Family Law in Columbus, Nebraska and Surrounding Areas

For a knowledgeable practice of family law in Columbus, Nebraska, count on Neiman Law Office to provide you with the guidance you need.

Divorce Law

In Nebraska, a no-fault divorce is granted on the basis of a showing by either spouse that the marriage is “irretrievably broken.”

A lawyer represents a client’s best interests by serving as an advocate and negotiator and knowing the proper procedures to follow and the pleadings and other documents that must be filed with the court. Often, two people who are in the process of dissolving their marriage are unable to negotiate calmly and rationally. It is also usually very difficult to agree upon a settlement without being properly advised of your legal rights and obligations.

Both parties should fully understand any settlement agreements and how the court would likely proceed if no agreement is reached. An experienced lawyer like William Neiman can help at all stages of the divorce proceedings by providing practical and legal advice.

Child Custody

If you have children, one party is normally granted physical custody, and the other party receives visitation rights or parenting time with the children. The non-custodial parent is usually required to pay child support, determined by guidelines adopted and published by the Nebraska Supreme Court. The main principle behind the guidelines is to recognize the duty of both parents to contribute to the support of their children in proportion to their net incomes.

Issues of custody of children, child support, and visitation or parenting time are subject to modification at any time if the parties can show that there has been a substantial and material change in circumstances since the entry of the last order. Modification will also be considered following the best interests of the children.

A contest over child custody is usually a very difficult experience for all involved. If the parties cannot agree on custody, the issue will go to trial, and the judge will make the final determination. The court does not give preference to either parent based on the sex of the parent or children, and the court will not begin the trial presuming that one parent is more fit than the other. In deciding on this issue of custody, the court may consider some or all of the following factors:

  • Who the primary caretaker of the child/children was—attended school conferences and doctors’ appointments, cared for them when they were ill, cooked, cleaned, and took general care of their physical, academic, and emotional needs
  • General considerations of moral fitness of a child’s/children’s parents, including parents’ sexual conduct
  • Respective environments offered by each parent
  • Emotional relationship between the child/children and parent
  • The age, sex, and health of the child/children and parents
  • Effect on the child/children as a result of continuing or disrupting the existing relationship
  • Attitude and stability of each parent’s character
  • Parental capacity to provide physical care and satisfy the educational needs of the child/children
  • General health, welfare, and social behavior of the child/children
  • The desires and wishes of the minor child/children, if of an age of comprehension regardless of chronological age, when such desires and wishes are based on sound reasoning
  • Abuse inflicted on any family or household member


Another aspect of the dissolution of a marriage is the apportionment of the property of the parties, which was acquired during the marriage, and the apportionment of the debt incurred during the marriage. Depending upon the complexity of the case and the amount and types of marital property and debt, division can be relatively simple or quite complex.

An experienced attorney like William Neiman can review the property and debt to ensure that you receive the amount of property that you are legally entitled to and that you need not pay any debts you are not legally required to pay.

Spousal Support

Alimony or spousal support is another issue that we can assist you with. Depending on the circumstances of the marriage, the court may order one person to pay spousal support to the other.

In determining whether alimony or spousal support is appropriate, an experienced attorney will conduct a detailed review of the circumstances of the parties, including:

  • The duration of the marriage
  • The history of the contributions to the marriage by each party, including contributions to the care and education of the child/children
  • Interruption of personal careers or educational opportunities
  • The ability of each party to engage in gainful employment without interfering with the interests of any minor child/children in the custody of such party

If a party does not receive any spousal support at the time of the original decree, that decree cannot later be modified to award spousal support.

Required Information

If you are seeking a dissolution of your marriage, the following information will be required so the appropriate pleadings may be drafted by your attorney, William Neiman:

  • Your full name, age, date of birth, street address, social security number, birthplace, occupation, and your residence at the time you were married
  • Your spouse’s full name, age, date of birth, street address, social security number, birthplace, occupation, and residence at the time you were married
  • The place where you were married (i.e., city, county, and state)
  • The date of the marriage
  • If you have any children: their names, dates of birth, and social security numbers
  • Information on the property that is owned and all of the debt that is owed