The Legalities of Step-Parent Adoptions

Step-Parent AdoptionsLife after divorce can be difficult, especially if children who are minors are involved. And in cases with stepparents, the legal reality can be a bit tricky. While many people may assume that a stepparent would obtain parental rights simply by marriage to the child’s parent, it is not always the case. A court is unlikely to grant that parent any rights over the child unless the stepparent has petitioned for parental rights.


It’s always best to consult with family law attorneys in Hernando County, Florida, if you want advice about your particular situation, but here are a couple of points to think about.


Stepparent Adoption


It is best to review your situation with family law attorneys, as the process of adopting a stepchild can have several complexities that may arise throughout the proceedings.


Eligibility – Under Florida law, the stepparent’s spouse, who must be the parent of the child to be adopted, has to consent to the adoption. If not, then the court may find that it would be in the child’s best interests, or there may be other extenuating circumstances.


Petition – Family law attorneys will advise that next, a petition must be filed with all of the required information and documents. Petitioners seeking stepparent adoption must either obtain consent from the other parent or terminate that parent’s parental rights before being able to adopt a stepchild.


Notice – The petitioners must then provide notice to the other spouse, or any other interested parties. If the other parent consents to waive parental rights, then the process will be significantly expedited. If not, the court will determine whether the stepparent will be allowed to adopt the child.

How to Make an Interstate Custody Arrangement Work

Custody ArrangementGoing through an inter-state divorce is always hard, and when a child is involved, it only compounds the hardship. At the Law Office of James R Jones Jr, P.A., you will work with a compassionate custody lawyer in Hernando County, FL, that acts in your best interest. Of course, there are certain criteria that have to be met before a court can make any decision regarding custody.


According to the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, which is recognized in every state except Massachusetts and Vermont, one of three conditions must be met before a court can alter an existing custody decision:

  • The Court Is in the Child’s Home State
  • The Court Is in a State in which the Child Has Ties to Living Individuals
  • The Court Is in a State in which the Child Is Residing for Safety


If you are unsure whether your situation meets any of these descriptions, reach out to custody lawyer James R Jones Jr. There is no better advocate to have in your corner, especially when it comes to something as important as your child’s custody. Let Mr. Jones guide you to the best possible outcome for your custody situation, whether it’s here in Florida or between states.

How Common are False Allegations of Domestic Violence?

False Allegations of Domestic ViolenceFalse Allegations of Domestic Violence Are More Common than You May Think.


Domestic violence is a horrible crime that happens with disturbing frequency in the U.S. and worldwide. While the majority of these cases come to light thanks to victims who are brave enough to speak the truth, others are less factual. In fact, roughly 1.5 million temporary restraining orders are issued in the U.S. every year that are either trivial or false.


If you have been accused of domestic violence that you didn’t commit, that doesn’t mean that you’re safe. Be sure to get in touch with a domestic abuse lawyer who understands the law and how to keep you protected. You’ll also want to get to work immediately collecting any evidence available that proves your innocence. Along with evidence, gathering key witnesses who can testify to your character is of utmost importance. Better, yet, try to find individuals who were present for a certain event or exchange between you and your accuser.


The Law Office of James R Jones Jr, P.A. helps walk you through this trying process, providing you with a domestic abuse lawyer who is backed by decades of experience. Give our firm a call if you ever find yourself on the receiving end of false allegations; you’ll be glad you did.

Domestic Violence Affects the Entire Family

Domestic ViolenceRegardless of what that old saying tells us to believe, you never hurt the one you love.


There’s no excuse for violence because it is not an answer or a solution. It just becomes another part of the problem and causes it to grow rather than recede.


The team at the Law Office of James R Jones Jr, P.A., has seen the effects of domestic violence on the clients they support and want to provide this information to highlight how domestic violence affects the entire family and what solutions are available.


