District of Columbia Questions & Answers

Q: Can a parent take child away from nonparent if they didn't raise him?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Jun 17, 2018
Alan Solomon's answer
Yes unless you have a court order for custody, parents have superior rights. If the natural parents are harmful to the child go file an emergency motion. If it is simply not in child's best interest file for custody immediately
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Q: Is there a difference between physical and legal custody?

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for District of Columbia on
Answered on Jun 12, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Yes, and it's an important difference.

Physical custody refers to the the parent's custodial right to have the child in their care, during whatever time frames the court order directs, or during all times when the other parent is not afforded specific times for visitation/custody with the child. There is sole physical custody, where one parent is the primary custodian of the child, and the other parent is granted periods of visitation (including overnight visitation) with the child;...
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Q: What does it mean if you have a bench warrant?

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Jun 12, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
You missed a court date, and the judge issued a warrant for your arrest "from the bench" in open court for your failure to appear. You need a lawyer to arrange to turn yourself in an have the court date rescheduled, and to represent you on the charges.
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Q: I filed for my wife as a Spouse of a Permanent resident, her Visa appointment is Next Month, but i'm becoming a Citizen

1 Answer | Asked in Immigration Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on May 30, 2018
Carl Shusterman's answer
You may want to postpone your naturalization ceremony until she enters the US. She will be admitted in the family-based 2A category as the spouse of a permanent resident.
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Q: I was in an accident with property damage and was given a field sobriety test. I was released and no citation was given

1 Answer | Asked in Car Accidents for District of Columbia on
Answered on May 25, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Yes, they do not have to charge on the spot, but it is unusual for them not to, unless there is a serious injury to someone where death is imminent or has occurred. In those cases, they review for possible manslaughter charges. What was your BAC test result? Also, your post is confusing as you posted this in the DC jurisdiction and then ended your post with “West Virginia”. Where did this happen? Consult a lawyer licensed where this happened.
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Q: Can I be adopted by someone even though I have a father, can I legally be a son to both even though they aren't married?

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption for District of Columbia on
Answered on May 12, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Your natural parents must either consent to the adoption, or the court will have to rule on the evidence that sufficient reasons exist to terminate the parental rights of your biological parent, and grant adoption to the other.

Q: How much time will he be getting?

1 Answer | Asked in Immigration Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on May 10, 2018
Carl Shusterman's answer
The Judge in his criminal case will decide how long he will spend in prison.

Q: I am currently on H1B and wish to pursue on campus weekend, non credit courses, leading to certificate. Is it allowed?

1 Answer | Asked in Immigration Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on May 8, 2018
Carl Shusterman's answer
As long as you continue to work full time for your H-1B employer, there is no problem with you taking classes at the university.

Q: I am married with a U.S citizen. I obtained my temporary green card through marriage, but I want to separate.

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Immigration Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Apr 21, 2018
Carl Shusterman's answer
If your marriage ends in a divorce before your conditional permanent residence (CPR) expires, you should submit an I-751 waiver to the USCIS as soon as your divorce becomes final.

Most foreign-born persons who marry U.S. citizens apply for a green card in order to remain in the U.S. with their spouse. In order to become a permanent resident, they must first file for a 2-year conditional green card, and then submit form I-751 to apply to remove the condition and obtain a 10-year green...

Q: If I leave beofre 18 months I owe 6K. Is this legal?

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts, Collections and Employment Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Apr 16, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Usually these types of clauses are tied to educational or training expenses, or paying for professional licenses or certificates, that the employer incurs. The repayment is tied to reimbursement for a valuable benefit provided to the employee who may take the training or professional license and then just leave for another job with another employer. This type of repayment is usually a valid and enforceable contract provision. If it is not tied to any training or professional expense, then it...

Q: Filed bankruptcy chapter on 8-29-2017; it was discharged on 12-12-2017. Can a college withhold transcript and diploma?

1 Answer | Asked in Bankruptcy for District of Columbia on
Answered on Apr 3, 2018
Andrellos Mitchell's answer
Federally Funded Public Student Loans are typically non-dischargeable in Bankruptcy. An actual complaint needs to filed against the lenders and then you must meet an extremely high burden to even have the court consider

discharging your student loans. I'm not sure why a college or university would withhold your transcripts and degree because you filed bankruptcy. However, a college or university can do whatever it pleases. Whether its actions are legal is a totally different...

Q: Do I need to reapply for my son's green card?

1 Answer | Asked in Immigration Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Mar 7, 2018
Hector E. Quiroga's answer
Your son is likely already a citizen. He derived it through you when you became a citizen yourself. Proof that he is your son, that you are a citizen, and proof that he obtained permanent residency should be sufficient for him to get a US passport.

Q: How do I formulate a disclaimer for a particular bank account that is moved to probate (Washington, DC)

1 Answer | Asked in Probate for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 28, 2018
Richard Sternberg's answer
It's probably worth a few hundred dollars to have a lawyer draft it for you, but there is a probate form that depends on the date of the decedent's demise. You'll need to specify the account involved in a sufficiently precise manner, and that's where the lawyer comes in.

Q: My fiancé is on child support from a previous relationship. Once we are married will I be effected of his child support

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 28, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
No, you will never be legally obligated to pay his support obligations, and none of your personal assets, including bank accounts or wages, may be attached to pay any past due support he owes. However, you may wish to keep your bank account titled separate from his to avoid a risk that the account could be garnished and therefore end up having some of your funds taken by mistake, or your joint funds frozen while you contest the attachment in court.

Q: We had to sell our house before the bank foreclosed on us. Do we have to pay taxes on it?

1 Answer | Asked in Real Estate Law and Tax Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 26, 2018
Richard Sternberg's answer
If taxes are due, yes. But, that will rarely be the case. See a qualified CPA or lawyer.

Q: Can an inmate file for a protection order if his accuser is harassing him?

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Domestic Violence for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 21, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Consult a criminal law attorney about the letter claiming she lied to get him convicted. There may be something that can be done regarding his case. There is also basis to file a protective order or maybe even criminal charges for harassment, and in your case, criminal forgery and interference with US mail.

Q: If a judge throws out a criminal conviction, can a prosecuting attorney request and go forward with the re-trial?

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 21, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Depends on the basis the judge “threw out” the conviction. You provide insufficient facts.

Q: Do I still have to pay child support if my child how is 18 and now lives with me full time.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Support for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 19, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Turning 18 usually does the trick, but you need to look at your child support order and take it to a lawyer. If child support is still due under the order or by law (such as your child has not yet graduated fro high school and support is due until graduation in May) then you will need to file a motion or petition to modify or terminate support based on a material change of circumstances (e.g., your child's change of residence). The support must still be paid until the court makes its ruling,...

Q: Can I take my aunt to court for a equal share of the sale of the house and bank accounts?

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Probate and Real Estate Law for District of Columbia on
Answered on Feb 13, 2018
Mark Oakley's answer
Not enough facts to answer this question. What gives you the right to claim an interest in "the sale of the house and bank accounts"? Were you named in a will by the deceased owner of these assets as an heir or legatee? Is your name on the title to these assets? If so, you will need to explain further in order to receive an answer that will be of assistance to you.

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