What We Do
Spirn Family Law LLC represents clients in divorce and legal separations as well as related actions, including motions to modify and motions for contempt, in St. Louis County and its surrounding jurisdictions. For more detailed information about our practice areas, see below.
Division of Property
In a divorce, all of your assets and debts – everything from your house and cars to your retirement savings and personal property – are divided and allocated between you and your spouse. One or both parties in a separating couple might own a closely held business, which may also be subject to valuation and division. Missouri law requires an equitable (fair) division of property between the spouses. Of course, a fair division of property depends on each case’s unique facts and circumstances. Mindful of your goals, we guide you through the process of valuing your assets to secure a division of your property that allows you to confidently move forward.
When one spouse cannot meet his or her reasonable needs with the income or the property awarded by the court, Missouri law allows the court to consider an award of maintenance (formerly known as alimony) to that spouse. The court has significant discretion whether to award maintenance to one party in a divorcing couple. As a result, cases with seemingly similar facts may be resolved quite differently between various jurisdictions or even by different judges within the same circuit. Whether you are in a situation where you are likely to either pay or receive maintenance from your soon-to-be former spouse, we will use our experience to guide your expectations in order to achieve the best result for your specific circumstances.
Nothing is more important than ensuring your children’s emotional stability and minimizing the difficulty they may experience during a trying time for your family. We work closely with you, as well as with Guardians ad Litem when necessary, to advocate for a parenting plan that establishes legal and physical custody in accordance with the best interests of your children, regardless of their age(s). We will listen carefully when to provide not only sound legal advice, but also connections to outside resources for emotional and psychological support.
We provide experienced representation to prepare or review pre- and post-nuptial agreements for clients who may wish to contract around the dissolution laws of the State of Missouri. We will carefully discuss your individual goals to ensure that you enter into a valid and enforceable agreement that is made freely, fairly, in good faith and with full disclosure.
Child support in Missouri is typically determined using Form 14, a chart which calculates the support obligation based upon the number of children, the amount of maintenance paid to a spouse, and most importantly, the gross income of each spouse. Determining a spouse’s “income” can present a complex task requiring the retention of vocational or financial experts, or an analysis of the ordinary expenses incurred by a small business. Whether you or your spouse is a W-2 employee, independent contractor, partner in a business enterprise or a stay at home parent, we will work with you to ensure that the child support amount ordered by the court is appropriate.
Following a contested trial, a court-ordered judgment that is unsupported by the substantial weight of the evidence, is against the weight of the evidence, or erroneously declares or applies the law, may give rise to an appeal to be pursued with the Missouri Court of Appeals. Regardless of whether we were your attorneys at the trial, we will carefully examine your judgment to help you determine the likelihood of success on appeal, and will represent you throughout the appellate process.