While women are most often the target of domestic violence, they are not the only victims who can benefit by seeking a domestic abuse lawyer in Hernando County, FL. Men are abused, and so are children. Regardless of who the target is, the effects are felt throughout the entire family unit. The abused person is hurt physically, mentally, and emotionally, while other members are touched by the fallout as well.


It’s not possible to see one family member hurting another and not be hurt yourself. Imagine the scenario of one parent striking another in front of a child and the damage that’s doing. A person doesn’t have to be hit to be hurt.


If you find yourself in a situation that you need to get out of, remember that a domestic abuse lawyer in Hernando County, FL, is ready to help you today to take strides toward a better tomorrow.

What to Do If You Suspect Child Abuse or Neglect

Child Abuse or NeglectChild abuse and neglect are frightfully common — and typically close to home. Nobody wants to think the worst of their family or the people they interact with frequently. However, if you have reason to believe a child is being abused or neglected, family law in Pasco County, FL, says you have a legal responsibility to report it. It’s important to notify the authorities about your suspicions so the situation can be investigated by the appropriate professionals.

Fortunately, reporting your concerns is simple. You can call 1-800-962-2873 any time of day or night to make a report. Those who prefer to report online can visit the Florida Department of Children and Families’ online portal. Anonymous reports are permitted, except in the case of professionally mandated reporters.

Be sure to have basic information available so your allegations can be investigated quickly. It’s okay if you don’t know everything, but the more details you can provide, the better. The staff member will ask you for the following:

  • Victim’s Name
  • Alleged Perpetrator’s Name
  • Subjects’ Address and Phone Number
  • Subjects’ Date of Birth
  • Subjects’ Social Security Number
  • Brief Description of Your Allegations

For the safety of the child, it’s important to report suspected cases of abuse or neglect as soon as possible. In fact, Florida law requires that you report it or you may face legal and financial penalties. Don’t hesitate: your actions may save a life.

Personal Injury: Medical Malpractice

personal injury lawyer hernando county flIf you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a medical mistake, it is important to seek the legal guidance of The Law Office of James R. Jones Jr., P.A., to help you receive just compensation for your pain and suffering. Medical malpractice consists of medical providers, licensed doctors and nurses, hospitals, and healthcare facilities failing to treat patients by offering competent care. When proper policies and procedures are not followed in diagnosing, prescribing, or treating a client, and a patient is injured or damaged as a result, you could receive just compensation regarding your case. Below we help educate our clients by providing examples of medical malpractices.

  • Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnosis
  • Surgical errors during an operation
  • Birth-related injuries
  • Failure to follow proper policies and procedures
  • Using defective medical devices
  • Nursing home neglect or abuse
  • Pharmacy and medication errors
  • Delayed treatments
  • Failure to properly monitor a patient effectively
  • Healthcare and hospital errors
  • Negligent abandonment of a patient
  • Emergency room malpractice

If you are interested in speaking to our great personal injury lawyer in Hernando County, FL, we encourage you to contact our firm today at (352) 683-0234 to request a consultation. We proudly serve clients in Spring Hill, Florida, and the surrounding areas.

Benefits of Estate Planning

estate planning lawyer hernando county flAt The Law Office of James R. Jones Jr., P.A., we strive to help our clients plan for their future by offering comprehensive estate planning services. Although estate planning can be an uncomfortable thing to think about, it is important to help ensure your assets are secure to help protect you and your loved ones. Below we list the many benefits of estate planning.

  • Ensures your property is passed on to your loved ones with ease.
  • Helps your family avoid legal hassles during property and asset transferal.
  • Minimizes taxes when passing the property.
  • Avoids costs associated with the probate process.
  • Determines any specific medical care after incapacitation.
  • Dictates funeral arrangement preferences and expenses.
  • Names an inheritance manager for minor children.
  • Easily transfers a business after retirement, disability, or death.

