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Rhonda S. Boule

Rhonda Boule’s Answers

30 total


  • Is it okay for my ex to pick up my kids from my mom when I am work? ?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    You and your former spouse can make any pickup/drop off arrangements you'd like as long as you both agree (and as long as there are no safety concerns). In this case, your mother has also agreed to help facilitate the transition, so there shouldn't be any issue. I would suggest just communicating to your former spouse clearly, in writing, what the plan is so that you're both on the same page. (Something as simple as: I'll be at work during your pick up time, but my mom will be at my house with [our daughter] and just needs to know what time you'll be by. You can let my mom know the time directly, or let me know and I'll tell her.)

  • How does not knowing how to drive impact parenting schedules when parents live a great distance?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    A little more information would be required to properly answer this; it's not clear what the status of the case is, or the nature of the parenting plan and custody arrangement (and therefore the respective rights and obligations of the parents). It sounds as though a practical, logistical solution is needed, whether it entails making carpool arrangements and/or tailoring a parenting schedule to best fit the needs of the child. Ultimately, it's about the best interests of the child, and while sports may be an important consideration, other considerations are also important, such as education and the child's relationship with his parents.

  • How do I find out if my husband has received any bonuses are compensations which I am entitled to according to the divorce agree

    Rhonda’s Answer

    First, check the Separation Agreement, and/or any Supplemental Judgment, for guidance. Often there's a provision whereby the recipient of the bonus is required to pay a set amount (or percentage) within a certain time after receipt, or else is required to provide copies of proof of compensation within a certain time, or else periodically, or the parties are required to discuss periodically (such as once a year). If there's an obligation in the Agreement or Judgment to pay in connection with receipt of certain compensation, but no other guidance, you or your lawyer could send a letter to your former spouse requesting the information and documentation pursuant to the Judgment. If you don't get any response, unfortunately you may have to file a court action, since you cannot subpoena documents - financial or otherwise - absent a pending case. Of course, the more you can work out without having to resort to court involvement, the better off you are, as litigation can be time consuming and costly, and results are uncertain.

  • What happens at a 1A uncontested divorce hearing?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    The good news is that once the Separation Agreement has been finalized and an uncontested hearing has been set, the difficult part is over. The hearing itself is brief, and is an opportunity for the Judge to review your Agreement, determine whether it is fair and reasonable, and if so, after some basic questions (after having sworn you in), to enter the Agreement as part of your divorce Judgment. With lawyers having assisted with the Agreement, it's more than likely there will be no problems and the Agreement will be approved (or at worst, the lawyers may need to hand-write a minor correction or clarification). While uncontested hearings are typically heard before more complicated matters, you should plan on being in Court all morning. If both lawyers are present, they should have all the necessary documents, including the original, signed agreement, current financial statements, and any other necessary documents.

  • Is there anything I can do besides court?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    I agree with Attorney Callahan, but would be a little more hesitant to file a complaint for contempt. Although it's the correct thing to do in your situation, after 3 years in Probate Court, I'm sure it's the last thing you want to do. I would try another approach first: You could try to contact the Judge's clerk or Assistant Case Manager in hopes of obtaining a verbal confirmation of your position. You could then approach your ex, explain that you've contacted attorneys who support your position (and that the Court supports your position, assuming you get an answer), that you were advised to file a complaint for contempt but would prefer not to. If she still doesn't agree, you could draft the complaint (forms are online), clearly set forth the Judgment and why your position is the correct one, and show it to her before you file it in hopes that she will concede. While this may be overly optimistic, I would just keep in mind that the Court should be your last resort (though it may be necessary in the end).

  • What do I do so I'm not left with nothing after my divorce?what docs do I need to file it?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    As a practical matter, now may be the best time for you to gather financial information that may be more difficult for you to obtain in the event of a separation. It would make sense for you to make copies of bank statements, credit card statements, investment and retirement account statements, and the like. This is especially important if you are not the one who handles the finances. The court will require both spouses to make full disclosure, but it makes sense to have an idea of your financial situation when facing a divorce. You should also take advantage of a free consultation offered by many attorneys who handle divorces. Clients often feel better once they understand their options, and how the process works.

  • Can I get visitation of a child who is not my daughter by blood

    Rhonda’s Answer

    The Probate and Family Court has the authority to order visitation in certain circumstances other than in the context of a "traditional" family. The courts have recognized that a child may be a member of a nontraditional family in which he is parented by a legal parent and a de facto parent. A de facto parent is one who has no biological relation to the child, but has participated in the child's life as a member of the child's family. The de facto parent lives with the child and, with the permission and encouragement of the legal parent, performs a share of caretaking functions at least as great as the legal parent. The de facto parent shapes the child's daily routine, addresses his developmental needs, disciplines the child, provides for his education and medical care, and serves as a moral guide. The de facto parent fulfils this role "for reasons primarily other than financial compensation." If you believe you have been a de facto parent -- and it sounds as though you have been -- you should petition the Probate Court for visitation. You may want to start, however, by discussing the situation with your ex, and attempting to work out some sort of visitation schedule informally.

  • Before divorce, should I move out of marital home with minor child?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    In terms of what is better for your child (stability) and your ability to keep the marital home after the divorce, it would be better for you and your child to remain in the house. You could try asking him to leave, even if temporarily, to help relieve some of the tension between you. Absent his agreement, you are free to move out without any court order. I would suggest, however, that you file for divorce right away and ask the court to enter temporary orders of custody and support (child support would presumably cover a portion of the day care fee). The orders would be temporary until such time as the divorce is final. You can ask that he be ordered to vacate the home, but a judge would be reluctant to enter such order unless there's an issue of domestic violence. It's a good idea to set up a free consultation with an attorney so you have a better idea of your rights and options, even if you end up filing on your own. Many people feel some sense of relief after learning what may lie ahead, especially when children are involved.

  • If a child is not going to go to College, what is the cutoff age for child support?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    The court may order child support for a child who has reached age 18, but not 21, who is domiciled in a home of a parent, and is principally dependent upon that parent for maintenance. If your older child still lives with your ex and is dependent upon your ex for support, your obligation for that child would end when he/she reaches age 21. Further, the court may order support for a child who has reached age 21, but not 23, if the child is domiciled in the home of a parent, and is principally dependent upon that parent for maintenance due to being enrolled in (undergraduate) college.

  • I can I force the mother of my child (custodial parent) to file for SSDI dependency benefit?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    Under the Rosenberg case, SSDI benefits would be added to your gross income, and then you'd be entitled to a dollar-for-dollar reduction of your support obligation based on the amount of the benefit. I would file a complaint for modification if the SSDI benefits began after the child support order/judgment entered.