Skip to main content
Paula Brown Sinclair

Paula Sinclair’s Answers

7,861 total


  • I found a house on Craigslist and the owners say the are not in my state do I send money?

    they want me to send the deposit and then they will send me the keys and lease and then after I get the papers I will send the rest of the money is this a good idea and is there a legal way we can do this so no one loses anything?

    Paula’s Answer

    It has become an all-too-common scam for crooks to locate vacant properties and pretend to "lease" them. Of course, they can't because they really have no connection to the property, and don't have keys to send. Craigslist is rift with such "deals." Be smart and deal locally.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • I have been contact by a lawyer that says that he can help getting my student loans decreased or even removed. Is this possible?

    They also say that they can get the co-signers removed from the loans and that they should have never asked for a co-signer when I applied for the student loans? Is this possible and correct? They say this won't hurt my credit, I'm worried that s...

    Paula’s Answer

    The legal ability to discharge liability for "student loans," is very limited, and the legal analysis is far more complicated that your are imagining. Facts not disclosed in this question are critical. For instance, private loans (with no federal government involvement) are often not subject to the "student loan" exception to the bankruptcy discharge. Few attorneys, however, are knowledgeable and prepared to pursue that advantage. To know the basis for your attorneys conclusion and advice, ask for specifics about how the promised result will be accomplished. Information about past experience representing similar clients would be useful.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • Does a custody modification ever expire?

    Ive been interviewing attorneys and I've had one attorney say that my custody agreement with my ex husband say that it's expired since it said that it would need to be revisited in 2009 after our son was in school. Another one says that no it's no...

    Paula’s Answer

    As a general rule, custody orders continue in effect until changed or the child(ren) reach majority. To address the problems that have manifest, returning to court with a new motion for modification may be indicated.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a est answer.

    See question 
  • Pro bono for protection order, custody and divorce

    Ive heard from personal friends that have done things like duis and the like that they are sometimes provided with a pro bono for their case and they never win. how much of an effort will a pro bono put in for a difficult case like mine since they...

    Paula’s Answer

    The vast majority of Idaho attorneys, albeit perhaps not every single one, work diligently for their clients. They are knowledgeable, efficient, and THEY CARE. But while a large part of the role of attorneys is to put the best face on the facts and advocate for the client, attorneys cannot make the facts. DUI cases are a good example. Public defenders, among the most dedicated and hardest working of our colleagues, are provided in criminal cases. The fact that they are free has nothing whatsoever to do with winning. DUIs are typically charged where the scientific data from blood and breath testing proves the crime. What is there to win other than advocating for a lesser sentence?

    Idaho resources for pro bono legal services in civil cases, particularly contested family matters, is quite limited.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • Can I file bankruptcy on my own if I am still legally married? Can I keep my car and file chapter 7?

    My husband and I have been separated ( not legally) for almost 2 years. We have no joint debt.

    Paula’s Answer

    Most respectfully, the simplest of bankruptcies is complicated and not reasonably a DIY project. Add the issues of marriage and separation, and the usual opportunities for self-inflicted injury are multiplied. Yes, you can file a bankruptcy without having him join as a debtor, but he will be somewhat involved. The wisest strategy is to work with experienced bankruptcy counsel who can complete a full case review to identify all issues and alternatives.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • Is it true in the Juris secundum that an attorneys first obligation is to the court, then to the public and then to the client.

    Had an attorney that didn't seem to act on my behalf and looked to find out why. How do you reconcile this when someone is paying you,

    Paula’s Answer

    No, your "source" is incorrect or you have misread it. If by "Juris Secundum" you mean the volumes called "Corpus Juris Secundum," which is nothing by an encyclopedic compendium of statutes and case law, nothing published there is binding law. The rules of ethics by which attorneys are bound are state-specific, commonly emplaced by the Supreme Court of the state and enforced by the state bar, the licensing agency. While the codes of attorney ethics vary some from state to state, commonly provisions include requirements of loyalty to a client and zealous representation. A candid conversation with your attorney about your dissatisfaction could be helpful.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • Can I get my child support reduced?

    My ex-wife and I divorced in San Diego, CA. She now lives in Idaho Falls with our 6 year old son. At the time of the divorce (4 years ago) she was not working. My monthly disposable income at the time was $4,319. I was ordered to pay her $1,000/mo...

    Paula’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    There must be much more to the story where custodial access was set at 0%, and if the child has lived in Idaho, very likely the Idaho court will take jurisdiction. Unless there are important and provable reasons why the child is not safe in your case, Idaho courts will support your right to reasonable custodial access. To predict a possible increase in child support, find the Idaho Child Support Guidelines online and run the numbers. Even with 50% more income, the monthly payment may be less. The value of the child income tax benefits will be part of the calculations. Be aware that her income has little influence on the bottom line. A consultation with experienced family counsel in Idaho Falls would be wise.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • Not married, need parenting plan, what are the steps

    The mother of my child and I are not married. She lives in Idaho, I live in Washington. . I have seen my son every weekend for the past 2 years, he is now 6 years old. I did not know I had a child until he was one and at the time was in the milita...

    Paula’s Answer

    Until your paternity is established, you are a legal stranger to your child, and the mother can change the contact arrangements. The proper procedure is to file Petition for Filiation. The Court issues the Summons you submit, and you arrange service of process on the mother. She then has 20 days to respond. Your Petition should request as well a decree of parental rights, and child support will be ordered. Whether the Idaho Supreme Court has provided approved forms is irrelevant. The essential assistance you need is in navigating the procedure, and that is what flesh and blood attorneys are for. It's not a matter of getting more time with the child, as suggested by the earlier poster; it is a matter of establishing legal rights.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question 
  • Protection order for domestic violence, custody forbreastfeeding infant, husband and 2 lawyers against me and volunteer attorney

    i currently have a protection order against my husband for domestic violence he has threatened me many many times in the past if i didnt move to wherever he wanted he would take our 8 month baby who is exclusively breastfed no bottle, and take h...

    Paula’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You may be eligible for services through Idaho Legal Aid Services, and should start there. You can reach them at (208) 3450106 or apply online. The Volunteer Lawyers Program of the Idaho State Bare may also be a resource. Be assured that no amount of attorney representation or skill can change the facts, and it will be important for you to have licensed counsel to put together and present your proof to show a judge the facts of your situation, which are compelling. Be smart and respect the protection order. There is no reason to talk to him about custody issues. Arrange representation and let your attorney do the talking.

    Best wishes for an outcome you can accept, and please remember to designate a best answer.

    See question