William D. Tingley, Attorney

Bill Tingley Family Law and Family Law Appeals

WILLIAM D. TINGLEY is a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers and an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Northern Kentucky University, Salmon P. Chase College of Law. His published works include The Kentucky Appellate Practice Deskbook published by The University of Kentucky, Rosenberg College of Law. In 2019 he chaired the Rules and Comments Subcommittee of the Kentucky Supreme Court’s Standing Committee on Family Court Rules Of Procedure and Practice. He was also a Co-Chair of the Jefferson County Advisory Board for the Kentucky Supreme Court’s Family Court Project. He has been called upon to testify before the Senate and House Judiciary Committees of the Kentucky Legislature concerning family law legislation. He has prosecuted 38 cases before the Kentucky Supreme Court, and 185 cases before the Kentucky Court of Appeals. Seventeen of his appellate cases resulted in published opinions. For over 3 decades he has lectured state-wide, on behalf of the Kentucky Bar Association and the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, on a variety of family law topics.

Licenses, Memberships, And Activities

  1. Kentucky Bar Association, Admitted, 1986.
    • Representative to Kentucky House of Delegates, 44th Judicial District, 1987-89.
    • Chairperson – Family Law Section, 1996.
    • Kentucky Bar Association Leadership Institute, Speaker, 1986-87.
    • Peoples Law School Speaker, 1987.
      Family Law Speaker, 1990 to present
  2. Supreme Court of Kentucky, Chairperson, Rules and Comments     Subcommittee, Standing Committee on Family Court Rules of Procedure     and Practice, 2019.
  3. American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Fellow, 1998 to present.
    • American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Certified Family Law Arbitrator, 2020.
    • Member-National Child Support Review and Recommendations Committee, 2017.
    • Recipient-Raise the Bar Award, AAML, Kentucky Chapter, 2014.
  4. Kentucky Legislature, Expert witness, Senate and House Judiciary     Committees, proposed De Facto Custodian legislation, 1997.
  5. Louisville Bar Association, Member, 1990 to present.
    • Louisville Bar Association, Family Law Speaker, 1990 to present
    • Chairperson – Family Law Section, 1996 and 2014.
    • Recipient – LBA Outstanding Section Chair of the Year Award, 1996.
    • Recipient – Richard A. Revell Family Practitioner of the Year Award, 1998
  1. Jefferson County Family Court
    • Advisory Committee, Co-Chairperson, 1996-2003.
    • Jefferson County Family Court Rules Committee, Chairperson, 1995-96.
    • Host – Inside Family Court, a Family Court public service television broadcast, 1991-94.
  2. Bell County Bar Association, President, 1987-89.
    • Obtained dispensation from Kentucky Bar Association permitting regional members to obtain CLE credit via video tape.
  3. Bell County Law Library, Chairperson, 1987-89.
    • Established first regional Federal law library.
  4. Florida Supreme Court, Family Law Symposium, Speaker, 2000.
  5. Martindale-Hubbell – Highly Rated Legal ability and Ethical Standards,      2013.
  6. Better Business Bureau – A+ rating
  7. Courier-Journal-2014 Family Court Judicial Campaign Endorsement
  8. Citizens For Better Judges-2014 Family Court Judicial Campaign      Endorsement
  9. Easter Seals Century-Plus-Ten Award, Recipient, 1977.

Reported Decisions

  1. CHFS v. L.G., 635 S.W.3d 93 (Ky. 2022).
    • Substantial evidence supported finding that child was emotionally injured by mother who manipulated child into believing his father had abused him.
  2. Lawson v. Woeste, 603 S.W.3d 266 (Ky. 2020).
    • Determination of continuing jurisdiction under UCCJEA for custody is a matter of particular-case jurisdiction, and not subject matter jurisdiction.
  3. Seeger v. Lanhan, 542 S.W.3d 286 (Ky.2018).
    • Paternity actions may be brought by private attorneys, no attorney fee awards in paternity cases, child support accruing before paternity petition is filed are pre-petition liabilities and not arrears.
  4. Pettingill v. Pettingill, 480 S.W.3d 920 (Ky.2015).
    • Domestic violence “Lethality Factors” may be considered by trial court in domestic violence cases.
  5. Ford v. Perkins, 382 S.W.3d 821 (Ky.2012).
    • Trial court may not presume a 50/50 division of marital assets, Court of Appeals may not makes its own division.
  6. Anderson v. Johnson, 350 S.W.3d 453 (Ky.2011).
    • Trial court’s failure to make any findings of fact is an error of law on motions to relocate with a child.
  7. Lewis v. Fulkerson, 650 S.W.3d 288 (Ky. App. 2022).
    • TSubstantial evidence supported finding that transfer of money to wife in trust was a gift.
  8. Geralds v. Geralds, 658 S.W.3d 500 (Ky. App. 2022).
    • Ex-husband’s long-term incentive plan payments, earned post-divorce and received in exchange for noncompetition agreement were not marital property.
  9. Miller v. Armstrong, 622 S.W.3d 661 (Ky. App. 2021).
    • Appeal dismissed for failure to follow the rules of appellate practice and procedure.
  1. Burgess v. Chase, 629 S.W.3d 826 (Ky. App. 2021).
    • Paternal grandmother who parented alongside a parent was not a de facto custodian.
  2. Brannock v. Brannock, 598 S.W.3d 91 (Ky. App. 2019).
    • Despite marital settlement contract terms to the contrary, the parties may waive provisions of their agreement by their actions.
  3. Dellapenta v. Goldy, 575 S.W.3d 697 (Ky. App.2018)
    • Children’s absence from Colorado was temporary under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act even though mother delayed returning for the children for several months.
  4. Wagner v. Wagner, 563 S.W.3d 99 (Ky.2018).
    • Trial courts are to give “common meaning” to terms in marital settlement agreement and view agreement as a whole when questions arise as to meaning and interpretation.
  5. Lewis v. Fulkerson, 555 S.W.3d 432 (Ky. App.2017).
    • Failure to allow trust attorney to testify on issue of parties intent in creating trusts was reversible error.
  6. Miranda v. Miranda, 536 S.W.3d 196 (Ky. App.2017).
    • Despite history of mental illness, mother was entitled to hearing on restarting visitation.
  7. Bootes v. Bootes, 470 S.W.3d 351(Ky. App.2015).
    • Gross income from business counts for child support purposes even though business owner-father gave all of it to his father.
  8. S.B. v. M.C., 352 S.W.3d 345 (Ky. App.2011).
    • Once the presumption of paternity arising out of wedlock is rebutted, the trial court has jurisdiction to determine paternity.


