Jensen & Leiberan is one of only four law firms in the state of Oregon listed in the family law section of Martindale-Hubbell's Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers every year from 2008 to 2015.
The attorneys at Jensen & Leiberan are committed to working hard and to zealously advocating for our clients. Although we often work amicably with other attorneys and individuals in order to negotiate fair and equitable settlements for our clients, we are experienced in representing clients in highly contested cases and in taking cases to trial. We will take the time to listen to your concerns, to answer your questions, and to gather the information that is necessary in order to make sure that your rights are protected.
Our family law attorneys represent clients in relation to all types of family law matters:
- Divorce (dissolution of marriage): A proceeding to end a marriage. The Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage contains provisions dividing marital property and marital debts, establishing custody and a parenting time plan for joint children, ordering child support for joint children, and ordering spousal support when appropriate.
- Child support & spousal support (alimony): In Oregon, child support is calculated pursuant to each state's child support guidelines. There are no guidelines or calculators for spousal support. The amount of spousal support awarded in each case depends on the length of marriage, income of each party, financial needs of each party and on other factors. We represent clients with support claims and clients seeking to contest or modify an order of child or spousal support.
- Child custody & parenting time (visitation): Under Oregon law, the parent who has custody is the parent who makes major decisions for the children, including decisions relating to education, religion and health care. Although parents can agree on joint custody, one of the parents will be awarded sole custody if the parties do not agree on joint custody. Which parent is the primary parent and what is in the best interests of the parties' children are two important factors that the court will consider when making a decision regarding which parent should have custody and what the parenting time schedule should be in each case. Contested custody and parenting time cases can be lengthy, stressful and complicated. We zealously advocate for our clients in initial custody and parenting time proceedings and in subsequent modifications of custody and parenting time judgments.
- Grandparent, stepparent and other non-parent custody and visitation rights: When there are concerns that parents are unfit, we assert custody claims on behalf of grandparents, stepparents and other non-parents who have a parent-child (psychological parent) relationship with the children. We seek visitation rights for relatives or other third parties who have an ongoing relationship with the children when the parents have blocked those persons from all contact with the child. We also defend the constitutional right of parents to the custody of their own children against unjustified claims of third parties and represent parents who oppose relatives or other third-parties from having contact with their children when the parents do not believe that this contact is in their children's best interests.
- Dissolution of same sex registered domestic partnerships: Even though the U.S. Supreme Court has now recognized the right of all couples to marry, Oregon still has a statute that allows couples to enter into a registered domestic partnership and there are still many same-sex couples in Oregon who are living in registered domestic partnerships. The decision of the U.S. Supreme Court does not dissolve these registered domestic partnerships or automatically convert them to marriages. Therefore, at least until the Oregon legislature changes the law, those who have entered into registered domestic partnerships have unique legal issues. Couples who have registered as domestic partners in Oregon have the same rights and responsibilities that married persons have under existing state laws in Oregon, but they do not have the same rights as married persons under federal law. Although the procedure for dissolving a registered domestic partnership is similar to the procedure for dissolving a marriage, couples seeking the dissolution of a registered domestic partnership may need specialized advice in dealing with the unique tax, property division, and parenting issues that may arise as a result of the dissolution of a registered domestic partnership. Our family law attorneys have experience dealing with the unique issues and complications that LGBT individuals may encounter when dissolving a registered domestic partnership.
- Domestic violence: If you are the victim of domestic violence, or if you need forceful and effective representation against an accusation of domestic violence, please contact us immediately. We represent clients seeking Family Abuse Prevention Act restraining orders (FAPA) and defend clients against FAPA restraining orders when they are not justified.
- Stalking orders: We work with individuals seeking stalking orders and represent individuals against whom a stalking order is sought.
- Unmarried cohabitation: The legal rights and obligations are not clearly defined for persons who live together but have not entered into a contract defining their rights and responsibilities, are not married, or have not entered into a "registered domestic partnership." When such relationships are terminated, the property rights of such couples are controlled by case law, and how property will be divided greatly depends on the intent of the parties and on the specific facts of the case. We have experience handling all aspects of cases involving property division between individuals who never married and who are not registered domestic partners.
