Kowalski Family Law

At Kowalski Family Law, we specialize in family matters. Our attorneys have the experience, judgment, and knowledge to guide you through difficult times. The legal system can be confusing and uncertain, so we take pride in our communication. We will:

  • Respond promptly to your questions and concerns.
  • Listen to understand your goals.
  • Clearly explain your options.
  • Develop a plan for your case.
  • Work hard to give you the best outcome.

We truly believe that you will not find better representation for your family.

Kowalski Family Law Blogs

Latest from Kowalski Family Law

If you face interstate custody issues, contact Kowalski Family Law. We have noticed an increase in custody disputes between parents that reside in different states. This is most likely due to the fact that families are more mobile, and that parents are often moving for employment.   The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act is the source of law that applies to Wisconsin custody disputes. The UCCJEA is designed for the prevention of a parent taking a child to another state and filing a custody action in that state.  Link to More Information The post Interstate Custody Issues appeared first…
Many use social media every day as a leisurely activity. However, if you are currently initiating the divorce process, it is important to be aware that the content on your social media profiles can be used against you in divorce litigation. Here are six tips on how to avoid your social media having a negative impact on your case outcome. One of these tips entails never writing a private message to someone “that you would not want to be read out loud in a court of law”. The post Be Aware Of Your Social Media Practices Amid Your Divorce Case
A postnuptial agreement is a marital property agreement that plans the details of the division of assets in the event the marriage is dissolved. It works similarly to a prenuptial agreement. However, a postnuptial agreement is established after the marriage occurs, instead of before.  Wisconsin is a community property state. This means that marital property will be split down the middle (50/50) if a divorce occurs. If the spouses wish for a different arrangement, a marital property agreement must be signed.  Kowalski Family Law has successfully represented numerous clients, both to enforce and overturn marital property agreements, and we will…
Earlier blogs discussed options to manage legal custody and physical placement during a servicemember’s deployment.   If one parent is unavailable, legal custody and placement are left to the other parent, by default.   Therefore, if a parent is deployed, the children must remain with the civilian parent unless he/she is unfit. But what is the option if both parents are in the military and could be deployed at the same time?   Or if there is only one surviving parent?  Luckily, Wisconsin’s guardianship law recently changed to permit two options. First, if no parent is available for care, the parents should file…
Deciding whether or not to initiate a divorce is a devastating decision. If you come to the conclusion that divorce is the correct choice for your circumstances, access to reputable advice on maneuvering the process is important. Here are 54 tips from experts pertaining to the best ways to prepare for the divorce process. For experienced legal counsel throughout your divorce, contact Kowalski Family Law. Choosing the right lawyer is vital when the future remains unclear. The post Expert Tips for Maneuvering the Divorce Process appeared first on Kowalski Family Law.…
Deployment is a fact of life for servicemembers. The member has little control over the timing or location, and in most cases, the spouse and children remain in the US. Until now, parents had few options to shape their child placement schedule in the event of deployment. However, a new Wisconsin statute provides greater flexibility. Wisconsin Act 20 (2021) grants parents the right to make “contingent” placement agreements, which had previously been prohibited. The judge is now authorized to accept agreements to change legal custody or physical placement “upon the occurrence of a specified future event . . . that…
David Kowalski is a member of the Collaborative Family Law Council of Wisconsin. Collaborative law is designed to ensure a divorce process free of court disputes. The negotiation of terms of a divorce can often become emotionally taxing for all parties involved, including children. A collaborative divorce begins with both spouses signing a binding agreement not to litigate disputes in court. A specially-trained divorce lawyer is necessary throughout the collaborative divorce process.  Learn more about collaborative divorce in Wisconsin here. The post What Is a Collaborative Divorce? appeared first on Kowalski Family Law.…
The United Nation’s definition of violence against women is as follows: “any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual, or mental harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.” Coercive control, which entails toxic and controlling behaviors toward a spouse, often poses as a precursor to domestic abuse incidents. Some are advocating for coercive control to be added to domestic violence statutes.  If you want to obtain a domestic abuse restraining order, contact Kowalski Family Law.…
