Expertise.com

Best Family Lawyers in Lakeland

Laurels
Laurels

We did the research for you!

Learn more
  • checkboxLicensing
  • checkboxUser Reviews
  • checkboxMystery Shopping Calls

Family Lawyers FAQs

Learn more
Advocate Law Firm, P.A. logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Advocate Law Firm, P.A.

1207 N Galloway Road, Lakeland, FL 33810
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Divorce
  • Child Custody

Business Description

Advocate Law Firm, P.A., handles cases surrounding family issues like legal separation, custody, domestic abuse, and adoption. The team facilitates collaborative meetings to relieve tension between parties, and it advocates for LGBTQ+ rights by providing legal assistance on same-sex divorce. Its other practice areas are estate planning and criminal defense. Founder Melissa Wilson has been representing people for over 20 years and serves as the vice president of the Polk Association For Women Lawyers. Spanish-speaking clients in Lakeland are accommodated.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Darla K. Snead, P.L. logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Darla K. Snead, P.L.

609 Mid-Florida Dr., Lakeland, FL 33813
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Divorce

Business Description

Darla K. Snead, P.L., accommodates the Lakeland area. The office provides legal solutions for a wide range of cases involving family law, from divorce and establishing paternity rights to parenting plans and timesharing and child support and custody. Founder Darla K. Snead brings over 20 years of experience to fight for clients' rights in litigation, arbitration, and mediation proceedings. She is a certified family law mediator and arbitrator by the Florida Supreme Court. She has represented families in over 1,000 mediations and over 100 litigations.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Karie L. Sanoba Attorney at Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Karie L. Sanoba Attorney at Law

114 E Edgewood Dr, Lakeland, FL 33803
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

Karie L. Sanoba Attorney at Law offers legal assistance to clients across Lakeland and the surrounding areas. The firm handles a wide range of family law issues involving child advocacy, support and custody, parenting plans, and visitation agreements to help individuals protect the rights and needs of their children. It also caters to clients needing guidance in enforcing court orders, establishing marital agreements, and navigating divorce procedures. Firm founder Karie L. Sanoba is a former state prosecutor who has been practicing family law for over 25 years.

Law Office of M​i​chael S. Farrell, P.A. logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Law Office of M​i​chael S. Farrell, P.A.

206 Easton Drive, Lakeland, FL 33803
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

The Law Office of M​i​chael S. Farrell, P.A., has been providing legal services to the residents of Lakeland and the surrounding areas for more than 20 years. It represents and counsels clients on various family law matters, including divorce, child custody, visitation, child support, and step-parent or relative adoption. It also handles issues involving dependency and termination of parental rights and domestic and dating violence injunctions for protection. M​i​chael S. Farrell, who founded the firm, serves as a guardian ad litem, advocating for the interests of minor children.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
McNelis Law PA logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

McNelis Law PA

158 E. Summerlin Street, Bartow, FL 33830
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

McNelis Law PA has been serving families and individuals in Lakeland and the surrounding areas for over a decade. It helps navigate family law matters, including property division, child custody and support, divorce, alimony, stepparent adoption, and paternal rights. It also assists with domestic violence petitions and regaining custody of those removed by Florida DCF. McNelis Law PA is owned and operated by Stacey Hendrix McNelis, a former assistant public defender and assistant state attorney who has been in practice since 2001.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Miller Troiano, P.A. logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Miller Troiano, P.A.

