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Steven Gary Hittelman
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Steven Hittelman’s Answers

73 total


  • Can a unmarried mother move from california with her child?..

    i am marriedwith 2 girls the oldest isnt my husbands daughter her biological father and me never went to court for custody or something like that he has been in and out of her life, my current husband and me are trying to move to nevada but this g...

    Steven’s Answer

    If there are no orders regarding the oldest daughter then you could move without an order, but I don't recommend it.
    Instead, put together a calendar of ALL the time her father spent with her over the last year (or as far back as you can go).
    You may want to be the one to go to court to ask for "permission" to move with your daughter. In some cases where there is little contact between the parent and the child there can be a "presumed right to move" with the child.
    However, this is a complicated area of family law, and you will definitely want to consult an attorney before you make a decision one way or the other.

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  • Forced to pay for private school?

    My 2 children currently attend private school, total cost is upwards of $55,000/year. My ex hasn't had a job for years and is on the verge of bankruptcy. My income has dropped dramatically and the tuition is crushing me. My ex wants to keep the...

    Steven’s Answer

    Your predicament is neither insane nor unusual in today's economy.
    Private school is discretionary to the court, meaning it doesn't HAVE to order it. That decision depends upon whether or not it makes economic sense to pay the tuition.
    Frankly, there are few people who can afford $55,000/year right now.
    If you have a contract with the private school to pay for the school year then you're likely stuck with the current tuition. However, school selection is a legal custody decision, and if you and your ex can't decide on the school then you have to ask the court to make the order. Since you can't afford the private school, and your registration/deposit is due soon, I would file something with the court ASAP to put the next school year (2012 - 2013) decision before the court, and that you can't afford to pay the tuition.
    You will want to look-up the STAR testing results and the API scores for your and your ex's local schools to try to find out which one is the better, and make a proposal to your ex before you get into court.

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  • My spouse is an only child and is listed jointly with his 95 year old mother on the title of her home. She lives with us now.

    Can he sell her home and do all of the signing? We, and the home, all reside in California.

    Steven’s Answer

    Technically your spouse only has control over her "half" of the jointly-held property.
    If his mother doesn't want to sell the house then you can seek a conservatorship (assuming she can't handle her own affairs). Of course, if she cooperates then that's that.
    There are certain tax advantages and disadvantages to selling the home now that she's moved out, so before thinking about selling consult with a tax accountant about what you would pay once it's sold.

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  • Can an exparte be granted if the children witness domestic violence with their father and stepmother?

    My children have witnessed quite a few times acts of violence when they are with their father during visitation. They have seen and heard and the father has told them that their stepmother has abused him. The last incident was a few weeks ago, s...

    Steven’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    IF YOU DO NOT DO SOMETHING NOW YOUR CHILDREN MAY BECOME PART OF THE JUVENILE COURT SYSTEM!
    Since you've known about the abuse for weeks have you reported it to anyone? Has your son made any statements to doctors or teachers about the abuse? Have you taken your son to a counselor (with his father's permission)?
    You must seek ex parte relief to prevent the father from allowing the step-mother to be near the children. Since the court will not have any jurisdiction to make orders against step-mother they will have to use the father to "control" who the children spend time with.
    Any delay on your part may be viewed by the Department of Children and Family Services as neglectful in allowing your children to be victims of Domestic Violence.

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  • I was injuried on the job after being married for four years. Would my soon to ex-wife be entiled to any of my medical retiremen

    we have been married a total of 14 yrs.

    Steven’s Answer

    The right to your medical retirement depends on how the payment is structured.
    If it's for your own future medical and pain/suffering then no, you can argue she doesn't get a share of that.
    If it's for lost wages then she could make a claim for no more than one-half of the retirement as a property right. If there is an annuity of monthly payment then she can seek to have the monthly amount part of your spousal support calculation. In some cases she could "double dip" by having a share of your property right (the retirement fund) as well as a support right (the income paid to you).
    Since medical retirement plans are a specialized area you will want to consult with an attorney who deals with your plan (PERS, STRS, etc.)

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  • Been married 32 years haven't worked since 1987 husband now wants a divorce Will I be able to get spouse support and keep my

    my house Husband thinks i've been cheating and I havent I have 2 older kids above age 19 and one my husband has conservativeship over she is 25. And we don't want him to be her conservator she wants me

    Steven’s Answer

    Spousal support in California is based not only on how long you've been married, but on a number of factors including what skills you have, how long it's been since you worked, if there is any domestic violence, etc.
    I would get your last few years' tax returns and any up-to-date information you have on your husband's income and consult a family law attorney ASAP.
    With the conservatorship it sound like it's already been granted, so trying to change it may be a problem. I would consult a probate attorney (one who also practices family law!) to see what you can do to meet your daughter's wishes.

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  • Can I get palomony?

    I have been living with my boy friend for about 2 years with promises from him to marry, etc. I was unemployed for most of the time and he has been paying the bills and I have been his maid and his cook ( I was paying for all groceries). Now he is...

    Steven’s Answer

    The issue of your ability to get "palimony" depends upon whether your boyfriend promised to support you, said you did not need to get a job since he would take care of you.
    Unfortunately most of the time it's not specifically said that he will support you, he just pays the bills you both build up.
    You should consider consulting with an attorney who also does civil, as well as family, law, since the claim for palimony is heard in the civil courts (and not family courts).

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  • How do I go about getting my son's fathers rights terminated?

    I reside in Chula Vista, Ca. My son is 7 years old. His biological father has been incarcerated since October 2007, since my son was 3 years old. I currently has full custody of the child but am looking to have his fathers right completely termina...

    Steven’s Answer

    Unfortunately the State of California does not allow a parent's rights to be terminated until and unless there's someone willing to step-up to those rights.
    However, the good news is that when you are married you can do a "step-parent adoption" that will terminate the biological father's rights (assuming abandonment by 1. not seeing the child and 2. not paying to support the child). If the biological father agrees to the adoption the process can be that much quicker.

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  • I have a court date with my case # for my ex-girlfriend to show up to court

    because she keeps calling and threaten me my to take away my son from me who is living with me for 1 year 6 months here in california and goes to school here to.i,m the biogical father when my son was born i the hospital i signed paternity declar...

    Steven’s Answer

    The short answer is "no" she can't have someone take your child without your permission or a court order.
    The long answer is: Assuming your ex-girlfriend is the mother of your child, your child was conceived in California, and you and your son lived in California for the last 18 months then California should have "continuing exclusive jurisdiction" to make orders regarding your son. Does she leave messages saying she's going to take your son away? Do you have emails from her saying the same thing? You can ask the court to limit her time with the child, to have that time supervised, and to prevent her from removing your son from California. If your son is school age then make sure you have his school records (grades and attendance) to show the court how long he's been with you and how well he's doing (hopefully). Also, if there are any witnesses to either her threats about taking your son, or if there are witnesses to how well you are doing as a father, they should be present at the court hearing to tell the Judge.

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