Personal Injury Lawyer
Serving Hazleton, PA

When your marriage ends, you need an attorney you can trust

Divorce is a difficult decision for anyone to make. It can be a long and sometimes painful process. Emotions can run high. One spouse may not be ready to accept divorce. Children may feel confused and frightened. Other people are affected, too-including family members, friends and even co-workers.

Hazleton Attorneys Theodore Laputka and Edward McNelis know that every divorce is a personal matter that requires guidance, compassion and the understanding that life will go on for both parties. Our experienced family law attorneys have a thorough knowledge of Pennsylvania divorce law and stand by clients every step of the way.

No one gets married thinking of divorce. But people change over time. Situations change. Couples can grow apart. Eventually, one or both spouses reach the conclusion that the marriage is no longer working and a divorce is needed.

But even if both parties agree the marriage should end, there are many decisions to be made. If there are children, what are the custody arrangements? Will there be alimony? If the couple owned a home, what happens to it? How will financial assets be divided? What about the debts the couple had? Reaching an agreement that both sides accept can be complicated. Having an experienced lawyer by your side makes a big difference.

Fault and no-fault divorces

There are many reasons why a couple may decide to end their marriage. These reasons are referred to as "grounds" for divorce. In Pennsylvania, a divorce may be granted using either "fault" or "no-fault" as the grounds.

When one person in a couple can point to a specific reason why the marriage should be ended, a divorce is sought on the grounds of fault. The reasons can include adultery, bigamy, imprisonment for two or more years, willful desertion for one year, cruel and inhuman treatment endangering the life of the spouse and personal indignities.

Seeking a divorce on the grounds of no-fault means there is no specific incident that occurred. But it is felt the marriage has deteriorated beyond repair. The law defines no-fault grounds as either:

  • irretrievable breakdown of the marriage with the spouses living separate and apart for two years, or
  • irretrievable breakdown of the marriage and the spouses have both filed affidavits they consent to the divorce with the spouses no longer living together for a period of at least 90 days.

Attorneys Laputka and McNelis know that each case is different. Some are amicable and can be settled between the two parties; others are more contentious and require litigation. Some cases are more involved than others. In every case, we work to get the best results for our client while protecting children from any turmoil between the parents.

If you are facing a divorce, it's very important to get advice from an experienced attorney. We protect your rights and work on getting the best deal possible so you can focus on moving forward with your life. Contact us to learn more about how we can help. We offer a free consultation.