Family Law, Divorce, Mediation


Family Law, Divorce, Mediation

             At Sweeney and Associates we understand how difficult it is for families going through divorce, custody disputes, or child support issues. We pride ourselves in not only representing our clients zealously in and out of court but also assisting them through the difficult times they endure during the litigation. Attorney Richard Sweeney and Attorney Sabrina Bonanno represent clients going through divorce, whether it is contested or uncontested, clients wanting to change the custody and visitation arrangement, and clients who are dealing with a parent who has not paid child support or if one parent seeks to change the amount of child support owed. Call us at 617-328-6900 or email us at rsweeney@rsweeneylaw.com to discuss your case.

In Massachusetts, you can either file for a contested or uncontested divorce. It is important to note that whether you file for a contested or uncontested divorce, an automatic restraining order applies to both parties which prohibits either spouse from engaging in any activity that would affect the financial status of either or both spouses.

Uncontested divorces are governed by G.L. c.208, Section 1A. An uncontested divorce based on an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage is filed when both parties agree they want to separate. The document filed is called a Joint Petition for Divorce. If you are filing for an uncontested divorce the following must be filed:

  • Joint Petition for Divorce
  • Notarized Separation Agreement.
  • Affidavit of Irretrievable Breakdown  (signed by both parties)
  • R-408-Certificate of Absolute Divorce or Annulment Statistical Information
  • Certified copy of civil marriage certificate
  • Financial Form
    • Long Form if you earn more than $75,000
    • Short Form if you make less than $75,000
  • Affidavit of Care and Custody (if you have children with the spouse you are divorcing)
  • Child Support Guidelines Worksheet (if you have children with the spouse you are divorcing)
  • Participate in a Parent Education Program (if you have children with the spouse you are divorcing)
    • This is done after the divorce paperwork is filed

Contested divorces are governed by G.L. c.208, Section 1B. A contested divorce based on an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage is filed when only one party wants a divorce. If one party files for a contested divorce and then the other party agrees that there has been an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, the Complaint for Divorce can be amended to a Joint Petition. If you are filing for a contested divorce the following must be filed:

  • Complaint for Divorce
  • Affidavit of Irretrievable Breakdown
  • R-408-Certificate of Absolute Divorce or Annulment Statistical Information
  • Certified copy of civil marriage certificate
  • Financial Form
    • Long Form if you earn more than $75,000
    • Short Form if you make less than $75,000
  • Affidavit of Care and Custody (if you have child(ren) with the spouse you are divorcing)
  • Child Support Guidelines Worksheet (if you have child(ren) with the spouse you are divorcing)
  • Participate in a Parent Education Program (if you have child(ren)
    • This is done after the divorce paperwork is filed
  • Within 45 days, of serving the other spouse with the Summons and Complaint, both parties must exchange financial information as required by Supplemental Probate Rule 410

A Complaint for Separate Support can be filed if one or both parties want to separate but do not want to divorce. These Complaints are governed by G.L. c.209, Section 30. The following documents must be filed:

  • Complaint for Separate Support
  • Certified copy of civil marriage certificate
  • Financial Form
    • Long Form if you earn more than $75,000
    • Short Form if you make less than $75,000
  • Affidavit of Care and Custody (if you have child(ren) with the spouse you are divorcing)
  • Child Support Guidelines Worksheet (if you have child(ren) with the spouse you are divorcing)

When facing life altering issues such as these it is vital to your future and your family  that you hire reputable and experienced attorneys to handle your case. If you are need assistance from experienced, knowledgeable attorneys contact Sweeney and Associates at 617-328-6900 or email us at rsweeney@rsweeneylaw.com  today and let us help you navigate the system and obtain the best result possible.  These issues affect you and your whole family and we are experienced and can provide you and your family with the resources and help necessary to deal with these problems.

Attorney Richard J. Sweeney is a board certified mediator and can assist you and your family in any of these matters in an economical and just manner.  Please call 617-328-6900 to discuss your inexpensive option to costly litigation.  We can draft separation agreements and final court documents for both spouses if there is agreement on disposition of the assets and other issues.  If you agree on most issues often a session or two with Attorney Richard Sweeney can help you resolve outstanding disputes saving time and money.

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