Posts Tagged ‘Divorce’


Protecting Yourself From a Dangerous Spouse During Separation

October 1, 2008
  1. Have a plan and a safety plan
  2. Have a support group in place
  3. Consider an order of protection

For help with all of the above, contact your local domestic violence project.  Most domestic violence projects have trained, certified counselors on staff who can attend to your special circumstances and help you safely plan the best strategy for you.  The staff can help you develop a safety plan, provide individual and group counseling, and many projects have court advocates to assist you with the order of protection paperwork.  Most or all of the above services are often free of charge!

NOTE:  Be aware that your abuser may be tracking your internet usage with cookies!

Nassau County, Florida: or hotline 1-800-500-1119.

Duval County, Florida: or hotlines:  (800) 500-1119 or (904) 354-3114.

Nationally:  National Coalition of Domestic Violence 1-800-779-7233.


Pay Alimony in Pennies, Go to Jail

October 1, 2008

Frank tried to pay his $5,000 alimony with 500,000 pennies in a barrel.  The Judge was not happy and ordered Frank to pay with a cashier’s check or go to jail. 

I guess there were no moneys in that barrell, or laughs either.

Source:  “Frank Rolls Out the Alimony Barrel,” by John A. Ritter, Esq., Orlando Sentinel


Benefits of Using a Good Divorce Lawyer

October 1, 2008

A good divorce lawyer:

  1. Knows the ins and outs of the legal process and can help you legally claim a right to what’s yours
  2. Advise you of your rights, some of which you probably didn’t even know you had
  3. Will act as an intermediary between you and your spouse (also serving as an emotional buffer as well)
  4. Will monitor the progress of the case and all the minute details involved in managing the negotiations, calendar, property and monetary issues, etc.
  5. Protect your best interests and help you avoid potential landmines placed by the opposing party
  6. Help you negotiate a settlement with your former spouse, if possible
  7. If a negotation can be reached, a lawyer can help you attain a final judgment much sooner than you could attain on your own
  8. By knowing the legal procedure and requirements, a good lawyer can help you avoid potential time delays if you don’t meet all the requirements or have all of your paperwork in order
  9. Make you aware of all your options, even if you want a divorce

Source:  “Why You Need to Use a Good Divorce Lawyer” by Jon Arnold


Fighting Over Fido

October 1, 2008

10/6/08 Update:  This topic received additional coverage on the Virginia Family Law Blog’s article, “Who Gets The Pets?”


As more and more people view pets as people and as their “children,” pets are becoming a battleground in divorce proceedings.  Prevent the heartache of having to let go of Fido by including him in your prenuptial agreement, postnuptial agreement, marital settlement agreement, or other living arrangement agreement. To read more, click here.

What happens to Fido if you die before he does?  Pet trusts are also becoming more popular as people are considering the long-term care of their pet.  Add a pet trust into your estate plan.  It’s a very simple way to make sure Fido is taken care of after you have departed.


Bright side to divorce

September 25, 2008

1. Discover strength within you never knew existed

2. Understand who you really are

3. Create the life you’ve always dreamed of

4. Become your own best friend

5. Fall in love again


Source:  Modern Woman’s Divorce Guide


Tips for Preparing for Mediation

September 24, 2008
  1. Know how the process of mediation works in your area
  2. Clearly identify the issues in advance
  3. Make sure your attorney has clear and current information
  4. Make sure your mediator has relevant materials in advance so they can familiarize themselves with your case.
  5. Consider preparing charts, spreadsheets, etc. of voluminous information
  6. Have 3 copies of everything available:  one for you, one for the mediator, and one for the opposing party
  7. Consider your best alternative to a negotiated agreement (if you can’t reach an agreeement, what is your best alternative) and weigh the pros and cons
  8. Consider your worst alternative to a negotiated agreeement (what is your worst alternative) and weigh the pros and cons
  9. Brainstorm possible solution proposals before mediation begins
  10. Anticipate and consider the opposing party’s issues, concerns, and proposed solutions
  11. Throughout the process, consider the pros and cons of settling v. going to trial (financial and emotional time costs and the time involved)

Source:  Dick Price, Esq., Divorce and Family Law in Tarrant County, Texas blog


Deciding Who Gets Residential Custody of the Child After Divorce

September 24, 2008

The awarding of child custody is of prime concern to parents going through divorce. In Florida, the custody of your child is determined by seven simple words: “best interest and welfare of the child.” While it is the parents who initiated the divorce, from the court’s point of view, it is often the rights of the child that dictates child custody determinations. What if you are the parent who is better suited to support the child financially? Does this give you an advantage in obtaining residential custody of the child or children? In Florida, the fact a child would be more financially secure with one parent as opposed to the other parent is not a controlling factor in determining custody rights.


