Recent News

What are the Practical Effects of the New Uniform Family Law Arbitration Act?

Washington State Divorce & Family Law Lawyer Mackenzie O. Bretz | 9/5/2023
This year, Governor Jay Inslee signed into law HB 1088, which adopted the Uniform Family Law Arbitration Act (UFLAA), a statutory scheme for the arbitration of family law disputes. The new arbitration laws allow for greater flexibility and efficiency in family law cases. And, since all awards are confirmed by the Court, there is a… Read More

Am I a De Facto Parent?

Washington State Divorce & Family Law Lawyer Susan O’Toole | 8/31/2023
Parentage appears in numerous forms. Biological parentage and legal adoption tend to be more commonplace; however, an often-overlooked form is that of “de facto parentage.” Conceptually, a de facto parentage legally recognizes the relationship between a child and a person who has acted as a parent, even if they are not the biological or adoptive… Read More

How will A.I. Affect my Family Law Case?

Washington State Divorce & Family Law Lawyer Mackenzie O. Bretz | 8/21/2023
The buzz continues around how A.I. will affect the law and lawyers in general. However, Family Law may feel some very specific effects of A.I. What is A.I.? A.I. stands for Artificial Intelligence. Typically, this means programs use machine learning to perform human-like tasks. The programs will take information from complied data to detect patterns,… Read More

Can my Spouse have Joint Decision-Making for our Kids if they have committed Domestic Violence?

Washington State Divorce & Family Law Lawyer Susan O’Toole | 7/31/2023
Many clients come to me as victims of sometimes horrific domestic violence, whether it be physical, emotional or “coercive control.” If they want to leave the marriage or relationship and there are children involved, the main concern for the Parenting Plan is often how to protect the children. If children are victims of domestic violence… Read More

Parenting Plans – What is a Minor Modification?

Washington State Family Law Lawyer Anne B. Bennette | 6/29/2023
When the Court enters a Final Parenting Plan, it is expected that it will remain in place until the child (or children) are no longer dependent.  For that reason, it is important to have a comprehensive Final Parenting Plan addressing the residential schedule, holidays, and other provisions as the children age no matter how young… Read More

Minor Guardianship – Options for Non-Parental Caregivers (Formerly Known as Nonparental Custody)

Washington State Divorce & Family Law Lawyer Mackenzie O. Bretz | 6/12/2023
Do I Need Regular Minor Guardianship or Emergency Minor Guardianship? An emergency minor guardianship is temporary, and it lasts up to 60 days. In some cases, it can be extended but emergency minor guardianships are typically easier to get and are most often used when a child is in immediate danger. A regular minor guardianship… Read More

Can I Get a Divorce Without Destroying My Kids?

Washington State Divorce & Family Law Lawyer Susan O’Toole | 6/1/2023
In previous posts, I have discussed aspects of Collaborative Divorce and Mediation as alternatives to the typical “messy” divorce we hear about from friends and see portrayed in the media. But as a spouse, sometimes your feelings of bitterness, rage, and even hate for your partner—all the emotions that may have led to your divorce—can… Read More