Grandparent Standing for Custody/Visitation

Section 5325 of the Domestic Relations laws sets out the circumstances under which grandparents and great-grandparents may petition for partial custody/visitation. One of three conditions must be met: (1) a parent of the child is deceased; (2) the parents of the child have been separated for at least six months AND don’t agree on whether […]

Grandparent Custody Rights

Sections 5324 and 5325 of the Domestic Relations statute sets out the circumstances under which grandparents and great-grandparents may petition for custody/visitation. Section 5324 deals with partial custody or visitation and requires that at least one of three conditions be met: (1) a parent of the child is deceased; (2) the parents of the child […]

Desperate for Divorce but Worried about Abuse?

If you are currently married and in a physically or mentally abusive relationship, it can be a very tarrying situation that you might be desperate to get out of. You might be thinking of leaving or filing for divorce but have that voice in your head telling you it is not a good idea because […]

Custody Exchanges during Covid-19 Pandemic

Our country is still battling the spread of a new virus and with that, new questions as to custody exchanges in the event of confirmed Covid-19 diagnosis or suspected exposure. First and foremost, be compliant with your existing Order to the extent possible. This virus is not a reason to keep your child from seeing […]

What to do after adoption

After your adoption hearing, you can take steps to update your child’s name and/or birth certificate, where necessary. To obtain a new birth certificate you will need to submit a request through Vital Records in the state that issued the initial birth certificate. If outside of Pennsylvania, check with the local office regarding their specific […]

How to Place a Child for Adoption

There are two options to place a child for adoption. The first option is to surrender the child to the appropriate agency. This can include the county social services agency or private adoption agency. Under 23 Pa C.S. 2501, written notice of intent to give custody of the child to the agency should be presented […]

Guardianship of a Minor Child

A guardian can be appointed to make decisions on behalf of a minor child. Temporary guardianships can be put in place without a court hearing. The guardianship would transfer the authority to make decisions for a minor child from the existing parent/guardian to another person for a limited time. A written agreement is required to […]

Foreign Adoption

If you have adopted a child from abroad, there are several steps to take to finalize the adoption domestically. A re-adoption being filed in the United States can serve a few purposes. It can allow for an adoption decree that is in English. It can be required for immigration purposes. It may also be helpful […]

Counseling for Natural Parents

Natural parents can take advantage of court-sponsored counseling services when facing termination of their parental rights. Each county is responsible for keeping a list of qualified counselors who are available to assist natural parents contemplating voluntary relinquishment or facing involuntary termination of their parental rights. Prior to any adoption of a minor taking place, the […]