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Top 10 Common Misconceptions in Family Law

Many clients contact attorneys with preconceived notions of what divorce and asset division will involve in their situations. These are some of the most commonly held beliefs most attorneys hear from people regularly.

  • If I quit my job I won’t have to pay support.
  • I should be entitled to know where my support money is going.
  • My spouse is not entitled to part of my pension.
  • My spouse will get less if I can prove he/she committed adultery.
  • Assets are divided equally in a divorce in Pennsylvania.
  • I will lose my rights to the house if I move out.
  • Children can decide where they want to live at a certain age.
  • I can keep my kids away from my ex’s new boyfriend/girlfriend.
  • The other parent has no right to see the children if he/she is not paying support.
  • There is no alimony in Pennsylvania

People going through divorce, child support or custody issues often rely on advice from friends, family and co-workers who, although well intentioned, may not be fully aware of what the law is and how it applies in every case. Due to the fact that these kinds of cases often depend upon the specific situation you are in, it is highly recommended that you speak with a family lawyer before making any decisions which may prove costly and difficult to change later.


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Pennsylvania distributes marital property on an "equitable" basis, which means the court awards property in a manner it believes is fair, not necessarily on a 50-50 basis. The court considers numerous factors when it considers how to award divorce property, and it can also award alimony.
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