Massachusetts Legal Blog
Family Law | Massachusetts Legal Blog
Even long after a divorce has been settled, parents can still be embroiled in heated debates and arguments. Whether it starts with child support payments or custody schedules, there is no excuse for making threats, especially if they involve a child’s safety. Massachusetts family law courts expect parents to conduct themselves respectfully in and outside of a courtroom. If your ex threatens to take away your child, you should act quickly and use every legal resource to protect your child.
Moving in together is an important step for many couples. It can demonstrate your commitment to each other and, for many, is paramount to determining if you are both ready for marriage. But it can also be extremely stressful, as you will both now have to split living costs, merge your incomes, share property, and figure out your finances. When you throw in conflicting personalities, this could put you in a sticky situation if one of you moves out or your breakup down the line. However, a cohabitation agreement may alleviate a lot of these problems.
For many, self-isolation due to the Massachusetts’s COVID-19 stay at home order comes with added stress, anxiety, and financial worries. While these procedures are necessary to prevent widespread infections and deaths, many households are now dealing with economic uncertainty as workers are laid off or under new pressures to fulfill their duties while avoiding becoming ill. Inadvertently, this has led to an increase in spousal and child abuse.
Grandparents play a unique role in the raising of children, sometimes even taking over as surrogate parents if the parents are unavailable or deceased. In many cases, grandparents don’t realize that they have legal recourse for both financial aid and visitation rights – but they do. If you are a grandparent trying to do your best for your grandchildren when they are in a difficult situation, you need legal assistance to utilize your grandparent rights.
For most parents, one of the most important aspects of life is the relationship with their children, and ensuring the children are well taken care of, happy, and leading good lives. However, when parents have children without being married in Massachusetts, the father can have a distinct challenge in attaining the legal recognition of fatherhood, and the rights associated with being a parent.
January is a time of fresh starts, resolutions, and planning for the new year. Many people have indulged in celebrations and festivities for nearly two months leading up to January 1st, and as the busy holiday season comes to an end so do many marriages. Unofficially, January has become known as Divorce Month, even though the courts record more divorces in August and March. But this increase in the divorce rate in January appears to be connected to a few understandable trends. Read the rest »
Meeting that someone special, falling in love, and deciding to get married—this sequence is probably the most exciting time in people’s lives! But there’s more to consider before and after a proposal than just what the wedding colors are going to be. There are practical considerations that you need to talk about…like the dreaded prenuptial agreement. Read the rest »
Massachusetts has, arguably, the most progressive laws relating to the process of providing child support in the nation. The family courts have significant discretion in support decisions. Traditionally, child support payments are a parental requirement until the child turns 18. A few states extend support until the age of 21, based on the circumstances.
In Massachusetts, if the child is enrolled in college, lives with and is supported by the parent being paid child support, the support payment eligibility extends to age 23. This state allows judges to deviate from the formula-based calculation if it is determined to be in the child’s best interest.
When a divorce decree is finalized by the court, the decree often contains specific orders to one party specifically called court orders. These orders may include payment of child support or spousal support or a transfer of property to one spouse. The courts may also order specific visitation schedules for the non-custodial parent. Too often, former spouses may elect to ignore these orders which can create numerous problems. The penalties to the offending party for these transgressions can be severe but oftentimes the party who is being harmed needs to file a claim in order to call the court’s attention to the situation. Your family law attorney may suggest you file a contempt of court case against the offending party. Read the rest »
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