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

  • In Divorce: What’s A Reasonable Return on Invested Cash? This debate is as old as “guns vs. butter” but it has intensified in the past decade as interest yields have collapsed.  As we “head to the Fed” meeting next month a 10 year treasury note gets you 2.06% and we are told that a rate cut is on the way.  There was a time when you could buy a stock like GE and get a good yield plus some hope for appreciation.  That time ended two years ago. This trend... More
  • Northwestern Mutual: THE 10 YEAR VIEW OF AMERICA Hopefully, or perhaps, despondently, all of us recall early 2009.  The stock market crash of 2008 hit bottom in early 2009, and, thankfully, we began to emerge from the greatest financial crisis of our lifetimes.  In 2009, the broad S&P 500 Index was working its way back to 1,000; a low it had not seen since 2003.  Today it closed at 3,000 which means that if you had $1 invested, then it today is worth $3, a triple in baseball... More
  • SUMMER FUN BECOMES SUMMER ANGUISH The photo of 25-year-old Albert Almora a few days ago tells the story best. The 25-year-old Chicago Cubs outfielder has his head in his hands as he copes with the fact that his line drive foul ball struck and fractured the skull of a two-year-old in Houston. It could scarcely be more personal for Almora, who is himself the father of a two-year-old child. Today, another story of summer fun gone awry. A 14 year old from Raleigh North Carolina was... More
  • PENSION JUSTICE DONE; BUT ALONG A ROCKY ROAD On April 30, 2019, the Superior Court published a panel decision related to a retirement benefit divided in divorce.  This wasn’t just any pension, but one established for a Pennsylvania municipality.  As this author learned in organizing a recent seminar for the Doris Jonas Freed American Inn of Court, municipal pensions are a very special and unwieldy animal.  The decision in Conway v. Conway v. City of Erie Police Relief & Pension Association demonstrates why. The facts are easy.  The Conway’s... More
  • SKOOL DAZE; STATUTES OF LIMITATIONS AND THE LIMITS OF HIGHER EDUCATION CONTRIBUTIONS. Beth Anne and Mark Weber were married and produced two children, one in 1984 and another in 1994.  In their 1999 divorce, they formed a Property Settlement Agreement containing provisions that they would share equally the costs of “an appropriate undergraduate college or other post-secondary education for the children.” In 2007, Beth Anne filed to enforce the Agreement stating that Mark had not paid his share of their son’s tuition at Florida State University.  The son also intervened claiming status as... More
  • FINANCIAL INFIDELITY: Don’t Let Your Spouse Make You A Victim. As part of National Public Radio’s morning edition report for April 29, 2019, business correspondent Yuki Noguchi reported on a phenomenon we have witnessed, financial infidelity.  Ours is an age where credit is available everywhere 24/7.  Want to buy a power washer at 3 a.m.? Your friends at Amazon are not only prepared to take the order, they are also happy to discount the product if you will take a Chase Amazon Prime card as part of the transaction. If... More
  • Do Friends & Family Have a Role to Play When Interviewing an Attorney? To answer a question with a question: “Isn’t the sensible answer ‘No’?” After all, people contemplating divorce are not children. This is an entirely adult decision made by an adult who decided to marry in the first place. The prospective client is the person living the marriage with all of its advantages and disadvantages. No matter how close the friend or family member, that person is not living the marriage. In the past, my feelings on this subject were mixed and... More
  • Shouldn’t Everyone Have a Debt Allocation Agreement? We have written a fair amount about prenuptial agreements including a lengthy piece last October concerning difficult issues that young couples can face but rarely ever discuss.  Some recent litigation we have been managing prompts mention of a subject, which probably should be in a premarital agreement in almost every marriage.  In fact, we should probably all have these agreements. The subject?  Debt.  Americans love it.  The average household owes $184,000 on the mortgage and $28,000 on the cars in the... More
  • PARENTAL ALIENATION; DOES IT EXIST? CAN IT BE REPAIRED? The Center for Investigative Reporting at National Public Radio (NPR) published a report on March 9, 2019 about the longstanding controversy over parental alienation.  The broadcast includes recordings of actual testimony from a New Jersey child custody proceeding where a father suggested that the mother’s relationship with the children was “toxic.”  Parental alienation is a concept not formally embraced by the mental health community, which suggests that one parent can poison a child’s relationship with the other parent.  If you... More
  • Pennsylvania Supreme Court Permits Citation to Non-Precedential Appellate Rulings Take a friendly lawyer to your local watering hole and ask him for a quick summary of annoying things that have occurred in the practice in the past 20 years.  Chances are two strong subjects will come up.  The first is the decision about two decades ago by the Superior Court and Commonwealth Court to issue non-precedential opinions.  In common parlance the opinions are called “non-published”, but truth is that they are published and you can read them but the... More