How to “Work the System”…Imputation of Income

How to "Work the System"…Imputation of Income.

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“He Said She Said” Not Enough In Divorce Court

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida
After filing for divorce in Palm Beach County, it is mandatory that the parties exchange financial information by way of proof.  This helps to settle divorce issues like alimony and attorneys fees, child support and division of marital assets and debts.

Each party must provide to the other things like tax returns, bank statements, credit card bills, pay check stubs or income statements, mortgages, investment and retirement accounts and the like.  Both parties are required to disclose this information under Florida Family Law Rule 12.285, which is commonly referred to as the mandatory disclosure rule.  In most cases, the court requires going back one to three years with these statements.

The court views these statements as the back up data to a parties’ sworn financial affidavit, perhaps the most important document in any divorce.  A divorce cannot be granted without one.  Proof of income is used for child support calculation purposes; to show need or ability to pay alimony and attorneys fees.  Credit card and other billing statements show debt.  Investment accounts, mortgages, and deeds to real estate show lifestyle of the marriage and determine equitable distribution schemes.

The paper pile tends to grow but merely standing in court and testifying as to your need, or lifestyle or debt is just not enough for the divorce court judge.  Your allegations must always be backed up by proof.  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.

If You Want Rights, Get Married!

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

I received an inquiry from a potential client who had been living with a man in a “marriage like” relationship for more than 20 years.  They had two children and lived in a nice house in Palm Beach Gardens.  From  outside, they appeared to be a happily married couple.  However, the relationship tanked when the “husband” met someone new and asked the “wife” to make “other arrangements”.  She came to me to ask what her rights are.

Unfortunately, the “husband” and the “wife” were not; further, there is no common law marriage in Florida. Additionally, there was no written cohabitation agreement for unmarried people living together long term.  There was no legal obligation for the man to voluntarily continue to support her or children that are over the age of majority.  In short, this woman was you know what.

For those among you who want legal rights, it is best to have a legal marriage.  That legal entity protects a partner from the scenario above.  If marriage is not possible, then a written cohabitation agreement is the only other alternative for protection.  For more information about this or other 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.

What Is Temporary Relief?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Temporary relief includes any kind of relief for the “have not” spouse, to allow the spouse to live and pay bills, pending the outcome of divorce proceedings.  There is usually a temporary relief hearing before the judge, in the event that a court ordered and required mediation does not resolve in a global settlement of the divorce.

Temporary relief can include a court order on child support, time sharing, shared parental responsibility, alimony, attorneys fees, exclusive use and possession of the marital home, a partial division of marital assets and debts, and any other relief requested by the spouse, to allow normal household bills to be paid, and maintain the status quo pending any outcome in the divorce.  Temporary relief stays in place until further order of the court, or an agreement of the parties.  Temporary relief may or may not be precedent setting.  For more information about this or other divorce topics, call one of the Palm Beach divorce lawyers at 561 835 9091 or click on the Firm’s web site at http://www.familylawwpb.com.

You’ve Gotten A Divorce But You’re Still Stuck With Your Ex?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

One advantage certain couples have, is that once the divorce is final, both parties can go their separate ways without interference from the other.  They never have to see each other again; they never have to talk to each other again… about anything.  That is unless they are sharing a business,  a dog, or children.

If a divorcing couple has any of the above, they are in it together for the next number of years until the children reach the age of majority, the business folds or is bought out, or the dog dies. Along with child support, shared parental responsibility and time sharing, which keeps the two of of tied together,  the focus today is on co parenting.

Co parenting can be very difficult, especially if the former husband and former wife just don’t see eye to eye.  An exaggerated example: The kids get to eat candy in one home, while in the other they are forced to do homework.  This is an example of a typical dilemma co parents face all the time: different co parenting styles.  The best advice is to live and let live, unless there is some detriment to the children.  Pick your battles wisely.

Even so, children hone in on certain things, and usually can figure out how to play one parent against the other.  Remember, you are the adults.  You should wise up to this ploy and work together for the best interests of your children.  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.

Marital Settlement Agreements Are “Special” Contracts

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

When you are going through the divorce process in Palm Beach County, Florida, you will have to go to mediation, prior to going to trial in the courtroom.  This is court  mandated, and gives a divorcing couple a formal way to settle out their differences by themselves, instead of having the judge dictate how the family will live from final judgment forward.

Marital settlements agreements become part of final judgments of divorce.  They are based upon both the husband and the wife fully disclosing all finances, separate and marital property, legal obligations and debt.  They equitably divide marital assets and debts, setting aside separate property, they provide for spousal support or alimony, and also set forth guidelines to follow for any children of the marriage.

That can include child support, time sharing, vacation time, grandparents rights, shared parental responsibility, health insurance, doctors visits travel and just about anything else.

After full disclosure and negotiations, if the parties can agree, they will sign a marital settlement agreement, freely, with full knowledge of their rights and obligations and with intent to be bound.  Marital settlement agreements are enforceable by the court as is any court order. 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 You Change A Marital Settlement Agreement Once It Becomes A Court Order?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

Yes.  A marital settlement agreement and court order of divorce can be changed by AGREEMENT OF THE PARTIES or by COURT ORDER.  A court order will be the result of a PETITION FOR MODIFICATION OF FINAL JUDGMENT.  It has to be based upon a substantial, material change of circumstances.  You would have to prove such a change requires a modification at the POST DISSOLUTION TRIAL.

However, there is an EXCEPTION…once property and debts are divided in divorce court, or even by agreement of the parties, that part of the final judgment is a done deal.  Spousal support (alimony) and children’s issues (time sharing, child support) can be modified.  Division of assets and debts cannot.

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.