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Questions Answered by Kristen Thurmond

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce for Missouri on

Q: If I get a divorce and my spouse and I own a business together, what happens? Even if I am only 30% owner and he was

sole owner prior to marriage? It is my only income and has been for many years? What do I do? Would it be fair to request alimony in MO?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Jan 9, 2019

When spouses own a business, one of two things happens once a business evaluation is done: one spouse buys out the other spouse or the business is dissolved and each spouse paid their portion. Maintenance (formerly known as alimony) may be an option but depends on the assets of the parties and... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Missouri on

Q: My ex has sole custody of our kids. I'm paying CS but found out the kids don't live w/ him now? Options?

I have a set of twins that will be 18 in June. My ex has had custody since they were 6. I've been paying CS but recently found our that one of them is living w/ his ex-wife and he is paying her $100 month in CS for our daughter. The other is living w/ her boyfriends mom (BF is at school) and is... Read more »

Kristen Thurmond answered on Jan 8, 2019

If you're struggling to hire an attorney try to find an attorney that may be able to help you on a limited scope basis, such as preparing paperwork to file. With the children turning 18 in June, the options are different than children about to turn 8. At the very least talk with an attorney who... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Family Law for Missouri on

Q: Can my fiance adopt my five year old daughter?

Father has been proven by DNA testing but is not on birth certificate. He hasn't been in her life at all. There is no parenting plan or custody agreement between me and her father.

Kristen Thurmond answered on Jan 2, 2019

Talk to an attorney about step-parent adoptions. There are lots of procedural hurdles and hoops, so having an attorney is going to be the easiest way to accomplish an adoption.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Missouri on

Q: Father willingly wanting to terminate rights?

The father of my child is wanting to terminate his rights and I’m not entirely sure how this would happen. He abused me, he sells drugs and is very unstable. He doesn’t even have a place to live. Im just wondering, how would we, he and I, go about doing it?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Jan 2, 2019

Contact an attorney to help you or look at the self representation forms on the Missouri courts website. A father cannot terminate his rights unless another individual is going to step in to take his place. He can agree to no custody and you can agree to no child support. However, it is in your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Missouri on

Q: Ex-wife, primary care parent, asked me to keep son "for a few months" while she goes to rehab. Grounds for full custody?

I live in Missouri. I'm active duty Air Force. Divorced June 30, 2017. She lives in Murfreesboro. Sporadic employment and now admits to multiple recreational drug use. I want to flip our custody agreement which is $523/mo and 63 days per year. I want him to live with me and not pay child support at... Read more »

Kristen Thurmond answered on Jan 2, 2019

You need to get an attorney immediately. The sooner you file, the sooner your child support obligations will stop or be retroactively stopped and the sooner you can get a new custody arrangement ordered by the court. Drug use is a very serious problem that judges will consider greatly when... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Missouri on

Q: Can someone file for Guardianship in a different county than where the original custody order was ordered in MO?

My child's father was granted full custody 10 years ago. He has since given her to a third party to raise. I filed a motion to modify for custody and the third party turned around and filed a guardianship case in a totally different county. So there is a pending motion to modify in the original... Read more »

Kristen Thurmond answered on Jan 2, 2019

Yes, someone can file a new case in the county where all the individuals, including the children, reside. It does not necessarily mean they will prevail, though. The issue of can the county take up a guardianship case when there's a pending motion to modify is an issue for the court to determine.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Missouri on

Q: There is a dog in an abandoned house. Can I bring it food and water until animal control gets a warrant?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Dec 17, 2018

While this answer is a bit late, I still wanted to respond so if anyone else has a similar question they can find an answer.

Your best bet is to call an animal welfare group or animal control before entering property that is not yours, even if you believe it to be abandoned. You could be...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody for Missouri on

Q: My sons mother and teacher are withholding educational information from me regarding my son, i have full rights to.

Among dozens of other noncompliant issues my sons mother does against our court ordered parenting plan. She has texted that the teacher and herself are withholding important educational information about my son. The parenting plan states I get all information that she does. What can we do about... Read more »

Kristen Thurmond answered on Dec 17, 2018

One solution to the school issue is to call the school and ask about how to receive information directly from them as a parent who lives out of town. Most schools have online portals to view grades, correspondence, attendance, etc. At the very least, make sure you're receiving letters, notices,... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Missouri on

Q: What form to file if custodial parent leaves the state without notifying co-parent with no child care arrangements made?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Nov 30, 2018

This is going to depend on whether or not you have a court ordered parenting plan. If you do, immediately to file a motion to modify the judgment or prevent relocation of the child. If you do not, you need to file a petition to establish such a parenting plan. You will want an attorney to help you.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Missouri on

Q: We found a stray dog that was skin and bones. Posted it online, etc. Took to vet had scanned and all. It's been 2 weeks.

