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May 2012

Rhode Island Divorce Tips to Undergo Changes.

Well, it appears that Google now finds that the setup for Rhode Island Divorce Tips doesn't contain valuable articles because of the category titles.  However, those category titles differ in many respects in content.  

Sadly, I am faced with the predictament of finding a way to revamp Rhode Island Divorce Tips without hurting those people who have already linked to topics and articles in those categories.  It is a daunting task to say the least since I have focused more on law than on I have on SEO and website optimization but have no interest in paying a company to do it for me.

Please be patient as I find new ways to make this website more interesting and more helpful to you as the reader and also palatable so that google puts it back in the top 10 rankings for many key phrases where it rightfully should be due to my hundreds of writings to help the public on dozens of topics.

If anyone has ideas that they wish to share with me for free because they have knowledge in the area of SEO and also appreciate a person who writes and gives the public information to keep them informed.

All my Best to All Who Go Before the Rhode Island Family Court,

I am Attorney Christopher A. Pearsall and I am "The Rhode Island Divorce Coach."

"Custody" in RI Divorce Law is too often misunderstood by those facing Divorce!

The word "custody" in Rhode Island family law is often confused by people who are headed for divorce or in a divorce proceeding.  

When you have "custody" of something many people think of physical possession.  Yet the word "custody" by itself has become confusing under Rhode Island Family law as it relates to children particularly without any context to give it reference. 

For example, I am meeting with Silvia who says to me "We both have custody of our son."  

Here's the issue.  Does Silvia mean "joint legal custody" or "joint/shared physical custody" also referred to as "joint/shared placement?"

It is not a wonder there is confusion.  Some Rhode Island divorce attorneys have used the word "custody" without making reference to any context in court orders for years.  This has been compounded by some cases from the Rhode Island Supreme Court.  In some RI Supreme Court cases the word "custody" is used by itself.  Then, later in the case it is described in either a legal context or a physical placement context.

This has unfortunately caused a continuance of the "custody" confusion with lawyers who don't take the time to understand and clarify the concept and add contextual words to "custody" to clear up the confusion, especially when it comes to court orders, decisions and judgments.

If a Rhode Island divorce is in your future and you have either natural or adopted children from your marriage I strongly recommend that you make absolutely certain that you have your lawyer explain to you the concepts of the different types of custody and be certain that you understand them.

Understanding is key to a divorce.  Understanding helps relieve stress, anxiety and worry.  There are few things worse than simply not knowing or not understanding something so crucial in your divorce.

Not getting understandable answers from your own lawyer? Isn't your child worth a measly $145 to make sure you understand what is happening?  If so, call me at (401) 632-6976 now to set up your 1 Hour Coaching Session!

All my Best to All Who Go Before the Rhode Island Family Court,

I am Attorney Christopher A. Pearsall and I am "The Rhode Island Divorce Coach."


Rhode Island To Consider Marriage Equality, Divorce Bills

A House committee in Rhode Island will consider several bills related to same-sex unions, marriage, and divorce on Wednesday:

– One proposal would allow same-sex marriage in Rhode Island, recognize previously performed civil unions as marriages, and recognize unions and marriages performed in other jurisdictions as marriages.

– A second measure would allow divorce in Rhode Island for couples legally married elsewhere.

– A third bill would repeal the controversial amendment attached to last year’s civil unions bill that allows for certain organizations to use religion as an excuse to refuse services to couples who have a civil union.

The state does not currently recognize same-sex marriages, but does allow for civil unions. Couples are shunning that law’s broad religious exemption, however, which allows organizations to ignore their relationships and are traveling to neighboring states for full marriage equality. Still, marriage law in the state remains muddled.

In 2007, Attorney General Patrick Lynch released a legal opinion stating that the state did not explicitly prohibit same-sex marriage and should recognize gay unions performed in other states. That same year, the Rhode Island Supreme Court ruled that a same-sex couple could not divorce in the state.


Full Credit for this Article is Attributed to:  ThinkProgress.Org

In Rhode Island Divorces You May want to Pay Child Care Expenses Directly!