It’s not hard to consider a situation where spouses are going through divorce, they have children, but one parent makes substantially more money than the other. Take, for example a situation where the father is an executive of a corporation with an annual salary in excess of $250,000.00, and the mother is a homemaker who works really hard but does not earn her own income. In an economically driven society, some tend to think that the more money you make, the better you will be able to provide for the best interests and welfare of your children.


The truth is, even though one parent may bring home more money than the other, in most cases, both parents are still able to provide for a child’s reasonable needs. And although money is important in raising a child, especially in recent years, the courts also look to a parent’s ability to provide for a child’s personal, emotional, and social welfare as well as providing for a child’s material welfare.


If you are a parent going through a divorce, but know you make less money than your spouse, there are other important factors to consider in the issue of determining custody. Rather than spending time worrying about your financial situation, spend time detailing the factors the court will consider, such as: (1) character and moral conduct; (2) mental health; (3) the proposed home environment for the child; (4) character of others living in the proposed home of the child; (5) ability to maintain continuity in the child’s home; (6) parent’s work schedule; (7) and the effects, if any, that an interracial marriage may have on the child. And while no single factor alone is indicative of how the court will rule, it’s important to look at all of them and plan accordingly. Together, these factors comprise the analysis by which a court will determine what is in the best interest of the child when deciding the issue of residential custody.


In such cases where there is a significant disparity of income between one parent and the other the court will often mitigate that difference with awards of child support and alimony.


Source:  Bradley H. Trushin, Esq., Florida Family Law Blog


Alimony in the Divorce Process

September 24, 2008

A divorce is usually a last resort in attempt to fix broken hearts, rectify emotional distress, and discover, if only, a sliver of peace of mind. And while the process of change can be a very difficult road to go down, it is all too often the case that moving on, and determining the circumstances under which change can happen, is the most laborious task of all.


Alimony was a very common occurrence in the divorce landscapes during the past few decades. A family that split up due to one individuals fault or the other would find that their standard of living has decreased immensely for a number of reasons. Whether it was because there was only one breadwinner in the household or because the ex-spouse simply held a heart of scorn against his or her counterpart, one spouse would win financially over the other.


Now, though, the landscape is changing as the nuclear household is not what it used to be. More and more women are out working and bringing home income as their husbands. Parental and familial rights are more equally distributed between couples and so are stressful concerns. These days alimony has become less of a requirement and more of a safety precaution, depending upon the specific circumstances of the situation.


There are a large number of factors that go into determining who gets alimony, how much, and why. The court may look at the health of the individuals involved; sometimes one spouse may be terminally ill, or needs money specifically for medication. Age can also play a role, as well as the length of the marriage, the amount of time that they may be have been separated before divorce, and the earning potential of the two individuals. Alimony can be given indefinitely or for a specified amount of time.


There have been arguments against alimony be people who claim that the court order is unconstitutional. The argument points to the thirteenth amendment, which forbids involuntary servitude. The fact that individuals are ordered by the government to pay money to an ex-spouse is considered a direct violation of that clause. Secondly, alimony supposedly violates the equal protection clause under the fourteenth amendment, due to the lack of reciprocal action or benefit.


Technicalities aside, alimony still remains at least an option in the divorce processes. It is very important to employ the trusted aid of an experienced divorce or family law attorney. For more information on alimony and other divorce related topics, please visit


Source:  Joseph Devine


Steps to Take Once You Decide to Divorce

September 24, 2008
  1. Cancel all joint credit cards and open individual accounts.
  2. Cancel direct deposit and unlink all of your bank accounts.
  3. Divide the cash you have in joint bank accounts 50/50 and deposit into your individual, separate account.
  4. Change all of your passwords (online and offline) and don’t reuse old passwords.
  5. Monitor your credit report to make sure the accounts are closed.
  6. Start a folder to collect all of your billing/banking/account statements (for your Financial Affidavit).
  7. Determine how the bills will be paid while the divorce is pending.  Make sure you both agree, and get it in writing.

Source:  “7 Action Steps to Take Once You Decide to Divorce,” Pamela S. Wynn.


3 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Divorce

September 23, 2008

1.  Be ready for horrible lies and even more horrible truths

2.  Divorce is not about gaining freedom

3.  Kids feel responsible

Read more here.


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