Blog – Pennsylvania Family Law

http://pafamilylaw.foxrothschild.com/

Mark contributes to the Pennsylvania Family Law Blog, which 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.

Recent Blog Posts

  • Your Divorce Is Not a Community Event We live in an age of instant information where there is constant temptation to share what one is doing and thinking. We are used to sharing our experiences and thoughts freely. The temptation becomes even greater when we are in times of stress. And, while this is a universal tendency that has always been prevalent, today we have a new means of making our thoughts known; through electronic writing. A recent case outside the domestic relations realm informs us of the... More
  • Custody Standing Wars- Chapter 2 The leading case from last year in family law was the Supreme Court’s decision in D.P. v. G.J.P. 146 A.3d 204, holding that Pennsylvania’s grandparent custody statute offended principles of privacy and was partially if not wholly unconstitutional. This was an odd turn, in an age when it seemed as if more and more people were eligible to claim custodial time or rights related to children. But the decision earlier this month from the Superior Court in K.W. v. S.L. &... More
  • Custodial Ménage A Trois This week we see a new case from a trial court on Long Island, which held that folks who adopt an open marriage that produces children might find the custody courtroom doors open when parts of the relationship have closed. Follow along carefully. It is a bit more “complicated” than you might expect. Dawn and Michael Marano are married in 1994. In 2001, they form an intimate relationship with a neighbor Audria Garcia. The Michael/Audria relationship (yes, the extramarital one) yields... More
  • Calculating Value Increase in Real Estate During Marriage – The Debt Reduction Side Hopefully all of us know that Pennsylvania is an “increase in value state” meaning that under Section 3501(a) of the Divorce Code, the increase in value of non-marital assets during marriage (to final separation) is a marital asset subject to division. There are two sides to this equation in cases where a spouse brings a premarital home to the marriage. The first is the increase in value that may be brought about by market demand for real estate. In laymen’s... More
  • The Custody Case Where Everything Went Wrong. Last Fall brought us a decision from the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania holding that a grandparent did not have standing to terminate a Father’s parental rights incident to an adoption. Last week brought us a Superior Court case in which the appeal comes from a Mother and her own Father in a custody case involving a 12-year-old child. Mother had a girlfriend. To show the seriousness of their commitment, Mother and Girlfriend decided they would adopt each other’s children. The family... More
  • Projecting Returns When Crafting A Divorce Settlement Ours is an age where hyperbole has not only become accepted, it is almost universally embraced as a part of American culture, and among the chief advocates of hype is the financial service sector of our economy. We lived throughout the 1980s, 1990s and early 2000s in an age when one could not open a newspaper or magazine without reading the amazing returns on investment that could be achieved by investing with this fund or that. In 2008, when the... More
  • The UTMA Quagmire It was the Uniform Gift to Minors Act. Then it became the Uniform Transfer to Minors Act. The goal was the same. To permit parents to set aside money for their children until they attained their majority or to use it for their benefit along the way. A rainy day or a college fund for kids. Seems like a good idea. Ah, necessity is the mother of invention and the road to hell is paved with good intentions. The last time... More
  • Where Stated Goal Is Marriage, Adoption May Be Revoked Just days before a separate panel of the Superior Court held that Pennsylvania courts may assume jurisdiction to dissolve civil unions, Judges Gantman, Bender and Panella issued a published opinion, In re Adoption of R.A.B., Jr., holding that an adult adoption consummated in July, 2012 could be annulled or revoked. 2016 Pa. Super. 295. The opinion was published on December 21, 2016. In April 2012, 76-year-old Roland Bosee petitioned the Allegheny County Orphans’ Court to permit him to adopt his 40+... More
  • Look Under The Tree And There’s A Family Law Case Involving Evidence Not terribly exciting but evidence rulings are hard to find and ones where a family law ruling is reversed based on evidence used by the trial judge are especially rare. Johnson v. Johnson 2016 Pa. Super. 294 is a published panel decision where the issue was whether Father needed to continue to support an adult child. The law in this area is made murky by the statute (adults “may be liable” for continuing support: 23 Pa.C.S. 4321(3)) but clarified by the... More
  • And Now The Private School Top 25 A few months ago we blogged about recent public school rankings across Pennsylvania and the battles they sometimes foster over school placement among warring parents. Well, Niche.com has now weighed in on Pennsylvania’s top private schools. The list is 100. We’ll pause at 25 with Aquinas School. ... More