An issue that arises frequently is this scenario:

Cindy has placement of the children and Chris is ordered to pay child support but neither Chris nor his attorney ask that Chris be allowed to pay child care directly to the child care provider.  In the end the Child Support figure is lumped all together and gets sent to the placement mother.

Six months later Cindy finds a cheaper licensed child care provider and moves the kids to that provider without informing Chris.  Later Cindy finds that a friend is willing to watch the kids when she needs them watched for an even bigger savings.  Chris keeps having the monies taken out of his paycheck each week or keeps paying Cindy directly but he is never informed that Cindy has changed the child care provider twice and he is never consulted about whether he approves of the change.

This can go on for years until it is finally discovered and then suddenly Chris learns that he has been overpaying for the child care for years and that this has been a windfall going to Cindy and has not been necessarily going to the children's needs.

Practically speaking, it's unlikely that Chris is going to get that money back for the child care though there is some chance that he might get a credit for some of it toward future child support payments if the Judge believes he should have one and if he can prove the amount of the overpayment.

This happens all too happen.  The best answer is to eliminate the problem and make sure you get an order paying your portion of the child care directly to the provider.  That insures that you are paying the actual child care cost that you are responsible for and let's you know if there are any changes in cost or if your children are removed from that provider.

It's a smart answer to what can be a very frustrating problem if the placement parent simply decides to do whatever they want without consulting the parent paying part of the child care expense.

This certainly raises a question about a possible violation of joint legal custody in moving the children from a child care provider, but that is an issue for another day.


All my Best to All Who Go Before the Rhode Island Family Court,

I am Attorney Christopher A. Pearsall and I am "The Rhode Island Divorce Coach."

In Rhode Island Protection from Abuse Matters, No Contact means NO CONTACT!

Rhode Island's protection from abuse laws were created to protect the truly abused person, both men and women.  The usual result after the paperwork is filed and the judge has reviewed the complainant's application for an order of protection and affidavit about the facts which lead to the request is to grant a Temporary Order of Protection from Abuse.  When a temporary order is granted then it typically includes a restraining order preventing the defendant from having any contact with the plaintiff/complainant.

Some people don't realize that no contact means exactly that "NO CONTACT."  Too many times the defendant will find himself or herself back in court because they don't process those two words and make them stick in their brain.


No contact means

1.  No direct messages sent through a 3rd person;

2.  No messages that are indirectly sent through a 3rd person (i.e. John is standing there while Bill who cannot contact his wife tells John "She should know that I'm so mad I could do THIS to her while bill takes a sledge hammer to his car.";

3.  No messages even of a friendly or apologetic nature;

4.  No flowers or cards;

5.  No voicemail messages;

6.  No hangup calls (if the line is picked up for even a milisecond then you have created a contact);

7.  No messages left with family which could be interpreted as being intended to get to the person who has the no contact order;

8.  No responding to a phone call in any way made to you by the person who applied for the protection from abuse order;

9.  Even a wave of your hand or just watching a person mowing their lawn as you drive by their house has been interpreted as contact;

10. No emails, texts or photos;

11. No facebook emails or postings using any online service at all;

12. No phone calls;

13. No birthday or anniversary cards;

14. Even if you send a card to your child who is with the plaintiff/complainant may be interpreted as contact, especially if the child can't read;

15.  No following a person;

16.  No being in the same place as the same person who has the protection from abuse order against you.  Yes, you must leave immediately as soon as you realize it;

17. Essentially, anything whatsoever that is intended to get a message across to the plaintiff/complainant may be interpreted as "contact."

Remember, "no contact" does not mean "no hostile contact."  It means no contact at all, for any reason, at any time, through any means.

If you want to find yourself being arrested for a misdemeanor that may follow you for the rest of your life, then you can think you are smarter than the Order, the Judge and the law and try to put it to a test trying to use a technicality, but I can tell you that unless you plan on taking the matter to the Rhode Island Supreme Court and spend a lot of money for nothing it is better just to find yourself in handcuffs and under arrest just do the smart thing and remember this... NO CONTACT means NO CONTACT.  

All my Best to All Who Go Before the Rhode Island Family Court,

I am Attorney Christopher A. Pearsall and I am "The Rhode Island Divorce Coach."