Divorce, Custody, Support
For when families need help through division and conflict
Sometimes, families just do not stay together for a variety of reasons. Two committed people working together is ideal, but not always reality. If your family is divided and cannot agree, the courts may have to make decisions for the couple or about children. If so, Raiders Law is available to help guide you through the family law process.
When a couple makes the unfortunate decision to divorce, the courts have very specific rules for how to manage issues that arise. Pennsylvania has very specific rules for dividing property, managing funds and reclaiming a prior name. Raiders Law has experience in many Pennsylvania counties navigating the divorce system, appearing before a variety of Special Masters, and negotiating detailed Marital Settlement Agreements to manage risk and provide the better answer.
For divorces starting at the end of 2016, the parties may need to wait a year before they can demand a divorce. In earlier cases, this waiting period is two years. The parties may agree to not wait beyond the mandatory 90 days. The firm helps couples who agree on a divorce and wish to develop a quicker divorce case. Or, if circumstances require a wait, the firm will prepare for and litigate a divorce trial, which usually involves equitable distribution of assets.
Custody is the right to enjoy your child or children as they grow up through when the graduate high school and become adults. When parents disagree and separate, the courts often must intercede and decide how parents enjoy their custody time. The courts decide many factors, divided into two types of custody.
Legal Custody is the right to make life decisions for a child. This includes making decisions concerning a child's academics, health, religion, sports, or any thing else that affects the child's well being. Legal Custody is usually Shared, with both parents (hopefully) agreeing on major life decision for each child. If the parents cannot agree, the Court could order Sole Legal Custody to further the best interests of the child. Physical Custody describes when each parent may enjoy custody of children. Courts can order Sole, Primary, Partial, Shared, or Supervised Custody. The different forms of physical custody arrangements can be endless within these groups, to account for the wide variety of cases the courts see within the population. Courts will try to adapt the custody schedule to the needs of the children and reasonable accommodations for parents' jobs and obligations.
Some parents forget that, when one parent seeks the court's assistance in determining custody rights, the court, not the parents, guide how the parents raise the child. This becomes more important when third parties, like grandparents, become involved. Otherwise, someone can raise a Contempt petition and use the Courts to enforce custody rights. As attorneys, we must sometimes negotiate a settlement of a family dispute impacting custody or take the matter to the Court for a resolution. Any parent should carefully consider when contempt is the right course when things go wrong.
Custody Orders can be updated when things change. A child's needs change as the child progresses through school. Families and living arrangements change. The Courts are willing to adapt a Custody Order to account for new circumstances.
Every parent should support thier child. Sometimes the Court must order support, insurance or reimbursement of expenses. Lawyers assist clients to get the funds they need to take care of children and develpo a reasonable support plan for a child or spouse.