  • Family Law Arbitration: A Rebirth, Kentucky Bench and Bar Magazine, May-June 2019.
  • Violence Against Women’s Act, Reauthorization of 2013, A Glimpse at Legal Specific Provisions, Bar Briefs, Louisville Bar Association, April 2014.
  • Kentucky Appellate Practice and Procedure Deskbook, UK/CLE (2023).
  • Third-Party Joinder In Actions For Dissolution of Marriage, Kentucky Bench and Bar Magazine, November-December 2019.
  • Spanish translation of Kentucky Child Support Worksheet, 2015.
  • Divorce in Kentucky, An Interactive Video and Organizer, 1997.
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution in Family Law Matters, Kentucky Domestic Relations Handbook UK/CLE (3d ed. 2021).


  • Kentucky Child Support Obligations Calculator, Child Support, Child Care and Medical Expense computer program(replaced by Apps).
  • Kentucky Child Support Obligations Calculator, iPhone/Android Mobile Application,Copyright No. TX 7-810-605.
  • Child Expense Tracker, iPhone/Android Mobile Application Copyright No. TX 7-810-621.

Professional Experience

  1. William D. Tingley, PLLC, First Trust Centre, Louisville, Kentucky, 2005     to present.
    • Nature of Practice: Exclusively Family Law including regular practice before the Supreme Court of Kentucky and the Kentucky Court of Appeals. Court approved Family Law Mediator.
  2. Guardian Ad Litem, Jefferson County Family Court, Division Two, Judge     Hugh Smith Haynie, 2005-06.
    • Court Appointed: Guardian Ad Litem for Parents and Children for Dependency, Abuse and Neglect cases.
  3. Assistant County Attorney, Jefferson County Attorney’s Office, Division     of Child Support, Louisville, Kentucky, 1999 to 2005.
    • Duties: Paternity Court and Non-Support Prosecutor

    • Experience:Establishment and enforcement of child support orders, participation in hearings under UIFSA, participation in administrative hearings, advise Child Support workers on various establishment and child support related issues, respond to client complaints, speak to community organizations about child support establishment and enforcement.
  1. Assistant Commonwealth Attorney, 44th Judicial District, Bell County,     Kentucky, January 1989 to February 1990.
    • Duties:Represent Commonwealth of Kentucky in all aspects of felony prosecution from Grand Jury presentation through trial.
  2. Adjunct Professor, Lincoln Memorial University, Harrogate, Tennessee,     August 1986 to May, 1989.
    • Subject:Business Law.


  1. Asbury University, Wilmore, Kentucky, Bachelor of Arts Degree, June 2,     1980
    • Major: Psychology
    • Minor: Political Science
  1. Honors, Memberships, Activities
    • Dean’s List-1984-85.
    • Debating Team- Vice-President,1979 and 1980.
    • Resident Assistant- 1977-80.
  1. Capital University Law School, Columbus, Ohio, Juris Doctor, May 20,     1984. Honors, Memberships, Activities Dean’s List-1984-85.
  1. Honors, Memberships, Activities
    • Dean’s List-1984-85.
    • Student Bar Association-Representative 1981, Vice-President 1981.
    • Judge-Voluntary Moot Court Competition, 1982-83.

Community Involvement

  1. Kentucky School for the Blind, Legal Treatise Reader, 2006-07.
  2. Louisville Adoption Day, Volunteer Adoption Attorney.
  3. Teen Court Project, Supervised High School students     prosecuting/defending non-violent juvenile offenders in special     Jefferson County District Court diversion program.
  1. University of Louisville Hospital, Emergency Room Volunteer, 2013.
  2. Salvation Army, Board Member (Bell County), Bell Ringer (New York).


  1. Flying-Private Pilot’s License, 1993.
  2. Open Ocean Sailing
    • Six-Pac Captains Certification, 2015.
    • 100 Ton Captains Certification, 2015.
    • Open Ocean Racing, Angela to Azores, 2013.
    • Cape Horn rounding, 2015.
  3. Home Remodeling