Birth Certificate Lacks Legal Basis for Paternity

It is becoming increasingly common in the United States for babies to be born to unwed couples - a little more than 40 percent of all births in this country were to unmarried mothers in 2014, compared with less than 20 percent in 1980.

That is a sobering statistic for single mothers because studies show they face greater economic challenges than married mothers. And both parents face significant legal challenges as well, largely due to a number of misconceptions about the birth certificate, custody and parenting time.

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Life Series IX: Update Estate Plans When Kids Grow to Adults

For Harry and Sally, children entering adulthood was another parenthood milestone. They gradually accepted the need to talk with their children as full-fledged adults, particularly regarding family matters that could impact the children’s lives.

Although uncomfortable, those discussions focused on decisions that would have to be made if Harry and Sally became disabled or died.

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Legacies Don’t Have to be Large to be Meaningful

I love practicing law in West Michigan because it puts me in touch with some really wonderful and humble people. You would feel the same way too if you had a chance to hear how a number of my clients discuss sharing their earthly belongings in their final statement -- their Trust or Will.

Some clients are shy, almost to the point of embarrassment, about how much money they want to leave to a cause, an organization, a family member or friend. For many of these clients, the amount of bequest won’t place their names on the scrolling credits of a PBS television special or play prominently in the annual report of a local foundation.

Read more: Legacies Don’t Have to be Large to be Meaningful

New Michigan Laws Can Have an Impact on You

Hundreds of laws are passed by the Michigan Legislature each year on issues ranging from CPR instruction to morel mushroom hunting. It’s easy to assume that these new laws won’t have much impact on our lives.

In terms of sheer numbers, that attitude is understandable. For the past two sessions of the Legislature, more than 1,600 bills were introduced and more than 250 are passed annually. Because a majority of those bills are narrowly focused, we rely on the media to inform us about the few new laws dealing with hot button issues that impact us all.

Read more: New Michigan Laws Can Have an Impact on You

Mike Toburen - Attorney at Law   

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Attorney Mike Toburen

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