Family & Divorce

Posted on February 07, 2024 in Family Law
Establishing paternity is the legal process of determining and confirming the identity of the biological father of a child. This may be necessary in situations where parents are not married at the time that their child is born or when there is doubt about the identity of the child’s father. Paternity can be established in several different ways, including through an agreement between the parents or through a court order following
Continue Reading What Are the Benefits of Establishing Paternity for a Child?

For the past several years, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) has researched models that promote family engagement with parent experiences in the child welfare system to effect change. DCF explored many different models, and selected Iowa’s Parent Partner Model to adapt in Wisconsin because of its many potential benefits as well as for the ability for Wisconsin to contribute to the research base. Parents Supporting Parents in Wisconsin The Wisconsin Parent Partner Model, known as Parents Supporting
Continue Reading Invaluable: Wisconsin’s Parent Support Program

There is disagreement among family law practitioners as to whether modification of custody or placement orders is an appropriate remedy for remedial contempt. The scenario is one that we often see: one party is willfully and intentionally violating a custody and placement order, and as a sanction for their conduct, a request is made for the court to change the underlying order. Purpose of Remedial Contempt It’s important to remember the purpose of a remedial contempt sanction: to coerce
Continue Reading Is Modification of Custody or Placement a Remedy for Contempt?

Unfortunately, there are times when one party withholds placement of a child. There a can be many reasons or motivations for a party to withhold placement from the other parent. Regardless of the reason, the party who has had their placement denied, withheld or interfered with may file a motion with the court to have the placement order enforced. As in most cases when a motion is filed, the moving party must allege facts to show that their placement
Continue Reading Enforcing Physical Placement Orders

A prenuptial agreement, which is commonly referred to as a “prenup,” is a legal contract that may be entered into by two people before they get married or enter into a civil partnership. This agreement outlines the distribution of assets and liabilities in the event of a divorce or separation.

While prenuptial agreements may be used by any couple, they can be especially beneficial for couples with a high net worth. Understanding the various ways that a prenup
Continue Reading Can a Prenuptial Agreement Benefit a Couple With a High Net Worth?

A temporary order in a divorce proceeding is especially helpful when there are contested issues. Think of a temporary order as the “rules of the game” during a divorce proceeding. Aside from limited situations, the soonest a divorce judgment may be granted is 120 days after service or filing a joint petition. A lot can happen in that time and without any provisions or orders in place either or both parties may find themselves in at a disadvantage. A
Continue Reading Temporary Orders in Divorce Proceedings

Posted on January 08, 2024 in Divorce
Spousal support, also known as alimony or spousal maintenance, is a common point of contention in divorce proceedings. In Wisconsin, spousal support is determined by different factors, including the length of time the couple was married, the amount of money each spouse is able to earn, and the standard of living experienced during the time the couple was married. Depending on what a spouse thinks they are owed for maintenance or
Continue Reading Top Three Reasons for Spousal Support Disputes in Wisconsin

The State Bar of Wisconsin Family Law Section is moving forward with seeking an amendment to Wis. Stat. chapter 767 to permit divorces to be granted without a final hearing. The proposed amendment language has been approved by the section board and circulated with key stakeholders in family law matters. We are in the process of seeking a bill sponsor and hope to have the bill introduced at some time in the next session. The Family Law Section Legislation
Continue Reading Amending Chapter 767: Divorce by Affidavit

Earlier this year, the Wisconsin Supreme Court again waded into the waters of termination of parental rights law in State v. A.G.1 The Court, in its decision, addressed whether, A.G.’s plea was knowingly, voluntarily, and intelligently entered, based on the circuit court informing him during the plea colloquy that the State would have to prove at disposition that termination of parental rights was in the best interests of his child by “clear and convincing” evidence. Wis. Stat. section
Continue Reading Burden of Proof: ‘A.G.’ and TPR Dispositional Hearings

The holiday season is a time when families can come together to celebrate and create lasting memories. However, for some people and families, the holidays can be a time of increased stress and tension. Unfortunately, this can sometimes lead to an increase in domestic violence incidents. Those who have been accused of domestic violence may face arrests and prosecution, and they will need to understand what steps they can take to address these issues and defend against criminal charges.
Continue Reading Is Domestic Violence More Common During the Holiday Season?

Can the court order a parent to submit to a drug test at the request of the other parent in a contested child-related issue?

Substance abuse issues, or allegations of substance abuse, are often at the forefront of family court cases, and can play significant roles in determining the custody and placement arrangements that are in the best interests of the children.

Wis. Stat. section 804.10 arguably grants the court the authority to make such an order:

When the
Continue Reading On the Family Court’s Authority to Order Parental Drug Tests

A postnuptial agreement, also known as a post-marital agreement, is a legal contract entered into by married couples after they have tied the knot. While prenuptial agreements are signed before marriage, postnuptial agreements are created during the course of the marriage. A postnup can detail how the division of assets and debts will be handled if a couple chooses to divorce or separate, and it may also address other financial issues, such as whether one party will pay
Continue Reading Can a Postnuptial Agreement Help Prevent a Divorce?

You might hear of people who are legally separated and wonder how that is different from simply being divorced. In Wisconsin, legal separations and divorces share a similar legal process, but the end result is differently. For example, in both cases the parties have to file petitions with the court. The court cannot enter a judgment in either case until 120 days have passed since the joint petition was filed or the non-filing party was served.

In Wisconsin, the
Continue Reading Legal Separation versus Divorce

Spousal support, also known as alimony or maintenance, is a common issue addressed in divorce cases. The purpose of spousal support is to bridge the gap between divorcing spouses and enable the lower-earning spouse to maintain a similar standard of living after divorce.
In Wisconsin, spousal support payments are determined on a case-by-case basis by considering various factors such as the length of the marriage, each spouse’s income and earning capacity, the age and health of both parties,
Continue Reading How Will Remarriage Affect Spousal Support Payments in Wisconsin?

A divorce can involve a variety of complex financial issues, including determining how a couple’s marital assets will be divided. These concerns can be especially consequential for business owners, and some of the most important aspects of this process will be related to determining the value of business interests. A proper business valuation is crucial for ensuring that marital property can be divided fairly and equitably. To address this issue correctly, a business owner or their spouse can work
Continue Reading How to Perform a Business Valuation During the Divorce Process

A proceeding to terminate the parental rights (TPR) of one or both parents is initiated by preparing and filing a petition, summons and a notice. The petition is the document that identifies the people involved, including the child, and the grounds to terminate the right of one or both of the parents. Think of “grounds” as the reason for filing the petition. The summons and notice are the documents in which the parents and other parties are notified of
Continue Reading Termination of Parental Rights Proceedings