Spivak Law Firm | Pittsburgh, PA

Based in Pittsburgh, PA

412-344-4900

Spivak Law Firm is BBB Accredited

DUI and Driver’s License Suspension

 

200274121-001If you’re pulled over for drunk driving, you may decline to take the roadside sobriety tests. That’s right, you don’t have to stand on one foot or touch your finger to your nose.

But you should take a Breathalyzer or blood test, and here’s why:

Under Pennsylvania laws, refusal to submit to chemical testing will result in suspension of your driver’s license.

So even if you weren’t drinking and you beat the rap on the DUI, you still could lose your driving privileges for a year for refusing to take the chemical test.

To speak with an experienced DUI attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Penalties for Not Paying Child Support

 

Little girl wearing sundress holding flowersIf you are entitled to receive child support, the system in Pennsylvania is set up to garnish wages from the paying spouse and deposit the money directly into your account.

If a parent fails to pay child support, the court may enter a judgment for the total amount of unpaid support, requiring immediate payment in full.

Failure to obey a support order of court could result in sanctions such as attorney’s fees and even imprisonment.

To speak with an experienced family law attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

PFA Orders Help Abuse Victims

702075.TIFAre you or your children victims of domestic abuse?

In Pennsylvania, a Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order offers many safeguards, including to:

  • Evict the abuser from your household
  • Restrict the abuser from you and the children
  • Order the abuser to pay financial support
  • Prohibit the abuser from contacting you
  • Ban the abuser from possessing guns

Spivak Law Firm provides strong, aggressive representation for Plaintiffs and Defendants at PFA hearings in the following counties: Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Indiana, Washington, and Westmoreland.

For a free consultation, call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Domestic Violence Penalties

DV Pic5Domestic violence experts say that strangulation is a strong indicator for future homicide.

In 2015, six people were strangled to death in Pennsylvania. Studies show that the odds of becoming a homicide victim increase dramatically for women who reported strangulation by a partner in the past.

Pennsylvania lawmakers are now considering a bill to establish a felony strangulation law. The bill would rank strangulation as a second-degree felony or a first-degree felony if the defendant is named in an active Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order, uses an instrument of crime, or has been previously convicted of strangulation.

Spivak Law Firm handles all matters of family law and criminal defense with a focus on domestic violence. Call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Helping Juvenile Offenders

 

Family Pic9In Pennsylvania, people under 18 who commit crimes go to family court, where the approach is more rehabilitative and less punitive. Some policy experts advocate raising the family court’s age to young adults up to 25-years-old.

“Young adults are more similar to adolescents than fully mature adults in important ways,” wrote Vincent Schiraldi and Bruce Western of the Harvard Kennedy School in a recent column published in The Washington Post. “They are more susceptible to peer pressure, less future-oriented, and more volatile in emotionally charged settings.”

Additionally, they point to “disastrous” public safety outcomes resulting from drawing a line at age 18: “For example, 78 percent of 18- to 24-year-old released from prison are rearrested and about half return to prison within three years, the highest rescidivism rate of any age cohort.”

Spivak Law Firm handles all family law and criminal defense matters. We are routinely appointed to represent juveniles in Allegheny County. To schedule a consultation, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Avoid Stress in Divorce

 

Family Pic3Divorce doesn’t have to be stressful emotionally or financially.

Litigation tends to increase stress levels for people going through a divorce. But you can get a divorce without ever stepping into a courtroom.

Spivak Law Firm is trained in mediation and collaborative law. We are skilled negotiators who can help spouses reach settlement on all issues, including: child custody; child and spousal support; and dividing assets and debts.

If agreement is reached, we then draft a Marital Settlement Agreement and quickly process the divorce.

To speak with an experienced Allegheny County divorce attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

No Guns For PFA Defendants

PFA Pic9Should Pennsylvania adopt stricter gun laws in an attempt to reduce domestic violence?

Many states have recently done so. For instance, Maine last year passed a law prohibiting people convicted of domestic violence crimes from owning guns for five years after completing their court-ordered sentences.

In Pennsylvania, people with active Protection From Abuse (PFA) Orders against them are prohibited from possessing firearms. PFA defendants must either relinquish weapons to their local sheriff’s office or give them to a friend or family member for safekeeping.

Some activist groups want to further restrict PFA defendants by eliminating the state’s third-party safekeeping provision.

Spivak Law Firm handles all matters of family law and criminal defense with a focus on domestic violence. Call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

4 Reasons to Modify Child Support

Custody Pic5Either parent may seek to modify a child support order at any time. The moving party will need to show a substantial change of circumstances occurred since the final order was entered by the court.

What constitutes a substantial change of circumstances?

Common examples include:

  • One parent gets more custody time
  • One parent gets a significant pay increase
  • One parent gets laid off from work
  • A child seeks to participate in a new extra-curricular activity

Do not voluntarily quit a job to avoid paying child support, as a court can assign an earning capacity based on past income levels.

To schedule a consultation, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Child Custody and Social Media

Custody Pic3Everyone has a friend or follower on social media known as the “over-sharer” who posts private information for everyone to see.

If you’re engaged in a child custody dispute, avoid being the “over-sharer.” Think twice about whether or not your next status update could negatively affect your case. What was once a venting session could become evidence that your ex-spouse’s attorney uses against you in Court. The same holds true with emails and texts.

To speak with an experienced family law attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Want a PFA? Just Ask.

PFA Pic3In Allegheny County, judges approve nearly all requests for Temporary Protection From Abuse (PFA) Orders.

Indeed, more than 90 percent of requests for a Temporary PFA are granted in all counties surrounding Pittsburgh, including: Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Washington, and Westmoreland.

But recent reports show that a whopping 44 percent of PFA petitions were denied by judges in York County, located in South Central Pennsylvania. Public meetings have been scheduled in York County to address the disparities.

Spivak Law Firm provides strong, aggressive representation for plaintiffs and defendants at PFA hearings. For a free consultation, call (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.