Got him fixed and chipped. Now a person claims he is hers. We live in small town and she never posted a thing til now. Do we have to return?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Nov 6, 2018

This is not really addressed well in the law and there is not a definitive answer for you. However, please consider that not everyone actively uses social media, the dog may have been stolen and released, or the person may have looked for the dog and given up hope. I have met numerous people who... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Traffic Tickets for Missouri on

Q: I am looking for Missouri State laws or documents that state jurisdiction of officers for counties.

I was followed by an officer from another county and just before the county line I was pulled over and given a ticket just want to know the legality and what I can show the court that the officer was in the wrong.

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 31, 2018

This is going to be very fact and location dependent. You will want to talk with local counsel who knows the local laws and rules to best understand the situation you experienced.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Missouri on

Q: Do all child molestation charges get you life in prison? Even if one isolated event and no priors?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 31, 2018

The criminal code indicates a range of punishment for different classes of misdemeanors and felonies. In order to figure out the maximum and minimum jail time or penalties, you will need to look at the criminal code or talk to an attorney who can look into it for you based on what you are being... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Missouri on

Q: My kids found a dog that has had no food or water in days he's all skin and bones and he has sores all over him

We tried to make contact with the owner but there is never anyone there night or day are we allowed to legally take him

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 31, 2018

This is a late response, but the answer is that only police or animal control can take the dog. They are granted authority by the city, county, or state to do so. You should report severely malnourished or emaciated pets any time you see them.

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Missouri on

Q: Can my neighbor trap and poison my cat?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 31, 2018

This would be considered abuse by almost any city ordinance more than likely and it probably violates a state statute, as well. If it happens or you see the trap out with poison, contact local police or animal control to make a report.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support, Divorce and Family Law for Missouri on

Q: Denied access to children for six months, do I need to pay child support for missed time? (In Missouri)

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 31, 2018

If child support was ordered during the time you were denied access, then you must pay child support. Child support and parenting time are dealt with separately by courts. The reason why you were denied time may impact future time with your children. You need to find a local attorney to help you,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Missouri on

Q: Does a paying parent (father) in Missouri have a duty to inform the state, court or the other party of a pay increase?

There have been many changes since the 2nd time my ex filed for a modification, two of the four children are of age now, one of the remaining is in college at my expense so far. My main question, however, is to find out if i had any duty to report changes in my income to anyone. She has filed once... Read more »

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 15, 2018

Without scouring through the statutes, there is nothing I can quickly recall that requires a parent to inform the other of increases in pay. However, in practice, there does seem to be an implied obligation based on the statutes that both parents should report changes in income in regards to child... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Missouri on

Q: Can I leave Missouri after having my child here without being married but father on birth certificate?

If I live in Missouri, unmarried, and I am planning on having my child here in the next month. Can i move states after I have said child if father is on birth certificate?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Oct 15, 2018

Based on what you have stated, it seems like you have no obligation to stay in your current state. However, attempting to prevent the father from having a relationship with his child can cause problems for you. Once the child is born, father has every right file a paternity action to establish... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Missouri on

Q: Hi, me and my boyfriend have had a dog for a year now and are being forced to rehome her in a few days. It that legal?

Our dog has done property damage to,our apartment which we agreed to pay for. She's not a viscouis dog at all. She's loving, sweet, and great with kids. We dont want,to give her up.

Kristen Thurmond answered on Sep 25, 2018

This is going to be dependent on what is in your lease. You will need to talk with a local attorney who does landlord and tenant disputes.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for Missouri on

Q: How can you pay child support when it hasn't been ordered yet so as to keep it from accumulating and can it accumulate?

There's been child custody papers served 3 months ago but still no court date, can the child support accumulate? How does the judge decide on an amount for the support?

Kristen Thurmond answered on Sep 24, 2018

Without knowing your specific situation, in most cases child support can accumulate when an order is pending. This is what the legal system refers to as retroactive child support. If you want to pay support in the interim to reduce the amount of arrears that will accrue from the retroactive... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Animal / Dog Law for Missouri on

Q: Friend gave me a pup from her dogs litter and now wants him back and is claiming I Stole the pup. What do I do?

My friends dog wouldn't nurse the pups so I got permission to take the pup as long as I bottle fed him. She is neglecting the other pups and said I have to give the pup back if I dont feed the others too. I said it wasnt my responsibility to feed the other pups and now she claims I stole my puppy.... Read more »

Kristen Thurmond answered on Sep 21, 2018

If you feel there is abuse or neglect, please call animal control to investigate. For the remainder of your question, that is going to be very fact specific based on what you and your friend have said to each other and what agreement you had. You would need to schedule a consultation with an... Read more »

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