Legislative Wrap-Up Part Two: The Family Law Changes You Should Know

blog1Aside from the major changes to mutual consent divorce that we covered in our last blog, the Maryland General Assembly also made changes to two other pieces of family law. In addition to a new bill covering standby guardians in the case of deportation, Maryland also added a new “grounds for divorce” law to the books.

Appointment or Designation of Standby Guardian in the Case of Adverse Immigration Action

Maryland is not the only state currently struggling with how to assist families facing an elevated deportation risk. This past year has brought to a head the importance of having enforceable plans to care for children in the event of adverse immigration action. This new bill allows for the creation of a standby guardian to take care of any children in the event that a deportation process begins. While there were current provisions already available in the event of death or incapacity, there was not anything applicable in cases of deportation. Governor Hogan signed this bill into law on May 15th, and it was passed as an emergency bill to take effect immediately. This bill will allow for parents facing the prospect of deportation to ensure that their children will be taken care of by a trusted guardian.

Grounds for Divorce

A new law that is now in effect allows a party to add an oral amendment to an application for limited divorce or absolute divorce in open court. This oral amendment could qualify as “filing of the application for divorce,” as long as both parties have met the 12-month separation grounds for divorce.

Your Family Law Specialist is Lebovitz Law

Protecting your children, if you are at risk for deportation, is a very serious matter that you should not leave up to a lawyer who is unfamiliar with family law. We are also experts at navigating the divorce process. Lebovitz Law has decades of experience working with couples and families through the divorce process, guardianship process and more. We are experts at creating agreements that resolve alimony, custody and property issues. We can guide you through the entire divorce process, whether you are divorcing by mutual consent or not, and assist with all filings and court dates. To learn more about how we can assist you, please contact us today at (410) 941-3309.