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Massachusetts Child Custody Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Family Law and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: If my mom is in jail can a friend of mine get guardianship of me

I am 16 my mom left me in the care of a relative without birth certificate or social security card and I have been out of school for a year and am currently living with a friend who is filing for guardianship and feel unsafe goin back to my mom. How long will this process take and can or will they... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Sep 21, 2020

If the Court finds the petitioner for guardianship to be suitable and in your best interest after first having the petitioner appointed temporarily usually there would then be a trial date for appointment of a permanent guardian for you until age 18. Sometimes the parent(s) assent to temporary or... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support, Divorce and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Can your child support payments be lowered if you have another child with new spouse?(Massachusetts)
Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Aug 28, 2020

It can be used as a defense to the request for an increase in child support but not to lower an existing child support order.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Domestic Violence and Probate for Massachusetts on
Q: Why doesn't MA take parental alienation seriously?

I have exhausted all options I could think to do. Modifications, motions, emergency motions, DCF reports, attempted to have a GAL appointed, ARC attorney only telling court her wishes. Nobody sees an issue with this. A good relationship to a nonexistent one. The hate and anger coming from my child... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Aug 27, 2020

Not sure what you are trying to do at this point. If counseling is ordered then you should comply with the Court's Order. Is there a review hearing date? If so you will need to report that counseling has not gone well and are concerned that there should be separate individual counseling for... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Hi need help with Child custody for my daughter

Hi, I need with a child custody for my daughter Rosalie. She is 7. Her father just served me papers for custody and parenting visits. I'm planning on moving out of state and i want to do things legally. I also want to do what the best interest of my daughter. Her dad doesn't pay child... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Aug 27, 2020

There is a Public on-line Probate & Family Court docket search you can do to check the status of your case Its unclear what your case was- divorce, paternity, etc. Was the MDOR /CSE involved in obtaining child support orders? if yes, then follow up with the MDOR. If not, you can seek an... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Domestic Violence for Massachusetts on
Q: Where can I find a pro bono lawyer for child custody in Taunton, MA?

Parental alienation. Emotional and psychological abuse. Gaslighting. I'm getting absolutely nowhere in court.

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Aug 27, 2020

You can check with the local Bar Associations- I believe Bristol is your county.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Family Law and Domestic Violence for Massachusetts on
Q: What to do when a custody issue isn't taken seriously by the court?

Simple. My daughter and I had a great relationship 6 months ago to absolutely nothing. The court has a mountain of evidence proving emotional and psychologically abuse.

The ARC attorney is only sharing my daughter's wishes. I filed motions, emergency motions, contempt actions as well... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Aug 26, 2020

Has your case gone to trial or is it at the temporary orders stage? Temporary orders can be changed as circumstances change ,so although there is an Interlocutory appeal process generally cases are appealed that have gone to Judgment and there are rules of procedure that must be promptly followed... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Civil Rights for Massachusetts on
Q: Do I need to attend the meeting before the pretrial conference? MA probate.

Custody battle. I am filing on terms of parental alienation, emotional and physiological abuse. There's a pre trial conference but the other parties lawyer emailed me stating the court requires a meeting beforehand. I don't feel comfortable speaking in this meeting with just myself and... Read more »

Brian Waller
Brian Waller answered on Aug 10, 2020

The pretrial order you received from the court should explain exactly what you need to do and when. Some judges require the parties to meet at least a week or two before the hearing. If you decline to meet the other party's attorney will likely bring that to the court's attention. This... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Divorce and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: My little brothers father and my mom got a divorce and he doesn’t live with us anymore. Can he record us when he visits?

Before he was removed from our home he had “nanny” cams, and would frequently use his phone to record us in our home. At first I was told it’s like a nanny cam and was okay. Now that he lives with us can he still come into my house and record us with his gopro? I do not want to be recorded... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 28, 2020

Recordings are not permitted without consent of the recorded person in Massachusetts. Your mother is authorized to inform him it is unacceptable behavior and may need to address this behavior which is likely being prompted by his father via a Modification of the terms of visitation and possibly... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support, Divorce and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Do I need permission from SO’s ex to have a child depending on stipulations in their custody arrangement

They have an agreement that neither party can make a decision in regards to their child without first speaking to other parent and developing an agreement. As having a sibling would effect their child does he and I trying for a child fall under that agreement

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 24, 2020

This is not a typical construction of a decision concerning the child's health and education and recreation. Does your stipulation discuss this question of additional children ? I've never seen this coming up! It sounds like an intrusion and could well be a violation of public policy that... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Ok so how do I go about moving we both want to make some type of agreement and it’s legal custody
Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 20, 2020

Depending upon what Petition the joint legal custody was ordered temporarily or finally adjudicated, either a settlement agreement called a Stipulation to be entered as a Judgment if it was a temporary order or if the joint legal custody was a permanent Judgment then by a Joint Modification... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Hi I want to move to another state and me and the father have joint custody but the child lives with me...

