ZAMBA LAW OFFICE

s.c.

PATRICIA  ZAMBA

(placeholder)

Patricia Zamba - Guardian ad Litem

I am one of seven Kenosha County Guardians ad Litem, appointed by the court to serve the needs of children, or of adults under a disability.


If I was appointed as Guardian ad Litem (GAL) for your children in your family court matter (including divorce, paternity, custody/placement actions and post-judgment matters), the following is intended to give you some information about the process.


My job is to represent the best interests of your child(ren), and to make a recommendation to the court regarding the disputed issues in this matter.


I would like to meet with each parent, and possibly the child(ren) (depending upon the age and other factors), so that I can gain information about your family to help guide my recommendation.


Please note that, when I am appointed, the Court gives me very little information about your case.  Often, the parties call my office before I know anything about their case.  It is up to the petitioner (or their attorney, if they have one) to give me the background information about your case.  I cannot set up appointments until I have this information.


If this is a currently-pending divorce, paternity, or new custody/placement action (no final judgment has been granted yet), I need a copy of the Petition, and any temporary orders regarding custody and placement.


If this is a post-judgment matter, I need a copy of the most recent final order/judgment regarding custody and placement, and the currently pending motion(s) or order(s) to show cause, and any recent temporary orders regarding custody and placement.


I also need you to complete the parenting plan.  The Court should have given you this at the time I was appointed.   Bring a copy of this parenting plan with you to our meeting - you should keep the original.  This will need to be filed with the court at some point.  If you don’t have it or need an extra copy, you can get that by clicking here.


After you’ve assured that I’ve received the information that I need, you can contact me to request an appointment.  To contact me via e-mail please click on this link.  You can also call my office at 262-843-3300.  Please let me know if you would prefer an appointment at the Kenosha County Courthouse or at my Paddock Lake office, and what days and times you would prefer (Monday through Friday, normal business hours).  


FOR YOUR INFORMATION


     -As GAL, I am not involved in financial issues, including child support, property division, etc.  I do not need a copy of your financial disclosure statement or any documents that only relate to financial matters.


     -I cannot change orders; only the judge can do this.  I will not advise you to violate court orders.


     -I am not your attorney.  I cannot give you legal advice.


     -If you have third parties (friends, relatives, etc.) that have information for me that you feel may be useful, please have them write me a letter or email to provide that information.  Ask them to provide their name and telephone number in case I want to ask follow-up questions.


     -Do not discuss your court case with your children.  Do not “prep” them for their meeting with me, or tell them to tell me certain things.  If they come in to talk to me, I will explain my role to them in age-appropriate terms.  I will interview the kids in a way that is as low-stress as possible.  I do not want the kids to feel pressure from either parent.  I want them to be able to speak to me with their own voice.


     -Do not interrogate the kids about the interview after our meeting.


     -The Court has a system by which to select a GAL for your case.  You cannot select/request a particular GAL.  Once a GAL has served on your case, it is likely that they will be appointed again in the future if your matter returns to Court for Custody/Placement.


L  A  W  Y  E  R   /   A  D  V  O  C  A  T  E