What Exactly is Family Law?

Family law is a field that involves so many different aspects, it often is misunderstood. Sometimes its believed to only concern one issue; other times its broadened beyond what it actually means.

What does family law actually include? Most of it concerns things that directly effect families or those living together.


Divorce is easily the most recognizable area of family law. Strictly speaking, it is the legal termination of a marriage. However, it also includes all of the aspects that go into that marriage, including alimony, distribution of assets, and child support and custody.

In fact, these other issues often stretch on longer and take a bigger toll on the divorcing parties than the divorce itself.

Not Just Marriage

Sometimes, two people involved in a separation or custody case aren’t married partners. Cohabitants with shared assets who split, for instance; often need guidance on how to separate their assets when they go their separate ways.

Non-married parents also often need guidance when it comes to determining child custody, support, and visitation when they are not able to come to an agreement.

Additional Issues

In addition to these separations, there are also family law cases that are just as important: adoptions, grandparents’ visitation rights, and pre-nuptial agreements, for instance.

Because family law incorporates so many different parts that are extremely big parts of someone’s life, there are multiple areas of knowledge family lawyers have, from an understanding of financial planning and handling estates to how family issues effect their client’s well-being.

If you are looking for a family lawyer, it’s best to choose one who has experience in all of these areas, because a working, well-rounded knowledge of many possible situations will give your lawyer unique insight.

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