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Teri M. Nelson
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Teri Nelson’s Answers

870 total


  • Does an ex-spouse have a legal right to be present during the other parent's placement on the grounds that it's a public place?

    I am in a relationship with a divorced father of 2 small kids. His ex-wife has harassed/stalked me with phone calls/texts/visits to my home for over a year and has recently started showing up to "observe" things like the kids swimming lessons, pic...

    Teri’s Answer

    This is a strange situation and it seems as if there is more going on here. I strongly suggest that you consult with an attorney to discuss all of the facts and circumstances. For example, does the judgment of divorce provide that one parent has the right of first refusal if the placement parent is unavailable? If not, then she is interfering with placement, not to mention probably stressing and upsetting the children with this stalking, and a motion before the family court might be more appropriate than a restraining order. Our office offers free consultations - one of our attorneys would sit down with you and your spouse to go through all of the facts and determine what your options are. If you are interested, please contact us at 414-258-1644 to schedule an appointment.

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  • Can the amount for child support be determined off of the net pay as opposed to the gross pay?

    I am currently going through a divorce. We have been married 15 years and have 2 children. The temporary child support order does not allow me to maintain a living wage due to bills that have incurred during marriage, such as a car note that I hav...

    Teri’s Answer

    The short answer to your question is no. Child support must be based on gross income. However, it sounds as if you have a variety of factors going on here. I strongly encourage you to speak to an experienced divorce attorney. There may be other ways to reduce your payments. However, without looking at all of the specific factors, it is impossible to do that through a forum such as this. Our office offers a free initial consultation and we practice in Milwaukee County. If you are interested, please call us at 414-258-1644 to schedule an appointment.

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  • I am looking for any information on ways to reduce or eliminate child support arrears interest after paying the current arrears?

    I owe just under 3000 in arrears being paid at 430$ a month. I have over 14,000$ in interest. I no longer pay current support just arrears. please help

    Teri’s Answer

    Unfortunately, the court is prohibited from retroactively modifying arrears. The only way to reduce or eliminate your interest is to try to work out a deal with the other party. Perhaps offer a lump sum payment in exchange for eliminating the interest? This is the typical arrangement that we work out in these types of cases. Good luck.

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  • Does domestic partnership nullify maintenance payments and/or Social Security benefit disbursements?

    Person X is receiving maintenance payments from their ex-spouse. Also, it is very likely person X will be using the ex-spouse's income to determine Social Security benefits after retirement. If person X enters into a domestic partnership, will m...

    Teri’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    This is no different that someone living with a significant other. Living in a marital-like relationship is already well-established in law as grounds for a payor to seek a termination or modification of maintenance. The fact that there is a domestic partnership (which is not necessarily same-sex, by the way; heterosexual partners can seek domestic partnership as well) would be even more solid grounds for the payor. However, whether to modify or terminate maintenance in this situation is a discretionary decision on the part of the court and not necessarily automatic. Sometimes, the court finds that living in a marital-like relationship in any given case to be compelling enough to terminate or modify maintenance, sometimes they don't. It is a very fact specific and fact driven situation/determination. In my opinion, however, a domestic partnership is very strong evidence against continuing maintenance payments and the court would likely consider same.

    As far as social security benefits are concerned, you would need to seek the advice of an attorney who is experienced in that type of law to be sure. Or, for that matter, simply call Social Security to ask.

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  • What to do in custody case if not married, girlfriend is not letting me see baby

    She is going to make me out to be a bad person but I am the one who asked her to leave

    Teri’s Answer

    You should consult with an experienced family law attorney right away. If you haven't been to court yet, you need to file a paternity action to get some custody and placement orders so that you can see your child.

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  • Can I sue my ex husband for joint loan?

    We have a joint loan for my vehicle that started during our marriage. After our divorce we both took over our debts and just continue paying for them. He has been making payments on time for the vehicle loan but I don't want my name on the vehicle...

    Teri’s Answer

    Any issues such as this must be addressed in your divorce action. Spouses, or ex-spouses, cannot sue each other for issues arising during your marriage. If your divorce judgment is silent on this issue, you should contact a divorce attorney about the possibility of reopening the divorce judgment to address this. If it is not silent, then you should go back to divorce court to enforce your judgment.

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  • I have a divorce attorney who threatens to drop my case unless she gets $,$$$ now. Is there a way to keep her from doing this?

    My earnings are substandard and I'm supporting a family. My Attorney has let his attorney take the lead and issue documents for signing that are very unreasonable. Mine has advised not to sign. She has also stated any agreements we can come to ...

    Teri’s Answer

    Attorneys are not indentured servants and deserve to be paid for their work. If you can't pay, then an attorney has every right to withdraw from representation. You should look in your county for other low cost alternatives or perhaps find an attorney who is willing to take your case for a lower fee or pro bono (free). You should also discuss with her the option of requesting your spouse to pay your fees based on the facts of your case, including if he is being difficult or unreasonable.

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  • Am I allowed to claim my kids on taxes? I'm Active duty & had to deploy I had my kids physically with me for 6mo & paid daycare

    Our kids are physically with their dad right now but they will be in my custody when I get back from my deployment. Since we both had the kids for 6 months of that year who can claim them. I paid all of child care am I allowed to claim them?

    Teri’s Answer

    This is a question for an accountant, not necessarily a family law attorney. However, if there are court orders regarding the children, such as in a divorce or a paternity, there should be a provision indicating who can claim the children. If there are no court orders, perhaps it is time to look at establishing some. Your best bet is to consult an experienced family law attorney who can more specifically answer your questions based on the facts of your situation.

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  • Can I take my son on vacation if other parent says no?

    The vacation is only for a week. Maybe less. I live in Wisconsin, my ex & I were never married. My son is 2 & 1/2. I have 100% sole custody & we have 50% legal custody. I have family in Florida & told him a week ago what I was planning on doing & ...

    Teri’s Answer

    You do not need permission to take your child on vacation, even out of state. There should be something in your court order allowing periods of vacation. If there isn't you might want to change that. However, the issue isn't the vacation, the issue is whether you can deny him his periods of placement so that you can take your vacation. Again, if the court order allows it, you can go. If you are taking your vacation during a time when he does not have placement, you can go. But, if you are going to have to deny him periods of placement without a court order, you may have issues down the road if he takes you back to court over it. You should talk to an experienced family law attorney who can review your order and give you specific legal advice about what you should do and what could happen if you go anyway.

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  • Can my boyfriend sign the paternity acknowledgement form and give my son his last name if he is not the biological father?

    My boyfriend has taken care of my son since my son was 1 year old. He is the only father my son knows. As far as I recall, my sons biological father never signed the paternity acknowledgement and refused to go and establish paternity because he di...

    Teri’s Answer

    It is too late to sign a voluntary acknowledgement. That must be done shortly after birth. And, if the father is already adjudicated, he is the legal father at this point. The only option is to get married and seek a step-parent adoption. In this situation, bio-dad's rights are terminated and your now husband becomes the legal father through adoption.

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