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Bird nesting: an alternative to traditional child custody

Divorce can throw a child's life into disarray. Not only does the child have to reconcile that his or her parents are no longer in love and will no longer be married, but traditionally the child would also have to adjust to living in two different homes, one with each parent.

Parents in Franklin, Pennsylvania, naturally want to reduce the amount of stress a child feels during a divorce. Therefore, some consider a rather unique alternative to child custody: bird nesting. In a bird nesting arrangement, the child stays in the family home and it is the parents who rotate living in it. Therefore, some days one parent will live with the child in the family home and the other parent will live in a separate apartment, and then other days the parents will switch roles.

Understanding key factors of child custody in Pennsylvania

For divorcing parents, child custody is a primary focus. Parents unable to reach an agreement must present evidence to a family court judge who will determine custody. However, even if parent’s reach an agreement they are still required to submit it to a judge for review and approval.

The best interest standard

Four reasons to update your estate plan

There are many reasons to update an estate plan. One particularly relevant is the recent passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. This new law resulted in an overhaul of the tax system that could impact an estate plan in a number of ways.

The increased exemption rate is one example. Trusts, for example, were often structured to help reduce tax obligations. It was not uncommon to create a trust with language transferring the "maximum amount to a credit shelter trust that would not create an estate tax and the rest to my [spouse]." With the previous tax law of the early 2000s, this meant approximately $1 million would go into the trust and the rest would go to the spouse. With the new law, over $20 million could transfer into the trust. This may not be the creator's intention. The creator should review the plan and make adjustments as needed to better ensure the plan reflects his or her wishes.

Five top questions about custody

The divorce process can be very challenging emotionally, financially and socially. If you and your spouse are parents, worry about the children’s well being is added on to the feelings you are experiencing. There are often misconceptions about divorce, mainly the matter of custody. Here are answers to the top questions divorcing parents have about child custody.

What is the difference between physical and legal custody?

The basics of gun control in Pennsylvania

Across the United States right now, gun rights and legislation is a hot topic. Recent shootings in schools, churches and other public places have ignited this age-old discussion. Should gun control increase or relax?

No matter which side of the debate you fall on, it is important to know what Pennsylvania state law currently regulates guns. Like every other state, Pennsylvania can add its own policies to the federal gun laws already in place.

What can a criminal defense lawyer do for you?

If you have been arrested, charged with a crime or are under criminal investigation, you may be thinking of hiring a lawyer to defend you. Don't know where to start? Having an understanding of what they do can take the fear out of picking up the phone or walking into a law firm for the first time.

The job of a criminal defense attorney is to be your advocate, which includes appearing with you in court. All defense lawyers are is responsible for:

Don't trigger gun law problems in Pennsylvania

Gun control is right up there with immigration and marijuana as one of the most highly controversial topics in Pennsylvania and throughout the nation. You may be among those who staunchly defend the right to bear arms and perhaps have one or more firearms in your home. Whether you own guns for hunting purposes or enjoy target shooting as a hobby, or you are in the process of obtaining a concealed carry license, the more you know ahead of time about Pennsylvania gun laws, the better.

This state has some of the strictest firearms regulations in the country. Some of those laws can be confusing and it's best to seek understanding if you're unsure about a particular regulation rather than risk facing weapons charges in court.

Pennsylvania investigating opioid crisis

According to the Palm Beach Institute, nearly five million Americans are addicted to prescription painkillers. Name-brand drugs like OxyContin might work well to solve personal aches and pains, but they are creating new problems related to addiction, drug possession and white collar crime. What is being done to confront this recent epidemic?

In June, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro joined officials from three other states in investigating how opioids are manufactured and marketed in the United States. President Donald Trump has also assigned his own panel to look into the issue. What does this mean for the future of opioids in the United States?

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