Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from March, 2015

Things a Judge Can't Do, but You Can! - Part 4: Parent Coordinators

A number of recent appellate decisions in Massachusetts have addressed the boundaries of what Probate and Family Court trial judges have the power to do.  Agreements reached between the parties, however, can include provisions that the judges don't otherwise have the authority to order.   In this four part blog series we will explore some of the important areas that an Agreement can address but the trial court is limited in addressing.  These are just some of  the most recent examples, and not intended to be an exhaustive list of all the ways that Agreements are better than  letting a Judge decide your fate . Part 4:  Parent Coordinator:  Do you want help resolving parenting disputes without returning to court? In Part 1 , we discussed how the Appeals Court in Ventrice overturned a lower court's order that required parties to engage in out-of-court mediation prior to filing any further action in the Probate and Family Court.   While Parent Coordination is different than

Things a Judge Can't Do, but You Can! - Part 3: Survived Agreements

A number of recent appellate decisions in Massachusetts have addressed the boundaries of what Probate and Family Court trial judges have the power to do.  Agreements reached between the parties, however, can include provisions that the judges don't otherwise have the authority to order.   In this four part blog series we will explore some of the important areas that an Agreement can address but the trial court is limited in addressing.  These are just some of  the most recent examples, and not intended to be an exhaustive list of all the ways that Agreements are better than  letting a Judge decide your fate . Part 3: Survived Agreements:  Do you want to decide now that certain issues can never return to court? The issue of survived v. merged agreements can often be a confusing one, but it is actually relatively simple:  Merged agreements can be changed in the future by a Court, and survived agreements can NOT be changed in the future by a Court. Recently, the Appeals Court

Teen Parenting Support Groups

While parenting of adolescents is challenging by itself, divorce and separated parenting can add even more complication.  We often encourage parents to consider the use of trained therapists to assist when issues arise with co-parenting teenagers.  Carly Baker, a trained Collaborative Coach and therapist, is offering two upcoming 8 week therapeutic support groups for parents of adolescents: Flyer for Daytime program beginning on Wed, April 29, 2015 Flyer for Evening program beginning on Tuesday, May 5, 2015 Click here for more information on Separated Parenting.

Things a Judge Can't Do, but You Can! - Part 2: Self-Executing Adjustments

A number of recent appellate decisions in Massachusetts have addressed the boundaries of what Probate and Family Court trial judges have the power to do.  Agreements reached between the parties, however, can include provisions that the judges don't otherwise have the authority to order.   In this four part blog series we will explore some of the important areas that an Agreement can address but the trial court is limited in addressing.  These are just some of  the most recent examples, and not intended to be an exhaustive list of all the ways that Agreements are better than letting a Judge decide your fate . Part 2: Self-Executing Adjustments - Do you want to return to court for changes you can anticipate? On March 18, 2015, Doris Tennant and Lisa Smith presented to the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation on the issue of Self-Modifying agreements, also known as self-executing provisions.  The program was an excellent overview of the recent case law relating to these

U.S. Tax Court Alimony Decisions: Five Cases You Should Know

Massachusetts Appellate courts have been busy interpreting the recent changes in alimony law, but they’re not the only courts struggling with legal questions surrounding alimony.  The U.S. Tax Court is tasked with interpreting the treatment of alimony under the I.R.S. Code and this has led to some interesting decisions in 2015.  Yes, I just used “tax” and “interesting” in the same sentence, but trust me if you are paying or receiving alimony, or representing clients who are, you need to know about these decisions. David H. Goodman, CPA/ABV/CFF, CVA of Gosule, Butkus & Jesson, LLP has been kind enough to provide us with summaries of these recent cases: U.S. Tax Court Alimony Decisions: 5 Cases You Should Know Guest Post by David H. Goodman, CPA/ABV/CFF, CVA Below I have summarized five U.S. Tax Court cases in which the Court ruled against the taxpayer on issues involving deductible alimony. In each of these the taxpayer attempted to deduct a payment as alimony and attrib

Things a Judge Can't Do, but You Can! - Part 1: Dispute Resolution Provisions

A number of recent appellate decisions in Massachusetts have addressed the boundaries of what Probate and Family Court trial judges have the power to do.  Their powers are limited by statute, case law and the Massachusetts Constitution, and sometimes judges exceed those powers by crafting solutions that test the boundaries of their authority. These limitations, however, highlight one of the reasons that more and more people are seeking out-of-court methods of resolving their family conflict.  Agreements reached between the parties can include provisions that the judges don't otherwise have the authority to order.   In this four part blog series we will explore some of the important areas that an Agreement can address but the trial court is limited in addressing.  These are just some of  the most recent examples, and not intended to be an exhaustive list of all the ways that Agreements are better than letting a Judge decide your fate . Part 1:  Future Dispute Resolution - Do y