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What if my spouse won’t agree to a Divorce?  In Massachusetts it is not required that both parties cooperate with the Divorce proceeding. Only one spouse needs to decide that he/she wants to pursue a divorce action. You do have to have the other party served; which will commence the proceeding and you can go […]

What is mediation for separating and divorcing couples?  It is a way the parties can control their own decision making about their future.  It can have some real benefits, for parents who will continue to need to figure out ways to parent their children. Not only as minors, but even as adults. The work in […]

DCF wants me to sign releases, what should I do?  Every case is unique, but it is the best practice to go over the Releases with an attorney first. Not saying that you are denying signing the Releases or agreeing to sign the Releases, just say that you want to review it with an attorney; […]

More than likely that is including looking at the sleeping areas and cabinets. It is important that medication is put away safely, ideally in a medication safe, depending on the age of the children; that there is no alcohol or drugs present; the house is somewhat tidy; and it is helpful if there are age […]

Failing to take the investigation seriously. Even if the allegation is false and the worker is inexperienced, be careful of your contact with DCF, your behavior with DCF and your answer to questions if you decide to be interviewed. It is important to be as calm and polite as possible, not showing a lot of […]

Even with intact families, there are often conflicts over what seem to be minor issues like “what’s for dinner?” However, in divorce and high conflict custody cases parenting styles may come into major disagreement arising from differences in religion, medication, sports, etc. Often parents cannot compromise and request that a judge get involved in what […]

This can be a complicated question depending on the allegations and what would likely be found.  Sometimes I have had cases that have been unsupported even when someone comes back with a positive for things such as marijuana. When the allegations are more serious drug use there is a question about whether you want to […]

One of the problems that you see is that DCF is trying to investigate your life and having screening questions to ask for broad based questions about all types of abuse and neglect.  Even if the allegation is false about why DCF originally came in, they find that the child or children are still at […]

Typically, it does not keep the case from being investigated.  Although, DCF is aware that there can be ulterior motives, such as a breakup with a significant other or dispute between neighbors and that have things to do with other than the welfare of the child.  It is important to be able to advocate this […]

The Answer is, it depends.  It depends on your part of the definition.  DCF can screen-out 51A Investigation; although that is not that common, but some examples for that might be that it doesn’t need the legal threshold such as; it is an allegation where there is no allegation against the caretaker or guardian. There […]