- Legal planning for unmarried individuals who live together: We provide legal advice to unmarried individuals and have experience preparing cohabitation agreements, wills and trusts, documents for an adoption, advance directives, power of attorneys, and other documents to help clarify the wishes and protect the rights of unmarried individuals.
- Division of property (assets and debts): Who gets the car, the house, the retirement accounts, the bank accounts, and the credit card bills? Our legal team works to make certain there is a fair and equitable distribution of assets and debts. We also work with individuals with separate assets and those with business or corporate interests to assure that our client's rights are protected.
- High asset divorce: We handle complex property division and support issues involving cases where the parties have a large amount of assets. We are experienced in handling these high-assets divorces and in assisting our clients in obtaining a fair and equitable division of business interests, real property, investments, assets received from inheritances and other valuable items.
- Modifications: As your life changes and your children grow up, your child custody and parenting time arrangements may need to change. After an initial custody or divorce proceeding, it is not unusual for parents to move or for children's needs and schedules to change. What may have been in your children's best interests at the time of the initial judgment may not work for your children at a later time. We will evaluate your entire situation and explain the risks and benefits of seeking a modification of custody and/or the parenting time schedule. If you decide to seek a modification we will vigorously represent you to achieve your goals.
- Post-divorce modification of support: When there has been a significant change in a parenting time plan, in certain reoccurring expenses for the children, or in the health or income of either party, it may be necessary and possible to modify child support and/or spousal support upwards or downwards.
- Temporary orders for custody, parenting time and support: Several items may need to be addressed during a divorce, dissolution of domestic partnership or custody proceedings. We can help you obtain temporary orders or judgments for child custody, parenting time, child support and spousal support that will remain in place until a final judgment is entered in your case. Depending on the facts of your case, you may even be able to obtain a judgment requiring the other party to contribute to your attorney fees during the pendency of your case.
- Legal separation: Whether for religious reasons, for financial reasons, or because a couple can no longer live together but are not ready to divorce, legal separation offers a viable option for some individuals. Our attorneys can provide you with legal advice about the possible benefits, potential risks and financial consequences of a legal separation. If you decide that you would like to obtain a legal separation or if you need assistance in converting a legal separation into a divorce, the attorneys at Jensen & Leiberan can provide you with legal advice and representation to make sure that your legal rights are protected.
- Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements: Regardless of an individual's financial situation, a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement can provide piece of mind and a formalized outline of how assets and debts will be divided if a marriage is dissolved. Individuals who have a significant amount of real property or other assets, who are beneficiaries of a large inheritance or trust, who have children from a previous relationship or who own an interest in a business are all individuals who should seriously consider entering into a prenuptial agreement prior to marriage. Our experienced attorneys can prepare a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement and can advise you on what steps should be taken to make sure that the agreement is valid. The attorneys at Jensen & Leiberan have experience drafting and reviewing prenuptial agreements to meet with special needs of our clients.
- Adoption: We have experience handling various types of adoptions, including step-parent and family member adoptions.
- Paternity: Without establishing paternity, a father has no legal right to child custody or parenting time, and neither parent has the right to receive child support from the other parent of the children. We represent clients seeking to establish paternity and defend clients against paternity claims that they believe are unfounded.
Appeals: If a judge made a ruling in your case that was a legal or factual error, you have the right to challenge the outcome of your case on appeal. Our skilled and experienced appellate attorney can evaluate your case and let you know if there is a basis for an appeal. If you choose to pursue an appeal, we can represent you through every step of the appellate process.
When you need a Portland-area family law attorney who can go toe-to-toe in court with any lawyer in a custody or parenting time dispute or a powerful attorney who can make certain your rights are protected in a case involving complex property division issues, you can count on the attorneys at Jensen & Leiberan. Please contact our office in Portland at (503) 641-7990 to arrange an initial consultation.