With your decision-making parenting plan in one hand and the answers to some important questions about jobs and schedules in the other, you are ready to start marking up a calendar to decide how to divide custodial time. You might want to print out some calendars and mark them up with different schedules. Printed calendars make it easier to evaluate the possible plans.
When you are working in mediation or collaborative law, you can create most any schedule you want to create to suit your families' needs.
The schedules I’m describing in this post are examples of what has worked for some families. Of course, if you cannot develop a plan through mediation, negotiation, or collaborative processes, you will be stuck with a schedule that a judge creates that may or may not be as tailored to your families’ needs. Read More
Last week we looked at how to create a parenting plan to divide your decision making after divorce. Establishing details and processes for decision making is the foundation of a terrific parenting plan. Create a plan with the help of an experienced mediator, family counselor, or collaborative attorney to draft a strong agreement-- built to withstand a lot of wear of tear! Next, you’ll develop the second part of your parenting plan, a schedule outlining what nights your child is sleeping at each house—or “allocation of custodial responsibility.” Read More
The media can’t seem to stop generating stories about how Bruce Jenner is now Caitlyn Jenner. I watched Diane Sawyer’s interview with Jenner about the physical and emotional process. How about the legal process? Has "Bruce Jenner" legally become "Caitlyn Jenner?" I don’t know. I do know that the process of changing your name is not difficult, but like any legal process, it’s not simple.
Legally changing your name requires filing documents with the court. You must give notice to anyone who may be affected. Some states require a hearing, and the process concludes when the judge signs the order. Like many legal proceedings, a petition for name change can be filed pro se, without an attorney. However, it may be cost effective to hire an attorney. The attorney can identify potential problems and help you through the process. Read More
You won’t find terms such as “full custody” or “50-50” or “Schedule A visitation” in West Virginia's child custody statutes. Rather, you’ll find provisions that allow for parents to work hard to create decision making processes and schedules that are tailored to meet the best interests of their child. Parents who are separating should consider the options provided by mediation and collaborative law in deciding what is best for their children. Our office provides mediation services and accepts custody matters when the parents are committed to collaborative processes to develop the parenting plan that is best for their child. Read More
Many times parents believe that the child should have a chance to articulate their opinion in a divorce or child custody case. Many courts prefer that their opinions be addressed through the appointment of a specially trained lawyer, or a Guardian Ad LItem, who may interview the child outside of the courtroom. Another option is to include children in mediation. While this option should be employed sparingly, for some families it might serve to empower the children and bring the family closer. Only a specially trained mediator, often working with a child specialist, can assess the situation and determine whether or not the child's participation is beneficial. Our office accepts cases in West Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia and can work with families to determine the best mediation structure for you.
Many children are injured at school, through accidents and through school violence. As a parent, you will want to protect your child from this harm, but after it occurs, you will also want to take whatever action you can to help your child fully recover and enjoy school again. Our office provides legal services and mediation services to work with families in West Virginia and the District of Columbia to help your child recover. Read More