What Will 2017 Bring to Family Law?

As with other areas of the law, family law is regularly changing to keep up with new developments in families’ needs. The trend in the last few years in family law is to streamline and simplify the grounds for divorce.

When I first began practicing law in Maryland, there was a two year waiting period of continuous separation before filing a divorce if you and your spouse didn’t agree to separate. On top of that, it is not unusual for the divorce to take a year to be final if the parties didn’t agree on the financial issues of the divorce. In the last few years, that waiting period was reduced to one year, and there has even been a new mutual consent ground for divorce which does not require separation. (Other conditions apply, of course!)

New this year is the removal of the requirement for corroboration of the grounds for divorce. In the past, even amicable divorcing couples had to be sure to bring someone to court with them who also had knowledge of the grounds for divorce, whether it was separation, adultery, etc. It required another adult to make themselves available, take time off work and to publicly state details of the couples’ private life.

What will 2017 bring? Possibly an expansion of the mutual consent divorce availability, stay tuned for updates from Maryland’s General Assembly.   – Heather L. Sunderman

For more information on Family Law, please contact Heather L. Sunderman at (301) 664-7710 or hlsunderman@mirskylawgroup.com.

Disclaimer: The content of this blog is intended for informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or to provide legal advice. Laws differ by state and jurisdiction. The information on this blog may not apply to every reader. You should not take any legal action based upon the information contained on this blog without first seeking professional counsel. Your use of the blog does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Mirsky Law Group, LLC.

 

Impending FLSA Regulations are On-Hold

In a blog I posted on June 25, 2016, “Time to Start Preparing for The New Overtime Regulations”, I discussed what was slated to become a major change to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) on December 1, 2016.  Well, not so fast.  Last month, a federal judge in Texas issued a Court Order blocking the implementation of the new regulations which would have increased the minimum salary to $47,476 annually for an employee to qualify for the executive, administrative or professional exemptions (the so called “white collar exemptions”).   While employee-rights groups celebrated the new regulations, many business groups felt that the new regulations put extra financial pressures on businesses that were already having difficulty surviving in the current economy and that the Department of Labor had overstepped its authority with the new regulations.  Thus, lawsuits were filed which culminated in the federal judge’s decision, which applies nationwide, and basically keeps everything status quo for the time being and employers do not have to make changes by December 1, 2016.

However, while I was presenting seminars on this topic during the past few months, I discovered that many employers are still misclassifying their employees and, as a result, may be failing to pay required overtime.  Many employers simply believe that they can pay their employees a non-fluctuating salary, and somehow they are magically in compliance with the FLSA.  This is not the case.  An employee’s job duties dictate if he/she is entitled to overtime.  The fact that the federal judge has stayed the impending regulations, does alter the basic rule that employees whose job duties do not qualify for an exception under the FLSA must be paid overtime.

For more information on the classification of employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act, please contact Scott A. Mirsky at (301) 664-7710 or samirsky@mirskylawgroup.com.

Disclaimer: The content of this blog is intended for informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or to provide legal advice. Laws differ by state and jurisdiction. The information on this blog may not apply to every reader. You should not take any legal action based upon the information contained on this blog without first seeking professional counsel. Your use of the blog does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Mirsky Law Group, LLC.