Divide & Conquer Divorce with Good Legal Counsel

Do-It-Yourself Divorce is like self-help brain surgery:  you might remove your leg to stand on instead of getting that lobotomy you were so looking forward to.  You may have good intentions going in, but may not realize the ramifications. The idea behind divorce is to get things settled and separated.  If you are ready to do that, then it can be done cheap and fast.  If you are amicable, then it can be done amicably with good legal counsel that will not cost a fortune or unnecessary time in misery.     Read More

You Do Not Have to Go Broke to Get Divorced

You can get divorced in about three minutes.  It does not have to take long, nor does it have to be expensive. Once the love is gone, it is just math.  If everything is decided on, there is no need for a drawn-out courtroom drama.  Furthermore, Florida is a no-fault state, meaning you can get divorced if you just say the marriage is irretrievably broken. Divorce is sometimes necessary; however, you can leave the courtroom drama to television, and leave the big budget production to a film crew.     Read More

Divorce & Therapy

Your lawyer is NOT your therapist.  While a social professional may help you work through your feelings, your attorney removes emotion and reframes the situation into business terms so you can look at the possible choices and consequences.  That being said, Therapeutic Divorce is a legal option in Dissolution of Marriage. The idea behind Therapeutic Divorce is to work out the details while allowing both sides to continue to be good parents, good employees or employers, good at whatever it is that they are.  It keeps the focus on the business of how best to deal with the details, and also does not make public those details.  Because the process goes through mediation and not through the court, the dirty laundry is hampered from public view. Once the love is gone, it is only math.  Divorce can be a blood sport, but it does not have to be.  Therapeutic Divorce gives the couple more control over the outcome (rather than the judge) and offers a way to avoid the courtroom drama.   Read More

Do-It-Yourself Divorce

The Florida Supreme Court has do-it-yourself divorce forms available online, but that may not be in your best interest.  The law is technical, and from a technical standpoint there are things you can mess up that will hurt what you are trying to accomplish. In cases of Domestic Violence, you can get a Temporary Injunction separating yourself from a potentially dangerous situation until both parties appear before a judge at a hearing.  That hearing is like a mini-trial.  You can represent yourself in court, but those who do often show up with affidavits that are not admissible, or they want to phone a friend.  The hearing is not a game show and it is not Judge Judy.  The Judge can only call balls and strikes—he or she cannot rule on conjecture. Divorce is not rocket science, but it is not basket weaving either.  Do not put yourself in harm’s way by making an ignorant mistake in court.  Competent legal counsel can properly represent your case…and also take the emotion out of the situation so you can move forward through the process. Read More

The Price of Divorce

Earlier this year a portrait of Picasso’s girlfriend sold for over $45 million.  Who says you cannot put a price on love?  Most divorce settlements are a substantial bargain in comparison. When the love is gone, it is only math.  In divorce you can have a drawn out courtroom drama with lots of expensive legal fees…but you do not have to.  Therapeutic Divorce offers each side an opportunity to negotiate a deal without the blood sport aspect. In some cases, divorce is necessary, but it does not have to be a Kardashian epic drama.  If both sides are ready to sit down and take the necessary steps to complete the procedure, then it can be over and done within about a month.  Seek competent legal counsel to discuss your circumstances and your divorce options. Read More

Injunction & Why You Should Not Sit Next to Stephen King on a Plane

Stephen King claims:  “I’m a confrontational writer.  I want to be in your face.  I want to get into your space.  I want to get within kissing distance, hugging  distance, choking distance, punching distance…” that may be a little too close for comfort. A Temporary Injunction brings immediate consequence.  As a defendant, you do not get to go home from work that day, not even get to collect your clothes, and you do not get to phone, text, or send flowers.  That can be a real horror story. Even if you pay the mortgage or rent, you can be denied access to your property or any personal belongings within it through a Temporary Injunction.  That is really scary, particularly if the plaintiff is lying. You may want to write a different story.  Sometimes it is too late to change the ending of a relationship, but you do not have to be the confrontational author of actions that will get you in more trouble. Spouses should not be hitting each other.  And they should not be lying about it.  Once the love is gone, it is only math.  Divorce does not have to be a blood sport, or the subject of […] Read More