2323 S. Florida Ave, Lakeland, FL 33803
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

Miller Troiano, P.A., caters to the legal needs of families in Lakeland. Its team of attorneys leverages over 50 years of collective experience to resolve family disputes related to domestic violence, child custody and visitation, property and debt division, and pre-and post-nuptial agreements. They work with accountants and psychologists to assist clients in reaching settlements through mediation and negotiation. Victor J. Troiano, a partner in the firm, is a circuit civil mediator certified by the Supreme Court.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––
Ricardo Santander PA logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Ricardo Santander PA

206 Easton Drive, Lakeland, FL 33803
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Divorce

Business Description

Ricardo Santander PA is a law firm representing families and individuals throughout Lakeland and the neighboring communities. The firm helps clients navigate their family law issues to help them protect the rights of their loved ones. These issues include divorce, child support, and custody. It also guides them in establishing protective and restraining orders to protect clients and their children from abusive family members. In addition to family law, the firm deals with immigration, probate, criminal, and estate planning matters. Founding attorney Ricardo Santander also serves Spanish-speaking clients.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Steven J. Zucker, P.A. logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Steven J. Zucker, P.A.

5640 South Florida Avenue, Lakeland, FL 33807
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

Steven J. Zucker, P.A., advocates for individuals and families in Lakeland and the surrounding locations. Its founding attorney, Steven Zucker, consults clients regarding complex and sensitive family law issues, such as adoption, divorce, and domestic violence cases. He also provides comprehensive services on matters involving wills and trusts, asset protection, document and contract reviews, and consumer advocacy. His other practice areas include probate, bankruptcy, and personal injury. Zucker offers mediation services involving family, residential, and circuit foreclosures.

The Stohlman Law Firm, LLC logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

The Stohlman Law Firm, LLC

120 E Pine St # 7, Lakeland, FL 33801
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

The Stohlman Law Firm, LLC, is a private legal practice serving the residents of Lakeland and the surrounding areas. It provides legal representation and mediation services for both contested and uncontested dissolution of marriage cases. It handles issues such as property disputes, child custody and support, and alimony. In addition, it assists with orders of protection and no contact orders, domestic injunctions, and adoptions. The firm's founding attorney, Charles T. Stohlman, has been practicing law for more than three decades.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
4.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
––
Trakas Thornhill, PA logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Trakas Thornhill, PA

324 West Highland Drive, Lakeland, FL 33813
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Divorce

Business Description

Trakas Thornhill, PA, is a law firm that caters to clients in the Lakeland metro and the surrounding communities. It advises and counsels individuals who are filing for a divorce and assists them with resolving matters related to family law. These include asset division, child custody and support, and spousal maintenance. The law office also helps clients negotiate a parenting plan that works in their child's best interests. Christine Thornhill, the firm's attorney, has been practicing law for more than 20 years.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Walter Thomas, PA Attorney at Law logo
Visit WebsiteWebsite

Walter Thomas, PA Attorney at Law

230 Doris Dr, Lakeland, FL 33813
Visit WebsiteWebsite
  • Child Custody
  • Adoption
  • Divorce

Business Description

Walter Thomas, PA, Attorney at Law represents clients in family law cases across Lakeland. It handles issues concerning child custody and visitation, contested and uncontested divorce, child support modification and enforcement, and contempt proceedings. Its team also deals with protection orders, relocation, mediation, and separation agreement cases. Firm principal Walter Thomas is a member of the Florida Circuit: 10 and The Florida Bar Association. He also represents clients in criminal defense, civil law, and personal injury matters.

Professionalism:

We hire mystery shoppers to call our providers anonymously and evaluate them. Providers who respond quickly, answer questions thoroughly, and communicate politely score higher.
5.0
Responsiveness
Friendliness
Helpfulness
Detail
Back to Providers

Frequently Asked Questions

What kinds of cases do family lawyers handle?

Family lawyers handle all types of family-related issues, including divorce, child support and spousal support, custody, adoption, paternity and guardianship. Family attorneys can also handle prenuptial and postnuptial agreements and divide marital assets based on the policies outlined in these documents. Domestic violence cases are also within the purview of family law attorneys.

Is family court different from district court?

In most states, family court is a division of the district court rather than a separate court system. Family law judges primarily preside over family disputes, such as divorce and custody hearings. Most states require family law judges to receive special training on how to best address family law matters.

How long do custody cases last in family court?

