Because there are so many different types of family law cases, a great number of potential proceedings might stem from an issue cover by this type of law. In some cases, a lawyer will be needed to represent a family member in court. In other cases, the job of the lawyer might simply be to offer advice on a contract. The lawyer might also play an important role in an adoption proceeding or in a custody dispute.

Many lawyers also work in non-courtroom settings to help families deal with their problems. Attorneys are often important parts of the alternative dispute resolution process, working with their clients and their families to provide reasonable solutions to problems. The attorney may also help to represent the client in negotiations that help to provide some kind of resolution without involving the courts directly. These alternative methods of dispute resolution often help preserve parts of the family relationship that might otherwise be damaged during a more adversarial process.

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