‘Injunctivitus’

If ‘Injunctivitis’ were a real condition, it could mean the propensity to nail your spouse with Temporary Injunctions.  It might refer to false accusations of domestic violence just to get the defendant out of the house and disallow that person any further contact.  ‘Injunctivitus’ could be a handy way to get rid of somebody you are mad at.  As the defendant, though, it could be enough to make your eyes red, itchy, and irritating…if ‘Injunctivitus’ were a real word. In a Temporary Injunction, fifty percent of the time the affidavit against the defendant is lies.  Say the right thing on an affidavit and hubby cannot come home, get his stuff, or even write—it does not matter if he is the homeowner or pays most or all of the rent.  A Temporary Injunction takes the defendant out of the home fast and without warning.  They leave only with what is on their backs as far as personal belongings go. Sometimes that is necessary.  I have great compassion for trial judges who have to make decisions in cases of domestic violence.  They have to make tough decisions and err on the side of not getting somebody hurt (or worse). If you are […] Read More

Landlord-Tenant Law Beyond ‘Happily’

Once upon a time, everyone lived happily:  Mr. and Mrs. Landlord had leased their house to Mr. and Mrs. Tennant—but that was before ‘Ever After’ happened.   A Big Bad Foreclosure Suit knocked on the door of the rented house, and it huffed and it puffed and it threatened to blow down the home equity and all the Landlords’ credit.  Try as they might, the only homeowner assistance the Landlords could get was for a homestead property—the Landlords would have to live in the house in order to save it from foreclosure.  So despite the lease, Mrs. Landlord evicted Mr. and Mrs. Tennant, claiming they had not paid rent.   Misery loves company, and Divorce and Foreclosure go together like a horse and carriage (they just do not rhyme).  Mr. Landlord was going to lose everything anyway—regardless of the mortgage deal, he was going to lose the house in the divorce—so he told the Tenants they could take with them whatever they wanted.  He gave them carte blanche, as well as a stove, refrigerator, air conditioner, and pool pump.   When Ms. Landlady went to make an inspection of the property and saw what was missing, she called the cops.  Then she went […] Read More

Mediation & Horsemeat – Dividing the Leftovers

You can beat a dead horse…it just is not going anywhere. Do you want a Judge to decide what to do with the meat of the matter, or would you rather decide yourselves what to do with the carcass of a bad situation?  Sometimes mediation is an option…sometimes it is not a bad option. The Judge may tell you to grind up the meat and feed it to your children as part of child support (though probably not).  You do not know what a Judge will do, neither do you have control over their decision.  You may prefer mediation instead where you and your opponent could decide to sell the meat for dog chow and use the money from the sale to buy food for your children. The nice thing about mediation, especially in divorce, is that it is up to you and your soon-to-be-ex-spouse to shape the outcome.  Generally it is easier to live with an agreement you create, rather than trying to follow someone else’s order.  Mediation gives you more control over your future. Read More

Alimony App in Massachusetts

For 99 cents, Massachusetts couples can figure out how much divorce will cost them in alimony…and do it at the tap of an app on their iPhone.  Launched by a divorce lawyer, the new app calculates alimony and divorce payments for unhappy couples in Massachusetts, and creates child support forms in PDF formats.  The app does not work in Florida. Divorce laws differ from state to state, for instance Florida does not recognize a ‘legally separated’ status the way Massachusetts does.  Nor does Florida calculate alimony the same way. Florida does offer Therapeutic Divorce, however, as an alternative to a blood sport courtroom drama.  Once the love is gone, it’s only math.  The idea behind Therapeutic Divorce is to work out the details while allowing both sides to continue to be good parents, good employees or employers, good at whatever it is that they are.  It keeps the focus on the business of how best to deal with the details, and also does not make public those details.  Because the process goes through mediation and not through the court, the dirty laundry is hampered from public view. Massachusetts’ alimony app may be just the thing while neighboring New York is […] Read More