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Addiction can affect child custody orders

It is an all-too-familiar occurrence these days when a Pennsylvania parent struggles with an addiction to drugs or alcohol. With powerful painkillers available through prescriptions, it does not take long for addiction to take hold, leaving some parents unable to fulfill their parental duties. However, if the parents are divorced and following a court-ordered child custody plan, one partner may have concerns about leaving the children with the addicted parent.

The courts hesitate to get involved with minor disagreements between divorced parents. However, when the wellbeing of the children is at risk, a parent may find assistance through legal channels. If one can demonstrate that drug or alcohol use interferes with the other parent's ability to care for the children and keep them safe, the court may order restrictions on visitation. This may include supervised visitation or, in extreme cases, suspension of contact with the children until the parent completes a rehabilitation program.

How to talk to your parents about your inheritance

If you are curious about your future inheritance, you may not know how to approach the topic. Many families do not openly talk about finances or death. Estate planning and inheritances are often seen as taboo due to cultural discomfort. 

Even if it is an awkward conversation to have, it is an important one. If you do not have a basic understanding of your inheritance and the reasoning behind it, there may be serious family conflicts or probate litigation down the road. Here are a few tips to broach this topic. 

Figuring out child custody terms? Ask yourself these questions

When going through a divorce or separation, there are a lot of things that require consideration. Some couples are able to work a number of issues out on their own or with the assistance of legal counsel. Others, on the other hand, have to go to court to have a judge weigh in on the situation. Child custody, for example, is one of those things that numerous parents in Pennsylvania struggle to agree on.

When it comes to child custody, how it will work out all comes down to one thing: what will serve the best interests of the children. As parents know their kids better than anyone else, it is preferred that they work out custody terms that they believe will work for their family. Shared custody is the arrangement of choice these days, but sometimes there are situations when sole custody may be warranted.

Is there any way to protect assets from probate?

Most adults in the United States do not have estate plans; they assume any assets they have will pass on to their closest relatives with no issues. Those who do have plans in place may not be as protected as they think if they fail to update them when necessary. Whether one is going through the estate planning process or is tasked with the responsibility of closing out a loved one's estate in Pennsylvania, the one question just about everyone has is: Can probate be avoided?

Probate is necessary if a person lacks a will when he or she dies. It is also necessary to deal with issues surrounding certain assets and any claims made against the estate. There are a few ways to avoid probate, all of which have to be done before an estate needs to be administered.

3 financial tips to save money in a divorce

One of the worst aspects of divorce is financial consequences. It takes money to file and have legal representation. You lose many assets during the division process, and you may have to pay child and/or spousal support.

The bills quickly add up. Most of these costs just come with the territory, but others you have more control over. Even with those you do not, you can take steps to prepare yourself financially to minimize the hit to your bank account.

Did any of these habits contribute to you wanting a divorce?

The decision of whether to end a marriage or keep working on it can be a difficult one to make. Some problems can be worked through, while others, on the other hand, cannot. There are certain habits that may be exhibited by a spouse that nothing can change. If these habits exist in one's marriage, wanting a divorce is certainly understandable. What are these habits that may lead Pennsylvania residents to end their marriages?

According to an article, there are six specific habits that can contribute to the breakdown of a marriage. One or more of these habits may exist in a marriage. Obviously, every couple has their own unique issues. The six habits listed in the article are:

  • Arguing over everything, big and small
  • Holding grudges
  • Failing to track finances
  • Being jealous of one's partner
  • Failing to include one's spouse in the decision-making process
  • Avoiding confrontation

Probate generally necessary when there is no will

Following the death of a friend or loved one, it can be difficult to manage funeral arrangements, let alone handle the closing of his or her estate. Closing out an estate in Pennsylvania can be made even more difficult if the decedent died without leaving a will behind. In such cases, probate court is generally necessary.

What is probate? It is the official process of administering someone's estate. When there is a solid estate plan in place, going to probate court may be avoided. When there is not, a judge will get to make a lot of important decisions regarding the future of the estate.

Most common ways spouses hide assets

Anyone going through a divorce needs to be aware of the possibility of hidden assets. Many people like to think a partner would never hide assets. However, research has shown roughly 7.2 million Americans hide assets from a spouse during marriage. 

Therefore, spouses need to be aware of how partners most likely hide assets until after the divorce is final. You have a right to an equitable distribution of assets, so do not agree to anything until you have checked the following places. 

Put these 5 tips to work in managing your gray divorce

Perhaps you and your spouse have had a long marriage, but things have changed. The children have families of their own now, and the two of you have grown apart.

If the end to your union is on the horizon, here are five tips to help you better understand and navigate your gray divorce.

How long does it take to get through the probate process?

If you recently lost a loved one, you likely want to know how his or her estate will be closed out. In Pennsylvania, probate may be necessary -- it all depends on what type of assets the deceased owned and whether he or she had an estate plan. If probate is necessary, you probably want to know how long it will take to get through. The truth is every case is different, so there is no set time frame for how long it will take to finalize the probate process.

Closing out an estate is a time-consuming and, sometimes, exhaustive affair. There is simply a lot to it. An official probate case needs to be opened, beneficiaries must be identified and contacted, assets have to be inventoried, creditors need to be contacted, and taxes must be paid -- among other things. All of this can take months, and that is if everything goes smoothly.

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