March, 2021 Archives

Tracking Child Support Payments

Under Massachusetts law, both parents have a duty to support their child. Typically, following a separation or divorce, only one parent is considered the custodial parent. This is the parent who lives with and has primary care of the child.

The support provided by the custodial parent is offered in the time and care given to the child. When families no longer live under one roof, sharing duties equally can be difficult. This is why one parent generally performs more of the task related roles, such as taking the child to school and providing meals, while the other offers support financially.

Some families try to avoid the court and legal battles by setting their own agreed-upon child support arrangements. In some cases, this even works—until it doesn’t. Without a formal court order to substantiate an agreement, a parent receiving money can allege the other isn’t holding up their end of … Read More »

Living Without a Healthcare Proxy: A Risk to Avoid

Your Life, Your Way Healthcare decisions are among the most personal, and most consequential, any of us can make. For many of us, there may come a time when old age, illness, or injury will prevent us from voicing our wishes and concerns about what we prefer for our bodies, or even how we prefer to spend the remainder of our lives.

In light of this, everyone needs to make provision, in writing, for someone else to be authorized to make these decisions for them. In Massachusetts, the only recognized legal vehicle by which to do this is by granting durable power of attorney, also called a healthcare proxy.

Massachusetts: The Odd Commonwealth Out When it comes to medical and end-of-life decisions, the law in Massachusetts is unusual when compared with the other forty-nine states and commonwealths that make up the U.S.

Massachusetts does not recognize living wills, also called … Read More »

Can I Change My Original Divorce Agreement?

Yes! Not only can you modify your divorce agreement, it is best to change it as your circumstances change.

Divorce agreement modifications can address changes to child support, alimony, and custody arrangements. Either party can request a modification to reduce or increase support payments or to change parenting plan specifications.

The status of your case, as well as the type of change requested, will determine how you facilitate modifications. One method is through a Complaint for Modification. Once completed, this form should be filed in the county where the judgment was issued.

Another way to make a change in some cases is to file a motion. For example, a Motion for Reconsideration requests a family court judge to review his or her previously issued decision in order to make a change in light of newly discovered evidence, an issue of fraud, or a mistake of law. A Motion to Set … Read More »