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Rachel Aliza Elovitz
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Rachel Elovitz’s Answers

974 total


  • Child Support and Custody

    Went to court for Legitmation of my daughter August 2013 and recieved it. Judge ordered a GAL but only did a 45min interview with child. No follow up with either parents. Judge did not order Visitation but told us to work it out amongst paren...

    Rachel’s Answer

    Your post begs a number of questions:

    It sounds as if you still haven't had a final trial? Has either party requested to be placed on a trial calendar? Have you attempted mediation or another ADR process?

    Have the two of you sought the input of a child specialist regarding how you might effectively co-parent - and what kind of parenting time schedule might be best for your child considering his or her age, your family dynamic, the child's bond with each of you and any step siblings, etc?

    If the judge is unwilling to put the case on a trial calendar, which seems unlikely (particularly if he or she appointed a GAL to conduct an investigation and make recommendations to assist the Court in making a custody and parenting time determination), then you might consider arbitration (or if you have not already tried mediation, you might try it first, so that you are not putting your future and that of your child in the hands of a third party arbitrator who doesn't know you or your family.

    As for child support, it is based on your current income and that of your child's mother Georgia uses a shared income model). "Income" is determined by looking at a party's income tax returns, w-2s, 1099's, paycheck stubs, bank returns and the like.

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  • Can you appeal a child custody case?

    Joint custody order was entered in Oct.2013 in less then 6 months, the mother files for full custody and child support. The judge awards her everything she ask for.

    Rachel’s Answer

    Your question is unclear and begs a few questions:

    1. Was the initial custody Order entered in Oct 2013?
    2. Was that Oct 2013 Order for joint legal and/or joint physical custody?
    3. Was there a modification action filed less than six months later - and an Order granting the petition for modification entered in that same 6 month time frame?
    4. What was the alleged material change of circumstance that the Court felt warranted the change of custody?
    5. Or was the Oct 2013 Order perhaps a temporary Order - and then a final Order entered less than six months later?
    6. Has there been another modification petition filed or Modification Order entered since the "less than 6 months later" Order was entered (presumably in April 2014)? If not, your time to file an appeal has expired.
    7. You may have a basis (which is not clear from your post) to seek to set aside the modification Order, but you need to show the Order, the 2013 Order, and the pleadings to an attorney to get a fully informed answer.

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  • I lied about having an abortion, now the father doesn't want to pay child support

    I got pregnant with a married mans baby. He wanted me to have an abortion, and I lied and said I did, because I was scared what he might do to me if he new I kept the baby, he lives in Hollywood and he's got a lot of money and influence. Now I'm h...

    Rachel’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    What does the law entitle him to do? Well, he can seek go legitimate his child, which would allow your child to inherit from him as if born in lawful wedlock. He could ask the Court to give the child his last name. He could seek an award of parenting time or custody. He can try to impeach your credibility by raising the fact that you lied about having the baby, and he can try and claim that he should be awarded custody because your past actions suggest that you do not want the baby to know or have a relationship with his father. You will be afforded an opportunity, however, to explain your actions to the court, and the fact that the father got you pregnant while married to another woman and has refused to support the child now that he knows he has a child will impact his credibility. All that said, you need a lawyer to represent you. If you cannot afford one and if you have no one to help you, call legal aid. Call your local bar and ask for a pro bono appointment. Apply for TANF while you look for work. Call DCSS and get him paying child support. Go to dcss.dhs.georgia.gov or call 877-423-4746

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  • Before we filled divorce papers, my husband and I signed and notarized a paper saying the house, the boat, and the car will be

    sold and proceeds will be shared 50-50. I will move out soon. How will I know that he sold the house, the boat, and the car? Will the judge give him a timeline? Will he order for me to be present during the sale? Thank you.

    Rachel’s Answer

    It's not clear from your post whether you are referring to a prenuptial, postnuptial, reconciliation or settlement agreement - and whether the agreement was entered into with the benefit of counsel, whether all essential terms were included, whether time, manner and method was adequately spelled out, whether the divorce decree has been entered, whether it incorporated an agreement other than the one to which you've referred, or whether it incorporated the agreement to which you've alluded. You need to show your agreement to an attorney - and if you are represented or were represented in the divorce (if over) then show it to the attorney who is representing or did represent you. We do not have sufficient information to answer your questions.

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  • Can cps take my newborn from hospital

    One year ago my husband and I had a case on us because we were addicted to pain meds dfacs put the children with my husbands mother and put a protective order on us.. I still can visit my children supervised on weekends . I now live in another co...

    Rachel’s Answer

    There has to be a present finding that your baby is a dependent child (what we previously referred to under the old Code as " deprived" ). However, if you are not following your case plan you are getting in your own way of having your other children returned to you. If you do not have an attorney, retain one. If you cannot afford an attorney, apply for a pro bono appointment through the juvenile court in which your case is pending.

