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Massachusetts Family Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Health Care Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Hi, can I remove my ungrateful, estranged 18 year old son from my healthcare plan?

Son lives in a different state and does not communicate with me. Thank you so much!

Meghan L Howard
Meghan L Howard answered on Apr 4, 2019

It depends. If you have a divorce agreement or court order that states you shall keep him on your health insurance so long as he is eligible, you would not be able to remove him without court approval.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: If you have supervised visits with a minor child and the mother and father had words. Does the mother have the right to

Hold the child from visitation or does she need to get the court order changed. There is a court order for supervised visits 2 days a week

Joshua H Bearce
Joshua H Bearce answered on Apr 2, 2019

No. The Mother does not have the right to prevent you from having parenting time with the child simply because the two of you had an argument. If the Mother wants to modify the current parenting plan, she needs to obtain a court order. Otherwise, you can file a Complaint for Contempt if she... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Ex-Husband is angry that I introduced my boyfriend to the kids. (He is not a danger to my kids and the kids like him.)

He is threatening to take me to court and "change" things. (My interpretation is that he wants to see if he can get physical custody changed to him. He is also repeatedly texting and calling me and will not stop.

Joshua H Bearce
Joshua H Bearce answered on Apr 2, 2019

If your boyfriend has no prior history which would make it unsafe for the children to be around him, then the fact that you introduced him to the children will not constitute a material and substantial change in circumstances warranting any modification of your parenting plan. I suggest you speak... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Can I file for contempt against mother in court ordered agreement?

I have a court order that says child primarily stays with mom in NC and I have parenting time in MA every month. I am receiving a child support notice from grandparent claiming child is living with her.

Anthony C. Adamopoulos
Anthony C. Adamopoulos answered on Mar 26, 2019

Yes, you may.

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Massachusetts on
Q: My full story is below.

My Grandfather passed away on 12/23/18, and had a Merrill Lynch investment account with 3 beneficiary's. My mother, and her two siblings. My mother passed away two months before him,on 10/9/18. The remaining 2 beneficiary's have since split the account 2 ways, and cut my deceased mother, ( and... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Mar 21, 2019

It depends upon how the beneficiary desigination reads-does it list the 3 persons as joint tenants with the right of survivorship? Or as beneficiaries in common or does it list further contingent beneficiairies.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: Ex-Husband is angry because a boyfriend was introduced to the kids. He is now threatening me via continual texts etc.
Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Mar 20, 2019

If the relationship is stable with your boyfriend and he is a suitable individual, it is ok to introduce him to your children. Sometimes there is an objection as to the boyfriend due to details about his past or present which may raise legitimate concerns, but you have not indicated that he has any... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: can custody be changed before a court hearing if all parties agree?

16 year old wants to live with father. Mother has physical custody. Both parties have joint legal custody. All parties agree to let him live with his father. Do they have to wait for a court custody hearing or can the son leave now?

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Mar 7, 2019

Unless there is some concern about whether the child's safety or well-being would be affected adversely by implementing an agreement for custody prior to the hearing date, it is generally acceptable. Sometimes, in fact, it is a wise idea to try on the new living arrangement for size to see how... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Estate Planning, Family Law and Probate for Massachusetts on
Q: My husband died in 2010. In MA, what forms do I use to start the probate process now? All for death after '12
Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Feb 26, 2019

The form set is for Formal Probate and the documentation to file is the same as for post March 31, 2012 deaths although the law on who is an heir or devisee is different.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Recently seperated from sons father, I will be looking for place. do I have the legal right to just move my son with me?

Live in massachusetts. We were never married.

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Feb 22, 2019

You have not stated whether there was any Order of the Probate Court involved so far, so it is difficult to answer satisfactorily except that if there are no current Court Orders then with the mother of a child born of unmarried parents presumptively mother has sole legal and physical custody.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: Both parents have been court ordered to use Our Family Wizard. One parent refuses. What do I do?

Non custodial parent refuses to use court ordered Family Wizard to communicate. Has had two months to do it. This parent has supervised visits that that require us to communicate. Tries using family to communicate. Child does not look fwd to going. Can I refuse vistation indirectly by refusing to... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jan 28, 2019

The other parent appears to be in violation of a Court Order and you can file a Contempt Complaint in order to obtain action from the Court that will address the non-compliance in terms of its effects on the child's bet interests. If you have counsel and there is a contempt finding against the... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: What are the steps and requirements needed to terminate my son's father's parental rights in Massachusetts?

My son is 15 months old, and his father has made no effort to see him or even ask how he's doing since I left him when my son was less than 3 months old. I've reached out multiple times with opportunities for visits with no response from him. He has my facebook blocked and has a new number so the... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jan 17, 2019

If you were divorced did you have a reference to custody and visitation in the agreement or in the Judgment post trial? If this is an unmarried parents Judgment of paternity or custody and support, then the issue of what custody there is would be addressed in that agreement and Judgment. You would... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Massachusetts on
Q: stepparent's obligation for child support if it's not in divorce decree. (In MA)

Divorce decree states "no child support, no alimony" in both directions. Mother has full custody and (adoptive) stepparent has the kid every other weekend. Fast forward seven years, the kid is 16, getting into trouble, and mostly uninterested in going to Stepdad's every other weekend. If Stepdad... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jan 10, 2019

If the child is adopted by you then the child support guidelines level of support would apply and child support orders can be sought regardless of whether visitation occurs.

