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March 2016 Archives

"Room" for Improvement

Last weekend, I finally got around to watching the movie "Room", which won Brie Larson an academy award for Best Actress last month. So, was the movie worth all the hype? I would say it 1,000% deserved all the praise it got; I thought it was a beautiful film.

What's in a Name?

As many of my friends and clients begin their process towards marriage or are reaching the tail end of their divorce the same question comes up. "Are you going to change your name?"

Spice: International Family Law in the Atlanta International Community

A couple of weeks ago Michael Manely and I had a pleasure of attending the Atlanta Center for International Arbitration and Mediation's event- a lecture and CLE by Professor Bermann. (Big shout out to Atlanta International Arbitration Society for organizing such a wonderful event. http://arbitrateatlanta.org)

When Grandpa is in the Family Law Bible

In 1961, the Supreme Court of Georgia heard an appeal regarding the case my Grandfather James McClinton filed for a downward modification of the alimony he was ordered to pay his ex-wife, Juanita. At that time, he was paying her $400 per month, and when he filed his petition, he asserted that he'd had a substantial reduction in his income warranting a reduction of his alimony payments. Juanita disagreed, and even counterclaimed for an increase in alimony and attorney's fees. The trial court dismissed Juanita's counterclaim, which formed part of the basis for the appeal.

Lights On Parenting

As native from central Florida, when I moved to Atlanta one of my immediate goals was to get immersed in the local culture, including the local sports teams. And like many other young Atlantans during the 2014-2015 season, I found the Atlanta Hawks to be a quality source for entertainment. The Hawks had a historic turn-out of representation in the All-Star game that season and the announcer for that event described performing in the All-Star Game as a "lights-on" moment, where the players were not just representing their team but themselves as individual players. I thought a lot about that expression in life outside of basketball and what "lights on" moments we all have in our life, particularly how it applies in family law.

Songs About Divorce, Part I: Highway 20 Ride

I was at lunch recently with a friend who practices criminal defense. We started talking about some of the family dynamics I see as a practicing family law attorney in Savannah when he recalled a country song about a step-parent's troubles in raising his spouse's children. Divorce is certainly ripe fodder for song-writers and particularly for country music song writers (insert "lost my dog, truck, and wife" joke here). You may recall Michael's post from a year ago on the Pina Colada song. Anyway, my lunch conversation started my mind on songs I could think of that dealt with the issues of family law. 

What's a Girl Like You Doing in a Court Like This?

It may be surprising to know that I entered law school intending to become a criminal defense attorney, specializing in juvenile work. Starting when I was a freshman in high school, I was all-in on the idea of representing juvenile offenders in criminal courts. That was, until one day a mentor asked me if I was only interested in delinquency or if I had thought about dependency work.

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