Tysons Corner, VA attorney Debra A. Goldenberg has provided comprehensive family law services for over 26 years. While she has a reputation with the courts as an aggressive litigator with creative tactics, she is also known for her ability to artfully negotiate a settlement out of court when such a resolution is in the best interest of her clients.
Virginia law provides two primary avenues to pursue a divorce: “no-fault grounds” and the more traditional “fault grounds”, such as adultery, cruelty and desertion. Although Ms. Goldenberg is always prepared for and comfortable in a courtroom, she knows that unless there is a true advantage, either financial or strategic, it is often better for parties to resolve their issues through a well written settlement agreement and for them to pursue a no-fault divorce.
If the parties do not have children together and have a formal written Separation and Property Settlement Agreement, they may seek a “no-fault” divorce after being separated from each other for at least six-month separation. If they have any children together or do not have a Settlement Agreement, they must wait a year before filing for divorce on a no-fault basis.
A divorce based on a fault ground such as adultery, desertion or cruelty is usually contested, and can usually be filed immediately upon the conduct that supports the fault basis occurring.
Debra Goldenberg has a reputation throughout Northern Virginia as a strong, thorough and aggressive litigator. Litigation is usually only recommended after parties have exhausted all reasonable efforts to resolve a case amicably with dignity and fairness; however, if you are forced into “battle”, with Debra Goldenberg representing you, you could have your best opportunity to achieve your goals. (Often “survive” is a more accurate description). Ms. Goldenberg knows how to protect your rights and understands the complexities of litigation involving domestic relations issues such as custody, visitation, support (child and spousal), and property distribution.
SEPARATION,PRE-MARITAL,MARITAL AND PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENTS
A formal, written agreement can be created to settle all or part of outstanding issues between parties. A well-crafted agreement can provide a more creative approach to resolve a lot more than who gets the dining room table. Parties may enter into these agreements prior to a marriage (pre-nuptial agreement), during a marriage (marital agreement), or prior to or after separating (separation agreement). What issues a party desires to try and resolve determines the content of the agreement, but the goal is to address all, potentially disputable issues including custody, visitation, school and medical records, child and spousal support, property distribution (including bank accounts and retirement accounts), attorney’s fees, and general rights arising once parties become partners in some capacity.
Debra A. Goldenberg has skillfully drafted and negotiated more than a thousand Settlement Agreements. She understands what is important to include, and how best to achieve results well suited for her clients’ individualized needs.
As an attorney active in the practice of family law, Ms. Goldenberg has the learned knowledge and has taken extensive training to become a family law mediator. A mediator is an individual, who acts in an unbiased manner to help parties resolve their difference outside of a courtroom. A competent mediator understands the basic facts of a case, has a strong understanding of the law, has sufficient experience to understand how the court may probably rule, and attempts to work out creative compromises between parties so that they can reach reasonable and fair out of court resolutions that work best for both parties and their families.
PROPERTY SETTLEMENT AGREEMENTS
This is a formal written agreement that can settle all or part of the outstanding issues between the parties. A well crafted agreement can provide a more creative approach to resolve a lot more than who gets the dining room table. They try to cover all potentially disputable issues including custody, visitation, school and medical records, child and spousal support, bank accounts and retirement plans.
Debra A. Goldenberg has skillfully drafted and negotiated more than a thousand Property Settlement Agreements. She understands what is important to include and how to achieve results best suited for her clients.
CUSTODY, SUPPORT & VISITATION
When a case is filed with a court to resolve where children should live, when and with what conditions, the judge’s required focus is a determination of what is in the best interests of a child. Frequently, a court may presume that a child’s best interests are best served by two parents sharing joint custody, and then hears evidence to determine if that standard applies to the particular case before it. The court then rules what visitation schedule should be established. Ms. Goldenberg can help you evaluate whether the specific facts in your case are likely to influence a judge to consider sole custody, as well as to establish a visitation schedule with such conditions as best fit your circumstances. Whether she is representing a husband, wife, a father, mother, or third party seeking custody/visitation of a child, the litigation and resolution of child custody cases is the significant focus of her litigation practice.
CHILD AND SPOUSAL SUPPORT
Child support is basically determined by statutory guidelines in Virginia, which use a formula to determine a presumptive amount of support. In order to calculate support, the gross income of each parent is used, along with considerations for the costs of health insurance, work related day care costs, and unreimbursed medical expenses. Ms. Goldenberg can help determine what a person’s gross income actually is, whether income should be imputed to a party, and what amount of support should be argued to be paid by one parent to another for the support of their child. She has often convinced courts that a party’s income is different than what may initially appear, and has argued that the circumstances of a particular case may justify a deviation from the guidelines.
Virginia does not have spousal support guidelines by law, but several counties have established their own guidelines for temporary spousal support. Ms. Goldenberg can assist you to determine whether your case may likely result in an award of either temporary or permanent spousal support, and ascertain what sum might be expected to be ordered by a judge.
Stanton Phillips’ practice involves all types of adoption including stepparent, private placements, agency, relative and international adoption. He also handles assisted reproduction cases including surrogacy, gestational carrier and embryo adoption. Consulting with him is usually the best way to begin the adoption process. See more info on Stanton’s adoption attorney services page.