The Answers You Need for the Questions You’re Forced to Ask

One of the worst aspects of pursuing a case—whether you’re fighting for injury compensation or trying to settle a divorce—is not knowing what to expect. Before you get yourself knee deep in the details of your case allow us to answer some of your questions first. We’ll help you be more fully prepared and more confident as you move forward.

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  • What is a parenting plan?

    A parenting plan is a legal document that clearly describes how the parents will divide custody of shared children after a divorce. All couples who have a child together must create a detailed parenting plan that governs custody arrangements until the child comes of age. Rhode Island Divorce & Child Custody Attorney Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    What to Include in Your Parenting Plan

    Parenting plans focus on much more than just questions of joint custody and sole custody. Instead, they create a framework for co-parenting and for solving child-related problems together after divorce. These plans usually include provisions for physical custody as well as legal custody and must be structured in a way that is in the best interests of the child.

    A parenting plan should provide a clear guide to:

    • Which days and the length of time the child will spend with each parent every year
    • How summer and winter holidays will be spent with each parent / grandparent (including travel times, and who is responsible for transport)
    • Dates and times of child pick-up and drop-off (and which parent is responsible for transport)
    • Visitation schedules for parents and extended family members without custody
    • Extracurricular activities for each child, and who will pay these costs
    • Observance or preservation of the family’s (or child’s) religious beliefs
    • Protocol for handling any cancellations or postponements of custody
    • Protocol for traveling out of state with the child
    • Who will make decisions regarding the child’s upbringing, education, health, and social issues
    • Instructions for a child’s special medical or educational needs
    • How the child will be disciplined or rewarded for their behavior
    • How the parties will work out disagreements about the child

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If  you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney  please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What is a child custody evaluation?

    When parents divorce, they may not agree on who should have primary custody of the child. In order to determine where the child will be raised, the court may order a child custody evaluation for one or both parents. It is important that you are well-prepared for the evaluation, since the assessment they make can determine who should have custody or

    how the parents will divide custodyRhode Island Child Custody Lawyer Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    How to Prepare for a Child Custody Evaluation In Rhode Island

    The evaluator is someone with professional experience in child welfare and has only one goal in mind: deciding what is best for the child. They will visit your home, ask questions, and speak with your child to get an idea of your daily life. After the evaluator has reported their findings to the judge, the judge will use the information to make a final ruling in the custody hearing on where the child will live.

    In order to make a good impression during the evaluation, you should:

    Be honest.

    You may be asked difficult questions about your parenting style and personal relationships, as well as respond to comments or concerns made by your ex-spouse. It’s vital to answer questions honestly and avoid misrepresenting anything about the child’s home life—even if you think it could benefit your case.

    Make your child comfortable.

    You should let your child know someone will be coming to the house to ask questions, and they should act normally while the evaluator is there. Don’t coach or prompt your child to lie. Evaluators are skilled at observing interactions between parents and children, and they are trained to recognize when a child has been coached or is uneasy about responding.

    Provide good references.

    You will be asked for a list of references who will be contacted for follow-up interviews. Make sure you choose a good mix of family and friends who can attest to your ability to provide a safe and happy home.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If  you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney  please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What if my ex-spouse and I don’t agree about how to raise the kids after our divorce?

    One of the most difficult aspects of divorce is deciding what is best for the children. Parents will have to make choices for their kids that can have long-lasting consequences, such as where their child will live and go to school. 

    Divorce and children Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    When You and Your Ex Have Different Preferences

    Parents may have differing views, opinions, and preferences about how to raise their children. In all custody matters, the court will rule on the basis of what is in the best interest of the child. A judge will not allow parental rules or restrictions to continue if they cause harm to the emotional or physical health of the child. But what if parents simply cannot agree on the best way to bring up their children?

    There are many different solutions available in these custody disputes, including:

    Staying the course.

    Most parents have already put a plan in place for their children’s upbringing, even if it has not formally been written down. If the child regularly attends a certain school or religious service, a judge will likely recommend that the current plan continues, so the child’s life is not disrupted.

    Mediation and compromise.

    It is in both parents’ best interests to work together and stay respectful of one another’s wishes on all parenting matters. Not only does this reinforce the strength of the parental unit, it prevents the need for court intervention. For example, there should be a clear understanding of whether the child will attend religious services with each parent.

    An open mind about the future.

    All child custody agreements are bound to change as the child ages. Children may have their own input as they become young adults, and their own beliefs should be taken into account.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • How much does it cost to get divorced?

