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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 […]

This in large part depends on the practice of the Court.  There is something called “Third-Party Custody” where one of the parties including child’s counsel can make the request for a Third-Party Custody hearing.  Some Judges allow this as part of a 72-hour hearing, other Judges ask for after the parents 72-hour hearing is completed. […]

One a key provision of the Massachusetts Criminal Justice Reform Act is raising the minimum age a child can be held criminally responsible; which used to be 7 and is now 12 and tried in Juvenile Court.   Bail Reform is where attorneys, judges and people within the court system would see that many indigent […]

What is a list of some of the Factors that the Court Look at in terms of Custody?           Again, the Courts look at what is in the best interest of the child. Some of the factors include: each parents financial and physical ability; to provide the children with both essentials and beyond such as […]

If One Parent gets Physical Custody can they move out of State? If the child of a divorced parent usually needs to consent to an out of state move; or else needs to get approval by the court as part of a Modification to remove the child out of state. If there is Joint Physical […]

In Massachusetts What are somethings that I can do to Help get better Chance of Winning Custody or Having more Parenting Time?    Many people ask about moving from the marital residence if the child is living there.  Generally, it is it not considered abandonment to do so; which is a concern that people have, but […]

A Court Ex Parte Order is a decision the Court makes only after one party presents evidence. At times it is usually based on an emergency and it would require an Affidavit and a hearing in front of the Judge to determine whether it would occur. Then there would be an immediate order and allow […]

In Massachusetts a “Parenting Plan” is similar to a “Visitation Plan”.  It can talk about details of the time that the children spend with each parent. It can be very detailed oriented with specific times, dates, holidays, vacations, summer vacations, out of state, the ways that the parents can contact each other, and a variety […]

In Massachusetts Child Custody Cases, who gets Custody of the Child (children)?    The Probate and Family Court determines physical custody based on a variety of factors.  The standard is the best interest of the child or children.  One of the more important factors is who has been the child or children’s primary caregiver during […]