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2020 Divorce Statistics and the Impact of COVID-19

With the worldwide pandemic of COVID-19 still plaguing much of the world, divorce rates have skyrocketed in 2020. According to the National Law Review, as many as 20% of all couples who have been married for less than five months sought out a divorce during the early months of the pandemic. More startling, divorce rates went up by as much as 34% by April 2020. But what is really behind this trend, and what does it mean for those looking to get divorced during a health crisis? After years of counseling divorcing couples, the Sejour-Gustave Law Firm, PLLC is poised...

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Pros and Pitfalls of a Ladybird Estate

The Ladybird Estate got its delightful name after the late wife of President Lyndon B. Johnson, Ladybird Johnson. Her real name was Claudia Alta, and her late husband’s bequest of their homestead set the stage for the nickname of an estate planning document also dubbed the “Life Estate.” But what exactly is a life estate, and should you be using one to avoid probate?  What is a Life Estate? Whenever someone deeds a property to another, they can do so in several ways. First, they can opt to grant the receiver everything - the whole package, so to speak. This is what...

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Do I Need to Probate an Estate in Florida?

One of the simplest, yet most common questions estate planning lawyers get is, “Will I need to probate my estate?” The answer is relatively simple, yet complicated at the same time. At Sejour-Gustave Law Firm, PLLC, we are a faith-based law firm, guided by principles of law and heartfelt devotion to Christ. As such, we see one’s final wishes in a different way than many attorneys. We understand that there is often far more to one’s final estate than dollars and cents. Sometimes, matters of conscience are just as important. So, when deciding whether a probate estate will be needed,...

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How Do Florida Courts Determine Custody?

Florida courts, like most state courts in the country, look to the “best interests of the children” when determining issues of custody. Florida no longer considers it custody. Rather, it is discussed as shared parenting time and responsibilities. There are several key reasons for changing the language of custody in recent years, but the key takeaway should be that courts no longer view custody as an “all or nothing” proposition. It is not a matter of “who gets the kids,” but rather how much time each parent will have and what duties and rights each parent will have. In reaching...

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Saving the Florida Small Business During COVID-19

Since March 2020, COVID-19 has kept much of America on lock-down. With ups and downs along the way, small family-owned businesses have struggled to stay open, while complying with rapidly evolving rules and local mandates. Florida has been a hotspot at times, with higher than normal infection rates, leading to a lot of concerns about extended harm to businesses and the likelihood of the shutdown lasting indefinitely. At The Sejour-Gustave Law Firm PLLC, our attorneys remain devoted to protecting and preserving small businesses in our region, even in these difficult times. Planning for Business Succession Succession planning is always a concern for...

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Can I Afford a Divorce as the Victim of Domestic Violence?

Perhaps the most devastating part of domestic violence for so many victims is that leaving seems impossible. Whether it is the psychological toll that domestic violence can take on its victims or the high financial cost of freedom, many victims do not feel they have the resources or power to fight back and get free from the abusive partner. The truth is that most people are able to break the cycle effectively once they get legal assistance from a professional. So, how does one afford a divorce when going through domestic violence? Step One. Acknowledge the Power of a Protective Order...

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How MacKenzie Scott Became the Richest Woman in the World by Divorcing Jeff Bezos

The headlines are outrageous and filled with scandal. A woman has become incredibly wealthy simply by getting divorced. If one were to read the headlines, they may get the impression that this woman has somehow fallen into luck and capitalized on her husband’s success. So, just how exactly did MacKenzie Scott manage to receive such a significant financial windfall in her divorce, and what lessons should every divorcing woman and man learn from this story? The Real Scoop Most news stories focus on the $68 Billion fortune that she now possesses, but long before there was a fortune, and long before the...

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Moving for a New Spouse’s Job After a Divorce

So, you are divorced and have children by your ex-spouse; however, you have recently begun dating someone or re-married, and that new partner has an incredible job opportunity across the country in another state. What do you do? You know the new opportunity could change life for you and your children forever, but it would mean the kids not seeing your ex nearly as much. Can you up and move? If you move without permission, what is the harm? How do you convince your ex it is the right thing for the kids? These are among some of the more common...

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Five Common Challenges in Adoptions

For those seeking to adopt a child, there are three primary ways it can be done. Each has its pros and cons. First, there is a traditional adoption. This is where an adoptive parent or parents contact an agency or find a private individual seeking to place a child for adoption, and the parties reach an agreement. Second, there are international adoptions. Finally, there are foster adoptions. Each has a unique set of challenges. However, in all situations, there are a few common challenges that potential adoptive parents should understand before making the commitment to bring a new child into...

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Estate Planning Basics for the Family Owned Business

Few things in life can bring more joy and satisfaction than owning a business. It can provide flexibility, autonomy, and a great income for generations. Successful family-owned businesses often are handed down to children and grandchildren, creating legacies as well as wealth. But business owners face more complex questions when preparing their final affairs. Unlike most Americans, small business owners have added concerns about who will take over the business, how the business will be run after they are gone, and what would happen to the business if they became incapacitated in some way. These and more are issues that...

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