Taking it to the highest court in the Commonwealth

We’re going to the Supreme Judicial Court! The mission is to refine the statutory meaning of “economic marital partnership” in the context of calculating the duration of alimony, where the divorcing parties cohabited prior to the marriage.

Under the Alimony Reform Act, the duration of alimony payments is determined based on the length of the marriage. Where the parties lived together prior to marrying, however, the court can add to the length of the marriage all or a part of the period of premarital cohabitation, where the court finds that the cohabiting parties engaged in an “economic marital partnership.”

The statute does not say what an economic marital partnership is, and some drafters of the legislation say that the provision was intended to benefit same-sex couples who might have lived together as spouses in all but name for a long time before they were able to marry formally. The SJC first looked at the question two years ago in Duff-Kareores v. Kareores, 474 Mass. 528 (2016), but some questions remain unanswered.

Stay tuned to Connor v. Benedict, SJC-12551.

This is why we don’t give up in custody battles.

When the court fails to cooperate (or even do the right thing), quitting still is not an option. This one was brutal. The court had refused to allow the report of a guardian ad litem into evidence, gave custody to the father (the GAL had recommended that custody stay with mom), and then the dad decided to terminate contact between mom and her daughter. Multiple complaints for contempt did not resolve the problem, and we eventually had to force the judge off the case. Persistence won out.

Gardner mother’s nightmare of losing custody of her daughter recounted – News – telegram.com – Worcester, MA

Ratings and Reviews

10.0Robert G. Clark
Robert Gilkes ClarkReviewsout of 3 reviews