    If you are planning to divorce your spouse, you may have already budgeted for the costs of filing fees and legal help. However, there are many other costs beyond attorney fees and court costs—and people are often shocked at the amount of unexpected expenses. Prevent making common mistakes during the divorce process by planning for these hidden costs. Cranston Rhode Island Divorce Lawyer Kirsehnbaum and Kirshenbaum

    Be Prepared for Additional Divorce Costs

    A good divorce attorney should give you a written estimate of their fees, as well as any potential legal costs of preparing and filing your divorce petition. They may also advise you on whether it is a good idea to hire outside experts to help you get the divorce settlement you deserve.

    There additional professional services may include:

    Appraisals.

    If you have assets that could be extremely valuable—such as jewelry, art collections, furs, or investments—you may need a certified appraiser to assign a value for each one. If this is not done by a professional, the value of items may be significantly over- or undervalued, leaving you at a disadvantage during property division negotiations.

    Business valuation.

    If you and your spouse run a business, you may need a business valuation expert to determine the value of the company and how to arrange a buyout. You may also incur charges if you need to draft new business plans or governing documents to reflect the changes in the company.

    Forensic financial investigation.

    If you are not involved in the financial aspects of the marriage, you may need forensic financial investigators to gather information about your spouse’s holdings, debts, bank accounts, and other potentially hidden assets.

    Estate planning.

    You may need to hire an attorney to make changes to your will, name new beneficiaries on your insurance policies and healthcare documents, and ensure your ex-spouse will not accidentally inherit upon your death.

    Moving costs.

    The spouse leaving the family home will need to plan for increased expenses. For example, that spouse should plan for packers and moving professionals, rent, utilities, and increased commuter mileage. The person remaining in the home may need to budget for mortgage, tax, and utility payments.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Are there any advantages to a legal separation rather than divorce?

    A separation may be a good option for married couples who are considering divorce or who have problems that could potentially lead to divorce. In fact, couples who separate before beginning divorce proceedings often save time and money and increase their chances of an amicable divorceThe benefits of a legal separation Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Benefits of a Legal Separation Before Divorce

    In general, a legal separation is a married couple’s conscious choice to live apart. Much like a divorce, legal separations require court petitions and can be granted on fault or no-fault grounds. However, separations are not permanent and only last a few months or a few years.

    Separation may be beneficial in many cases, including:

    Potential for reconciliation

    If you believe there is chance for reconciliation, you can use your time apart to think about what you want from your marriage and what you and your spouse can do to avoid a divorce in the future.

    Pre-divorce preparation

    A separation period can give you a preview of life after marriage and give you time to open new bank accounts and health insurance policies.

    Child benefits

    Divorce proceedings can be stressful for kids. A separation period can avoid undue stress on children or allow them to finish out the school year before the divorce process begins.

    Financial concerns 

    In Rhode Island, spouses are prohibited from selling, transferring, or concealing any individual property or marital assets during a separation. In addition to preventing retaliatory spending, a separation can give an unemployed spouse time to find a job and offer a real-time look at each spouse’s finances going forward.

    Religious concerns

    A separation can allow you to live apart from your spouse if your religion prevents you from getting a divorce.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What Can I do If My Ex Is Not Following Our Custody Order?

    Often times you may find yourself in a position where you have gone to court and have successfully achieved a custody and or visitation order but that after Court your ex refuses to comply with the terms of the order. If that is the case, it is inadvisable to take the law in your own hands. Some parties feel that when the other side is violating the order that in response they can withhold child support, withhold visitation rights or take other self-made remedies. Do not retaliate and kind!

    If you find that your ex is not following a custody order, the best response would be to speak with your attorney, who will likely file a motion to adjudge the other parent in contempt or to seek other relief. If found in contempt, the court can issue new orders with various forms of relief, including modifications to the custody or visitation order that is being violated.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If  you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney  please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

  • At What Age Can My Children Decide Not To Follow Our Visitation Schedule?

    In Rhode Island, the preference of a child to visit with a parent is only one factor that the Court will consider when establishing a visitation schedule.  There is no set age when a child can decide not to visit with the other parent; when determining visitation, the Court will ultimately have to decide what is in the best interest of the child.

    While there is no set age for a child to decide not to visit with one parent or to change a visitation schedule, the Court may consider the child’ s preference.  In doing so the Court will consider the child’s age, maturity and reasons provided for wanting or not wanting to visit with a particular parent.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If  you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce family law attorney  please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

  • Is there a good way to tell my spouse I want a divorce?

