We are proud to offer a selection of blogs covering different geographies and areas of the law. Please see below for a brief description of each, or jump to our recent posts.
New Jersey Family Law Blog
Fox Rothschild's New Jersey Family Legal Blog provides practical information and useful tips related to such topics as alimony, child support, custody, parenting time, divorce, equitable distribution, prenuptial agreements, domestic violence and grandparent visitation. This blog is an excellent resource for individuals with New Jersey specific family law questions and advisors whose clients may encounter family law issues.
View the New Jersey Family Law Blog
Pennsylvania Family Law Blog
The Pennsylvania Family Law Blog provides readers with information on and insight into Pennsylvania Family Law issues, including divorce, equitable distribution, alimony, child support, spousal support, alimony pendente lite, and custody.
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Recent Blog Posts
- Can Divorcing Families Afford The “Sporting Life?” The September 7 issue of TIME Magazine features our obsession with childhood sports. The statistics tell the story. In 2005, school age children played sports at a combined cost of about $8 billion per annum. Today that number is about $15 billion, almost double. And, during this same period there was no increase in the population of American children. About 73 million, then and now. So, how about household income over the same period? Nominally, it went from an average... More
- Observations On Mediation There is a world of information on the internet. That includes a huge number of websites professing to advise you about divorce. And among the topics often discussed on these sites is mediation. Not a week passes without at least one client asking whether they should mediate one or more issues arising from separation and divorce. Mediation is non-binding negotiation without lawyers. What could be better? Get the job done without the expense of the lawyers. So, it naturally follows that... More
- Where Should Custody and Parenting Issues Be Decided? Sometimes, the location of a case – for one reason or another – can be just as important as anything else. Perhaps the law is different and more beneficial to one side in a particular location; possibly, one place is simply more convenient for purposes of introducing evidence at a trial or merely having all parties be present in court. In my practice, I have seen this issue come up more and more. With our increasing mobility, the questions of where... More
- Right Against Self-Incrimination Preserved for Parents in Cases Involving Child Sexual Abuse Thankfully, sexual abuse allegations against parents do not often arise in the context of a divorce typical. However, when those scenarios do arise, they bring lawyers, litigants and judges alike in to unchartered territory where they sometimes have to sift through various accounts to get at the truth of the matter. Twenty years ago, the Appellate Division succinctly described the dilemma Courts often face when dealing with sexual abuse allegations: This case is an example of a tragic but recurring dilemma in certain... More
- You Can’t Disregard the Partnership Agreement When Valuing a Business In 2014, I authored a post on this blog entitled Stern Revisited – Using the Shareholder Agreement to Determine Value. I noted then that it seemed that after the Appellate Division’s decision in Brown v. Brown which changed the landscape by doing away with discounts and essentially ushered in more of a value to the holder construct, that the consideration of an agreement was dead. Rather, a myopic view of methodologies focused on income seemed to be the norm – disregarding all else. This was the... More
- SUPREME COURT OF NEW JERSEY DEPARTS FROM STANDARD UTILIZED IN RELOCATION CASES In what seemed like an eventual, but no less dramatic change in family law jurisprudence, the Supreme Court of New Jersey in Bisbing v. Bisbing overturned the well-established two-part test used in determining whether a primary custodian should be permitted to relocate interstate with an unemancipated child and, in connection therewith, the primary custodian’s presumptive right to relocate. In so doing, it noted a “special justification” in returning to the “best interests” of the child standard applied before Baures: We affirm... More
- Is Football Destined To Become A Legal Custody Football? In most cases, there isn’t much to write on the subject of legal custody. In Pennsylvania, it is the right to make decisions affecting the child’s welfare; in contrast to physical custody which is where kids spend their time. It rarely comes up except when couples fight over school placements or foreign travel to “unsafe” places. Under a long-standing Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision, Zummo v. Zummo, courts stay out of questions concerning religious worship unless the worship involves venomous snakes... More
- Hedging Bets on Social Security If you have been reading the news lately, we have seen lots of electronic ink spilled over entitlement programs, especially Medicaid and its role in health care reform. Meanwhile, the report of the Trustees of the Social Security Fund issued a grim report earlier this month about the viability of the program upon which almost every American relies as an important piece of retirement income. The short-term news is good. The Trustees see surpluses in the accounts (income exceeding benefit payments)... More
- The Examination Of A Child In A Protection From Abuse Hearing Governor John Carney recently signed House Bill 141 into law. The Bill amends Section 1042 of Title 10 of the Delaware Code regarding protection from abuse proceedings by creating a new subsection (f). This subsection permits the Family Court to interview a child outside of the presence of the parties. Specifically, the Bill provides: 1042. Commencement of action; procedure. (f) The Court may examine a child outside the presence of the parties for the purpose of obtaining the child’s testimony and ascertaining the truth of a matter asserted... More
- A Rainbow by Any Other Name-Legal Name Change Granted for Transgender Child In a case of first impression in New Jersey, I was privileged to represent the mother and custodial parent of a transgender child in a contested, but successful, application for the child’s legal name to be changed to the name which more accurately reflects the gender with which he identifies. The case, Sacklow v. Betts, has resulted in a reported decision (precedential) and gives guidance for judges who will no doubt be addressing these issues in the future. Janet Sacklow retained counsel... More
- Bitcoin Redux with an Ethereal Twist We last wrote about Bitcoins in late March, 2014. The principal concern we expressed at that time was that these cryptocurrencies might form a refuge from financial disclosure in the typical divorce setting. The specifics of how these assets work is in the earlier article and available on line as part of our archive (search: bitcoin). The one thing that had to discourage this medium of investment was its volatility. People who buy a currency tend to like it to... More
- Sua Sponte Reinstatement Of Dismissed Final Restraining Order Violates Due Process, Appellate Division Says Notice and opportunity to be heard is one of the most fundamental tenants of due process in this country. Every litigant, no matter how small the case, has the right to have his or her “day in court.” As we learn in the recent Appellate Division decision of T.M.S. v. W.C.P., that applies equally to a plaintiff – the party bringing the action – and to a defendant – the party defending against the action. Some background as to the Prevention... More
- Supreme Court Addresses The Application Of A Rebuttable Presumption The Sex Offenders Act is found in Chapter 7A of Title 13 of the Delaware Code. Section 724A of the Sex Offenders Act imposes a rebuttable presumption “that no sex offender shall be awarded sole or joint custody of any child, that no child shall primarily reside with a sex offender, and that no sex offender shall have unsupervised visitation with a child.” In the case of Division of Family Services v. Mark O’Bryan, No. 175, 2016 (May 31, 2017) the... More
- Family Court Releases Electronic Order Request Forms Family Court has not yet moved to the electronic filing system used by other Delaware Courts. However, effective today, June 1, 2017, attorneys and litigants in Family Court may request to receive orders issued in all their civil matters by encrypted email rather than U.S. mail. To do so attorneys may complete and file Family Court Form 613 and litigants may complete Family Court Form 614. ************ Leslie Spoltore is a Partner with the law firm Fox Rothschild LLP. Leslie practices in Fox Rothschild’s Wilmington, Delaware... More
- Don’t Forget To Celebrate – May Is National Foster Care Month By the President of the United States of America A Proclamation During the month of May, we observe National Foster Care Month and we celebrate those who have opened their homes and their hearts to children in need and those who have devoted their careers to serving America’s foster youth. Americans throughout the country are serving their communities as foster parents, mentors, respite care providers, and volunteers. In the last year alone, America’s foster families opened their homes and hearts to more than... More