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Helpful Articles: Before A Divorce

What you need to know and do before a divorce

January 8th, 2021

How Long Does It Take to Get a Divorce?

A Minimum of Four to Six months (or More). It takes a long time to get divorced in Wisconsin. In fact, it takes longer in Wisconsin than in almost any other state. This is because Wisconsin has a mandatory 120-day “cooling off” period between the time a divorce is filed and the time it can…
August 3rd, 2020

Do I Need a Prenuptial Agreement?

Before you and your fiancé say your “I do’s”, it may be in your best interests to consider signing a prenuptial agreement. While no one likes to think about the possibility of divorce, especially before you’ve even wed, the truth is that forever is a long time, and there is no guarantee or requirement that…
June 16th, 2020

What Is A Contested Divorce?

Contested Divorce: When Couples Can't Agree Couples often get divorced when they can agree only one on thing: that they don’t want to be married anymore. However, there are many decisions that go into the dissolution of a marriage. A contested divorce is a divorce in which the court makes these difficult decisions for you…
March 18th, 2020

COVID-19 Pandemic & Divorce: What You Need To Know

We've Temporarily Taken Our Practice Digital Thanks to technology, our attorneys can still offer the same award-winning service to their Milwaukee-area clients despite the current pandemic. Fill out the form below to set up a free no-pressure online divorce consultation. Prefer to call? (414) 453-0800 During this time, our staff and attorneys continue to operate…
July 20th, 2019

What To Do If You Cannot Afford a Divorce Lawyer

[caption id="attachment_7172" align="alignleft" width="300"] David B. Karp[/caption] A frequently asked question when going through a divorce is what to do if you need an attorney, but cannot afford one. What are the alternatives and where can one find help? 1. Pubic Defenders - Some people are under the misconception that if they cannot afford an…
April 25th, 2019

Child Custody Calculator in Wisconsin

CALCULATING CHILD CUSTODY IN WISCONSIN Is there a way to calculate who gets custody of minor children when going through a divorce in Wisconsin? There are basically two forms of placement of minor children in Wisconsin when going through a divorce; a. Primary Placement. This traditional placement arrangement puts the children primarily in one parent's home…
March 2nd, 2019

How to prove a parent is “unfit.”

Almost every other phone call or on line inquiry we receive, concerns a post judgment custody issue where someone wants to prove or allege the other parent is “unfit.” The idea is they want to obtain primary placement of the children, and in many cases, also involves pre-judgment matters. How do you go about proving…
February 4th, 2019

When do “variable costs” apply in Wisconsin?

What are "variable costs?"  Wisconsin DCF 150 (29) defines "variable costs" as the reasonable costs above basic support costs incurred by or on behalf of a child, including but not limited to the cost of child care, tuition, a child's special needs, and other activities that involve substantial cost.   2. When do "variable costs"…
August 3rd, 2018

Wisconsin Adultery Laws

Learning that your spouse has been unfaithful to you can be a painful shock. That can be especially true if you have children or if you’ve been married for an extended time. As such, you might seek out help determining what to do about their infidelity. You’ll need to understand Wisconsin adultery laws, first, so…
July 3rd, 2018

Finding the right divorce lawyer

  I have written previous blogs about how one goes about to find a divorce lawyer. Today's topic is about finding the right lawyer for you in a family law case. You need to have a mindset from day one, about what type of a lawyer you are looking for. Are you looking for a…
May 20th, 2018

Name on a birth certificate.

There probably isn’t a day that goes by where I read a question posted on Avvo or or we receive at our web site, about placing the father’s name on a child’s birth certificate to determine that they are the father. We are obviously talking about a situation here where the child is born…
May 16th, 2018

Bringing false charges of abuse in a divorce

It has happened numerous times in my career, that at the onset of a divorce action, one of the parties is accused of abuse, whether it be domestic violence against their abuse, or in some cases, child abuse. These allegations are brought contemporaneously with the divorce or separation filing, usually to get an upper hand…
March 27th, 2018

“I want 50/50 placement!”