The duration of custody cases can differ based on the circumstances surrounding the claim. A case in which parents agree to split custody can be quick, while lawsuits in which both parents or guardians are fighting for full custody can take much longer. Most child custody cases last three to 10 days, but this can vary under more challenging circumstances.

Why is there no jury in family court?

There are no juries in family court cases because the concept of innocence or guilt does not apply. While there may be some cases in which additional opinions could be helpful, most cases are based on the letter of the law versus individual circumstances. Some states, including Texas, permit jury trials for family court cases, but this is uncommon.

What are the most common cases in family court?

Family law covers a variety of different cases pertaining to familial relations. The most common cases in family court include:

  • Divorce cases, including settling issues of alimony, property distribution, and child care
  • Child custody and the determination of paternity
  • Domestic violence protection orders
  • Name changes, including modifications due to adoption or personal preference
  • Guardianship, including who will handle the care of a child or adult should current caretakers be unable to do so
  • Adoptions and the termination of parental rights
  • Juvenile matters, including child abuse and neglect, foster placements, and criminal conduct
  • Emancipation, which is the process of declaring a minor as independent from their parents
  • Approval of underage marriages

Do family lawyers handle mediation?

Mediation can be a valuable part of a divorce case, counseling spouses to work through areas of disagreement in a fair, calm, and unbiased manner. Most, but not all, family lawyers handle mediation. Anyone who believes they may need intervention services is encouraged to ask about an attorney’s experience with resolving disputes, to ensure that support is available if necessary.

What is family law?

Family law is an area of legal practice that places a special focus on issues concerning families. Common areas of family law include separation of assets and potential alimony arrangements during a divorce, child custody and child support mediation between estranged or divorced parents, paternity cases, and matters of adoption. Family lawyers not only oversee mediation during disputes over things like child support and custody arrangements, but they also represent parties' interests when family matters are dealt with in court.

What is a custodial parent?

When two parents do not live together with a child, one will be named as the custodial parent. The designated parent—or other guardian if both biological parents are deemed unfit—will have precedence in any legal decisions made concerning the child's life, including education and other matters of the child's welfare. The other parent is referred to as the noncustodial parent.

What is sole custody?

When a child lives with one parent full time after a divorce or a legal separation, that parent has sole custody. This parent will be fully responsible for providing basic necessities for the child's well-being, including food, shelter, and clothing. The alternative is joint custody, in which both parents share physical custody of the child, based on a predetermined legal arrangement.

While they may sound the same, sole custody is not identical to full custody. In full custody, the noncustodial parent may have visitation rights, while in sole custody, they do not. A court would rule that a parent has sole custody rather than full custody when only one parent is deemed fit to act in the best interests of the child.

What is joint custody?

Joint custody is a preset arrangement that occurs after a marriage is dissolved. In joint custody, a child lives with their custodial parent for certain days or weeks and their noncustodial parent for the remainder. The custody arrangement may be decided in a hearing, but if two parents come up with a suitable agreement on their own, the court will likely accept it.

What makes a good family lawyer?

There are a number of characteristics to look for in a good family lawyer. The first is experience. An experienced family law attorney will understand the right steps to take to come to an equitable resolution that reflects the best interests of the family, often without going to court. The ability to communicate and act as an intermediary between parties in a dispute is important, whether it concerns a divorce, custody, paternity, or something else. Family legal disputes can be stressful to manage, especially when mediation and finding a common ground is involved. A good family lawyer is also available as a resource to help their client navigate a difficult situation in a way that won't harm their chances for a positive resolution.

How can a mother lose custody of her child?

A mother could lose custody of her child if she's deemed unfit to provide or take proper care of them. This decision often comes as a result of the mother being unable to provide a safe home or take care of a child's basic needs. It can also come from a mother abusing the child or neglecting them, abusing drugs and alcohol, or frequently being arrested.

In any of these cases, the state can revoke custody from the mother, citing details learned through home visits, interviews, court records, and a variety of other sources as the reasons. In this case, sole custody would be given to the other parent, if he/she is able.

Read all FAQs