Skip to main content
Brian Edward Sipe

Brian Sipe’s Answers

1,080 total


  • Can I make my ex pay child support if he's not helping?

    My ex husband and I divorced in 2010. We were married five years. We agreed to 50/50 custody. With him paying $600 a month in child support do to his high paying job. Since then he has asked me for reductions and I have said yes because I've f...

    Brian’s Answer

    If he quit his job, you can have the salary that he had been earniing imputed to him by the court.

    See question 
  • What are my rights so I can at least be better educated if I am unable to get a lawyer?

    In June this year I moved into a house with my mother with my 2 children, the oldest is 7yrs old and has a minor case of autism. I asked her to respect his strict routine and to help with discipline and not let him run around and do whatever he wa...

    Brian’s Answer

    It is impossible to give you a full accounting of your rights on Avvo. You need to speak to an attorney, even if you cannot afford to hire him/her. If you have a nice place to live, you should not have any reason for concern regarding having primary custody. He hasn't been in their lives and grandparent rights are somewhat limited, although a grandparent can often obtain visitation rights in PA. Much will depend upon the various factors listed in the child custody statute found at the link below.

    Good luck.

    See question 
  • Can I get a no-fault with out hiring a lawyer?

    Been separated 7 years, grown children, no joint assets, no retirement. Want to obtain a no-fault. Marriage irretrievably broken, spouse will not sign the forms.

    Brian’s Answer

    Below is a link to a no-fault self help manual for Philadelphia county. Many forms would be the same, many different. Look it over to see if you understand what is necessary. If so, you can do it yourself. However, if there are other issues, I would suggest you get the help of an attorney.

    See question 
  • Can I bifurcate the divorce and settle all matters but the physical custody in an effort to preserve my financial investment?

    My wife and I currently have no custody agreement and are sperated. Our divorce is not yet final. We agree on the division of marital assets. We agree on visitation with our children being 50/50 annually. We agree on no fault divorce. However...

    Brian’s Answer

    Bifurcation refers to the equitable distribution and the divorce itself, not custody. You can bring a custody modification petition at any time. It does not sound like she can "go after the house," but you have not given enough information for any kind of analysis to be done on this forum. You need a lawyer. If you do not, you should get one right away to make sure that this deal that you are contemplating is a fair one.

    See question 
  • How do I go about this with limited funds

    I'm looking to file for divorce and custody. My husband has been unfaithful for about a year and a half. I have screen shots of texts from his phone, pictures of him with other women and pictures of condoms that I have found in his car. I have be...

    Brian’s Answer

    Your first question, regarding limited funds, is simple enough to answer. PA awards alimony pendente lite to a divorcing spouse who makes less than the other party to the divorce. You will therefore get funds with which to litigate the divorce.

    Your second question, unasked, is whether he has a chance at getting custody because he is the "better parent." The court will ask how he can take his children to school or the doctors safely if he has an alcohol problem. Most likely, you will obtain primary custody. He will then have to pay child support to you along with the APL.

    You need to speak with an attorney in person to discuss your case in detail. But do not worry. You have rights that will protect you and you will get through this. The system is designed to help you do at least that. With the help of an attorney, you can plan your post-divorce life with an understanding of what assets you will have.

    Good luck.

    See question 
  • Does he loss his weekend because of the holiday or does he keep his weekend? He don't want to loss his time with his daughter!

    Custody, my finance has partial custody and is picking his daughter up Friday Dec 25 2015 for Christmas at noon and has her til the 26, which is sat but it is his weekend with his daughter and the mother is giving him a hard time about it.

    Brian’s Answer

    It all depends upon the wording of the custody order. The order should state very clearly who gets what day with the child along with the child's time off from school. If the order only states that Christmas day to the next day is with father, and nothing else, then the regular schedule would prevail. Mother does not have any default rights to the child, only what is in the order.

    See question 
  • Where would I have to start my divorce in NY or NJ

    I was married in New York but live in jersey for about 3 years now. My wife committed adultery and threatening me with repossessing the car. I live back in Philadelphia with my parents.

    Brian’s Answer

    NJ is the proper jurisdiction. If you and your wife have been living in NJ for the last three years, NY is no longer able to claim jurisdiction, which is based upon place of residence. However, you have not been in PA for very long, I am assuming. If you have been there longer than 6 months, you can divorce her there, but you may run into some technical issues.

    See question 
  • What can I do to protect myself, can I file charges against the hearing officer for crossing out a legal document.

    I went to a contempt charge for child support. At this hearing my counsel noticed that they did not record this hearing. Without my knowledge or consent and my councils knowledge the hearing officer crossed out the contempt charge for child sup...

    Brian’s Answer

    I think that you need to ask questions about the procedures of the court. What you have written does not make sense. However, the answer to your question is "no," it is not a civil rights violation for a court officer to make a procedural mistake, if that is what happened.

    See question 
  • Can I take my almost 14 year old to a domestic relations conference with a hearing master so she can tell them what she wants?

    Can I take my almost 14 year old to domestic relations in mercer PA for a revision of an order she wants her voice heard but last year I had her adult sister go to a conference with a hearing master on her sisters behalf, hearing master said they ...

    Brian’s Answer

    Ms. Gray is correct. And if you are referring to a custody master's hearing, the answer is the same. The child will be heard by a judge only. Masters and conference officers try to get the parties to negotiate a settlement. They cannot rule on anything and must move the party's on to a judge if that is necessary.

    See question 
  • Do I have a right to demand receipts for items such as clothing to ensure my children are getting what they need?

    I speculate that my ex-spouse is using the support money I pay her to pay her rent and not for our children's direct needs.

    Brian’s Answer

    As Ms. Hillbush has stated, the court assumes that the money is helping the children and will go no further. If your children were being dressed in shoes with holes in the soles or walked around in tatters, looking like something out of a Charles Dickens novel, then you might have reason to complain, but it would not be a support issue. It would be a C&Y issue.

    See question