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Joanna Marie Mitchell
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Joanna Mitchell’s Answers

925 total


  • Is there something I can do to avoid all contact with non custodial parent?

    i currently have full physical and legal custody of my daughter and I was granted the right to move from NY to FL a year ago. I let my child speak with her dad whenever he calls. Last time she went to NY I paid and this time I said he had to pay. ...

    Joanna’s Answer

    I somewhat agree with the other answers, at least in theory. However, in reality, there really isn't much that you can do if he is doing this when you are trying to reach your daughter on the phone. You could ask your daughter to initiate all phone calls and only communicate with him via email or text message (those are typically admissible in court, so if he is berating you, then you would if proof). Problem is, in reality, it sounds as if anything that you do is simply going to limit your contact with your daughter when she is with him. Yes, you can get court orders, but how to enforce them, in reality, is the problem and, of course, if it is all verbal, over the phone, he is simply going to deny that it occurred. My suggestion, just try to ignore him, don't sink to his level and be happy that you have the majority time with your daughter and that your issues are not much more serious.

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  • How soon does a divorce lawyer starts handling or processing the case?

    I've been married for 25 years. My husband and I are divorcing and would like to know how soon does the the lawyer starts to work on it once a he/she is hired. About how much will the fee be, does the fee has to be paid in full for the lawyer to c...

    Joanna’s Answer

    How much a divorce costs and how long it takes really depends on how many disputed issues there are, as well as how quickly either of the parties want the matter to proceed. Typically, a lawyer charges what is called a "Retainer Fee" which is payment of at least a portion of the services up front, and there is also usually a "Cost Deposit", which would cover filing fees, the cost of copies and postage, the cost of serving the papers, and other typical costs that would be incurred. If you Husband earns significantly more than you do, then there is a good chance that he would be required to reimburse you at least a portion and possibly all of your attorney fees. However, the initial Retainer and Cost Deposit are usually your responsibility, at least to get the matter started.

    If you would like to discuss your potential rights, options and "game plan" further, many attorneys offer free initial consultations, during which your questions can be answered in much greater detail and the answers would be tailored to your particular situation. You should consult with an attorney directly.

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  • I've been married for 25 years and looking for a divorce lawyer to explain my rights. I would like to know what to expect.

    What are my legal rights when starting the process of a 25 year marriage divorce. Do the couple need to go to counseling or is an option? My husband and I are not living together- no legal separation papers- since 2013. I caught him texting to an...

    Joanna’s Answer

    You are entitled to half of everything that was acquired during the marriage, regardless of whose name it is (unless it was a gift or an inheritance). You are also most likely entitled to alimony due to the length of the marriage. In order to really determine what your potential rights and options are, you need to consult with an attorney. Many attorneys, including myself, offer free telephone consultations, during which the particulars of your matter can be discussed and you can determine better what you can expect during the divorce process.

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  • When will a court award no child support in a 50/50 time sharing?

    i went to mediation and i was heavily bullied to do a 50/50 and then they offferend me child support in a 50/50 scenario, how can that be i hought the law erequires the husand to pay child support, i am unemployed and husband makes about 40k, and ...

    Joanna’s Answer

    If his income is substantially higher than yours, which it sounds like it is, then in most circumstances he will still be required to pay you child support. However, the amount that he will pay will be GREATLY diminished if he has 50/50 timesharing, as compared to what he would pay if he just had every other weekend. The reason for this is that child support is for the care and needs of the child, and his monthly obligation would be reduced as a result of him caring for and providing for the needs of the child 50% of the time already (when the child is with him). Typically, the only time no child support is exchanged with a 50/50 timesharing arrangement is when the parties incomes are relatively equal as well.

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  • Is Florida a "no -fault" divorce state?

    I'm currently going trough an "adultery" situation and I'm scared to lose my children, is Florida a "no-fault" state, my spouse files for divorce?

    Joanna’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Yes, Florida is a "no fault" State, meaning it doesn't matter who did what to whom as far as how matters are decided. Wrongdoing can come into play with certain issues such as child custody and alimony, but they are not the deciding factors. As for losing your children, where the children will predominately reside is based on many factors which are considered in determining what living arrangement is in the best interest of the children. You need to consult with an attorney in order to fully discuss your potential rights and options, as well as how to best proceed under Florida Law. Many attorneys, including myself, offer free initial telephone consultations. You should contact several attorneys and then choose the one with whom you feel the most comfortable and allow them to help you through this difficult time.

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  • No fault divorce ,no kids involved,no property involved

    Navy veteran on disability

    Joanna’s Answer

    Not sure what your question is. However, if you are looking to discuss your potential rights and options, many attorneys, including myself, offer free consultations. You should talk to an attorney and then determine how to proceed.

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  • Divorce attorney

    How much is a divorce

    Joanna’s Answer

    The cost can vary widely depending on what the potential issues are. If you handle it yourself and you are both in agreement on everything, it could cost only the initial costs to open the case, about $450.00; if you hire an attorney, it could be anywhere from an additional $1500.00 on up, again depending on not only issues, but the experience and fees charged by the attorney that you retain. The main factor affecting the ultimate cost is what the issues are, how strongly disputed those issues are, and, if the issues cannot be resolved, whether you will need to go to Trial and have a Judge decide the disputed issues. Bottom line, more issues, not resolved by an agreement, equals more time, which means more dollars. The only way you can get a more definitive answer to your question is by consulting with an attorney, and even then, there is no precise answer to your question, as no-one knows the future ...

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  • How do I legally block grandparents from seeing my children?

    My ex is living with her mother and her mother's wife. My mother in laws wife makes a LOT of money. She and my mother in law are using this money to fund my wife's parental alienation of me from my children. I have not seen them in months, and ...

    Joanna’s Answer

    I agree with my colleagues answer, but would also add that if she has an attorney, you really need to obtain one in order to have the best chance of your rights regarding your children to be properly represented and protected in court. Even if opposing counsel is stalling, as you have stated, your counsel would know how to move the case forward and obtain hearing time with the Judge.

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  • I am an unwed father, living in Florida. The baby's mother moved to North Carolina a year ago and left the baby in my care.

    She just came back a week ago and took the baby with her back to North Carolina. This is my sons home state and he was in my care for most of the time, since he was born and then he lived with me for a year, while she moved away. My name is on th...

    Joanna’s Answer

    You need to file a paternity action immediately and should do so after consulting with an attorney. During the course, you can request a DNA test. You will probably have to pay for the DNA testing initially; however, if the child is yours, she may have to reimburse you, at least a portion. Once paternity is established, then parental responsibility and timesharing (visitation) will be determined, as well as child support. Act quickly though. The longer you wait, the less likelihood of success you will have, and ultimately, you may have to litigate the matter in North Carolina.

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  • Can I have a case, that has been filed with the court, reviewed by another attorney?

    I feel that the child support case has been misrepresented by attorney and wondered if it can be reviewed by another attorney. If misrepresentation is proven, who would take the blame? Would that be the responsibility of the attorney or the client?

    Joanna’s Answer

    Yes, you are always entitled to obtain a second opinion. As stated by one of my colleagues, you didn't indicate as to what type of misrepresentation you were referring; therefore, a further answer cannot be given without more information.

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