Issues Involving Your Children

A Sensitive And Practical Approach To An Important Problem

The experienced family law attorneys of Raphael, Ramsden & Behers, P.C., understand that custody can be the most sensitive and important issue to you and your family. Our attorneys approach custody in a practical and sensitive way to help you through these issues. Our attorneys aim for workable and practical child custody agreements that serve the best interests of the children involved, but we stand ready to fight for your rights in court if an agreement cannot be reached.

Our Pittsburgh child custody lawyers handle initial determinations of custody and visitation, as well as:

  • Modifications to a current custody arrangement or visitation schedule
  • Adoptions by stepparents and same-sex couples
  • Issues involving the juvenile court
  • Grandparents' rights
  • Parental relocation and international custody issues

We represent both mothers and fathers in the Pittsburgh area, throughout Allegheny County and in the surrounding counties of Western Pennsylvania. Call us at 412-471-8822 or email us to discuss your pending divorce or custody situation.

Recent Changes In Custody Laws

There was a recent change to the Pennsylvania custody laws in January of 2011. Our attorneys have written articles and lectured on this change in the law as well as the new procedures required under the law. We can help you understand how these changes will affect your custody matter and provide you with knowledgeable representation to ensure that your rights are protected throughout your case.

Pennsylvania Custody Dispute Lawyers Skilled In Negotiating Agreements

Custody in Pennsylvania involves both legal custody (decisions about the child's education, medical care and upbringing), and physical custody (where the child is physically present). In determining both legal and physical custody, a court must determine what is in the best interest of the child, and our experienced lawyers can provide the guidance necessary to address these issues in a custody dispute.

Each custody matter is entirely unique and requires the attention of a sensitive and qualified attorney. Our significant experience in this area can allow for a practical and customized custody agreement to fit your needs. We can help address the issues of work, travel, child care, extracurricular activities, holidays, vacations and special events to devise a plan that works best for children and parents.

International Custody Disputes

Very few Pennsylvania family law attorneys have experience with the Hague Convention rules governing child custody, which deal with international custody disputes. Our attorneys do have this experience. International custody disputes are complex and hotly contested, and Raphael, Ramsden & Behers, P.C., has been involved in international custody cases in both state and federal courts.

Parental Relocation

We also handle custody disputes that involve attempts by the primary custodial parent to relocate out of the county or out of the state with the children. The court has wide discretion, but considers:

  • Advantages to the custodial parent and child (better job, better schools, support structure, lower living expenses)
  • Integrity or motive of both parents. Is the parent moving out of spite, to move in with a new significant other or to take a better job?
  • Whether an arrangement can be worked out to maintain a strong and healthy relationship between the child and the noncustodial parent

Whether you are petitioning for or challenging relocation, we will provide you with strong and experienced representation to assert your case.

Grandparents' Rights

Pennsylvania law provides for grandparent's right to custody in certain instances. We have considerable experience pursuing grandparents' rights to visitation and custody, and have extensive knowledge of the Pennsylvania laws that allow a grandparent to exercise custody.

Same-Sex Custody Disputes

Should you find yourself in a dispute over custody with your same-sex partner, our qualified attorneys at Raphael, Ramsden & Behers, P.C., have the experience to assist you in resolving this dispute. Our law firm has developed an understanding of the issues specifically involved in a same-sex custody dispute and we have represented many clients in these disputes.

Custody matters can be emotional and custody litigation expensive. We work to minimize the angst, animosity, cost and above all the impact on the children. Contact our Pittsburgh office to arrange a confidential consultation.