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Weekly Caselaw Updates

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In re D.G.J.

This case presented the Pennsylvania Superior Court with a factual scenario of first impression—U.S. citizens sought to adopt their foreign-born nephew, who has been residing with them in the U.S. on a non-immigrant visa, where there is no foreign adoption decree made or entered into in conformity with the laws…

This case presented the Pennsylvania Superior Court with a factual scenario of first impression—U.S. citizens sought to adopt their foreign-born nephew, who has been residing with them in the U.S. on a non-immigrant visa, where there is no foreign adoption decree made or entered into in conformity with the laws of the child’s home country.… Continue reading In re D.G.J.

The New Jersey Appellate Division ruled that procedural due process requires that before trial, judges inform the defendants in domestic violence proceedings both of the serious consequences resulting from the entry of a final restraining order (FRO) and of their right to retain legal counsel. Here, neither party was represented by counsel at the FRO… Continue reading A.A.R. v. J.R.C.

The Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the lower court’s order that adjudicated a child dependent. The mother appealed and claimed that the lower court abused its discretion because it denied her request to participate telephonically in the adjudicatory hearing pursuant to Rule 1129 of the Pennsylvania Rules of Juvenile Court Procedure. The Superior Court ruled that… Continue reading In re K.B.

Zabrosky v. Smithbower-Zabrosky
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Superior Court reviewed the lower court’s order that added money to a husband’s child support obligation after he secretly withdrew money from his children’s 529 Accounts to pay for the legal fees related to his divorce. The couple divorced and entered into a marriage settlement agreement (MSA) that forbade them from withdrawing from that… Continue reading Zabrosky v. Smithbower-Zabrosky

The New Jersey Appellate Division ruled that the lower court did not possess personal jurisdiction over a nonresident alleged to have fathered a child during a sexual relationship with a New Jersey resident when the child was conceived in New York. The Court analyzed the issue under New Jersey’s Uniform Interstate Family Support Act. More… Continue reading M.A.P. v. E.B.A.

Sichelsteiel v. Sichelstiel
Pennsylvania Superior Court

A father appealed to the Pennsylvania Superior Court from the Court of Common Pleas order to pay $2,300 per month in child support. The father argued that the flow-through income he receives from various businesses should not have been included in his net income because most of that money was retained by the businesses, and… Continue reading Sichelsteiel v. Sichelstiel

In this complex divorce matter, the New Jersey Appellate Division reviewed the Chancery Court’s order denying the wife’s motion to vacate her final judgment of divorce, which incorporated a property settlement agreement (PSA). Two facts are notable. First, throughout the initial divorce proceedings, the wife was represented by a guardian ad litem. And eventually, her… Continue reading D.M.C. v. K.H.G.

The Pennsylvania Superior Court reversed the orphans’ court’s decree, which terminated involuntarily Mother’s parental rights. In her notice of appeal, Mother contravened the rule in Commonwealth v. Walker when she filed one notice of appeal but listed two dockets. In response to the Superior Court’s rule to show cause, Mother asked the Court to strike… Continue reading In re A.J.R.O.

Mariano v. Rhodes
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court aptly described the question presented as “whether the prothonotary’s rejection of a spouse’s imperfect pleadings constitutes a fatal defect apparent upon the face of the record, thereby obligating a court to vacate a divorce decree under 23 Pa.C.S. § 3332.” Husband served Wife with a complaint seeking a divorce. Through counsel,… Continue reading Mariano v. Rhodes

Steiner v. Steiner
New Jersey Appellate Division

The New Jersey Appellate Division heard a husband’s appeal after the trial court bifurcated a divorce, conducted a bench trial on the grounds for the divorce, and found in favor of the wife. The Appellate Division largely affirmed the trial court’s order. The Court found that the trial court properly bifurcated the issues of the… Continue reading Steiner v. Steiner