I Filed For Divorce In Anger…Can I Change My Mind?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

When people are having marital problems and stress, they lash out in anger and sometimes do things without thinking it through.  Such was the case of a husband who had just had it with his wife’s spending habits.  He broke down and filed for divorce.  The significant thing about that was the filing date is generally thought of as a cut off date for marital debt.  In other words, anything the wife spent after the date of filing for divorce, would ultimately remain her debt.

The problem was that this Husband had buyer’s remorse.  After filing for divorce, he realized he still loved his wife and was sorry he reacted so extremely.  Now he wanted to stop the divorce process and get his shopaholic wife some counseling.

This can be done in two ways: either a voluntary dismissal of the entire divorce case, or an abatement for three months, to give the parties time to either reconcile, or go to marriage counseling to determine if they will go forward with the divorce or dismiss it.

The moral of the story is, yes, you can stop a divorce if you want to, but you run the risk of the other party taking up the divorce and running with it.  For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

 

 

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Refinancing The Home BEFORE The Divorce?!

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

One of my clients, the Wife, had the most daring request posed to her by her “amicable” Husband late one afternoon recently.  The couple is getting divorced and are participating in settlement negotiations with their respective CPAs and divorce attorneys.  Both the Husband’s name and Wife’s name are on the deed and the mortgage to the marital home which is here in Florida.  Another vacation home is up north in New York’s Hamptons communities. 

In the settlement negotiations, the Husband was to keep the marital home here in Florida in his name only by Wife quit claim deeding the home to him, and the Wife was to keep the vacation home in the Hamptons by him quit claim deeding that home to her.  He actually asked his wife to refinance the marital home WITH HIM, so that he could get the cash out, live there, have the home solely in his name, and pay her over time her equitable distribution from the marital assets!  In other words, her own money!  That takes balls.

Yes, I stopped her!  If she would have done that in the interest of being “amicable”, she would have further encumbered herself (read DEBT) in a property she no longer would have a legal interest in, and he would have the cash!  Then he would pay out over time, her own money. That is why divorcing couples need  divorce lawyers.  For more information call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, PA at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

 

My Husband Has A Divorce Lawyer, I Do Not…

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Times are tough and everyone is trying to save money.  However, in divorce court, do not fall prey to the statement, “Honey, we can use one lawyer and save money.”  Or worse, “Honey, I have a lawyer to do the work for both of us, you don’t need a divorce lawyer, as we agree on everything anyway.” Do not be penny wise and pound foolish.Do not fall prey to these tactics of control.

First of all, the Rules Regulating the Florida Bar do not permit one lawyer to represent the best interests of two parties that are potentially adversarial.  It makes sense.  But what about mediation, you ask.  A mediator does not represent either party and must stay neutral.  A mediator cannot represent the best interests of one party over another and give legal advice.

So back to the question…if your spouse has a divorce attorney and you do not, get one!

In divorce court, the party who has the need will get attorneys fees paid by the party who has the superior ability to pay.  The purpose of this law is to put the parties on equal footing.  In divorce court, both parties should have equal benefit of counsel. 

So, for example, the doctor husband will pay not only his own attorney, but the attorney for his stay at home wife as well.  Of course, he will try to convince the wife that she doesn’t need her own lawyer and direct her to think of the expense…the old guilt trip.  Run, don’t walk, to the phone to secure counsel. 

Only then can you be assured that your best interests are being represented in either settlement negotiations or litigation.  For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

Negotiating The Terms Of A Marital Settlement Agreement In Divorce

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Generally speaking, the divorce issues that need to be dealt with include as follows: alimony or spousal support, attorneys fees and costs, mediation fees, declaring what property is marital and what is non marital, fairly dividing up what is marital property and personal property, and dividing up marital debt, then declaring what is not marital debt. There is also the issue of the marital home and other real property, as to who will buy out whom, or will the properties be rented, or listed for sale and what happens then.  

Aside from these financial issues, are children’s issues, which include as follows: time sharing to each parent, child support worksheet calculations, shared parental responsibility or sole parental responsibility on certain decision making, (who will do homework), a parenting plan, schooling, religious training, counseling, and whether a parenting coordinator will be beneficial to facilitate the matter between the parties. 

All of these terms go into a 30 or so page document called a marital settlement agreement.  This agreement is agreed to and signed by the parties and becomes part of a final judgment of dissolution of marriage. 

As anyone can imagine, with all that there is to decide, two divorcing people will have a hard time.  That is where lawyers, accountants and shrinks come into the picture.  With knowledge about the possible ruling from a judge under the law, the team of experts guide the parties.  They can either negotiate in good faith and reach a resolution no one likes but everyone can live with, or the judge will decide their futures by enforceable court order.  For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

Can I Force My Husband To Leave The House In Divorce Proceedings?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

The two of you are fighting like cats and dogs.  The kids are acting out.  You are stuck under the same roof and  the relationship is deteriorating.  Divorce proceedings are in place and you each have divorce lawyers.  How can you get your spouse out of the house?

Most divorce petitions ask for exclusive use and possession of the marital home for the reasons so stated above.  It is not a healthy situation where the parties are constantly fighting, and especially if there are children around. But unless there is domestic violence, the spouse stays, at least until a mediation where the spouse can agree to leave, or a temporary relief hearing, where the judge will take evidence and testimony that the spouse has somewhere reasonably economical to go. 

In domestic violence cases, the wrong doing spouse is immediately removed from the marital home.  A hearing takes place within two weeks to determine the veracity of the claim.  This is the fastest and easiest way to get a spouse out of the house.  A spouse does not lose their marital rights to the house by leaving.

Barring any domestic violence, in mediation, the spouse can agree to go, using some marital assets to find a new place to live, OR should that not be the case, a temporary relief hearing will take place shortly thereafter and the judge will decide the matter.  For more information about this or other divorce topics call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, PA at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com. 

Can I Force My Wife To Change Her Name In Divorce Proceedings?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

In divorce proceedings, a wife can restore her name to her former name before marriage without extra court hearings or pleadings.  It can be part of her divorce petition or counter petition as the case may be.  Name changes under the law are left to the discretion of the wife.  She may choose to keep her married name or she may choose to restore her former name, it is up to her. 

Does the husband have a say?  Not under the law.  However, that is not to say that he could not pay his wife to change her name.  In sweetening the deal, he makes way for the new Mrs. Soandso.  She may jump at the chance to get a little more money in the divorce settlement if she changes her name back.   It really depends on the emotions of the parties and who is willing to do what regarding name changes.  For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the divorce lawyers at ROBIN ROSHKIND, P.A. at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com for more information.