Alimony in New Hampshire on You Tube

There's a new batch of You Tube videos about divorce and family law in New Hampshire. Here is the first, a segment about alimony. 

 

Here comes the Merrimack Family Division

The Merrimack Family Division is almost here! The Judicial Branch posted the following announcements on its website:

The Hillsborough South marital department will be closed to the public except for emergency filings from Monday, December 6 through Thursday, December 9. The closing will allow staff uninterrupted time to process cases in preparation for the reopening of the department on Friday December 10th as part of the Merrimack Family Division.

The Merrimack Family Division will serve the towns of Merrimack, Bedford and Litchfield. In addition, the Hillsborough South Superior Court docket, one of the last courts to make the transition into the Family Division, will transfer over to the Merrimack Family Division. The courthouse is located on Baboosic Lake Road in Merrimack, New Hampshire.

What is the difference between a CASA and a GAL?

I had a conversation today in which the person stated that most Guardian ad Litem's are volunteers, and that it is very unusual to have a GAL who is paid for his services. I thought this topic was worth a blog post to clear up this misconception that seems to derive from the common mix up between a CASA and a GAL.

As discussed previously on this blog, a GAL is a professional appointed by the court to perform an independent investigation and to make recommendations to the court regarding the best interests of a child. A GAL may be appointed in all types of family law cases, from divorces to guardianships, and is paid for her services. GALs are not volunteers, although most GALs work for drastically reduced rates and work far more hours on a case than are billed.

On the other hand, a Court Appointed Special Advocate or CASA is a trained volunteer who serves as an advocate for children in abuse or neglect cases. An abuse or neglect case is a type of case brought to the court by the Division of Children, Youth and Families under the Child Protection Act to protect the health, safety and welfare of a child. Although a CASA's role is very similar to that of a GAL, a CASA only works on abuse or neglect cases or derivative termination of parental rights.