Estate planning and trusts involve many different legal blueprints that protect your assets, money, and property, which is why it is important to seek our skilled attorney to help you navigate through the process. Our estate planning lawyer in Hernando County, FL, can help you with following estate planning documents: wills, revocable living trust, powers of attorney, advanced healthcare directives, and HIPAA releases. Contact us today at (352) 683-0234 to request a consultation and great legal guidance.



Tips for Discussing a Prenuptial Agreement with Your Partner

family lawyer hernando county flAt The Law Office of James R. Jones, JR., P.A., we understand that discussing a prenuptial agreement with your future spouse can be a difficult topic to navigate. While prenuptial agreements offer substantial benefits to many couples, many people are dismayed by the idea. Below we offer helpful tips to follow to help you prepare for a conversation regarding prenuptial agreements.

  • Prenuptial agreements are best discussed early in your relationship to let your partner know how you feel from the start. If you wait soon before your marriage to bring up the idea of a prenuptial agreement your partner could feel overly pressured or have feelings of distrust.
  • We recommend discussing your prenuptial agreement with your future spouse before you have an agreement drafted by our family lawyer in Hernando County, FL. Talking about your concerns and thoughts with your partner will allow them to have time to consider the agreement and understand how you feel.
  • It is best to know what you wish to achieve with a prenuptial agreement before you discuss the idea with your partner. From separating your inheritance to assigning assets to your children, a prenuptial can be a positive thing for your future.
  • Prenuptial agreements can be a sensitive and intimidating topic. It is vital to allow your future spouse to share their concerns and allow open communication.

If you have any questions regarding your prenuptial agreement, contact our law firm today at (352) 683-0234 to schedule a free consultation.

Reasons a Prenuptial Agreement Could Be Invalid

family law pasco county flPrenuptial agreements are used for couples who wish to establish financial properties and rights with their spouse before they get married in the unfortunate event of a divorce. At The Law Office of James R. Jones, JR., P.A., we believe prenuptial agreements can be a great tool in setting up ones rights and obligations. If you feel a prenuptial agreement is right for your relationship, it is important to look to our legal guidance to ensure your document is valid. Below we discuss reasons why a prenuptial could be considered invalid.

  • A prenuptial agreement must be in writing for it to be valid in court.
  • Both parties must sign the agreement before the wedding for it to be considered valid.
  • A prenuptial agreement may be considered unenforceable if one spouse did not read the agreement in its entirety. In addition, if a spouse is pressured to sign a prenuptial, this could cause your agreement to be invalid.
  • There must be time for consideration when signing a prenuptial agreement. For example, a spouse cannot surprise their partner with an agreement on the day of the wedding. This would most likely result in your agreement being

There are many other reasons that could constitute your prenuptial agreement to be unenforceable. Look to our family law in Pasco County, FL if you have any questions regarding your agreement. Contact us today at (352) 683-0234 to schedule a free consultation.

Reasons to Consider a Prenuptial Agreement

family law hernando county flAt The Law Office of James R. Jones, JR., P.A., we strive to provide legal assistance you can trust. While every marriage is unique, we often see prenuptial agreements used for second marriages or blended families. Our family law in Hernando County, FL can help couples create a prenuptial agreement that outlines each party’s pre-relationship interests and properties. In the case of a prenuptial agreement, our attorney will help you navigate through the process of assigning assets, debt allocations, alimony rights, and more. We encourage our clients to consider options that they think are right for their relationship. Below we discuss common reasons why many couples consider a prenuptial agreement.

  • One of the main reasons for a prenuptial agreement is determining financial obligations in the event of a divorce. In the case of a divorce, couples would typically divide their assets based on laws of the state. A prenuptial agreement would counteract the state laws, allowing the couple to follow the terms of the agreement instead.
  • The negotiation of a prenuptial allows couples to discuss finances up front, allowing your relationship to be open and transparent. A prenuptial agreement outlines each partner’s rights and obligations.

Contact our law firm today at (352) 683-0234 to learn more about our legal services.