As discussed in an earlier blog, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) grants servicemembers a “stay” or freeze of a divorce or child custody case until s/he can legitimately participate. Upon the servicemember’s request, the case must be suspended for 90 days. However, what happens if a real emergency makes a suspension unrealistic? Earlier blogs discussed various ways for the civilian spouse’s to dispute the request for stay and have the case heard earlier. See https://kowalskifamilylaw.com/servicemembers-civil-relief-act-in-wisconsin-blog-series-2/ and https://kowalskifamilylaw.com/servicemembers-civil-relief-act-blog-series-3/ But are there any options in the servicemember legitimately meets all the requirements for a stay, and truly cannot participate? Consider this…
If your spouse hides assets during the divorce process, it is illegal. When a financial disclosure statement is filled out, one must sign it under oath. Therefore, lying on the financial disclosure statement is considered perjury under Wisconsin law. The Wisconsin Statutes specifically state, “complete disclosure of assets and debts is required by law and deliberate failure to provide complete disclosure constitutes perjury.” Failure to identify or properly value one asset could result in a substantial financial loss as you emerge from your divorce. For guidance throughout the divorce process and aid in uncovering assets, contact Kowalski Family Law. Link
If you are getting married, you will benefit from a prenuptial agreement. There are numerous reasons why this is the case.  Getting married involves a contract. However, that specific contract does not aid in planning for what will happen if your partnership is dissolved. Here are three basic reasons why everyone needs a prenuptial agreement. For experienced representation that will ensure your assets are preserved, contact Kowalski Family Law. We will help you craft a resolution tailored to your unique circumstances.  The post Why Is a Prenuptial Agreement Necessary? appeared first on Kowalski Family Law.…
Military members and their spouses should be aware of the following Wisconsin statutes and cases that could have an affect on child custody and placement disputes: Wisconsin Statutes 767.41(2)(e) and (5)(c): ” If a party is a service member, the court may not consider as a factor in determining the legal custody of a child whether the service member has been or may be called to active duty in the U.S. armed forces and consequently is, or in the future will be or may be, absent from the service member’s home.” A “service member” in this statute is defined only…
When dividing federal benefits in divorce, there are two retirement accounts federal employees are eligible for. The first account is the Federal Employee Retirement System (FERS). Under FERS, employees are eligible for benefits from the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). Read more about the Federal Employees Retirement System and how it functions here. If you are a federal employee or a spouse of a federal employee who needs help navigating the divorce process, contact Kowalski Family Law. We have represented many federal employees and their spouses. Our experience and knowledge of the various options and limits will ensure that you receive…
All divorce cases require an analysis of each spouse’s assets, debts, and income. Divorce involving a military servicemember is no different. Basic documents such as the leave and earnings statement (LES), disability determination, points statement, etc. should be obtained in every case. There are several ways to obtain this information, with the last resort being a direct request to the government. The documents may be kept in the marital residence, and therefore the civilian spouse can simply copy them and provide them to his/her lawyer. The military spouse can provide them to counsel voluntarily upon receipt of an informal phone…
In a Wisconsin divorce, each spouse is required to issue a financial disclosure statement, which identifies all assets at hand. The list of assets Wisconsin couples are required to disclose include, but are not limited to, “real estate savings accounts, stocks and bonds, mortgages and notes, life insurance” and “retirement interests”. You can view more details about financial disclosure by examining the Wisconsin Statutes. In a high asset divorce in particular, the stakes are high when dividing property. Many valuable assets are present. At Kowalski Family Law, we are able to provide an in-depth accounting of such assets. We work…
How is child support calculated in Wisconsin? When it comes to the percentage of a parent’s gross income that will contribute to child support payments, the state’s standard formula is as follows: 1 child 17% 2 children 25%  3 children 29% 4 children 31%  5 or more 34% There are several guidelines that may be utilized when determining child support in Wisconsin. The guideline used is dependent on the amount of time spent with the child, as well as each parent’s income. These matters can become complicated. For guidance through establishing, reviewing and modifying support when appropriate, contact Kowalski Family Law. …