Posts Tagged ‘divorce’
Do I need a lawyer?
Check out the following circumstances to make sure whether you need to have a lawyer or not.
• You and your spouse have been wed for at least 5 years
• You and your spouse have kids.
• Either you or your spouse is the breadwinner while the other may have difficulty getting on his/her own two feet financially speaking, once the divorce is finalized.
• You or your spouse has come upon inheritance while married to one another.
• Either you or your spouse is in debt.
Where can I get a divorce lawyer?
There are a many ways to get a divorce lawyer. Also try asking your marriage counselor or therapist for a referral. Of course you may ask your relatives or friends as well. Other lawyers can recommend those attorneys which specialize in divorce also.
It is also possible if you may even go straight to the courthouse to check out if a particular divorce lawyer strikes your fancy. No matter where you look, may it be in the yellow pages or in directories on-line, you should assess their credentials.
Meeting a lawyer for consultation
After finding a promising lawyer, the next step would be to meet him/her for consultation. If he/she is hard to reach then this may be a sign that you may have a hard time getting in contact with him/her once you hire him/her as your divorce lawyer. Find out how much he/she may charge for consultation. What exactly is his/her specialization? It’s important that he/she specializes in divorce, for you to have the best representation. You wouldn’t want a gynecologist dealing with your heart disease would you? Of course you’d seek the help of a cardiologist and with legal matters it goes the same. Seek the help of a divorce attorney for divorce concerns.
What you ought to know after consultation with a divorce lawyer
The first time you meet with a divorce lawyer may be one of the few times that you are the one who gets to do most of the asking. Make the most of it. Find out everything you need to know in order to make the right choice of attorney. After speaking with a lawyer, make sure you’ve discussed the following matters:
• Length of practice
• Case specialization
• Divorce trial experience
• Experience in negotiation for settlements
• Familiarity with divorce mediators
• Custody dispute experience
• Familiarity with tax issues of divorce
• Familiarity with your particular situation/context
• Projected period of time for your case
• Projected outcome for your case
• Schedule and methods of contacting him/her
• Fee (Including specifics, like if travel time is included)
• Manner of billing
One out of every two marriages ends in divorce. Millions of Americans are filing for divorce. As the divorce rate continues to escalate in America, dating relationships are becoming more popular.
Social scientists have led us in the wrong direction, as they embrace incorrect solutions to a momentous problem. They are sending forth a message that is misleading pertaining to dating relationships. This message by social scientists will continue to mislead individuals who sincerely want to establish healthy dating relationships, with the hope of embracing an everlasting marriage. In this article, we will explore the truth behind the soaring divorce rate. In our search for a remedy, we are spending billions of dollars annually chasing illusionary solutions.
In the previous article, “The Art of Selection”, we explored how the selection process is retarded when selecting our dating partners. One’s selfish soul perverts the meaning of dating that may lead to marriage by focusing on imagination and desires. Take a step further; let us look at imaginary pleasures and security. Trapped in the fairy tale syndrome, we pursue dating and love relationships in an effort to receive immediate and future gratification from our dating partners. The selfish soul commits acts that weaken the foundation of a healthy relationship from the very start. The potential dating partner commits blameworthy acts to make a good impression. He/she gives a misleading representation of oneself, being overly kind, spending extravagantly, being conscious of one’s physical appearance, always appearing truthful, having late night telephone marathons, and displaying a disposition of caring and commonality of interests are commonplace when painting a handsome picture of deception. In one’s effort to insure the acquisition of his/her desires, he/she resorts to deception to consummate personal relationships that eventually end in disaster. This activity is the beginning of the breakdown in the marriage union before a potential marriage couple says, “I do”.
Before marriage and during the courtship, the relationship seems magical. Every day is a heartwarming experience. It feels so surreal and no one likes to be aroused from a dream. This state of elation takes total control of us, blocking out any semblance of rational thought. Helplessly hypnotized, we become a servant to an oppressive master, our own desires. We absorb this form of deception similar to a sponge that absorbs water that eventually transforms into tears.
Allowing our desires to be the criteria to make decisions exposes us to the most destructive form of a relationship. It becomes impossible to be fair, just, equitable, impartial, unprejudiced, unbiased, objective or dispassionate with others or ourselves. If the family structure is the foundation of society, then we must rethink our strategy when approaching a serious relationship.
As the dawn of reality rushes in and the dusk of deception slowly fades away, reflecting the light of reason, it becomes apparent we are in an undesirable dating relationship. It is no surprise that our mate’s disposition changes. He/she goes from being overly kind to being overly aggressive, mentally and physically. Sexual passion dissipates, extravagant spending dissolves, the truth becomes lies, commonality of interest changes to two strangers passing by one another in the night, and the list of deceptions continues to unfold.
Not surprisingly, assets are often hidden in a divorce situation. Why – well simply greed, or the feelings of betrayal or anger at the need to divide assets in the divorce, or the fear of not having enough after the divorce all motivate the behavior of hiding assets.
In divorce, the parties assets are divided. Under the divorce laws of some states they are divided equally and under the divorce laws of other states, they are divided “equitably” or fairly. Equitably often means equally to overworked divorce judges.
There is no way to know in advance if your spouse has or will hide assets in a divorce. You know your spouse better than your divorce attorney will and you will need to alert your attorney to the possibility of your spouse hiding assets. Before you get to that point, however, there are some easy steps to take to prevent your spouse from being able to hide assets. Those steps include finding out everything you can about your assets before divorce.
Before you alert your spouse that you are considering divorce, you need to compile and/or stockpile documentation about all of your assets. If you do not have knowledge of your marital assets, it is time to find out what is there. If bank and other statements come to the house, open them and write down account numbers and balances.
If you have access to the cancelled checks, copy those as well. It is not unusual for a spouse who is planning a divorce to transfer money to friends or relatives with the plan being that they will give that money back after a divorce is finalized. So, you should review those records and carefully scrutinize all large or suspicious transfers that take place in the two or three years prior to or just after the filing of a divorce action.
Make sure that you know where the copies of your income tax statements are. If your spouse has a business, make sure you have a copy of several years of tax returns for that business. All of these documents can be copied and hidden safely somewhere outside of the house in the event that you need them. Taking these simple pre-emptive steps can mean the difference in obtaining a fair settlement in divorce. It will also be incredibly helpful to your divorce attorney to have this information in advance.
If banking and other statements and financial records are not kept at or mailed to your house, you will need to obtain those records in other ways. You can contact the IRS to obtain copies of any tax returns that you signed. Request copies of those returns and have them mailed to a different address – either a friend or relative or your divorce attorney. If there are returns that you have not signed, such as business tax records, you will not be able to obtain copies of those returns from the IRS. If you have access to your spouse’s place of business, you may be able to find those tax returns there. If you are worried about your spouse hiding assets in a divorce, you really do need to find those returns and make copies of them – for as many years as possible.
If you have valuables, antiques, jewelry, art or other collectibles in your home, catalog all of them and if you have appraisals, make copies. It is not unusual for those items to disappear or even to be pawned by a spouse in need of more funds.
If you suspect that your spouse has engaged in some divorce planning and is hiding assets, let your divorce attorney know. Ask your divorce attorney to subpoena records from any other individual or entity who could be involved in assisting your spouse in hiding those assets. If need be, your attorney can use the services of an investigator to help to obtain financial records that have been withheld.