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: Unable to see our great granddaughters. Father is not responding to our calls to see them.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Jan 3, 2019

You may seek visitation rights via court filings. Why are the parents not letting you see the kids? More details are necessary to provide a professional analysis of your issue. The best first step is an Initial Consultation with an Attorney such as myself. You can read more about me, my... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Libel & Slander and Sexual Harassment for Massachusetts on
Q: What type of lawyer am I looking for?

My boyfriend of 4 years has been living a double life and has a one year old child with another woman. He’s been using me financially, borrowing over $25k over the course of our relationship. I have PayPal transfer receipts and written promises of repayment, fraudulent reasoning for why he needed... Read more »

Ali Shahrestani, Esq.
Ali Shahrestani, Esq. answered on Jan 3, 2019

You may have a case for breach of contract for the loans. As for the allegations of infidelity, you may want to contact the other woman via counsel. As for allegations of child endangerment of some sort, it depends on the facts. And do you need a restraining order for some reason? More details are... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: I am a high school student looking for some information about your career considering I was thinking about going into

my questions are about divorce lawyers and they are:

1) What benefits do you recieve?

2) What kind of salary did you get starting off?

3) What are your working conditions like?

4) What hours do you work?

5) Are there any advancement opportunities?

6)... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jan 3, 2019

I have my own law firm so I am not on a salary and the advancement is dictated by what I will and won't do. My hours are basically a 40 hour week although sometimes more or less depending upon what I am working on and deadlines to complete work. I am a Probate and Family Law attorney and I also... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Bankruptcy and Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: No asset Ch. 7 discharge in 2008 and two years later ordered to pay legal fees of ex spouse for services provided before

filing of Ch 7 -not support related & not found in contempt- I didn't list him as a creditor because he wasn't at that time, but I did serve him notice of my filing at the time - and he had already filed the motion for legal fees - but the judge didn't issue ruling for over 2 years -

Timothy Denison
Timothy Denison answered on Dec 27, 2018

You will have to reopen bankruptcy and add the lawyers a creditor. He should have been listed as a creditor in the original filing even though the amount owed may have not been liquidated at the time.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Massachusetts on
Q: I requested a Judicial Review in regarding arrears. Can DOR take $ from my chck while this is still under review

DOR just started taking child support from my check but I am waiting for the defendant, my ex to respond to the complaint. Can they take $$ if I'm questioning the arrears? Also how long does the defendant have to respond to the claim? What do I do if he doesn't respond and where can I get a default... Read more »

Joshua H Bearce
Joshua H Bearce answered on Dec 23, 2018

Yes. There is a court order in place to withhold money from your paycheck for purposes of the payment of child support. The father has 30 days to file an answer to your complaint after he is served with a copy of the complaint. You will not get a default judgment from the court if he does not... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: What are our chances of my husband adopting my son as his legal stepchild. As well as what are the steps we need to take

I have an 8 year old son from a prior relationship, his biological father has not seen or spoken to him in about 6 years. I was just recently married but before marriage my husband has been supporting my son for the past 5 years while we were in a relationship. The biological father does not keep... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Dec 17, 2018

If there are no issues involving the step father there are no chances working against you and then quite possibly biological father would be willing to consent to the adoption. You can still proceed with the adoption petition if he does not consent but it would be a longer time frame, and judging... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: My daughter, Age 5, was taken from me in November of 2015. I was granted a suspended judgement which is almost expired

I have fulfilled all of the obligations required of Me by the court, including remaining clean and sober and I will have two years clean on February 9th. My suspended judgement is set to expire at the end of January and the therapeutic visit monitor told me that she will be recommending permanency... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Dec 17, 2018

This sounds like a complex matter which you should pursue through counsel and not try to handle pro se. If you do not have funds to engage an attorney to represent you, you may qualify for appointed counsel to represent you in contesting the guardianship You would need to file a Motion requesting... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Divorce for Massachusetts on
Q: Can I file for divorce and upon being served, husband will move out? I am afraid of my spouse's reaction.

Spouse has filed an A&B claim against me, misleading the police officers into who the victim really is (case now dismissed). I need help filing for divorce and staying away from him (as well as custody of my 14 month old daughter) because he is unstable and angry. Can someone please advise me what... Read more »

Joshua H Bearce
Joshua H Bearce answered on Dec 15, 2018

You will need to file a Complaint for Divorce and a Motion for an Order to Vacate Marital Home. To get an immediate order directing your Husband to vacate the marital home, you will need to show that you and/or your daughter's health, safety, or welfare would be endangered if the Court did not... Read more »

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