    If you’ve decided to end your marriage, it may seem that there’s never a right time to break the news to your spouse. You know the discussion will be fraught with emotion, and approaching it the wrong way could affect your future relationship with your spouse and children. While there may not be a perfect way to ask for a divorce, there are some things you can do to make the conversation go more smoothly. Rhode Island Divorce Attorney Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    How to Prepare for a Conversation About Divorce

    The best way to ask for a divorce will depend on the person you are asking. You know how your spouse will likely react to bad news, how they process information, and whether they would prefer a long or short conversation. Acknowledging their feelings and being respectful will set the tone for the separation and increase your chances of an amicable divorce

    Before you make a request for divorce, you should:

    Make a script.

    It is best to write down your thoughts before meeting with your spouse. The right language can help you avoid hurting your spouse without giving them control over the conversation.

    Pick an appropriate time and place.

    Do not ambush your spouse by asking for a divorce when they don’t have time to respond. Plan the conversation for when you both have plenty of time to speak and ask questions, and do it in a place where you and your spouse feel comfortable. Try to let your spouse know ahead of time that you need to talk with them.

    Prepare for an emotional reaction.

    It may have taken you many months of deliberation before you reached the conclusion to separate, so expecting your spouse to process their emotions in a few moments is unrealistic.

    Have a counter-argument ready.

    When faced with the prospect of divorce, some spouses will ask about counseling or separation in an attempt to work on the marriage. It is best to have reasons at the ready for why these options don’t work for you.

    Address expectations for the future.

    You may want to discuss a few logistical details such as who will live in the house and who will have physical custody of the children. While you should listen to your spouse’s opinions and agree to work together to find a solution, it is best not to make any promises about custody or property until you speak to an attorney.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • After my divorce, how long do I have to wait before remarrying?

    If you are thinking of getting married soon after a divorce, there are a few things you may want to consider. While Rhode Island laws are fairly flexible regarding remarriage after divorce, the “right” time to remarry will likely depend on your personal and financial circumstances. Divorce and Family Law Attorney Rhode Island Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Factors That Can Affect the Timeline of Remarriage After Divorce

    It is common for one or even both spouses to get remarried after a divorce. Recent studies suggest that over 60% of people who get a divorce will get married once again at some point in their lives, and roughly half of all divorced people will remarry within five years of a divorce. However, you may want to wait a little longer to remarry if:

    The divorce is not yet “official.”

    Uncontested divorces do not become final on the day they are granted. There is a mandatory waiting period that can last up to 90 days after the date of the first hearing, but some divorces may be granted sooner if they qualify for expedited processing. You should check with the judge or your divorce attorney to find out the exact date you will be legally divorced.

    You are getting married in another state.

    Unlike other states, Rhode Island does not impose an additional waiting period before remarriage to a new spouse once a divorce is final. However, if you were divorced in Rhode Island and you want to marry someone in another state, you should check that state’s laws regarding waiting times.

    You want to continue receiving alimony.

    You should know that your ex-spouse does not have to continue paying alimony once you are remarried. If your ex-spouse’s support payments are allowing you to go back to school, undergo job retraining, or otherwise become self-sufficient, you may wish to postpone remarriage.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Family Law Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island family law attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What should I expect during my first meeting with a divorce lawyer?

    The dissolution of a marriage can be overwhelming, so it’s no surprise that many people delay consulting with a divorce lawyer for weeks (or even months) after they have decided to end their marriage. However, this consultation is a vital first step in the process, and it’s helpful to know what will happen during the first meeting with a divorce attorney. Rhode Island Divorce Lawyer Kirshenbaum and Kirshenbaum

    What Happens at Your First Meeting With a Divorce Lawyer

    The first thing you should expect in our offices is compassion for what you are going through. As experienced Rhode Island divorce attorneys, we know how stressful this time can be for our clients. You should not be afraid to show your emotions, share your feelings and fears, or be honest about your priorities.

    Your first meeting with us is an opportunity to:

    Ask questions.

    Your questions will be specific to your case, but we commonly hear questions such as: How does the divorce process work? Could I get alimony? Can we divorce through mediation? How much does a divorce cost? You should bring a list of questions to ask, and be prepared to take notes when the attorney responds or makes suggestions.

    Answer questions.

    We will ask a variety of personal but necessary questions, including inquiries about your living situation, children, house, occupation, finances, and any property or investments you own. The more you share with us, the better we can advise you of your legal options.

    Learn your next steps.

    At the end of the meeting, we will outline the steps you need to take as you prepare to separate from your spouse. If you choose to retain us, we will also explain what you can expect from us throughout your divorce proceedings.

    Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?

    If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.