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Terminating maintenance is a tall task for attorneys in Wisconsin because a termination of maintenance is permanent. To terminate maintenance, attorneys must show that the purposes or goals of maintenance, fairness and support, are no longer being accomplished under the circumstances confronting the parties at the time of termination. In termination cases, the courts will consider the style of living that the parties enjoyed during the marriage, the current income of the parties, and the assets of the parties.
Continue Reading Maintenance Termination and Hidden Assets

You went out last night to have a few drinks and an out of control patron assaulted you causing you to incur thousands of dollars in medical bills—who is liable for your injuries?

Of course, the individual who assaulted you is likely a target for any lawsuit. However the perpetrator may be judgment proof and the bar may be the only entity you can recover from.

While bars in Wisconsin enjoy broad immunity from liability for overserving patrons
Continue Reading Bar Fights and Third-Party Liability

Wisconsin Statutes allow the court discretion to order maintenance—often also referred to as alimony or spousal support—in cases for annulment, divorce or legal separation. The statutes do not define a strict formula for courts to rely upon as to when maintenance should be ordered. There are, however, factors for the court to consider which are outline below and included in Wis. Stat. 767.56(1c).

Courts may grant maintenance for a limited or indefinite period after considering:

  • The length of the

Continue Reading Maintenance in Wisconsin: When and how is it ordered?

While the court is required to order support, it can deviate from the standard factors if determines that the percentage standard is unfair the child or either of the parties. The court is obligated to state in writing or on the record during a hearing the reason for an unfairness finding, the reason for the modification and the amount of support should be ordered.

Those factors that the court shall consider are found in Wisconsin Statute 767.511(1m), but will
Continue Reading Child Support Deviations from Standard Factors

In many family law cases it may become necessary for the court to appoint a guardian ad litem to conduct an investigation and make a recommendation relating to custody and placement. A guardian ad litem is a licensed attorney who has completed at least the minimum training to serve as an advocate for the best interests of children. A guardian ad litem may also be appointed in cases where are allegations of domestic abuse in the relationship.

In cases
Continue Reading Working with a guardian ad litem in family law cases

Pursuant to 767.511 of the Wisconsin Statutes when the court enters a judgment for annulment, divorce, legal separation or an order regarding paternity, it must order one or both of the parties to pay reasonable child support. Child support is paid from one parent to the other and is intended to finically support the expenses for the child or children for food, clothing, housing, utilities, transportation and personal care and healthcare. The parties may come to an agreement for
Continue Reading Child Support Standard Orders and Obligations

Guardian Ad Litems are appointed by courts in custody and placement disputes to help educate the court on what placement and custody arrangement is in the best interests of the child or children. When determining if an arrangement is in the best interests, the Guardian Ad Litem will look at 16 factors. Those factors are enumerated in Wis. Stat. Sect. 767.41(5). None of the factors discuss firearms.

In the absence of any direction on how to handle firearms, firearm
Continue Reading Firearms and the Best Interests of the Children: Can a Guardian Ad Litem Take My Guns?

In divorces involving minor children two of the biggest concerns for parents are custody and placement of the children. Both terms are easily incorrectly used interchangeably so it is important to explain the differences between the two and what they mean.

Legal custody is the right and responsibility to make major decisions concerning the child. Those major decisions include the right to consent to marriage, the right to consent to a child entering military service, obtaining a driver’s license,
Continue Reading Placement or Custody?

Deciding whether to file for a divorce can be an emotional and difficult decision for people to make, especially when there are young children involved. Many people are likely left without direction or knowing how to start the processes. There are a few basic guidelines for a divorce that are imposed by the legislature, dictating where a petition for divorce should be filed, the grounds for obtaining a divorce and how quickly the divorce may be granted.

In order
Continue Reading Divorce Basics in Wisconsin

Generally speaking, the answer to this question is yes; a parent can refuse to accept child support. Most courts encourage parents to cooperate with each other and will not stand in the way of any agreements the parents reach, however, there are some exceptions to this rule. The main exception is if the child support agency is a party to your case. In that event, the agency will also need to agree with whatever arrangement you and your ex
Continue Reading Can You Refuse To Accept Child Support?

Many of our clients have concerns about child support. Child support is the concept of one parent giving the other parent money that is for support of a child. Judges in Wisconsin make child support orders in family law cases, such as divorces, child custody and placement matters, paternity actions, and guardianships. There are some other circumstances in addition to those just discussed when a parent may have to make child support payments to another care giver of the
Continue Reading 10 Sources of Income Wisconsin Considers To Be Gross Income for Purposes of Child Support

As divorce and child custody lawyers in Wisconsin, we discover that many people are surprised to learn that in addition to court ordered child support, a parent may be ordered by the Court to pay for additional child related expenses. What are those expenses? Here are three expenses we see that parents pay in addition to child support.

#1 Health Insurance

In Wisconsin, the Court will require one or both parents to provide medical insurance coverage for a child.
Continue Reading Three Expenses In Addition To Child Support That You May Be Ordered To Pay

As lawyers who practice family law in Wisconsin, we see a lot of situations where one of the parents has started a new romantic relationship. I recently read an article and a judge in Wisconsin who has practiced for nearly 10 years, commented on this topic. I want to share the comments to provide some perspective to parties involved in child custody matters, physical placement disputes, divorces, and paternity actions.

This judge made 3 main points. The first, is
Continue Reading Divorce: Tips on New Relationships, Cohabitation, and Placement Decisions

Here are four tips for fathers in a child custody placement case. Being a parent in a two household family can be very difficult. Many fathers have an especially hard time with the transition. They may feel that the deck is stacked against them. But fathers need not feel that way. With some very simple tips, they can not only have success in the courtroom, but more importantly be an effective and loving parent.

  • The first tip for a

  • Continue Reading 4 Tips for Fathers During Child Custody

    Here are three tips when entering a child custody and placement mediation.

    A. The first tip is to come to your session prepared. This means to:

    • print off and bring with you your work schedule

    • your child’s school schedule and activity calendar, and

    • a holiday schedule if necessary.  

    Having these documents with you in the session will help to ensure that you don’t have to remember those dates off the top of your head and will reduce the stress
    Continue Reading Child Custody Mediation – 3 Tips

    What is a marital settlement agreement? In an uncontested divorce action in Wisconsin, which is when you and your spouse have agreed on all issues, we call the marital settlement agreement the final agreement that you and your spouse would both sign and agree upon — all the terms and conditions that is then filed with the Court. At that point, the Court then accepts your agreement and grants you a divorce.  

    This gives you and your spouse certainty
    Continue Reading Divorce: What you MUST know about the MSA