5 Key Questions to Answer When Creating Your Will

A will is an important document to ensure that upon your death your assets are distributed according to your wishes rather than as the state determines. If the idea of creating a will feels like you’re tempting fate, think of it as a road map you’re leaving your family, so they don’t have to stress over making the right decisions on your behalf. If you do not have a will, you are considered to have dies intestate and your property will be divided according to specific state laws and rules rather than as you wished. You may have heard of
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Child Support Modification When One Parent Resides in a Different State

Child Support and Out-of-State Issues Whether one parent is living just over the Massachusetts border in New Hampshire but still commutes to Boston every day, or whether the one parent is living on the West Coast while the children live with the other in the Merrimack Valley, issues of state jurisdiction may come into play when seeking to modify a Massachusetts child support judgment or temporary order. Changing Circumstances, Modifying Orders In Massachusetts, child support is governed either by temporary orders or by final judgements. Temporary orders govern the terms of child support while there is still open legal action
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What does estate planning mean?

When many people hear the term “Estate Planning,” they think of billionaires like Bill Gates or Warren Buffett. They think of their elderly parents. Estate planning isn’t only for the wealthy or the elderly. Simply put, estate planning is your opportunity to make legally effective decisions regarding how you want your property, finances, and health care to be handled. Estate planning may also include planning for the care and custody of your minor children or family members with disabilities in the event of your death. It usually involves deciding how and to whom your property will be distributed. Additionally, it
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Is a house purchased by one spouse prior to the marriage a marital asset for divorce purposes?

The determination of which assets are part of the marital estate for division of asset purposes during the divorce is not always a simple cut and dried answer. There are many factors that the Court takes into consideration when deciding if a specific property is part of the marital estate and, if so, how it gets divides during the divorce. The short and simple answer is that the marital home can be included as part of your divorce settlement even if it was purchased prior to the marriage or relationship by one spouse. There are a wide range of factors
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How To Protect Your Children During a Divorce

Children are more intuitive than we give them credit. Divorce takes a toll on every member of the family, but it’s essential to make sure the children understand that the end of your marriage is not the end of the parent-child relationship. Have an Open Discussion Before sitting down with your child to announce the divorce, make a plan with your ex. Let the kids know what is going on with an open discussion as a family. This isn’t always easy when two parents are struggling to communicate, but the children will be comforted by having the family unit together.
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Am I Allowed to Date if My Divorce is Pending?

Divorce can be a lengthy process, and for many divorcing couples, the marriage is over emotionally long before a divorce is legally pursued. It’s not uncommon for a spouse to consider dating while their divorce is pending. The short answer to the question ‘to date or not to date’ is that there is no law in Massachusetts that prevents spouses from dating after separating or divorcing. So yes, you are allowed to date when your divorce is pending. However, before diving into the dating pool, you should be aware of the potential legal and financial consequences. Keep in mind, under
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Divorce Webinar: How to Overcome Parenting Challenges & Court Delays during Covid-19

July 2, Wednesday 2:00 – 2:45 PM Learn more: Divorce Webinar Info Register here: registration Open to the Public Co-parenting in the best of times is challenging. This is the worst of times: COVID-19, no school or camp, unemployment. What can parents do? With courts essentially closed, what resources can families turn to resolve their conflicts and keep kids safe? • Learn how to parent in a pandemic. • Learn about how to take control, even when your life feels out of control. Register here: registration
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Know Your Legal Rights When Protesting

Before heading out to participate in a protest, it’s a good idea to have a firm grasp of your legal rights. The First Amendment to the United States Constitution is a part of the United States Bill of Rights that protects freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, and right to petition. This means you have a legal and constitutional right to express your view through protest. Where to Engage in Free Speech Activity In general, you can lawfully engage in free speech activities, such as protests, in traditional “public forums” such as streets, sidewalks,
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Essex and Middlesex County Probate & Family Court tests ‘virtual registry’

The Probate & Family Court is testing the use of videoconferencing for registry assistance to the general public. The Essex and Middlesex Probate & Family Court registers’ offices have begun using Zoom videoconferencing to operate virtual registries. The program creates a virtual registry for Probate & Family Court matters using a Zoom videoconference meeting link that operates during normal business hours – Monday through Friday, from 8am – 4:30pm. when a host from a register’s office is logged in. In Essex and Middlesex, users who enter the virtual registry are placed in a waiting room until the host admits individuals
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