We meet with a lot of individuals going through a divorce who come  into the office and advocate that they want "50/50 placement." To me, that is like nails on a chalkboard because it really tells us nothing. It is particularly annoying when they make the same advocacy to the guardian ad litem and/or the…
January 19th, 2018

Release of medical records in a custody battle.

The other day I wrote a blog on the physician- patient privilege in Wisconsin, and under what circumstances it can be waived. One of those circumstances under Wisconsin law does not cover when parties are contesting custody of their minor children. So, the question becomes what is a party required to do when the court…
December 13th, 2017

Can you sue for adultery in Wisconsin?

We get asked this question quite frequently. Someone found that their spouse is cheating on them and now want to sue their spouse, or the person who had the affair with their spouse or press criminal charges. Can you sue for adultery? Under s. 768.01, alienation of affections has been abolished, so the answer on…
October 24th, 2017

Recorded Telephone Conversations in Wisconsin

An interesting question is whether someone can record a telephone conversation in Wisconsin and then use that as evidence in a courtroom as part of going through a divorce or separation case? Wisconsin is a  "one party"  wiretap state. It is not necessarily illegal to wiretap or record someone, without their knowledge or consent. Whether…
October 18th, 2017

Court Sanctions in Wisconsin

Sometimes litigants going through a civil matter, do not understand the significance of complying with court orders or rules and laws that govern pre-trial matters. There is a duty to cooperate with discovery under Chapter 804; that means timely complying with discovery requests, such as written interrogatories, that must be answered under oath within 30…
April 10th, 2017

Admission of Personal Service

The other day I discussed whether it mattered who filed first. In most cases it routinely does not, but if the parties are separated and living in different counties, or different states, it can certainly matter, and where minor children are involved, can affect jurisdiction of the court to proceed. When filing for divorce in…
March 27th, 2017

Lawyer Response Time

I take a lot of phone calls from people looking to replace their current lawyer and the number one complaint seems to be that their lawyer never calls them back. No one likes being ignored. What exactly should the response time be back from your lawyer? What is reasonable? What are your own expectations? What…
March 2nd, 2017

Using a GPS tracking device on your spouse; Is it against the law in Wisconsin.

You think your spouse may be cheating on you and you don't feel like spending thousands of dollars by hiring a private investigator to follow them around to prove it. Instead, you think of placing a GPS tracking device on your spouse's car. By doing that you can track their every move, see where they…
January 23rd, 2017

Pre-Marital Assets; exempt under Wisconsin law?

I have been getting a lot of questions and inquiries lately on how pre-marital assets are treated in a divorce case under Wisconsin law. Are the assets exempt from property division or are they divisible under Wisconsin law? All property in a divorce case in Wisconsin, whether acquired before the marriage or during the marriage…
January 4th, 2017

Is Wisconsin a 50/50 state for divorce?

It is surprising that most people don't know the answer to this question. We are frequently asked the question and the answer is yes. Wisconsin, since 1977, has been a marital property law state when it comes to a family getting a divorce or legal separation in Wisconsin. This means that there is a legal…
December 15th, 2016

Does a birth certificate establish paternity in Wisconsin?

The answer to the headline to today's blog is no, at least not under Wisconsin law. This is a frequently asked question where people believe that if a person's name goes on the birth certificate, that legally establishes the person as being the biological father. This is legally incorrect. There are two ways that paternity…
November 27th, 2016

Contesting a restraining order

Your spouse or former significant other has threatened to go to the courthouse and obtain some type of restraining order against you. Is there any way to prevent them from doing so, or to fight the matter in court? You can't really prevent someone from access to the courthouse if they want to pursue a…
June 11th, 2016

Waiver of the 120 day waiting period in Wisconsin

I am a huge  Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers' fan and they have a song entitled, "The Waiting (is the hardest part)."  What  I really want to focus on in today's blog,  is the fact that under Wisconsin law, an individual has to wait 120 days before they can be divorced and under what circumstances,…
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