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FAMILY LAW AREAS OF PRACTICE

DIVORCE

Divorce is both an emotional separation and a financial division. Separating your marital partnership from the legal partnership is a difficult task with many complicated considerations.  Trust our attorneys to protect your interests.

TRUSTS & ESTATES

Our Family Law Attorneys are here to help you protect your assets and help you to assure that your property passes onto the family in a quick and efficient matter.

GRANDPARENTS RIGHTS

Grandparents can request physical or legal custody of a child if they already have legal status that allows them to act as the child’s parent (this is called in loco parentis) or under specified other circumstances.

Spitale Vargo Madsen & Blair

CHILD CUSTODY

Every situation is different, but an experienced family law attorney can help find the elusive solutions to custody conflicts. We handle all child custody matters.

CHILD SUPPORT

The Family Courts apply the Pennsylvania Child Support Guidelines to determine the amount of support payable to the custodial parent.  Our Attorneys can assure that fair payments are made.

ALIMONY & SUPPORT

Spousal Support and Alimony orders are issued to assure a reasonable living allowance for the party requiring support.  Our Family Law Attorneys are here to help you throughout your case.

FAMILY LAWYERS

PRACTICE AREAS

Lehigh Valley Family Law Attorneys

Equitable Distribution Due to Divorce

The division of marital property in Pennsylvania is defined in section 3502(a) of the Pennsylvania Divorce Code. There are 11 factors set forth to determine the equitable division of martial property.

1. The length of the marriage;

2. Any prior marriage of either party;

3. The age, health, station, amount and sources of income, vocational skills, employability, estate, liabilities and needs of each of the parties;

4. The contribution by one party to the education, training or increased earning power of the other party;

5. The opportunity of each party for future acquisitions of capital assets and income;

6. The sources of income of both parties, including, but not limited to, medical, retirement, insurance or benefits;

7. The contribution or dissipation of each party in the acquisition, preservation, depreciation or appreciation of the marital property, including the contribution of a party as homemaker;

8. The value of the property set apart to each party;

9. The standard of living of the parties established during the marriage;

10. The economic circumstances of each party, including Federal, State and local tax ramifications, at the time the division of property is to become effective;

11. Whether the party will be serving as the custodian of any dependent minor children.

 

Pennsylvania is not a community property state where division of marital property is on a 50/50 basis; rather, in Pennsylvania a court is authorized by statute to equitably divide, distribute, or assign, marital property between the parties without regard to marital misconduct in such percentages as the court deems just after considering the above referenced relevant factors.

 

The Pennsylvania Divorce Code establishes a presumption that all property acquired from the date of marriage to the date of final separation is marital property except that which is defined as non-marital property as defined in Title 23 Pa. C.S. § 3501(a)1-8

1. Property acquired prior to marriage or property acquired in exchange for property acquired prior to the marriage.

2. Property excluded by valid agreement of the parties entered into before, during or after the marriage.

3. Property acquired by gift, except between spouses, bequest, devise or descent or property acquired in exchange for marital assets.

4. Property acquired after final separation until the date of divorce, except for property acquired in exchange for marital assets.

5. Property which a party has sold, granted, conveyed or otherwise disposed of in good faith and for value prior to the date of final separation.

6. Veterans’ benefits exempt from attachment, levy or seizure pursuant to the act of September 2, 1958 (Public Law 85-857, 72 Stat. 1229), as amended, except for those benefits received by a veteran where the veteran has waived a portion of his military retirement pay in order to receive veterans’ compensation.

7. Property to the extent to which the property has been mortgaged or otherwise encumbered in good faith for value prior to the date of final separation.

8. Any payment received as a result of an award or settlement for any cause of action or claim which accrued prior to the marriage or after the date of final separation regardless of when the payment was received.

 

It is crucial that the value of the marital estate be determined. The use of discovery includes the production of interrogatories, document exchange, valuation of businesses, retirement benefits, pensions, etc. all toward the goal of full financial disclosure and ultimately an equitable division of the marital estate.

 

All of the following items may be subject to equitable distribution following a divorce:

Annuities

Art Objects

Automobiles

Bank Accounts

Businesses

Certificates of deposit

Contents of safe deposit boxes

Furniture

Homes

Jewelry

Legal claims and awards

Life Insurance

Money and debts owed by others

Mortgages

Partnerships

Pension plans

Personal Property

Real Estate

Retirement benefits

Severance pay

Stocks, bonds, securities and option

Trusts

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680 Wolf Avenue
Easton, Pennsylvania 18042
Phone: 610-258-3757

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Spitale, Vargo, Madsen & Blair is a Lehigh Valley Law Firm.  We provide legal representation to the cities of Allentown, Belvidere, Bethlehem, Easton, Flemington, Jim Thorpe, Phillipsburg & Stroudsburg.  Our Lehigh Valley Attorneys practice in front of the Carbon County Court, Hunterdon County Court, Lehigh County Court, Monroe County Court, Northampton County Court and Warren County Court.  Our Lehigh Valley Attorneys operate out of our Easton, Pennsylvania Law Office.  Legal Disclaimer, Legal Resources

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