Pennsylvania Family Law and Divorce
Lisa Marie Vari & Associates, P.C.

November 2017 Archives

Facing The Holidays Anew After Your Divorce

Many families in Pennsylvania are about to experience the upcoming Thanksgiving and Christmas Holiday season for the first time since their divorce or separation. Yes the holiday season may not be the same but it can still be filled with love and laughter and is the opportunity to build new memories and holiday traditions.

If I live in Pennsylvania can I terminate the other parent's parental rights?

In Pennsylvania parental rights can be terminated either voluntarily or involuntarily. A voluntary termination of parental rights occurs when the parent in question wants to terminate their own rights to their child. An involuntary termination of parental rights occurs when the court makes the decision and terminates a parent's rights. There is a long list of factors the court will weigh and consider in deciding whether to terminate a parent's rights. Whether voluntary or involuntary, this process is not quick. A parent will not lose the rights to their child unless the court formally terminates those rights. Having your parental rights terminated is not the same as not having legal custody of the child.

A child's preference and Pennsylvania's custody law

When the court attempts to fashion a custody order parents often try to argue for more custodial time by insisting that the child/children prefers to live with them as opposed to the other parent. This begs the question; is a court in Pennsylvania likely to consider a child's preference for one parent over the other?

Exploring in loco parentis Law in Pennsylvania

The Pennsylvania custody statute does not define "in loco parentis," but Pennsylvania courts have found a person to stand in loco parentis to a child when they have taken on parental responsibilities and duties, with the consent of the biological parent. For example, in T.B. v. L.R.M., 753 A.2d 873 (Pa. 2001), the court implied that in loco parentis standing is granted for the benefit of the child, stating that if a "child has established strong psychological bonds with a person" that the child views that person with "a stature like that of a parent," the third party is provided "the opportunity to litigate fully the issue of whether that relationship should be maintained, even over a natural parent's objections."

New Year's Resolution: A New Beginning After Your Pennsylvania Divorce

It's that time of year again when Pennsylvania residents start thinking about New Year's Resolutions and how we can improve ourselves in 2018. The new year is a chance for a fresh start; some of us vow to start getting our recommended 8-hours of sleep each night, some vow to lose those extra pounds packed on over the year, but no matter what, we are vowing to ourselves to be happy. 

Military Divorces in Pennsylvania

Obtaining a divorce in Pennsylvania if you are a member of the military is no more complicated than if you were obtaining a divorce as a civilian. The complexity of any divorce case is based upon how complex the legal issues in any given case may be; whether custody issues will have to be considered, whether one of the spouses owns a business, what kind of marital assets and property there may be, and so forth.

Pre-Nups and Post-Nups in Pennsylvania. What are they?

In Pennsylvania a prenuptial agreement or "prenup" as it's commonly known, is a document that protects a person's assets in the event that they become divorced. Prenups are entered into, signed by the soon to be married couple, before the marriage actually takes place.

Can You Legally Adopt An Adult in Pennsylvania?

The short answer is yes. In Pennsylvania one adult can adopt another adult. An adult adoption is the adoption of any individual who is at least 18 years old. Perhaps the more interesting and important question is, "why would someone want to adopt an adult?"

IVF Law in Pennsylvania

Rapid developments in medical and reproductive technologies are raising new and complex legal issues in family law throughout the United States, including Pennsylvania. Many couples experiencing difficulties with conceiving have increasingly turned to in vitro fertilization (IVF) and other assisted reproduction technologies.

Child Protective Services in Pennsylvania: When Does the Court Get Involved?

Having the Office of Children, Youth and Families (OCYF) involved with your child can be a scary experience for any parent. So why are Pennsylvania courts involved in some cases but not others? That can depend on a number of factors and the specifics of your case.