Avvo

A service (http://www.avvo.com/family-lawyer/nv/las_vegas.html) has sprung up purporting to locate information about, and then rate, every lawyer in America. Called “Avvo,” an abbreviation of the Italian word for lawyer (avvocato), the service claims as its mission “to help people navigate the complex and confusing legal industry” because “choosing a lawyer is an incredibly important decision—yet most people have no idea how to go about doing it, and resources to guide them are scarce.”

In compiling its ratings, Avvo claims to rate and profile every attorney, and provide lawyer profiles that contain “helpful information including a lawyer’s experience, areas of practice, disciplinary history, and ratings from clients.” According to Avvo, the information used “comes from many sources, including state courts and bar associations, lawyer websites, and information provided by lawyers.”

Each such profile is supposedly constructed in accordance with a “mathematical model” that takes into consideration “a lawyer’s years in practice, disciplinary history, professional achievements, and industry recognition—all factors that, in our opinion, are relevant to assessing a lawyer’s qualifications.” Avvo immediately rated Mr. Willick at 10.0 out of 10.

One of the features provided by Avvo is an open-ended question-answering service; as attorneys of the Willick Law Group have answered some such questions, the questions – and answers – are repeated here in case they might prove of use to anyone with a similar inquiry:

Q: In Nevada I must pay alimony, If I get remarried and lost my job would my wife to be income be consider for the alimony payment?: Was married for 30 years she was awarded $500 a month alimony. I only take home $1435 per month with a $600 rent payment. I would like to get remarried and with the way the economy is these days I fear that the security of my job is not there and I do not wish to put this burden on my wife to be income.

A: Marshal’s answer: The short answer is that your new spouse’s income probably will not be relevant to your alimony obligation. In Rodgers v. Rodgers, 110 Nev. 1370, 887 P.2d 269 (1994), the Nevada Supreme Court rejected the Father’s contention that NRS 125B.070 grants district courts the discretion to consider a new spouse’s income in setting child support, but held that “under appropriate circumstances, a noncustodial parent’s community property interest may be taken into account pursuant to NRS 125B.080.” Specifically, the definition of “gross monthly income” in NRS 125B.070(1)(a) includes “income from any source” for a wage-earner, or the gross income from any source of a self-employed person.” The Court recited several rules of statutory construction. The Court termed 125B.070 “hardly a model of clarity.” The Court reaffirmed its holding in Lewis v. Hicks, 108 Nev. 1107, 843 P.2d 828 (1992) that “gross monthly income” does not include a parent’s community property interest in a new spouse’s income. However, the Court went on to note that under NRS 125B.080, the lower courts can, upon making appropriate findings of fact, deviate from the statutory schedule, and noted that NRS 125B.080(9)(1) lists “the relative income of both parents” as a factor. In prior cases, the Court construed this provision as including relative standards of living and financial circumstances, and reiterated its holding in Barbagallo v. Barbagallo, 105 Nev. 546, 779 P.2d 532 (1989) that “[w]hat really matters in these cases is whether the children are being taken care of as well as possible under the financial circumstances in which the two parents find themselves. Greater weight, then, must be given to the standard of living and circumstances of each parent, their earning capacities, and the `relative financial means of parents’ than to any of the other factors.” From dicta in Barbagallo, Lewis, and Herz v. Gabler-Herz, 107 Nev. 117, 808 P.2d 1 (1991), the Court inferred that “considerations such as standard of living and financial means may be intimately connected to community income,” and noted that under the community property scheme, a spouse has a present, vested one-half interest in the other spouse’s earnings under NRS 123.130, 123.220, and 123.225, and under California Family Code sects. 751, 760. Turning to tax law, the Court noted that the IRS considers half the income and expenses of the community to belong to each spouse, and that such a spousal share may be liable for that spouse’s premarital debts under NRS 123.050 and Cal. Fam. Code sect. 910. Thus, while spousal income is not part of gross income, the remarried parent’s imputed community property right to share in income does count for comparing “relative income” of the two parents. The case can be reviewed on our Published Works page. Further information about alimony can be reviewed on our spousal support/alimony page, at http://willicklawgroup.com/spousal-supportalimony/.
Posted 3 days ago.

Q: about child support: I have a question My ex wants to settle the child support out of court if I do that can I still get back support and the 18%? He has never paid anything for her and hasnt seen her in 10 years. Should I settle out of court or no?

A: Marshal’s answer: Your facts are a bit vague, and the question of whether to settle or litigate is one that should only be made after consulting with qualified counsel, but some information may be of use to you. In Nevada, in the absence of a court order, you are entitled to make a claim for up to four years of back child support for a child. If there is a court order, there is no statute of limitations for any child support accruing after 1981. A full explanation, and all relevant child support charts and information, are posted on the Child Support page of our firm web site, at http://willicklawgroup.com/child-support/. Some limited no- or low-cost assistance is available. The local Pro Bono provider is the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada, which can be called at 702-386-1070 (or see their information on the web at http://www.lacsn.org/option,com_jcalpro/Itemid,3/extmode,view/extid,15/). Those that take pro bono cases take them after they have been screened, and assigned, by Legal Aid. The Reduced Fee Panel sponsored by the State Bar also might be of use to you, and can be reached at 702-382-2200. Finally, for those that wish to attempt self-representation, forms are available at the Clark County self-help center website, at http://www.co.clark.nv.us/district_court/self_help_center.htm. But if you are interested in making an appointment with us for a consultation, details are posted at http://willicklawgroup.com/consultation-policies/.

Q: How to go about child support increase and garnishment in the state of Nevada: 4 yrs ago child support and visitation stipulations was ordered by a judge in family court in the state of Nevada. In the last 4 yrs my pay has had a substantial decrease of 40-50% (airline industry) due to play cuts and schedule reductions as well as all the time off I had to talke due to my child’s illness. Even though I am getting child support it has been consistantly late. Do I have a case as well as a chance for garnishment. Is there any free legal services I can use? Any information would be helpful. Thanks….
Posted about 1 month ago in Child Support

A: Marshal’s answer: First, you are entitled to a review of child support every three years, irrespective of changed circumstances, but the most important question is not whether your income has changed, but whether that of the person paying support has changed. If the payor’s income has increased, you are probably entitled to an increase in support. Also, over the past four years, the presumptive maximums have increased a bit. A full explanation, and all relevant child support charts and information, are posted on the Chid SUpport page of our firm web site, at Child Support. And, yes, you can arrange for either wage assignment, through a private attorney, or wage garnishment, through the District Attorney. See the same place for that information, or call the D.A. child support office. Finally, yes, some limited no- or low-cost assistance is available. The local Pro Bono provider is the Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada, which can be called at 702-386-1070 (or see their information on the web at http://www.lacsn.org/option,com_jcalpro/Itemid,3/extmode,view/extid,15/). Those that take pro bono cases take them after they have been screened, and assigned, by Legal Aid. The Reduced Fee Panel sponsored by the State Bar also might be of use to you, and can be reached at 702-382-2200. Finally, for those that wish to attempt self-representation, forms are available at the Clark County self-help center website.