Child Custody

News & Analysis as of

International Abduction

Today’s topic is a very serious one, but not altogether uncommon in the UAE. The rules that govern what constitutes abduction are fairly clear – even though there are no specific statutory provisions dealing with child...more

Custody Modification: Courts Can Do It Without A Petition To Modify If Proper Notice Is Given

A lot of times when parents file petitions with the court regarding enforcing a custody order or contempt, they also want the court to adjust the custody order. Some think that the court can only change the custody order if...more

Help, Domestic Violence Restraints were Filed Against Me—and I didn’t do it!

The New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act serves an enormously important function to protect abused individuals. However, the protections of the Act can be misused in a divorce or custody litigation to evict someone...more

Case Study in the United Arab Emirates: Family Law

Custody laws in the United Arab Emirates are mainly transcribed in Federal Law No. 28 of the year 2005 (UAE Personal Affairs Law), and I will refer to these articles in covering the Court's discretion in family law issues. A...more

Grandparent Visitation: What Major v. Maguire Means Going Forward

After Anthony and Suzanne Major’s son, Chris Major, separated from Julie Maguire, the Major’s claim they continued to have a substantial relationship with their granddaughter. Suzanne Major stated she visited her...more

Pennsylvania Superior Court Awards Custody to Grandparents Despite Mother’s Objection

Do grandparents have any rights to see their grandchildren? Consider the case K.T. v. L.S., 118 A.3d 1136 (Pa. Super. 2015), in which the Pennsylvania Superior Court awarded partial child custody to a set of grandparents...more

Same-Sex Parent Claims Victory Over Alabama in Custody Battle

Freshly back to work from maternity leave, it warmed my new-mommy/divorce-lawyer heart to see this week’s U.S. Supreme Court decision affirming a loving mother’s right to share in the ongoing care and custody of children she...more

Appellate Court Notes

Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: SC19474 - State v. Roman - Appellate Court Advance Release Opinions: AC37107 - NRT New England, LLC v. Jones - Plaintiff broker entered into an exclusive buyer’s...more

Supreme Court Decides V.L. v. E.L.

On March 7, 2016, the Supreme Court decided V.L. v. E.L., No. 15-648, holding that the Full Faith and Credit Clause of the United States Constitution requires Alabama courts to grant full faith and credit to an adoption...more

U.S. Supreme Court to Alabama: Full Faith and Credit Must Be Given to Out-of-State Adoption

In a unanimous, per curiam opinion in V.L. v. E.L., the U.S. Supreme Court has reversed the Supreme Court of Alabama’s refusal to enforce a Georgia adoption order. V.L. and E.L., two women, were involved in a 25-year...more

Supreme Court Update: Lockhart V. United States (14-8358), Gobeille V. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. (14-181)

Who could have imagined a month ago that our summary of Justice Scalia's dissent in Montgomery v. Alabama (14-280) would be our last opportunity to analyze an opinion from the Justice who, alongside Jackson and Holmes, will...more

Whose Your Mommy? Legality of Surrogacy Contracts

It appears that regardless of her separation and subsequent divorce from husband, Lamar Sally, television personality, Sherri Shephard, will still retain the title of “mommy” to Lamar Sally, Jr. On March 1, 2016, the...more

6 Things You Should Know about the New Child Support Law

Governor Christie rung in the New Year by signing a statute that dramatically changes New Jersey’s laws governing child support. Here’s what you should know: As a general rule, child support terminates automatically...more

A Stepparent Was Ordered to Pay Child Support in Pennsylvania Custody Order?

Did you know that a stepparent can be ordered to pay child support of his or her stepchildren in Pennsylvania? In a recent Pennsylvania Supreme Court case, just that happened – a stepparent was found to have a duty to support...more

Pennsylvania Superior Court Denies Father's Petition To Change His Son's Last Name To Match His Own

In a November 2015 binding opinion, the Pennsylvania Superior Court entered an order denying father's request to change his three year old son's last name to match his own. The Superior Court also denied father's alternative...more

Mediation and Parent Coordination Work

I am a true believer in mediation. It is honest, creative and raw. In mediation the parties are involved in their end result and can do things that a judge may not do. This week I served as a mediator and at the beginning of...more

To Bifurcate, or Not to Bifurcate: That is the Divorce Question

Some divorcing couples may want their divorce resolved as quickly as possible. In California, the legal minimum time requirement that a dissolution can be entered is six months from the date of service of the Petition to the...more

Court Permits Mother To Relocate With The Child More Than Five Hours Away

In September 2015, in a Non-precedential Decision, K.A.N. v. J.A.N., the Pennsylvania Superior Court upheld a trial court's decision to permit mother's relocation with the child from Pennsylvania to Virginia. The relocation...more

What Can Be Learned From Madonna’s Custody Battle

Pop icon Madonna is facing a difficult battle concerning custody of her 15 year-old son, Rocco.  While the divorce agreement she entered into with Guy Ritchie about eight years ago, awarded her custody of Rocco, it appears...more

The Queen of Pop’s Custody Battle

This Christmas, gifts were the last thing on the mind of America’s material girl, Madonna. Instead, she and her ex-husband, Guy Ritchie, are entrenched in a custody battle, fighting over where their 15-year-old son Rocco will...more

When Same-Sex Marriage Ends, Ex-Spouse May Have Custody Rights

On June 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its opinion in Obergefell v Hodges, in which it ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution requires a state to license a marriage between two people...more

Contracts Are Considered When Using Assisted Reproduction Technology

Two recent decisions highlight the importance of contracts between parties in cases involving assisted reproduction technology (ART).  In Pennsylvania, the Superior Court found that television personality, Sherri Shepherd was...more

How Coparents Should Handle the Holidays

Hi there, It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and with it all of the holidays of the season! This time of year is particularly tough for folks who are just getting used to a coparenting...more

Modifiability of Written Child Support Agreement

When parties are divorced, they often detail the economic terms in a written agreement called a marital settlement agreement or a postnuptial agreement. These marital settlement agreement may contain a provision regarding...more

Filing and Litigating a Hague Convention Child Abduction Civil Case in Federal Court

Background on Child Abduction Cases Under the Hague Convention - The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (“Hague Convention”) is an international treaty in which the signatory...more

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