Spivak Law Firm | Pittsburgh, PA

Based in Pittsburgh, PA

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Swissvale Family Law

Divorce: Risks For Kids

Research shows that divorce poses serious physical and emotional risks for children that can cause problems well into adulthood. Divorce can be a rough transition for children and it may be wise to enlist the help of a professional.

However, it is not abnormal for children to show signs of stress as they adjust. There are some general clues to look for when trying to decide whether your child needs therapy.

If you notice unusual behavior that persists for more than a couple of weeks, it is a sign your child might need help. Other specific symptoms include social withdrawal, increased sleepiness, and persistent mood swings.

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.

Violating A PFA Order Brings Criminal Charges

139378055Police may arrest a defendant without a warrant for violating a Protection From Abuse (PFA) Order based on probable cause even if the police did not witness the violation.

Probable cause may consist of verifying a valid PFA Order and the credible statement of the victim.

A Defendant who is arrested for violating a PFA Order will be arraigned on the charge of Indirect Criminal Contempt (ICC) by the magisterial district judge who has jurisdiction.

The burden of proof required in an ICC hearing is “proof beyond a reasonable doubt.” Punishment for violating a PFA Order is a maximum of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

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

Getting A Continuance In A PFA Case

77005984In most cases, Judges will allow at least one continuance in a Protection From Abuse (PFA) matter.

PFA hearings are generally scheduled within 10 days. The defendant in a PFA case should have no problem getting a continuance if he or she has not been timely served or needs additional time to retain an attorney.

Parties may be surprised when a Court won’t grant a continuance of a PFA hearing. Continuances are generally only granted for good cause. The plaintiff may not be entitled to a continued hearing date if the defendant is present and wants to go forward.

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

Child Custody in Allegheny County (Part 4 of 7)

89793648 (2)In Allegheny County, any person involved in a child custody dispute must enroll in Generations, an alternative dispute resolution program that includes an educational seminar and mediation session. To learn about the educational seminar, please click here. To learn about the mediation session, please click here. To learn about waiving the mediation session due to issues of domestic violence, please click here.

At the custody conciliation, the parties and their attorneys meet with a child custody officer in an attempt to negotiate and resolve their custody case. There is no fee for the conciliation. You should bring with you: your child’s school schedule, your current income information (pay stub and/or W-2), your child’s extracurricular activity schedule, and a proposed custody schedule.

If you and the other party are able to come to an agreement, the custody conciliator will write up an order of court and you will leave with an order of court that day. This will dispose of the custody action filed and you will go no further into the court system.

If you and the other party are unable to come to an agreement: you may be ordered to submit income information for psychological/home evaluations; you may be ordered to appear at a partial custody hearing; or you may be ordered to appear at a judicial conciliation.

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

Child Custody in Allegheny County (Part 1 of 7)

Beautiful baby of three months old in his mothers hands.In Allegheny County, any person involved in a child custody dispute must enroll in Generations, an alternative dispute resolution program that includes an educational seminar and mediation session.

The educational seminar, which takes place at Wightman School Community Building in Squirrel Hill, is approximately three hours in length and aims to offer parents the skills to reach their own resolution on custody issues. The seminar addresses several topics, including: building a co-parent relationship; developing ways to communicate and problem-solve; helping children cope effectively with their changing family; and identifying how parent conflict can affect the behavior of children.

The educational seminar is also required for children ages 6 to 15, who are grouped by age so that they can identify and share with other children similar experiences in their families. These groups are facilitated with activities, discussions, art, music and play.

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