Firm Overview

- DOMESTIC RELATIONS: Divorce, Child Custody, Child Support, Paternity, Contempt Actions, Modification of Child Support, Separation/Prenuptial/Postnuptial Agreements, Grandparent Visitation.

- EMPLOYMENT LAW: Wage and Hour Litigation (employee misclassification, non-payment of wages/overtime); Sexual Harassment; and Discrimination within the Workplace
Main Office

Walckner Law Office
51 Union Street, Suite #314
Worcester  MA  01608

Phone
  • 508-791-5090
Fax
  • 978-706-5166

Office Information

Office Hours

Monday through Friday 9am to 5pm.

Office Manager

Clair LarMoore

Divorce
When facing divorce, it is normal to have many questions. Attorney Walckner will make sure you understand the law and your options, articulate a clear strategy, and advocate zealously on your behalf.
Attorney Walckner can assist with all stages of your divorce from negotiation and initial court filings to settlement and trials, including:

Child Custody
Child Support
Alimony
Property Division
Debt Division
Pension Division
Employment
Fighting hard for Massachusetts employees. Attorney Walckner will zealously advocate for employees denied wages and overtime by taking on employers misclassifying workers as salaried or independent contractors.
NON-PAYMENT of WAGES & OVERTIME

The problem of companies failing to properly pay employees is wide-spread. Some employers fail to pay workers, fail to pay them timely, or claim employees are independent contractors or salaried, making them exempt from overtime pay. However, the law determines who may be salaried or is an independent contractor, not the company. A company found liable of misclassifying an employee as exempt from overtime can face serious consequences. In Massachusetts, companies failing to properly pay employees are required to pay three times the amount owed, plus attorney's fees and cost of litigation. Attorney Walckner will work with you to determine what money you are owed, and relentlessly pursue a verdict in your favor.

SEXUAL HARASSMENT

In Massachusetts, there are two types of sexual harassment: hostile work environment and "quid pro quo" harassment.

Sexual harassment based on a hostile work environment occurs when an employee is subjected to conduct of a sexual nature that creates an intimidating, humiliating, or offensive work environment. Jokes, gossip, gestures, and epithets can all be considered conduct of a sexual nature.

Quid Pro Quo sexual harassment occurs when an employee is offered an employment benefit or advantage in exchange for sexual favors. It may also occur when an employee experiences an adverse employment action based on the rejection of sexual favors. An adverse employment action can include termination, demotion, or an unjustified change in duties, hours, or compensation.

Sexual harassment may occur between people of the same gender. The sexual orientation of the people involved does not matter. The same legal standards for sexual harassment applied to opposite sex harassment and same sex harassment.
Child Custody
In child-centered court actions, the best interests of the child balanced with the rights of parents are carefully evaluated. Attorney Walckner will work towards a child custody arrangement that best suits the needs of the family.
Child custody is your right and responsibility as a parent to care for your child. It is usually discussed in conjunction with visitation or parenting time. However, visitation is a separate issue that addresses when you will spend time with your child.

Most of the time, child custody is determined by agreement of the parents. However, when the parents cannot agree, the court will make a decision based on the "best interest of the child" standard. Best interests of the child is not a determination of who is the better parent. Instead, it is an assessment of what parenting arrangement will provide the best environment for the child.

The court looks at many factors to decide what custody arrangement is in the best interest of the child. The primary focus is the health, safety, and well-being of the child. There is no exact definition for best interest of the child. The court has the discretion to consider all relevant information related to the ability of each parent to care for your child. You need a knowledgeable child custody lawyer to advocate on your behalf and present information to the court about what is in the best interest of your child.

Most of the time, child custody is determined by agreement of the parents. However, when the parents cannot agree, the court will make a decision based on the "best interest of the child" standard. Best interests of the child is not a determination of who is the better parent. Instead, it is an assessment of what parenting arrangement will provide the best environment for the child.

The court looks at many factors to decide what custody arrangement is in the best interest of the child. The primary focus is the health, safety, and well-being of the child. There is no exact definition for best interest of the child. The court has the discretion to consider all relevant information related to the ability of each parent to care for your child. You need a knowledgeable child custody lawyer to advocate on your behalf and present information to the court about what is in the best interest of your child.

TYPES OF CHILD CUSTODY

In Massachusetts, there are two types of child custody: physical custody and legal custody. Both types can either be shared by the parents or one parent can have sole custody.

