Spivak Law Firm | Pittsburgh, PA

Based in Pittsburgh, PA


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Child Custody: Recording Kids

Desperate parents may resort to filming or recording their children in an attempt to gain leverage in child-custody battles.

However, these tactics can backfire, leaving children distressed and causing judges to question the parents’ judgment and ability to act in their children’s best interests. Many parents fail to realize how harmful this recording behavior can be or how negatively it can impact their case.

Spivak Law Firm offers strong, compassionate representation in child-custody matters while aiming to protect children in the process. To schedule an appointment with an experienced family-law attorney, call us at (412)-344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Falsely Accused of Abuse?

Because courts overwhelmingly grant Protection From Abuse (PFA) orders, the system itself is frequently abused by people seeking leverage in divorce and child-custody actions.

In Pittsburgh and all surrounding countries, judges grant more than 90% of all petitions for a temporary PFA Order, which can immediately evict you from your home, restrict you from your kids, and subject you to arrest.

At Spivak Law Firm, we aggressively defend people accused of abuse at PFA and criminal domestic violence hearings. We handle all areas of family law and criminal defense. If you have been accused of domestic violence, call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

3 Benefits of Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative divorce can help you resolve your conflict, and it provides a number of advantages over going to court, including:

  • Collaborative divorce is often less expensive than litigating through the courts.
  • The process is more flexible, as you can determine your own meeting times to accommodate your work schedule rather than having to follow the court’s schedule.
  • Your children are better shielded from conflict, as they avoid the stress of going to court.

To learn more about collaborative divorce, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390 to schedule a consultation.

PFAs and Gun Rights

In Pennsylvania, Protection From Abuse (PFA) defendants are frequently ordered to relinquish their firearms. If the defendant has to surrender the guns, they can be held for safekeeping by a third party like a family member or friend who passes a criminal background check by police.

Spivak Law Firm advocates for PFA defendants to protect their Second Amendment right to gun possession and ownership. We have effectively represented many people whose careers were at risk due to a PFA, including: police officers, homeland security officers, nurses, teachers, firearms dealers, and military personnel.

If you’ve been served with a PFA order, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Avoid Conflict in Divorce

The decision to divorce does not end the hurt feelings and conflict between spouses. The animosity often spills over into the divorce process and can affect your ability to parent effectively. But allowing conflict to take charge of your divorce can prove costly.

One of the best ways to keep legal fees to a minimum is by cooperating with your ex-spouse, if possible. This does not mean giving in to every demand, but to simply make an effort to forgive and remain civil with one another. You and your ex-spouse may benefit from attending co-parenting classes together or even seeing a counselor, which may limit your emotional and financial stress.

Spivak Law Firm handles all family law matters, including: divorce, child custody, child support, spousal support, and PFAs. To schedule a consultation, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Child Custody and Substance Abuse

Pennsylvania courts decide child custody cases in the best interest of the children based upon sixteen relevant factors. One of the factors judges consider is any history of drug or substance abuse by the parties.

If you have a drug or substance abuse problem, it does not automatically mean that your ex will get sole custody of your children. But it does mean you will likely face substantial hurdles to obtain your desired custody schedule.

The court may temporarily restrict you from your children, order supervised visitation, and order you to undergo drug and alcohol treatment. You may be upset that you are forced to undergo rehabilitation, counseling, and drug screens, but judges often reward parents who take successful steps to better themselves in the interests of their children.

Spivak Law Firm routinely helps parents with substance abuse and mental health issues achieve their custody goals.

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

Criminal Domestic Violence

Q: I am accused of perpetrating domestic violence. Can my accuser get the criminal charges dismissed?

A: No.

In domestic violence cases, it is common for an accuser to later recant testimony in an attempt to “make the charges go away.” If your accuser no longer wants you to be prosecuted, he or she can make this known to the district attorney’s office. However, the prosecutor has sole discretion to decide whether to pursue criminal charges against you.

Spivak Law Firm handles all family law and criminal defense matters with a focus on domestic-violence issues. We provide strong, compassionate representation in all Protection From Abuse (PFA), criminal domestic violence, and child custody cases.

To learn more about domestic violence law in Pennsylvania, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Child Support in Pennsylvania

Q: How long do child support payments continue?

A: Child support payments continue until a child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever occurs later. Child support may be owed for an even longer period of time for a disabled child.

In Pennsylvania, judges apply the Child Support Guidelines to determine the amount of support payable for each child. This decision is made based on several factors, including number of children and monthly after-tax incomes of the child’s parents.

Spivak Law Firm offers strong, compassionate representation in all family law matters, including child support. We help families determine the amount of child support owed and represent clients in child support enforcement actions.

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

Criminal Records and Employers

When applying for a job, you are required to inform your employer of any misdemeanor of felony convictions. But you don’t have to disclose convictions for summary offenses. And you don’t have to tell your employer about criminal charges against you that were withdrawn or dismissed.

If you weren’t convicted, you may think that you have nothing to worry about. But employers can access your criminal record simply by using your name and date of birth. Even withdrawn or dismissed charges have the potential to negatively affect employment opportunities. Employers will likely wonder why the police brought charges against you in the first place.

If you were charged with a crime, and the charges against you were later withdrawn or dismissed, we can help you erase the incidents from your criminal record.

At Spivak Law Firm, we expunge criminal records for a low, one-time fee. For more information, call us at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Child Custody: Corporal Punishment

In child custody litigation, parents are under a microscope. But the court isn’t the only one watching you closely. Your ex is paying close attention too. Your ex may be willing to tell the court anything that brings your integrity as a parent into question, especially the use of corporal punishment.

Although Pennsylvania permits the use of corporal punishment, the standard for deciding custody cases is “the best interests of the child,” which includes the child’s physical and emotional health. Accusations of excessive or extreme corporal punishment are given weight.

In cases where the scales weigh equally in favor of each parent, excessive corporal punishment may tip the scales out of your favor. If you are engaged in a child custody dispute, you should avoid using corporal punishment.

Sending your child back to the other parent with a mark caused by spanking could have disastrous results on your child custody case.

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