Spivak Law Firm | Pittsburgh, PA

Based in Pittsburgh, PA

412-344-4900

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Pittsburgh Child Custody Lawyers

Child Custody During COVID-19

COVID-19 has presented new challenges for people sharing custody of their children, as disagreements occur over how much the kids should be allowed to leave home or socialize.

Co-parents may disagree about school reopening, play dates, and extra-curricular activities.

In some Pennsylvania counties, including Allegheny County, courts have generally directed parents to follow their court-ordered schedules throughout the pandemic.

Spivak Law Firm provides strong, compassionate, cost-effective representation in all child custody and family law matters.

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

Co-Parenting On Father’s Day

This Father’s Day weekend, families are taking extra care to show Dad how much he is loved and appreciated.

But when parents reside in separate homes, coordinating plans for Father’s Day can lead to conflict.

Here are some tips for a smooth holiday weekend:

  • Work together to set a plan for the day.
  • Encourage the kids to enjoy time with their father.
  • Make the holiday about your children and plan an activity that is fun for the whole family.

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

Child Custody and Travel Amid Coronavirus

Q: I do not want my children to travel during the Coronavirus outbreak, what can I do?

A: Your Court Order likely provides vacation time for you and your ex, but it probably does not include what to do in cases of a public health emergency.

If your ex seeks to take your child to a Coronavirus epicenter or out of the country, this may constitute an emergency matter necessitating Court intervention.

An attorney can draft and present an emergency petition to the Court to restrict the other parent’s ability to travel with your child.

In Allegheny County, Courts are generally directing parents to follow child custody orders and continue with custody exchanges despite government directives to stay at home.

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

Kids Who Witness Violence

Children who witness abuse suffer emotionally behaviorally, and cognitively.

There are no typical reactions to violence experienced by children.

Factors that may affect their behaviors include:

-Age

-Gender

-Amount of violence witnessed

-Type of abuse witnessed

-Whether the child is a victim as well as an observer of the abuse

Parents should try to be aware of behaviors that are unusual for a particular child and continue for a week or more.

If necessary, they should seek the help of a mental-health professional.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law with a special focus on child custody and domestic abuse. Call us today at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

5 Tips for Co-Parenting During Coronavirus

In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania directed all Courts to generally close to the public from March 19, 2020 through at least April 3, 2020, with limited exceptions.

Absent a true emergency, parents are stripped of the ability to bring child custody matters to Court until at least April 3, 2020, or even as late as mid-April in some counties.

Until you are able to proceed through the Court, we recommend following these five tips:

  • Comply with your Custody Order of Court as much as possible, unless in cases of true emergency.
  • Be honest with your co-parent about suspected and/or confirmed exposure to the Coronavirus, work together to limit your child’s exposure, and immediately notify one another if your child exhibits symptoms of the virus.
  • Provide makeup time to your co-parent if they have missed out on time with your child. The Court expects parents to work together to reasonably accommodate one other, and may hold your inflexibility against you in future proceedings.
  • Try to be understanding and flexible. If possible, try to work together for the sake of your child. Parents may be subject to layoffs and unable to make support payments.
  • Encourage the relationship between your child and your co-parent. Your co-parent may be working extra hours in the wake of this crisis, or may even be forced into a weeks-long quarantine. Work together to provide telephone calls, FaceTime, and/or Skype between your child and co-parent.

The attorneys at Spivak Law Firm are available to counsel you and provide options for how to best handle your custody concerns. To speak with an experienced child custody lawyer, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

CYF and Removing Kids

When safety issues cannot be addressed while a child remains in the home, Children Youth and Families (CYF) may remove the child from the home.

The child may be placed with a relative, in a foster home, or in a group home facility.

Out-of-home placement is a devastating event for the child and the entire family.

The trauma of separation can affect a child’s learning, emotional, and behavioral well-being for a long time.

Placement is also traumatic for parents and can affect their ability to function normally. It is critical that children be returned to their family as soon as safely possible.

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

Divorce Process In Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, most divorce cases proceed with litigation in which each spouse retains an attorney to represent his or her interest.

There are many opportunities to negotiate a settlement agreement resolving all economic claims.

If there are significant assets and debts in the marital estate, the attorneys will often engage in discovery – a formal process for obtaining all the relevant information.

Each side will file an inventory of their marital estate with the Court, then assign values to each asset and debt based on financial documentation.

If necessary, a family-court judge will attempt to mediate a settlement between the spouses. If no agreement is reached, there will be a hearing to determine a fair division of the marital estate.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law, including: divorce, child custody, child support, spousal support, and Protection From Abuse (PFA).

To schedule a consultation with an experienced Pittsburgh divorce attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Divorce: Cheating Spouses

Divorce often occurs when there are allegations of cheating.

But proving such allegations rarely affects the divorce process.

Under Pennsylvania law, there is no need to prove fault to obtain a divorce.

You might still have to pay alimony to your ex, even after proving that he or she engaged in an extra-marital affair that led to the divorce.

At Spivak Law Firm, we provide strong, compassionate, cost-effective representation in all areas of family law, including: divorce, child custody, child support, spousal support, alimony, counsel fees, and dividing assets and debts.

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

Child Custody Do’s and Don’ts

One of the most difficult issues for parents who share custody of their children is visitation. Some parents use visitation to achieve destructive goals. However, this can deeply hurt the children caught in the middle.

If you are struggling with visitation, take a look at these Do’s and Don’ts:

Do Make Visitations A Normal Part of Life: Find activities that give you and your children opportunities to build your relationship.

Don’t Argue With Your Ex In Front Of Your Child: Deal with important issues in a separate meeting or telephone call.

Do Show Flexibility Regarding Visitation Schedules: Give the other parent as much advance notice of changes in visitation as possible and respect their need for flexibility.

Don’t Try To Disrupt Your Child’s Relationship With Your Ex: Children need to know that it is okay to love both parents.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law, including: divorce, child custody, child support, and PFA hearings. To speak with an experienced family law attorney, call Spivak Law Firm at (412) 344-4900 or toll free at (800) 545-9390.

Child Custody: Co-Parenting

A key to effective co-parenting is encouraging your children to enjoy time with your ex.

Avoid telling your children that they are visiting with the other parent.

You don’t want to diminish your ex’s role as a parent or make your child feel like a guest in a home where they also reside.

Try to ensure your children feel at ease when transitioning from home to home.

It won’t always be easy, but try to encourage strong ties between the children and their other parent.

Spivak Law Firm handles all areas of family law, including: divorce, child custody, child support, spousal support, and Protection From Abuse (PFA). We routinely help people with child custody issues, including: negotiating custody agreements, custody relocation, and custody trials.

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