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Blog - Katrina S. Zafiro

Picking Witnesses for Your Trial

While we think it is always best if both parties reach a settlement and do not need to go to trial, this does not happen in every case.    When you file your family law case in a King County, Washington Superior Court, the court automatically issues an order setting the deadlines in your case, more commonly known as a “case schedule”.  It is very important to follow all the deadlines in your case schedule.  One of Read More

How Does Immigration Define Good Moral Character?

In order for an immigrant to be naturalized and become a citizen of the United States, he or she must be found to have “good moral character” (sometimes referred to as GMC). Since one’s moral character is an extremely subjective quality, and there’s no way for it to be scientifically measured, this can lead to a lot of questions. Today, we’re looking at the ins and outs of how immigration defines good moral Read More

Who Gets the House In a Divorce?

It may be relatively easy to divide personal/movable property (like cash, jewelry, vehicles, financial accounts, etc.), in a divorce, but dividing a real estate/immovable property like your house can be complicated.  Who gets what in a divorce depends upon whether the property is community property or separate property.  Community property is the property that belongs to both, the husband and wife. In Washington Read More

What is “Abusive Use of Conflict”?

Do you think there is a risk that a parent’s conduct may have a harmful effect on your child? If so, ask the court to limit that parent’s rights and/or visits with your child. A variety of restrictions can be placed like neglect by a parent, substance abuse, lack of emotional ties with the child, abusive use of conflict, etc.   Abusive use of conflict which creates the danger of serious damage to the child’s Read More

Three Things to Do If You’re Experiencing Domestic Abuse in Washington

Domestic violence includes physical violence between intimate partners, as well as manipulative behavior intended to exert power and control over you. Those experiencing domestic violence may notice that their partner is limiting their access to family and friends, money, and even healthcare. Domestic abusers often use children as pawns in their manipulation, making their behavior dangerous to everyone in the Read More

Petitioning for Your Spouse

If you are wondering how to bring your spouse to the United States, this information is for you.  The term “spouse” includes same sex married couples.  One of the basic requirements is that your marriage must be legally valid where it was celebrated.  The laws specifically exclude polygamous marriages because an immigrant coming to the US to practice polygamy is not permitted to enter or remain in the US.  This Read More

Marriage-Based Adjustment of Status FAQ

Adjustment of status is the process through which you can obtain lawful permanent residency, also known as your “green card,” when you are already physically located in the United States. You can apply for adjustment of status in the family category, the employment category, or the refugee category. In today’s blog, we’ll focus on answering some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the family-based Read More

Four Situations in Which Child Support Obligations May Need to be Changed

Life happens and circumstances change. Whether you are a parent who pays child support or a parent who needs to receive it to provide for your child, you know what a big role this financial arrangement plays in the lives of everyone involved. So what happens when the child support arrangement ordered by the court is no longer right? There are lots of situations in which this might be the case, and sometimes it is Read More

Is Spousal Maintenance Modifiable?

Washington law provides that spousal maintenance (aka “alimony”) awards to be modified but only as to future payments and only if you can show a substantial change of circumstances. The law also provides that the obligation to pay maintenance stops upon death of either the recipient or the payor or remarriage or registration of a domestic partnership of the party receiving maintenance. Parties may also agree to Read More

Parenting Plan Modification

There is a strong presumption for custodial continuity in the state of Washington.  A trial court must determine and allocate the parties’ parental responsibilities based on what is in the best interest of the child.   The “best interests of the child” standard is the top consideration in parenting plan modification cases, which is served by stability unless a change must protect the child from physical, mental, or Read More