We are not handling family law, except in the context of defending a PFA involving:
At present, we are only handling family law matters that involve the defense of a PFA.
If you cannot easily work out your disputes with the opposing party, you need to think about preparing to testify. The more prepared you are, the better. In many counties (such as Allegheny), one sitting judge will decide almost every issue in your case. In fact, that judge may also decide future matters that come in your case if, for example, you need a support modification or change in custody.
Make a great first impression to the courts.
Hence, you need to put your best foot forward early. Also, as the saying goes, you should plan for the worst and hope for the best, meaning, get ready for litigation, but remain open to settling your case short of trial to spare yourself the stress, assuming, of course, that the other side will be reasonable.
Get The Right Help.
Experienced matrimonial lawyers can guide you every step of the way through the process. Select an attorney that handles cases in Western Pennsylvania, depending on the location of your dispute, such as Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), Beaver County, Washington County, or Butler County.
Understanding Your Rights.
From experience, our Pittsburgh and Beaver County attorneys know that most kinds of family law issues are stressful. You need solid answers.
How is Property Divided in PA?
Pennsylvania is not a “title” jurisdiction, meaning, it usually does not matter whether the marital property is in the “name” of husband or wife or both. Also, in Pennsylvania, the courts do not always divide property evenly, like some other jurisdictions that seek a 50/50 split of assets in most case. Rather, the standard for distributing property in a divorce in Pennsylvania is called “equitable distribution.”
What is Equitable Distribution?
An “equitable distribution” has a meaning similar to the way it sounds: the courts try to do equity, or fairness. The courts look at the parties’ relative ability to support themselves. If, for example, a husband makes 200K per year and his wife is an uneducated housewife, the court’s might be inclined to award the wife a larger portion of the marital estate (property acquired during marriage or the increase in value of property owned individually before marriage).
Our experienced matrimonial attorneys can tell you exact what assets will be included in the “marital estate” and we can give you and estimate of how the courts will likely divide the estate. Overall, we handle divorce (no-fault divorce and fault-based divorce), issues of separation in no-fault (what it means to live “separate and apart” for the requisite time). Each attorney at our firm analyzes the ramifications of appellate court decisions and statutes (including changes to the divorce code) concerning “common law” marriage in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and lingering issues of common law marriage. We also analyze the modern day requisites for a valid marriage in Pennsylvania, cohabitation agreements, pre-marital agreements, prenuptial agreements, postnuptial agreements, petitions for temporary possession of property or use of home, equitable distribution, hearings on equitable distribution, petitions for sole possession, location of assets, cases where bigamy is alleged and other complex issues of divorce exist.
Our family law attorneys try to negotiate the equitable distribution portion of the divorce as amicably as possible and we often recommend mediation. Our attorneys constantly look for ways to streamline a divorce whether the proceedings involve a fault-based divorce and a no-fault divorce. Our lawyers evaluate whether prenuptial agreements can be upheld. We also evaluate issues of an engagement ring and whether and engagement ring must be returned if the marriage never takes place.
Support. Every attorney at our firm can help you calculate the different types of support. (1) SPOUSAL SUPPORT. We can evaluate the each party’s income and whether any income will be imputed to you our your spouse. (2) ALIMONY and APL: each attorney in our firm is ready to negotiate the best possible resolution of any claim for alimony, taking into account the amount of time and money it will take the dependent spouse to become retrained and/or otherwise involves in the workforce. (3) CHILD SUPPORT. Our lawyers also handle issues concerning imputed income issues. As with spousal support (above), we evaluate the basis of all claims for child support.
Custody – Claims by Parents.
Our lawyers represent parents during claims for custody. We handle claims for total custody, partial custody and/or visitation only filed in Pennsylvania and also interstate claims. We also attend custody conferences and proceedings before hearing officers and judges and/or custody trials. Our attorneys also handle appeals to custody resolutions. Further, in the context of a custody determination, we also handle other matters that may surface, such as Protection from Abuse Hearings (PFA) that take place while child custody issues remain ongoing. We also help with PFA appeals. We negotiate with other lawyers to resolve the matter most efficiently. Our attorneys always try to negotiate with the other lawyer or lawyers involved in the case. Call us to speak with experienced family law attorneys on this matter. Click to learn about child custody myths in Pennsylvania.
Claims by Grandparents.
Our lawyers study issues concerning claims for custody by grandparents and other family members. We evaluate the basis for standing for a grandparent or other family member and we handle representation of grandparents and other family members at conferences, hearings, and trials. As always, our experienced Pittsburgh lawyers try to negotiate with the litigant or lawyer on the other side of the case to bring about the most reasonable resolution of every case. We handle these issues throughout Allegheny County (including Pittsburgh), Beaver County, and Washington Counties. Call us to speak with an experienced family law attorney on this matter.
Our experienced counselors at law handle hearings on child delinquency and dependency. Our lawyers handle trials of delinquency matters, and appeals of delinquency matters. We work with Children and Youth Services of Allegheny, Beaver, and Washington Counties (CYF and/or CYS) to resolve a variety of issues such as dependency, visitation, adoption, parental custody, foster care placement, and custody and/or visitation by grandparents and other family members. We also handle name changes, petitions for name changes and hearings. Further, we handle issues concerning the joint ownership of assets outside of marriage. We handle these issues throughout Allegheny County (including Pittsburgh), and we handle some cases in Beaver, and Washington Counties in Pennsylvania.