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  • Will I get alimony?

    I had an affair while we were separated. He has forgiven me & wants to stay married. He has even said he'd look the other way if I wanted to continue seeing the other person so we can stay married. I have these conversations recorded. I have been ...

    Rachel’s Answer

    Alimony is based first and foremost on need and ability to pay, so first you'd have to demonstrate with financial documents, such as paystubs, tax returns, your Domestic Relations Financial Affidavit ("DRFA"), his DRFA, bank statements, and the like, that you have a need and he has an ability to pay.

    If the Court determines that you do have a need and he does have an ability to pay, that doesn't mean you get alimony. There are a number of equitable factors that the Court considers, including your ages, general health, contributions to the marriage, conduct during the marriage, the length of your marriage, etc.

    We don't know from your post if you are employed, what you are earning, if he is working, what he is earning, what your respective contributions have been to the marriage, what your ability to earn an income is, etc...but we do know that you had an extramarital relationship. And your post does not indicate that he has acted in contravention to your vows, rather that he loves you and is willing to give up his pride and self-respect to stay with you.

    While you say that he "forgave" you, if you file for divorce, he may testify otherwise. If you engaged in sexual relations (with your husband) after he learned of your affair, then he would arguably have "condoned" the infidelity, but if not, to the extent he can prove that the affair resulted in the break up of your marriage, then it will (or under the law should) bar you from an award of alimony.

    Finally, if in support of your claim for alimony you play a recording for the Court of your husband saying that he has forgiven you and will allow you to continue an extramarital relationship, don't be surprised if the Court's chin hits the floor. If your husband is so desperate to stay with you despite your infidelity, then either he is too afraid to be on his own and/or loves you too much to walk away, and if you disingenuously speak to him about reconciliation and then use a recording of his pleas to keep you and willingness to allow you to sleep with another man to justify your right to have him support you financially, I suspect you will lose some credibility with the Court. You will make your husband quite sympathetic.

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  • I need advise

    I have paid all my child support and the courts not my X is saying I owe them still . I paid it to my X not through the courts. Now we both have moved away and it's been 2 years scence I have seen or heard from X I dont know where she is to c...

    Rachel’s Answer

    What you're saying, respectfully, doesn't make sense. If there's an action, a legal action, pending in Superior Court in Georgia concerning past due child support, then your ex has filed a contempt action and sought to collect the arrearage or the State (ie DHS / DCSS) has done so on her behalf...which means that she is claiming that there is an arrearage. You need to retain an attorney to represent you and guide you through this process.

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  • I can not afford an attorney how do find some one to help me with my case?

    My boyfriend lives in Braselton, GA. and was served with child support papers from a lady in Pittsburgh, PA. He is unable to afford an attorney due to his unemployment and he is also on public assistance. He is unable to secure a job because of h...

    Rachel’s Answer

    He needs to contact the Pennsylvania Bar and ask about a pro bono referral. http://www.pabar.org/

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  • I have joint custody of my child with my ex- boyfriend. I have just come out as a lesbian. Could I lose custody of my child?

    Everything has been working fine with our arrangement and my ex and I have been working well together. However, he can be very sneaky and vindictive and I'm afraid he could take me court over my sexuality. I know that legally I can't be discrimina...

    Rachel’s Answer

    Yes, he can file an action to modify custody; however...he has to demonstrate the legal burden which is 2 fold:

    1st prong - he has to show that there has been a material change of circumstances impacting the health or welfare of your child since the original custody Order was entered: and

    2nd prong - he has to show that the change of custody is in your child's best interest.

    The fact that you are homosexual in and of itself should not enable him to prove his legal burden - but there are judges who do not believe unmarried persons (irrespective of sexual preference) should live together / cohabit when children are involved and I've seen a change of custody based in large part on that occurrence, so if you are living with a partner, that could negatively impact the Court. It might (depending on the county and judge), make a difference if you were married to your partner (even though gay marriages are not recognized in Georgia) - but just like with heterosexual couples, the court is looking to see if their is longevity in the relationship, stability in the home, consistency for the child...

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  • In GA, is it mandatory that the non-custodial parent pay child support (consider sole vs. joint physical custody)?

    Custodial parent is a higher wage earner than non-custodial parent and does not wish to seek child support for their children.

    Rachel’s Answer

    BOTH parents have a duty in Georgia to support their child. When it comes to child support, we employ a shared income model. There are certain adjustments and deviations that are authorized, including non-specific deviations....and you still see them done based on extended or equal parenting time resulting in neither parent paying the other child support, rather both supporting the children during their respective custodial periods. The CSW and CSA must reasonably support such a result for the court to accept it. You'd be wise to obtain an attorney to assist you through the legal process.

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