Jeff Bezos and the Billion Dollar Divorce

Posted by on 01.14.2019 in Posts | Comments Off on Jeff Bezos and the Billion Dollar Divorce

Jeff Bezos and the Billion Dollar Divorce

By Donna Marcus, Associate in the Weber Gallagher Family Law Group


Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, and his wife, MacKkenzie have decided to divorce after 25 years of marriage.  Bezos founded Amazon about a year after the couple wed.  MacKenzie is successful in her own right as a novelist.  Her financial success pales in comparison to that of her husband, though, who is reportedly worth $137 billion.  Bezos is also the majority shareholder of Amazon holding 16% of the shares.

The couple is from Washington which is a community property state.  That means that without a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, the assets created during the marriage could be split equally between Bezos and his wife.  It is reported that the couple did not have either a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

Since most of Bezos’ wealth is tied up in Amazon stock, he may need to transfer shares of his stock to his wife in order to pay her divorce settlement.  That could diminish his ownership interest and overall role with Amazon.  The Bezos divorce is just at the beginning.  How much MacKenzie Bezos will receive as her settlement and how the assets will be divided are still up in the air. One thing remains clear, though; if MacKenzie Bezos does receive 50 percent of the estate, she will walk away with over $60 billion based on the company’s current value and would become one of the richest people in the world.

New Rules Effective March 1st Regarding Parent Coordination

Posted by on 01.07.2019 in Posts | Comments Off on New Rules Effective March 1st Regarding Parent Coordination

Beginning March 1, 2019 important new Rules go into effect regarding Parent Coordination. The new Rules implement specific guidelines who may be a parent coordinator as well as the necessary training. The new Rule also addresses the role of the parent coordinator and addresses specific issues a parent coordinator may and may not address with the parties in a custody action. More importantly, the parties to a custody action may not utilize a parent coordinator before a Court Order is entered ensuring the role of a Judge is not circumvented in a custody action. For a complete listing of the new Rule please see:

Contact the Weber Gallagher Family Law Department at 610.272.5555 to see if a parent coordinator is the right choice for your custody case.

Pennsylvania is Implementing New Support Guidelines- What You Need To Know

Posted by on 01.04.2019 in Posts | Comments Off on Pennsylvania is Implementing New Support Guidelines- What You Need To Know

Effective January 1, 2019 Pennsylvania is implementing new Support Guidelines. Important issues which are addressed by the new Guidelines include the tax treatment of alimony pendent lite and alimony, new formulas for spousal support, alimony pendent lite, and alimony and new formulas for high income child support cases. For a complete discussion of the new Guidelines in Pennsylvania please see:  and

Contact the Family Law Department at Weber Gallagher to see if your support case will be affected by the new Guidelines.

New Year, New You!

Posted by on 01.03.2019 in Posts | Comments Off on New Year, New You!

New Year, New You!

By Skip Persick, Partner of Weber Gallagher’s Family Law Group

Skip Persick

I have some theories on why, but the busiest time of the year for family law attorneys is the first week of the new year.  The next busiest is the rest of January and right around Labor Day when school starts.  Talk to any family law attorney and they will tell you the same thing, there is something to the so-called January Rush.

I have never seen any psychological research on any of this, but my theory as to why January is so busy for me is the concept of a new year bringing a new you.  Most people do not go to see a divorce attorney on a whim, it’s a difficult decision based on months, if not years, of thinking.  In a lot of situations, the flipping of the calendar is just the impetus a person needs to get to a place where he or she can initiate a significant change in his or her life.

The same thing happens at the end of every summer.  There are two times per year where everything resets and starts anew, the beginning of the calendar year and the beginning of the school year.

Two qualities I believe I bring to the practice of family law are patience and understanding.  I understand that those first few steps are difficult and the person sitting with me has been thinking about coming to see a lawyer for some time.  If you would like to speak to me, I am available by phone at 610-278-1503, email at, or in person in either Norristown or West Chester, Pa.


A Hello From Our Newest Partner, Skip Persick

Posted by on 12.27.2018 in Posts | Comments Off on A Hello From Our Newest Partner, Skip Persick

Skip Persick

My name is Skip Persick and I’m new to the Weber Gallagher Family Law Practice.  I spent 29 years at Lamb McErlane, PC, in West Chester, Pa., practicing all aspects of family law including divorces, child custody, and support cases.  I also handle adoptions, guardianships, juvenile dependency, and school discipline cases.

I’m excited about joining Weber Gallagher in that it’s a win-win situation for me and for my new firm.  Weber Gallagher gives me the support I need to handle larger more document intensive cases and I give Weber Gallagher considerably more visibility in Chester County, Pennsylvania.  I have always taken pride in my ability to get clients through one of the most stressful times in their lives as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible and assure that they have the best possible financial foundation to move forward with their lives.

Should you want to discuss a family law issue, please call me at 610-278-1503, or email me at  I would also be happy to schedule a face to face meeting in either Norristown or West Chester.

College Applications – A Family Effort

Posted by on 12.20.2018 in Posts | Comments Off on College Applications – A Family Effort

College Applications – A Family Effort

by Carolyn Mirabile, Partner and Family Law Attorney at Weber Gallagher


Going to college can be stressful in an intact family but what if the parents are separated and decisions need to be made surrounding college. College choices are decisions which both parents and the child should participate in. Parents need to agree on where the child will attend, including whether it should be in-state or out-of-state, travel costs, applications for financial aid and scholarships as well as, who will pay for the costs of tuition, room and board. Although Pennsylvania does not require either parent to pay the costs of college, parents should attempt to contribute to a 529 Plan or other college savings and have a discussion whereby the parties will discuss exactly what each parent and the child will contribute towards college expenses.  Having discussions when the child is a Junior in high school can include, tutoring costs for standardized testing, college application costs and travel costs for the college tours. Both parents should be actively involved in the selection process so that costs can be mitigated and divided on need and ability o pay. Advanced planning will help families get through the often complicated and stressful college process.

