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South Dakota Family Law

South Dakota Family Law


Frequently Asked Questions about South Dakota Family Law


What is South Dakota family law?


South Dakota family law concerns the state government’s involvement in its denizens’ domestic lives. Legislators respect the family as the most essential unit in American life, so the laws that pertain to families are mainly focused on keeping them together and keeping them strong, even if some of the more formal connecting tissues like marriage bonds have to be severed in order to keep each individual member healthy. 


But what does South Dakota family law mean?


Essentially South Dakota family law is a rough grouping of several legal concepts, all involving families in some way, and possibly but not necessarily litigated in a South Dakota Family Law Court. However, it is nearly impossible to give a more definitive answer, as South Dakota family law is so all-encompassing that it can include legal actions taken in criminal, civil, and probate courts.


To get a better idea of what South Dakota family law can mean, look at some of the most popular legal actions that fall under its heading:


Divorce: Not just the most popular sector of South Dakota family law, it is perhaps the most popular legal action, period. Marriages can end in South Dakota only two ways, with death or divorce, so it makes sense that thousands turn to lawyers every year to help them step out of a relationship that is no longer working. The best way to cut down on divorce costs is to reach a compromise with your spouse and file for a joint uncontested divorce in which resources won’t have to be wasted arguing over child custody or who gets which piece of property.


Support Orders: A judge may order one relationship partner to pay either spousal or child support as part of a separation. While child support is calculated using an exact child support calculator, spousal support is entirely subjective, so a judge’s order may need to be wildly unfair. Yet the most popular reason to hire a lawyer to seek a readjustment to a support order is a change of circumstances, mainly the loss of a job or other source of income.


Paternity: South Dakota family law currently requires the administration of a paternity test whenever the heritage of a child comes under dispute. These tests are within one-thousandth of a percent for complete accuracy, so there is no more definitive way to prove who qualifies to pay a support order.


Adoption: A child might be adopted under a number of different circumstances, nearly all of them charitable and loving. However, South Dakota family law is very severe when it comes to adoptions to make sure that a child’s rights are protected, so whether you’ve adopted a child from overseas or a near-relative from the house next door, you may need legal counsel. Such a lawyer can help you to navigate the court system and fill out the required forms appropriately.