways of overcoming the loneliness. Do not shy away from seeking professional help. Visit a therapist or mental health counselor, if you feel that the depression is taking a toll on your well-being, and pay heed to your family and friends’ suggestions. Remember they want to see you happy and are only trying to help.

A bout of depression sees people either gorging on food all the time, or not eating anything at all. To forget the pain and suffering, people unknowingly resort to substance abuse, excessive smoking and drinking. This can take a toll on your health. Think twice before you seek refuge in any such activity. Take care of yourself. Eat a nutritious, well-balanced diet and keep up with an exercise regimen. Visit your doctor if your health is deteriorating. Pamper yourself. Buy new clothes, visit a spa or a salon, get a new hairstyle, and see the rejuvenating effect it has on your senses!

Try to get a hold of things and plan for your future, your post-divorce life. Before the divorce, perhaps your spouse was in charge of the household finances, but now since you are on your own, you have to pay the bills. Collect all important bank-related documents and get your finances back in order. Financial security is fundamental in getting your life back on track after a divorce.

If you have children, do not neglect them. They may be too young to understand the reason why a parent is missing from their lives, and you have to help them overcome this feeling of anxiety and insecurity. The negative effects of divorce on children may not be as obvious as those in an adult. As a single parent, your responsibilities towards the kids increase twofold. Be open with them, and encourage them to discuss their feelings with you.
Dealing with life after divorce is an arduous task, and how you manage your life and regain your self-esteem is subject to your mindset. Never forget that you can and you should get on with your life, for your own sake as well as for the sake of your loved ones. Structure your life such that you are back to normal again. It will take time, but the sooner you accept the situation and take matters in your hands to amend them, the sooner your life will change for the better.

Find a Pro Bono Divorce Lawyer

The prospect of divorce in itself is a messy affair for those involved. One definitely wants to get it right, as far as the legal aspects are concerned. However, paying for a divorce lawyer is not possible for everyone. Many people lose out on what they are entitled to just because they cannot afford a lawyer who can represent them well in the court of law. The enormity of the legal fees plays a major role for those searching for a lawyer.

Here is where pro bono lawyers come into the picture. A pro bono divorce lawyer is one who fights a divorce case free of cost, or if not, at least at a very nominal charge. Such a lawyer may not specialize in divorce cases, however, he may provide legal services in divorce at no or little cost to individuals or charitable organizations.

Why do Lawyers Work Pro Bono?

Pro bono is the Latin phrase which translates as ‘for the public good’ or ‘in courtesy of the people’. Under the ethical rules of the American Bar Association, every lawyer is recommended to set aside 50 hours of pro bono service every year. Some individual State Bar associations may require its lawyers to put in lesser hours of such kind of service. Besides fulfilling the ethical obligation, pro bono cases enable lawyers to gain experience in fields other than that in which they specialize. For example, a criminal law attorney can act as a pro bono divorce lawyer, which adds to his portfolio, for his own good. However, the urge to act as a pro bono lawyer can also be absolutely out of unselfish interests. Even highly experienced lawyers take up cases for free in the same area that they specialize in, in case they feel that the case is challenging and interesting. Or sometimes, it could be strictly for altruistic inclination of helping financially challenged individuals, or those who have been laid off and are unable to meet the customary legal fees. Some lawyers take up pro bono cases if they feel that taking up specific cases would be for the greater good of the community.

Does this mean that anyone and everyone can avail the services of a pro bono divorce lawyer? The answer to this question is a big NO. One needs to DESERVE a pro bono service to get it. One requires to qualify on the basis of his financial status or some other disability, to be able to avail pro bono legal services. These legalities again depend upon those stipulated by the laws of one’s residing state. The other common criteria that can entitle one for pro bono services is abuse in marriage. Be it physical, verbal, sexual, or even if it concerns one’s children, abuse of any form can help one qualify for having a pro bono lawyer fighting the case. However, one needs to present strong proof of such abuse in these cases.

