Category:   Consumer Articles

Fixed Fees in Collaborative Family Law Cases*

A Scenario**

You thought the marriage to the love of your life was going to be forever. After his six-month affair with the attractive woman from his department at the ad agency he works for, you just do not trust him anymore as your husband.

You met at Emerson College and have been married for 15 years. He is a great father to your three children who are six, ten and 14. He is attentive to them, is a great provider and a respectful person. You want to get a divorce and would like to work this divorce out amicably using the collaborative process.

However, the cost of a getting a divorce concerns you as you still have loans from college at Mass. College of Art and graduate school at Emerson College, the mortgage from your home, the auto loans and child care costs. Using a collaborative law process to get divorce seems too expensive. Your Husband has some small loans left from Harvard University where he got his MBA. Both of you make a good living, but the expenses are so high in the Boston area that you have to carefully watch your budget. You don’t want to spend hours in court, have others hear your private issues and spend lots of money in legal fees. You have some savings. So what can you do?

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The Volunteer Attorney Representing Children (ARC) in Massachusetts:

By Amanda Driscoll, Law Clerk*

Some of the most significant issues in Massachusetts Family and Probate Courts are those involving unemancipated children.  The court has jurisdiction over those children pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 208, Sections 19, 28, 28A, 29, 30, 31 and 31A.  In 2013, a program called Attorneys Representing Children (ARC) started in Massachusetts which an attorney voluntarily represents the child’s interest in a divorce case or other probate matter.

In determining the outcome of these cases, the court must consider what is in the best interest of the child.  Accordingly, a child’s preference is one piece that may be helpful to the court for this determination.  There is a wide variety of other resources available to the court in identifying the child’s desires and interests.

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Nesting: The Modern Era Convenience for Divorce

By Amanda Driscoll, Law Clerk*

What is Nesting?

When it comes to divorce, nesting is a new trend that is on the rise nationwide. Nesting is the process by which the mother and father take turns being available in the home, while the children remain within the “nest,” or family home, consistently throughout the process. For instance, the father may have certain days or time intervals each day, while the mother occupies the other time interval, like a shift change in a sense. Nesting allows divorced parents to give children stability and reduce financial burden by providing themselves with the proper amount of time to wait before selling the family home or investments.

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What’s On Your Lunch Box?

What’s On Your Lunch Box?
By Debra L. Smith, Attorney at Law

It is more difficult that it used to be to find a lunch box that is free from a concerning chemical smell.

To be more ecologically responsible, I purchased stainless steel Lunchbots and To-Go Ware Tiffin Sidekick to take lunch, plus Klean Kanteen water bottles for drinking water on the go.  Sandwiches fit easily in the Lunchbots and snacks fit in the To-Go Ware Tiffin Sidekick. The stainless steel Lunchbots avoid the use of plastic bags being placed in the environment after use. Klean Kanteen water bottles avoid my being exposed to BPA that is in some plastic bottles. Water tastes good in these water bottles.
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“Are Personal Care Products Safe?”

“Are Personal Care Products Safe?”


     We expect our shampoo, soap, deodorant, creams, sunscreen and make up we use on a daily basis to be safe, but are they?  The Alliance for a Healthy Tomorrow has concerns about the safety of our personal care products.  They are sponsoring a Safe Cosmetic Week of Action from June 18, 2005 to June 26, 2005.  During this week, their volunteers have been talking to counter staff and managers at local department store cosmetic counters and cosmetic stores and leafleting outside of stores about toxic chemicals in cosmetics, gathering petition signatures and posting ads in communities throughout the country.

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