Physical custody refers to where the child lives and which parent has the authority to make day-to-day decisions concerning the child. Sole physical custody is typically granted when the child primarily lives with one parent. The other parent may be granted reasonable visitation. Shared physical custody is granted when the child splits his or her time equally between both parents' homes.

Legal custody refers to the authority to make major decisions concerning the child. Some of these decisions include educational matters, medical care, and religious development. Joint legal custody is the preferred arrangement, and typically, special circumstances must be present before the court will grant sole legal custody.

Absent a substantial change in circumstances that warrants modification of child custody, your child custody arrangement will remain in effect for years. Having a child custody lawyer advocate on behalf of you and your child is often necessary to achieve an appropriate child custody arrangement.
Child Support
In child-centered court actions, an appropriate amount of child support is determined. Attorney Walckner will work towards a reasonable child support arrangement that is fair and best suits the needs of the family.
Massachusetts has a developed scheme for determining child support. The amount of child support is based on a mathematical formula, called the Child Support Guidelines, which compares the financial position of the parents.

However, determining an appropriate amount of child support is not a matter of simply of entering numbers into the formula. There are discretionary issues the court may consider and unique situations that may warrant deviation from the Child Support Guidelines.

Child support orders typically remain in effect for years. It is important to fight for a fair amount of child support. Attorney Walckner will work with you to achieve an appropriate and sustainable amount of child support.

COMPREHENSIVE CHILD SUPPORT SERVICES
Attorney Walckner works to protect your rights during all stages of your child support case. He can assist you in establishing your initial child support order as well as post-judgment actions, including:

INCREASING CHILD SUPPORT
As your child grows, his or her needs may change and the expenses associated with raising your child may increase. Or over time, the other parent may change jobs or earn increased pay. If you believe you should be receiving more child support, the Attorney Walckner can assist you with your Complaint for Modification.

LOWERING CHILD SUPPORT
If you are having difficulty making your child support payments, it is important that you contact Attorney Walckner. You may be able to decrease your child support payments before you fall behind. However, it is not just unemployment and salary reductions that may justify a decrease in child support. If you believe you should be paying less child support, contact Attorney Walckner for a modification evaluation.

ENFORCEMENT OF CHILD SUPPORT ORDERS
If the other parent is not complying with the child support order, Attorney Walckner can assist you with your Complaint for Contempt to protect the financial rights of your children. Examples of noncompliance including failing to pay on time, failing to pay in full, or not making payments at all.

CHILD SUPPORT PAST AGE 18 and THROUGH COLLEGE
Massachusetts has a tiered system under which child support may end at difference ages depending on your child's circumstances. If you have a child who will be graduating from high school soon, contact Attorney Walckner for an evaluation regarding continued child support.

James Walckner

Attorney James Walckner focuses his practice in the areas of Domestic Relations/Family Law and Employment Law.

Attorney Walckner is a member of the Worcester County Bar Association, the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys, Massachusetts Employment Lawyers Association, and the American Bar Association. James has appeared before the Probate and Family Courts, Housing Court, Trial Courts, Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, Division of Industrial Accidents, MA DOT Merit Rating Board, and Massachusetts Fire Safety Commission.

A cum laude graduate of the Massachusetts School of Law, and recipient of several academic awards, Attorney Walckner is admitted to practice law in the state and federal courts of Massachusetts. He holds a Bachelor's and Master's Degrees in Criminal Justice.

Attorney Walckner previously served as a police officer where he was awarded numerous commendations. During the course of his law enforcement career, James was a Detective, SWAT Team Member, and Union Official.

James employs a synergistic approach to client needs, often merging investigative methods honed over his policing career with careful legal analysis, to strategically place his client in the best possible position.
Education
  • Massachusetts School of Law
    Juris Doctor, cum laude
  • Curry College
    Master's in Criminal Justice, with distinction
  • Curry College
    Bachelor's in Criminal Justice

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Articles Written

Massachusetts Child Custody: Both Parents Have Equal Rights

Created On: 12/13/2012

Learn about the basics of child custody in Massachusetts, and the right both the mother and father have.

Financial Forms & Family Law Law Cases in Massachusetts

Created On: 11/08/2012

Most family law cases in Massachusetts require that both parties complete a Financial Statement. The Financial Statement details all of your income, expenses, assets, and liabilities.

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