Ways to Find a Pro Bono Divorce Lawyer

Finding a divorce lawyer who charges less fees can be a difficult task, as most of the lawyers fighting pro bono cases do not advertise themselves. One way to find a pro bono lawyer is to call the general practice attorneys in one’s local county and check if they are taking up pro bono cases. One can also contact the State Bar Association to find if there are pro bono divorce lawyers to take up a case. Certain firms have pro bono lawyers or have an assigned pro bono coordinator to look after such cases. Check with such organizations and legal firms to see if you meet the criteria to qualify for these legal services, for free or at a reduced cost. Ask your friends and family about lawyers who are willing to offer a pro bono service. It is always advisable to look for references of people who know such lawyers, so that you are sure, that despite working for no or lower fees, the pro bono divorce lawyer would handle your case efficiently.

It is very important to have an efficient divorce attorney. Despite all the benefits of having a lawyer fighting your case for free, employing a pro bono lawyer is not completely a rosy picture. There are pitfalls associated with it which one needs to be wary of. Many times, these lawyers do not have enough experience in handling divorce cases, as that may not be their field of expertise. It is best to do your research and talk to a couple such lawyers, if that is possible, before you are sure that you want a particular pro bono lawyer for yourself.

Consult with friends and family or those who can give references regarding the lawyer you are considering. The best help that you could do to yourself is to gather as much information about the laws regarding divorce, as you can. This ensures that you are not absolutely dependent on your divorce lawyer and left in the lurch in case things go wrong or not up to your expectations. Make peace with your past in a smooth and organized way, bereft of the hassles.

Locate the Right Divorce

If all marriages become successful, nobody would ever think of a divorce, and every couple would stay together happily always. But the bitter truth is that it doesn’t happen always. A number of couples, who take oath during marriage rituals to stay together forever, get separated for many reasons. If you are considering of leaving your partner, you should plan in advance. Here are a few tips to assist you finding the correct divorce attorney.

1. Hide from Your Partner

Many married couple mull over quitting their partners at some point. But if you think the relationship can’t be repaired, consulting a divorce lawyer and keeping it secret is a wise decision. We are telling to maintain secrecy not to give your spouse a surprise, rather to stop him from hiding assets. This is so because some partners make their bank accounts empty and hide assets to prevent division and sharing with their spouses.

2. Ask For a Free Consultation

Although many lawyers charge money for an initial consultation, there are attorneys who do it for free. In this initial consultation, you can know him/her well. Ensure he/she listens to your case carefully and give you correct guidance. The success rate of your divorce also depends on choosing the right attorney.

3. Consider Your Kids

If no children are there to bind both the couples into a tie, any renowned attorney can handle your case. But if you have kids, a family law professional must be contacted. They can not only handle the termination of your marriage but also they have experience with child custody concerns. Since many parents go for custody, and the process is hardly ever uncomplicated, a veteran divorce attorney in Orange County on your side can raise your level of confidence. Whether the case requires months or years for resolution, an experienced professional will be best preferred as he/she who is familiar with what you’re undergoing. Most family law lawyers can even do the job of counselling to help children manage with the breakup.

4. Referrals From Friends and Relatives can Help

You might have friends and relatives who have probably gone through this situation. They will almost certainly understand your predicament; you can consult with them regarding their legal experience. Keep in mind that, only because they got a favourable resolution, doesn’t denote their legal professional did an outstanding job. You should always find out how much emotional support he or she provided during the procedure. Because the dissolution of marriage can take several months or even years, emotional support must be taken into account when choosing a divorce lawyer in Orange County.

5. Estimate the Costs

Figuring out the cost for your case is important. Mostly the divorce attorney charges between $300 and $500 per hour. That being said, it is quite common for couples to pay out tens of thousands of dollars for their cases. If you don’t do enough research, you may end up with a heavy hitter who will make a big hole in your pocket.  Hence proper research is required regarding past success rate of the lawyer because you want to get what pay for.