We are delighted to announce that our physical office is re-opening to our existing and new clients. To provide safety to both our clients and staff, we are adapting the CDC guidelines for social distancing while we are in the yellow phase. Rest assured, that we have and will continue to regularly clean all areas of the office especially the high-traffic areas. All attorneys and staff will have their temperature taken daily and will be wearing masks when interacting with clients. Any attorneys and staff with a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher will work remotely. They will then be required to follow CDCrecommended steps, including not returning to work until the CDC criteria to discontinue home isolation are met.

As the health and safety of our clients and their families is our top priority, we are asking that our clients follow the procedures below during the yellow phase:

  1. Upon entering the building, we ask that all persons wash their hands or hand-sanitize. We will be providing access to soap, hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes.
  2. We will also be taking temperatures with non-contact thermometers upon entering the office.
  3. Our office is set-up to comply with social distancing of six feet. In the conference and mediation rooms we are asking that each person sit a minimum of one chair apart from attorneys and/or staff at all times.
  4. Masks are available and will be provided open request.
  5. Teleconferences Zoom meetings, and FaceTime are available in lieu of inperson meetings if requested.
  6. We will continue to have the drop-box available for delivery of documents.

In the event that anyone is sick or have been exposed to COVID-19, we ask that you reschedule your appointment or utilize the electronic forums listed above.

As each county determines the procedures that will be followed, please ask your attorney of the specific procedures regarding the county in which your case in pending.

Please note that we will also continue to accommodate the needs of new clients, who are welcome, and as always we encourage and appreciate referrals. During this uncertain and unprecedented time, please stay safe and remember that Sweeney Law Office, LLC will remain by your side for all of your family’s legal needs. We ask that you have patience during this challenging time.

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Father intends to appeal ruling in child custody battle

Parents in Pennsylvania may be interested to hear of an unusual child custody case. A real estate developer and his girlfriend made the decision to have a child together via surrogate. The girlfriend was able to see her son just after he was born nearly two years ago, but has not been able to see him since. A judge recently delivered a ruling in the complicated child custody case that has the father planning to file for an appeal.

The now-former girlfriend says it was the intention of the couple all along for the father to have sole custody of the boy but he would know his mother and have periods of visitation with her. The father claims she legally terminated all rights once she donated her eggs unless the relationship between the two resulted in marriage or became long-term. Numerous texts from the father before the boy was born, talking about “their” child played a part in the judge’s ruling to legally declare the former girlfriend as the child’s mother.

The judge gave some weight to an argument the couple had just after the birth of the boy that the father wanted to cut the mother out of the child’s life. Just a few days after the birth, the father legally had himself declared the lone parent, with the mother’s name omitted from the birth certificate. The mother had no knowledge of this action and now claims it was her punishment for not accepting his marriage proposal in addition to the aforementioned argument. The father is hopeful the judge’s ruling is overturned by the Oregon Supreme Court before the mother and boy can begin a relationship.

Thankfully not all child custody cases are this complex. However, to ensure the rights of the parents and especially the child are respected, it is best to have an attorney examine all legal elements of any custody case. A Pennsylvania family law attorney can work to resolve any custody disputes that may arise.

Source: oregonlive.com, “Judge: Jordan Schnitzer is not sole legal parent; boy has mother, too“, Aimee Green, Dec. 6, 2017


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