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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Fighting about school for the kids when you’re divorced

Every year, a steady stream of divorced and separated parents make their way into attorneys’ offices because they’re having conflicts over a child’s education. Since shared legal custody has become the norm and the law presumes that parents who share custody will also share in the decision-making process, these disputes have become more common.

Here are some of the most important things you need to know:

Pennsylvania law has specific entitlements

Unless a child is attending private school, they are typically required to attend the public school in the district where they predominantly live. If you have more-or-less equal physical custody with your spouse, then the child has the option of either district.

The best interests of the child are paramount to any decision

If you and your co-parent can’t agree on which school your child should attend, the judge in your case will look at the potential benefits and drawbacks of each school for the child. That may include things like:

  • Classroom size
  • Educational ranking of the school
  • The child’s learning style
  • The child’s preference
  • The willingness and capability of the school to accommodate the child’s needs
  • The cost of a school
  • Any transportation issues

If one parent lives in a much better school district than the other, expect that to weigh heavily in the judge’s mind during the decision-making process.

If you’re seeking a more unusual solution, be ready to explain your logic

Sometimes parents opt for a non-traditional education. Maybe you want to home school your child this year or move them to an e-classroom. If your spouse objects because they believe your child needs the brick-and-mortar environment, be prepared to make your case before a judge. You may point to safety concerns, problems your child has with the learning environment, food allergies and the like as reasons for keeping your child out of school.

These disputes can often be worked out through negotiation. When they can’t, you need an experienced attorney’s assistance.

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