Divorce Mediation

Have you considered divorce mediation as a way of handling your divorce? Some couples agree on getting a divorce and agree on how to resolve the other claims, such as their property division. For such couples, our firm offers mediation. Our firm represents both the husband and the wife. We meet with both of you, where we gather the needed information. We then prepare the legal documents, for the wife and husband to sign. Those documents are then filed with the Court. There are no hearings in Court.

The advantages are numerous. First, we can answer any questions you have about the process and divorce law. Second, the needed legal documents are prepared correctly and efficiently. Third, the overall cost is usually far lower than if both of you hire separate lawyers. The husband and wife can each pay half, if they choose.

Feel free to contact our firm for more details.

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Written by Attorney Andrew Glasgow
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Divorce: A Less Used Kind

Most Pennsylvanians get a no-fault divorce. There are two kinds. One kind allows you to get divorced, if your spouse consents. 23 Pa.C.S. § 3301(c). The second kind allows you to get divorced, if you have been separated for two years; you do not need your spouse’s consent. 23 Pa.C.S. § 3301(d). But what if your spouse will not consent and you do not want to wait for two years of separation? Is there an alternative?

Yes. There is a kind of divorce less often used. If you can prove one of the six following conditions at a hearing, the court may grant a divorce. 23 Pa.C.S. § 3301(a). First, your spouse has deserted your habitation for at least one year. Second, your spouse has committed adultery. Third, your spouse has endangered your life or health with cruel and barbarous treatment. Fourth, your spouse married you while still married to someone else. Fifth, your spouse has been sentenced to jail for at least two years. Sixth, your spouse has offered such indignities that your condition is intolerable and your life is burdensome. You only need to prove one of these conditions, not all six.

These six conditions have been simplified to provide a basic understanding of them and particular defenses may apply. If you wish to discuss whether you qualify for this kind of divorce, feel free to call our firm.

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Written by Attorney Andrew Glasgow
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Separation: Losing the House

A common property division (or equitable distribution) question is whether I’ll lose the house if I leave it. The scenario is as follows. The married parties are still living together, but one of them wants to separate and leave the house (the marital residence). For the sake of this example, suppose the wife wants to leave. She is afraid that, by doing so, she will lose her marital interest in the house. She will not.

A Pennsylvania divorce court will typically divide the property that existed when the parties separated. If the parties own a house, two cars, some furniture, and a pension when they separate, these are the assets the court usually divides. If you have been separated for several years, the court will still usually look back at what property existed when the parties separated. Thus, leaving the house at separation does not remove it from the marital estate.

The practical effect of leaving the house, however, is that (in my example) the husband is more likely to get the house from the final property division. He continued residing there after wife left it. But, he is usually required to pay wife her share of its value (or give her another asset of equal value.)

If you want some clarity on how your property division is likely to play out, you are welcome to contact our firm.

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Written by Attorney Andrew Glasgow
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Divorce

In Pennsylvania, there are two kinds of divorce: fault-based and no-fault. Fault-based divorces require proving a ground for it, such as your spouse committed adultery or gone insane. These grounds are limited in number. It has become popular to pursue the no-fault divorce rather than the fault-based, because a trial is not required with the no-fault version.

The two forms of no-fault divorce are 3301(c) and 3301(d). The first kind can be finalized in roughly ninety days, as long as your spouse consents. The latter kind, 3301(d), can be finalized in a little less than ninety days. You do not need your spouse’s consent, but you must have lived separate and apart for at least two years. Hence, a Pennsylvanian frequently determines whether his or her spouse will consent to a divorce. If not, that person frequently lives separately, carrying on with his or her own life for two years, after which he or she finalizes the divorce with the 3301(d) version.

Note that this procedure results in acquiring a divorce decree only. Support, custody, and property division are separate issues, requiring separate legal procedures.

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Written by Attorney Andrew Glasgow
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