Donna Marcus Accepted into the 2019 Montgomery Bar Association Leadership Academy

Posted by on 12.19.2018 in Posts | Comments Off on Donna Marcus Accepted into the 2019 Montgomery Bar Association Leadership Academy

PHILADELPHIA, PA, December 3rd, 2018– Donna M. Marcus was accepted into the 2019 Montgomery Bar Association Leadership Academy.  The MBA’s Leadership Academy is an exciting opportunity to enhance a broad range of leadership skills, develop a level of self-awareness essential to effective leadership, connect with Bar and community leadership, and foster invaluable professional relationships. In addition, members will have the distinction of being recognized as an emerging leader in the Association and in the community.

About Donna M. Marcus

Donna Marcus concentrates her practice on family law including divorce, child support and custody matters.  Donna comes to Weber Gallagher from the District Attorney’s Office in Philadelphia where she was an assistant district attorney in the Child Support Enforcement Unit.  Her work included representing the Department of Public Assistance and plaintiffs in actions including interstate, paternity and contempt hearings.

About Weber Gallagher

Weber Gallagher has more than 110 lawyers and 17 civil practice areas.  The firm provides legal counseling and representation in the Mid-Atlantic United States to local, national and international businesses, financial institutions and insurance companies.  To learn more, visit

Custody Burnout 101

Posted by on 12.12.2018 in Posts | Comments Off on Custody Burnout 101

Custody Burnout 101

by Carolyn Mirabile, Partner and Family Law Attorney at Weber Gallagher


Your child is 16 and just doesn’t want to follow the custody schedule they have been Ordered to do for the past 6 years. Your 16-year-old is in high school, wants to go to football games, dances and have sleepovers. The noncustodial parent believes their 16-year-old isn’t coming over on Fridays because the custodial parent has convinced the child not to go there. This may be a case of Custody Burnout. Parents often assume if a child has been ordered to follow a custody schedule, the schedule must be followed until they are 18 and have graduated from high school. This isn’t always the case. Most often as the child gets older, learns to drive, and is involved in more activities they want some independence. Sometimes a noncustodial parent may have to give their child a little freedom as they navigate their semi-adult world. But don’t confuse custody burnout for a parent who may be interfering with custody or a situation where the child is in distress. These are different issues which should be addressed by a Court.

Holidays and Custody- The Twelve Days of Stress

Posted by on 12.03.2018 in Posts | Comments Off on Holidays and Custody- The Twelve Days of Stress

Holidays and Custody- The Twelve Days of Stress

by Carolyn Mirabile, Partner and Family Law Attorney at Weber Gallagher


It’s December and the holidays are in full swing. Parents celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas and New Years and children who are on Winter Break need to make plans. First, if you have a custody Agreement or Order you should have read your document and review your plans for the holidays and winter break. Now is a good time to confirm all events in writing so there are no disappointments. If travel is involved make sure tickets have been purchased and the other parent has been notified of the plans. If you do not have a written Agreement in place, think of what the children are most used to doing during the holidays and confirm the plans in writing. Most often the Court is going to reinforce any family traditions which were in place when the parties were together. If it is the first year the children will be going through a separation during the holidays, try to make things as “normal” as possible and remember what might be best for the children may be different then what you want to do for the holidays.

10 Ways to Prepare Yourself If You Are Contemplating Divorce

Posted by on 10.26.2018 in Posts | Comments Off on 10 Ways to Prepare Yourself If You Are Contemplating Divorce

10 Ways to Prepare Yourself If You Are Contemplating Divorce
By: John A. Zurzola, Family Law Attorney at Weber Gallagher


Before filing for a divorce, here are my top 10 tips in order to prepare yourself now for the next steps.

1. Open a separate bank account and keep any documentation in a separate location or on a secure phone;
2. Open a credit card in your name and keep it handy;
3. Be familiar with any bills or accounts in your sole name, ex. car payments, credit accounts, utilities, etc.;
4. Be familiar with any bills or joint accounts and be prepared to obtain your own or remove your name from joint accounts if need be, ex. cell phone, utilities, car insurance, credit cards, etc.;
5. Locate all official documentation and be able to safeguard it if need be, ex. birth certificates, passports, marriage license, etc.;
6. Compile and safeguard all passwords for any online and bill payer accounts and change them if need be;
7. Have a place to go if you anticipate or your situation has become abusive in any manner;
8. If you have consulted with an attorney, have the attorney office contact information readily available to you;
9. Plan a basic budget in the event that you may need to move from your present location; or, if another wage earner in your house moves out and no longer contributes to your expenses; and
10. If you have children, plan on how you will explain the need for separation or divorce to them and be prepared for any reaction, depending on their age.

The foregoing list is only a general guide as to what steps most people contemplating divorce might do and is not specific legal advice. This checklist does not substitute a consultation with an attorney who specializes in Family Law, Divorce, Child Custody and Support, Alimony and/or Domestic Violence. For more on this topic as well as additionally important Family Law information, visit our website at: