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My Blog

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Why Limited Scope Representation Could Work for You in a Custody Case

Posted on February 19, 2020 at 4:50 PM Comments comments (9)
So you are looking to file a child custody or child support case but you do not want to hire an attorney to handle every aspect of the case because that would be cost prohibitive.  For the most part you want to be hands on and handle the case yourself.  However, there may be some small aspects of the case that require legal expertise.  For those issues you can us "Limited Scope Representation" as an affordable option that will allow you to get what legal expertise you may need without breaking the bank.  If you decide to go this route you will need to set out the parameters of representation in a limited legal services contract.  The best way to do that is to set an appointment to discuss what it is that you want and need and then sign a written document evidencing exactly what it is that will be expected from the attorney.  Our office can help you with those details and enter our limited appearance in your case, if that is what is outlined in the agreement.  If an Entry of Limited Appearance is filed in your case and once the work outlined in the limited scope representation agreement is completed a Termination of Limited Appearance will be filed with the Court and the attorney's work in the case will end.  However, an attorney is not required to file an Entry of Limited Appearance in every case.  Work can be completed without an attorney ever entering their appearance in your case.  If you are interested in this type of representation, please give my office a call to set an appointment.  Let my assistant know that your office visit is to discuss possible "Limited Scope Representation." The phone number for The Faulstich Law Firm is 314-260-7823.

Why might a Guardian Ad Litem be appointed to my case?

Posted on May 30, 2013 at 4:04 PM Comments comments (0)
There are the complicating factors that I referred to in a previous article. As I have said before, a Guardian ad Litem is NOT appointed in every case. The court has to see some reason for concern for the child’s welfare. Some of the more common complicating factors include alcohol issues, illegal drug issues, prescription drug abuse, and physical abuse or threats of physical harm.

The court and the opposing attorneys can find out about these in a few ways. Some of the more common ways are Orders of Protection, Police Reports, DWI and DUI convictions, and other times where the law creates a record of one of the activities mentioned above. Another common way is that one party accuses the other and then a drug test is ordered.

What is a Guardian Ad Litem? Part I

Posted on May 30, 2013 at 4:02 PM Comments comments (0)
A Guardian Ad Litem is an attorney. They are not social workers or psychiatrists (although sometimes in a case these professionals may also be necessary). A Guardian Ad Litem, or G.A.L. as they are commonly referred to in legal jargon, must be trained to practice law because the G.A.L. makes legal recommendations to the judge. These legal recommendations are based upon interviews with the parties to a suit, as well as interviews with the children involved, records and document reviews, and other information as the G.A.L. sees necessary. Many times a G.A.L. will make a home visit. Sometimes these are planned and other times they are surprise visits. The Guardian ad Litem’s job is to represent “the best interests of the child”.
  The Guardian ad Litem, technically speaking, is not the attorney for the children because she does not represent in the pure sense their interests. An oft repeated example is a child who wants to only eat Ice Cream and nothing else. This is probably not in the best interests of the child. The G.A.L. is called to make a recommendation that the child not, therefore, eat only Ice Cream, but, if this were important to the child, would make the child’s wishes known. A normal client would have more control over their attorney. Attorneys who represent the parties do not make best interests recommendations for their adult clients, but rather advocate for what the client asks.

One last thing to keep in mind is that in a divorce case, Guardian ad Litems are not always appointed. Guardian Ad Litems are only appointed when there is some complicating factor that worries the court about the child’s welfare.