Pennsylvania law divorce and separation


Can I Get A Legal Separation?

Our Pennsylvania divorce attorneys can assist you in forming a game plan for your future if you are considering a separation from your spouse. Further, it is far better to have a consultation with our PA family lawyers PRIOR to leaving your marital home or jointly occupied residence than afterwards as important rights may be compromised when you are not informed on the legal ramifications of your decisions.

Contact our Pittsburgh family lawyers to negotiate a Marital Separation Agreement for you or inform you about your legal rights and obligations on such topics as child and spousal support as well as child custody.

Contact a Pittsburgh Family Lawyer Who Understands

Our office accepts Pennsylvania family law cases including divorce, equitable distribution, spousal support, alimony pendente lite, alimony, paternity and child support matters, child custody cases, juvenile law cases, and related matters in Allegheny County Pittsburgh , Beaver County, Berks County, Butler County, Clearfield County, Washington County, and Westmoreland County Greensburg.

The couple can have an attorney draw up a civil agreement to legalize their settlement in order to make decisions about:. In the settlement agreement, the couple can also include details pertaining to child support and spousal support. Once signed by the court, separation agreements are binding documents and are difficult to modify. If you are in the midst of a separation, an attorney will draw up and file the agreement for you to ensure its handled correctly and that you fully understand its contents. For counsel about your legal options surrounding divorce or separation, or for help in drafting a separation agreement, contact our team at ARM Lawyers.

We have offices in three prime locations for your convenience: Stroudsburg , Palmerton , or Bethlehem We offer free, no-obligation consultations. Contact ARM Lawyers today to schedule a consult with our experienced attorneys. We will provide you with the strength, confidence and charisma you are looking for, whether you have a criminal, family or other legal concern. Contact our law firm today for legal counsel from attorneys with over 75 years of combined experience. Call or use the email form to schedule a consultation!

As part of the divorce, the court may consider these things as marital property and distribute them accordingly. No matter whose name is on the account, you are both owners of the funds. If one spouse draws all of the money out of an account, her or she may have to account to the other for the money, no matter who originally put the funds into the account or if the account is titled in only one name.

As part of the divorce, the court may consider the bank accounts as marital property and equitably divide the funds, regardless of whose names were on the accounts or which party primarily contributed to the account. Each spouse owes support to the other as long as they are legally married. A court may require a spouse to contribute to the support of the other. The amount of support is determined by considering the income of each spouse or their earning capacities.

Divorce in Pennsylvania

Both parents have a responsibility to support their children. This obligation exists even if the parents are not married and it continues after a divorce. If parents cannot agree on who is entitled to custody of the children, the court will determine the custodial arrangement that is in the best interest and welfare of the children.

There are three types of spousal support in Pennsylvania depending in which stage of the process your divorce is:.

Fault has no bearing on child support. The same formula described above is used but there are no defenses applicable to the award of APL. Alimony is secondary remedy and should only be awarded if the division of the marital estate is not sufficient to help the dependent spouse get back on his or her feet. Generally, a dependent spouse will not be entitled to alimony if his or her unfaithfulness was the precipitating cause of the divorce.

Can You Date During Separation Before a Divorce? | Pittsburgh Divorce & Family Law, LLC

A parent seeking custody or visitation rights may file a complaint in the country where the child has lived for the past six months. In many counties, a conference will be held with an appointed hearing officer to determine whether or not an agreement by the parents can be made. Most counties required an educational seminar be attended by both parents and that children of appropriate ages attend an educational program.

Finally, a hearing is held by the court at which all the evidence is presented and a determination is made. In most cases, the court will talk with the children to learn their feelings and preferences before making a decision. If the parents are not able to agree, the court will determine the custodial agreement which is in the best interest and welfare of the children. The most common arrangement is for one parent to have primary custody while the other parent has temporary partial custody at various times during the year. However, the law no longer gives special preference to mothers over fathers.


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The result in any given case will depend on the particular facts and circumstances of that case. Many counties and judges now believe that the ideal custody situation is an equally shared schedule. An award of sole custody to one parent with no custody or visitation rights to the other is rare. It is not uncommon for a court to allow a non-custodial parent to have input in making major decisions concerning the well-being of the children if the court find that both parents are fit parents and are able to communicate effectively with each other in the interest of their children.

Divorce in Pennsylvania

This is known as legal custody. It is important to differentiate between legal and physical custody when entering into a custody order. It is important to note, however, that a child is never old enough to choose which parent to live with, absent an agreement by the parents. An important factor considered by the court in determining custody is that the children continue to live in a familiar and stable home environment.


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Courts are reluctant to disturb an existing arrangement or to move children from their current school district if the children are doing well. The courts are also reluctant to split siblings between parents. Denial of visitation or custody rights is not a lawful excuse for ignoring a support order. A person has the right to go to court to enforce visitation or partial custody rights, but it is a separate proceeding. Refusing to pay support because of denial of visitation or custody rights will only result in legal action being taken to enforce the support order.

An order of court establishing custody or visitation rights may always be modified providing that the change is in the best interest and welfare of the children. If a person willfully does not comply with a court order, that person could be cited for contempt of the court order and the other parent will be entitled to make up time with their children.

pennsylvania law divorce and separation Pennsylvania law divorce and separation
pennsylvania law divorce and separation Pennsylvania law divorce and separation
pennsylvania law divorce and separation Pennsylvania law divorce and separation
pennsylvania law divorce and separation Pennsylvania law divorce and separation
pennsylvania law divorce and separation Pennsylvania law divorce and separation

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