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Child support paid by third party does not equal child neglect; Proposed Judgments prepared by counsel should not be signed verbatim.

The Constitution protects the fundamental right of a parent to custody of their child even though child’s best interests are the goal of statutes governing adoption.  An action for adoption without parental consent terminates, without a separate a… Read More

Marijuana use not grounds for termination of parental rights

Recent Case: Marijuana use under the level of chemical dependency not grounds for termination of parental rights Father appeals from the judgment terminating his parental rights. Grounds for termination of parental rights require clear and convincing… Read More

Domestic Partnership does not constitute marriage for termination of spousal support (aka alimony)

Recent case: Missouri law states that remarriage terminates spousal support unless expressly agreed or ordered otherwise. Domestic partnership does not qualify for this purpose. Ex-Husband appeals the circuit court’s judgment denying his motion to… Read More

Modified Child Support retroactive to personal service of the Motion

Recent Case:  Retroactive support can only go back to the date of service of the Motion, 20% change in child support amount is grounds for modification, child support can continue if child incapacitated. Father appeals the judgment and decree of mod… Read More

Unequal Division of Marital Property Appropriate in Some Circumstances

In a Missouri Divorce, the Court must divide all of the property and debt acquired during the marriage.  The property does not necessarily need to be divided equally, but it must be divided equitably (fairly).  In determining this, the Court must c… Read More

When Attorney Fees Can Be Awarded in Divorce/Family Litigation

While Missouri courts normally follow the “American Rule” regarding legal fees – that each party is responsible for his or her own costs – Missouri dissolution of Marriage statutes give the court the discretion to order one pa… Read More

Missouri no fault divorce - what it does and does not mean

Similar to other states, Missouri is a modified no-fault divorce state. However, there is some misconception out there about what this actually means for divorcing parties in Missouri. Modified no-fault divorce means that a party does not h… Read More

Grossly disproportionate division of property and debts in a divorce proceeding reversed

In a recent ruling by the Missouri Court of Appeals for the Southern District, a division of property and debt where the Wife received 93% of the assets and 27% of the debts, and the Husband received 7% of the assets and 73% of the debt was reversed… Read More

If you pay child support per a Missouri judicial or administrative order and your income is reduced or lost - A Motion to Modify is required.

In today’s turbulent economic climate, where job losses or reductions in income are frequent, it is critical to immediately deal with a child support order upon any significant change in income. Failure to act quickly can lead to an even g… Read More

This Week in Missouri Family law

Pension Was Marital And Non-Marital Property Pension is a hybrid of marital and non-marital property; the former to the extent that it represents deferred payment of wages earned during the marriage, and the latter to the extent that it represents co… Read More

Mark A. Wortman

Mark A. Wortman's Profile Image
Kansas City family law attorney Mark A. Wortman handles only divorce and family law matters, and practices only in the State of Missouri. Due to this specialty, Mark has handled thousands of Missouri divorce and family cases and has practiced extensi… Read More