Can my new wife have custody of my daughter if I die? 2 Answers as of June 08, 2011

My daughter would like to live with my new wife, not her biological mother, in the event of my passing. Does my new wife have this option since we will be married and my daughter lives with us full time now in Oregon?

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Howard W. Collins, Attorney at Law
Howard W. Collins, Attorney at Law | Howard W. Collins
Assume Oregon law applies: Unfortunately, the law would clearly favor birth mother; unless there are some evidence that mother's care of your daughter would be dangerous and detrimental to your child. Usually there is a lot more factors to consider, so the answer is not definitive, but you need to understand that the law assumes that mothers and fathers make decision that are presumed to be in the best interest of their children over the interest of a third party (step mother).
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 6/8/2011
Gresham Family & Bankruptcy Law
Gresham Family & Bankruptcy Law | Lillian Suelzle Watson
Based on the general question, I see the issue as follows: The mortgage on the property was discharged in your bankruptcy; however the property was not actually transferred to the mortgage company for some time. Accordingly, the HOA dues are new debt and a separate issue. If you owed back HOA dues they would have been discharged up to the date you filed bankruptcy, but HOA fees that accrued after the bankruptcy was not discharged. My understanding of collection laws is that you were responsible for HOA fees until the mortgage company foreclosed and took over ownership of the property and new HOA the fees. Until that time, you were still the legal owner. If you consider HOA dues as though it was a utility expense, consider this example. If you used water or electricity although you no longer owned the home, you are still responsible for the fees. This is similar to HOA dues. City fines or utility liens are handled the same way. You may want to discuss with an attorney who represents debtors in collection actions.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 6/8/2011
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