But he doesn’t pay his child support and he have tattoo shop

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 20, 2020

Whether or not he pays his child support will not affect the custodial issue nor the removal issue, but it does not reflect well on him and is a part of the whole set of circumstances the Court uses to evaluate the removal petition. Is this joint physical or joint legal custody you are referring... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: Can i request That my child’s father gets tested for COVID?

I have Full custody and he was supposed to pick up my daughter today for the weekend. This morning i found Out that he’s been in an Airbnb out of state with 11 other people, no mask no protection. I live With both my parents who are older above 60 with a lot of heath issues. They are both high... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 17, 2020

How do you have this information? Is it in written form? A text or email? If so, you should respond in writing to him- text or email about your legitimate concerns for your child and your household's health and that you urge him to reconsider taking the child for the next 2 weeks while he... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Domestic Violence and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: What are my options at virtual mediation? Child wants to stay with me and it is much safer here anyway.

High-conflict divorce and custody dispute, with ex having a lifelong history of mental illness diagnoses and treatments. Divorce and custody arrangement finalized in a previous state of residence where she still resides. Child is currently with me in MA and has been since the start of the pandemic.... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 16, 2020

Because the child has not been living in Massachusetts for at least 6 months, our Probate Courts do not yet have jurisdiction over custody and visitation as the former state of residence still is the home state until then. However, if there is a safety concern about the child going to the other... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: Can I lose custody of a my child in MA because I moved into an RV?

I have primary physical custody. I recently had to move out of my apartment. I moved into an RV that I wanted to live in full time with my child. I lost my job in March because of the pandemic and have not since found employment, but actively looking. I moved out of my apartment last month because... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 13, 2020

In and of itself, this is not an issue unless the child is adversely affected by the move or if the public school system -if applicable to your child -will not accept that you are a resident in the location of the campground. It is unclear why you would have moved from your apartment at this time... Read more »

Q: How do I go about filing an appeal on DCF? I am involved in case on which I am NOT the supported person of neglect.

Domestic violence with my children's father, in which I am the victim, have landed DCF in my life for the third time.

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 6, 2020

This is actually an area of specialization. However, briefly, if you are within 30 days of the supported finding of abuse or neglect you can ask for a fair hearing and if the finding is adverse at the fair hearing, then the Superior Court would be involved if an appropriate appeal of the hearing... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: How does probate court for custody work in Massachusetts

My son is almost 4 and has lived with me his whole life, along with his mother This past January she had gotten us evicted and I have my own apartment, she took my son and is living in a shelter Using my child to get herself state housing, while I work 40 hours a week How can I get to see... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jun 29, 2020

Has paternity been acknowledged? If not, then you should commence a Paternity proceeding and request visitation and child support orders to be entered upon a paternity finding. The law in unmarried situations is that the mother is the sole custodial parent, however, upon a showing that you were... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Divorce for Massachusetts on
Q: My husband and I have been separated since 2017. I’m terrified of him but I want to finally go through with the divorce

We briefly reconnected for about two months winter 2018 and now we have a baby. I told him I was pregnant in April 2019 when I found out and I didn’t hear from him my entire pregnancy nor did I hear from him her entire first six months of life. I ended up contacting him for help which was a... Read more »

Tanesha R Wright
Tanesha R Wright answered on Jun 15, 2020

You should contact an attorney to discuss specific details, there is not much here to go on. If you want a divorce you'll need to go through the divorce process of filing in the probate and family court. If you fear for your safety and your child's safety, for any reason, you should... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Civil Litigation for Massachusetts on
Q: I need to know legally where I stand with child support. X had c/s reduced 6 years ago due to no jobs but does very well

He just bought a $700,000. house, goes to the Caribbean 2-3 times a year and does not cover my health insurance and it’s in our divorce. The $49 a week I get in c/s is not enough

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jun 9, 2020

It sounds like a Modification of Child Support matter can be filed based upon his material change in circumstances . The current Guidelines would be applicable, also. It also sounds like he is in Contempt with regard to your health insurance coverage if that was not changed in the earlier... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Constitutional Law and Domestic Violence for Massachusetts on
Q: How would I go about filing a lawsuit for parental alienation against my daughter's father and his wife?

Also, how would I find out if my daughter has a lawyer? Any information you can give is greatly appreciated. What steps should I take? I haven't seen her since February when we had a wonderful relationship. I already proved drug allegations to be false in court. They are making false... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jun 4, 2020

Is there a Modification petition pending? Has your visitation been limited by any Court Order? If not you may file a Modification Complaint of your own if the circumstances have changed materailly since your prior orders. You could check the docket on line to see whether counsel for the child was... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Ex and I live in different states. I have custody, he gets visitation rights. Can I move to a different state with kids?

I moved away from him with our two kids 5 years ago. ( TN to MA ) He got a lawyer and we went to mediation, I ended with custody and he gets visitation rights that I have to pay for. ( plane tickets ) I now want to move in with my boyfriend of 4 years, but it’s to a different state ( FL ). Can... Read more »

Brian Waller
Brian Waller answered on Jun 1, 2020

Good question. It really depends on the agreement that you came to with your ex when you moved away. If there is any restriction about moving to any state other than TN, then obviously it would be an issue.

Realistically, there should be no impact on your ex if you are paying for the...
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