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Questions Answered by Cary B. Hall
1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Does a emergency custody order need to be signed by a judge

My friend received a letter in the mail and a text from the other parties lawyer stating that there is an emergency order put into place. When reviewing the paperwork that was sent from the other parties lawyer there was no judge signature or anything.

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jul 8, 2020

Yes, a judge's signature (whether actual or electronic) is necessary. You should be able to get it directly from the Court or the other party's attorney. And you should demand to see it.

Best of luck to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: I have not seen my 4 year old son in 8 weeks.

His father won't outright deny me the ability but keeps making up excuses every time I ask or have plans to go there because he wont allow me to take him with me. We were never married. I was however married to my daughters father when my son was born. We had to fill out certain paperwork in... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jul 5, 2020

The police won't enforce a *court* custody order, much less your say-so over who is supposed to have physical custody of your son. Cops aren't in the business of using kids as a rope in a game of tug-of-war between warring parents, and they'll refer you to the court once they make... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Ex's new gf has a DUI & open drug possession/paraphernalia charges. Can I modify custody to protect daughter?

Ex and new gf fight constantly in front of daughter in her car and drive around drinking alcohol. She also continuously calls me derogatory names in front of daughter.

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 29, 2020

You can file a petition to modify the terms of your custody order *anytime,* and the court will assess any change in circumstances as it relates to the best interests of your daughter. A past DUI on Dad's new girlfriend's record may have little relevance to custody proceedings, esp. if... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: I have an felony 3 conviction from 7 years ago. I wanted to know if it would be possible to get it expunged or pardoned.

The charge was corrupting the morals of a minor. I was 17 at the time Of the incident but charged at 18.

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 29, 2020

Unfortunately, no. Felonies cannot be "sealed" at all under Pennsylvania's fairly-recent Clean Slate Act - and you cannot expunge a felony conviction until you're 70 years old *and* have had a 10-year period subsequent to that conviction without any arrests.

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights for Pennsylvania on
Q: What kind of attorney do I need to persue a lawsuit against a county jail ASAP

My son (age 18)was beaten and humiliated by 5 inmates in our county jail over the weekend.(He is now released on unsecured bail) The guards let this go on for hours when they are supposed to check each block every half hour. I want to persue charges or a lawsuit for failing to protect him. Please... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 26, 2020

You'll want an attorney who does "1983" litigation -- which references the federal statute under which you'd file suit against the municipality/jail. You'll also be filing in federal court, so you'll want someone who's familiar with federal procedures. It's... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Why would it be helpful to allow the other parent to file for custody first?

The child is mainly with me an goes with other parent on weekends there are safety concerns with the other parent such as him drinking an driving an even showing up to pick child up with an open container in vehicle. When I spoke with a lawyer the suggested to let him file first but im confused as... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 25, 2020

The only reason I can think of to let the other parent file first is to save yourself the court filing fee of opening up a custody case (which can run a few hundred dollars, and is $155.00 in Lycoming County).

Pennsylvania criminal law already prohibits a person from driving while...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: I got emergency custody of kids bc father went to jail. We have a modification hearing this week if he's looking at 5yrs

will I get full custody

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 22, 2020

The Court will be more interested in what sentence your children's father actually receives, and less so what he's "looking at." For instance, first-degree misdemeanors in Pennsylvania carry a maximum sentence of 5 years in jail, but many defendants so charged receive only... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: My ex has repeatedly threatened me and my girlfriend. I saved the messages, will these help me in court?

she has also stated that she will not give me my daughter even with a court order.

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 22, 2020

Potentially, yes - so save them and transfer them some way to your computer *and* print them out in such a way that the participants/dates/times can be recognized. You may find this easier said than done, however, which is why I always advise my family law clients to communicate by email only!... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Pennsylvania on
Q: Hello, How much will I pay for child support? Please see details below.

We're not married. We both live in cumberland county PA.

My daughter's mom and I split up but we are spending the same amount of time taking care of our daughter (3.5 days with me and 3.5 days with her mom)

We both have the same gross income (She get paid just a dollar... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 18, 2020

Since you're paying for your daughter's health insurance, you've got 50/50 time and the parent's incomes are the same, you probably shouldn't be paying ANY child support to your daughter' mother. In addition, you could probably negotiate alternating who gets to claim... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning and Probate for Pennsylvania on
Q: My grandmother just recently passed but she left a handwritten will in which I was a witness to

In the will it states how she wanted her assets divided among the family which include money she had left in the bank. But however her daughter who has her named on the account refuses to carry out my grandmother wishes is this legal

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 18, 2020

Potentially, if your grandmother and her daughter were joint owners of the bank account (which is also called "joint owners with the right of survivorship" - check the paperwork that was signed when the account was opened, or when daughter's name was added to the account). In such a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Pennsylvania on
Q: Social distancing and covid concerns

We have 50/50 custody of my stepson and also take care of my husbands elderly mother. She is considered high risk. Today we found out that my husbands ex has not been practicing social distancing and has been letting their son play with children closely. Talks in the house have been it might not... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 18, 2020

If there's no court order, there aren't any "official" rules by which to play -- at least right now. He has two recourses: (1) work it out informally, just like he always has, or (2) file a Complaint for Custody and let the court sort everything out.

Your...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Due to pandemic can someone restrict their father from weekly visitation if they feel they and family they live with are

Not practicing safety measures like not wearing masks and social distancing with others

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 15, 2020

Philadelphia Legal Assistance created this guide back in late March 2020 concerning custody during the pandemic: https://philalegal.org/custodyCOVID19. It may be of some use to you.

A court order is still a court order, even in a pandemic - and if you choose not to follow it, for...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: can someone get convicted if a witness say they see him with a gun but they didn’t find a gun cop found bullets

They locked him up I gave the detectives a statement and I’m going to go to court and repeat my statement that he pulled out a gun can you still he get convicted even if they didn’t found a gun

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 15, 2020

Yes, but it's certainly more likely if the gun was discovered on his person.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Pennsylvania on
Q: Are there laws in PA that restrict dad from bathing five year old daughter? And sleep with her on the same bed?

PA family law

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 15, 2020

I am aware of no such laws in Pennsylvania, and I've been practicing family law in the Commonwealth for 20 years.

Sounds like you two could benefit from some family counseling, at least for the kids' sake. Perhaps suggest it to her as a responsible father and co-parent. Best of luck to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can I keep my daughter from her bio father if he was high while she was in his care?

I was just informed that my daughter's bio dad was high while she was in his care (An entire weekend in another city). She is 4 1/2 and he had no involvement in her life until September 2019. I was informed that he was using heroin for the last month, including when he had her. We have no... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 9, 2020

Yes, you can can (and probably should) file for emergency custody -- or, since there's no order, you could also refuse to allow him physical custody of your daughter any longer and let *him* file for a custody order.

The tricky part, of course, is the reliability of your information...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Municipal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: How can I legally add and deed 1/2 of a paper road to my property? The other 1/2 to my neighbor? It existed since 1956.

Subdivision plan from 1956 shows a named paper road between my property and my neighbor to my right. It runs back into another property behind us. All deeds from 1956 to current, name the road on them as a boundary line with measurements of distance, utility right of way, etc. The property... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 8, 2020

If your unfriendly neighbors have no other access to their property, then they'll almost certainly get to keep using that "paper road" as a means to reach their property. A court will not render a property virtually worthless and unusable by "landlocking" it, and would... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: My husband has says that Covid-19 is fake news! He has been putting us at risk every single day, says he doesn't care!

My husband is out socializing EVERY-SINGLE-DAY! Partying every/all weekend and refuses to distance/wear mask/etc. He wont allow our 6 yr old son to wear a mask when they are outside together which really bothers my son. Today, for the 2nd time (1st time was even worse), he has risked our son's... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 8, 2020

At this point, you're still married and each of you has as much "right" to parent your child as you each see fit. If you want to change that and have "a leg to stand on" to prevent your husband from parenting in a way that you oppose, then you'll need to file at least... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: How can I get charges more than 10 years old off my record I cant find employment for them
Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 5, 2020

You can find some information about this here: https://mycleanslatepa.com/. You can also contact a criminal defense attorney to assist you - and you probably should to help you navigate the system.

Best of luck to you.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Joint legal custody, summer visitation coming up. My son has a work permit I did not sign an acknowledgement for...

I was just informed three days prior to my first summer visit that he was scheduled to work during my work hours, and requires me to transport him. I never signed anything stating he would be working or what his schedule would be, his mother did. I am unable to transport him to work due to having... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 5, 2020

There's nothing in Pennsylvania law that provides an answer to this; rather, the courts have the authority to make decisions in specific cases like yours. A court could order her to provide transportation, or not - and someone would have to file something to bring the issue to the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Is Summer vacation custody time "pure vacation" or is it substituted with regular custody time? When is "Summer"?

If I have child custody on a 3 day weekend, and I need to incorporate taking 7 days of vacation with my child, do I have custody for 10 days, or only 7 days total, effectively losing 3 days of "vacation"? In other words, are the vacation days "pure" vacation days that can be... Read more »

Cary B. Hall
Cary B. Hall answered on Jun 4, 2020

Normally, a comprehensive custody agreement would answer all of your questions by defining all of these terms. If it doesn't -- and make sure you review any written agreement to make sure it doesn't -- then you have two options: (1) go back to court to get the clarifications you seek,... Read more »

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