All I Want For Christmas Is A Divorce. How Do I Get One?

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

You start by taking stock…of your situation, your family finances, your assets and your debts.  Educate yourself as to your spouse’ income, his/her spending, and whereabouts.  Then pick up the phone to a divorce lawyer.

Once you have a good idea of the value of your house, your stock accounts, your incomes, get your hands on your tax returns, bank statements, credit card bills, mortgage papers, loan applications, insurance documents, estate planning instruments, and anything else that evidences money. 

Remember in Florida, there is no fault divorce; there is equitable distribution of marital assets and debts, and there is premarital property that may or may not have been comingled.  There is also permanent alimony, durational alimony, bridge the gap alimony, and no alimony.  There is child time sharing, child support, shared parental responsibility, or sole parental responsibility. 

There is money for attorneys fees and costs, or not.  There is mediation and settlement, or trial.  There are depositions, mandatory financial disclosure, and penalties for not producing financial disclosure.  Divorce is a process, but in certain circumstances, it is the best gift you could ever give yourself.  You don’t need his/her permission to get a divorce in this state.  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 www.familylawwpb.com for more information.  

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Preparing for a Divorce Trial

Preparing for a Divorce Trial.

Preparing for a Divorce Trial

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

If the issues of alimony, child support, time sharing, and division of marital property, assets  and debts cannot be agreed to by the parties in  a marital settlement agreement, a divorce case that is pending, will be going to trial.   After extensive and detailed discovery, and the exchange of documents and financial information between the parties, one or the other spouse can request a trial date from the judge.  The judge will then review the history of the case by checking the docket sheet to make sure all pleadings are closed and replied to.  That being the case, the judge will issue an order setting a trial date and informing the two attorneys of the requirements prior to trial. 

This includes filing a pre trial stipulation as to what facts are agreed to by the two opposing attorneys, what facts are in dispute, what issues need to be adjudicated.  It also includes the requirement of providing in advance any relevant case law or memorandum of law on a disputed issue, a fact witness list and rebuttal witness list for either party, an inspection and filing of exhibits and evidence and any objections thereto.  The judge will also order a mediation to occur sometime prior to the trail date.

Copies of all relevant documents have to be provided to the opposing attorney, as well as be available for the judge.  Also in advance of trial depositions have to take place and court reporter transcripts have to be ordered.  Trial preparation is a huge and costly task, involving lawyers, paralegals, expert witnesses, and support staff, along with document logs and generation.  That is why going to trial is such an expensive undertaking.  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.  

 

Working the System! Motion for Continuance

Working the System! Motion for Continuance.

How Do I Answer Deposition Questions?

By Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

You are involved in a full fledged divorce litigation case.  Opposing counsel wants to take your deposition to find out just about everything.  He/she can pretty much ask you anything, whether relevant to the case or not.  Depositions are basically fishing expeditions for information that might lead to more information.

Some of the topics you will be asked about include the children, your ability to co parent, time sharing, your finances, your lifestyle, who you are dating, what you are spending, where you last vacationed, what you are driving, what you did with your expensive rolex, and just about anything else.  Here is some advice in answering these sometimes touchy questions:

1.  Remember that the judge is not present at this depo.  You don’t have to convince anyone about anything.

2.  Have an agreeable demeanor.  If you don’t, it looks like you’ve got something to hide.

3.  Don’t have diareha of the mounth.  Keep your answers short and to the point.

4.   Watch your body language, especially if the deposition is being video taped.

5.  Don’t fidget, wring your hands, tug your hair, chew gum or wriggle.

6.  Answer truthfully.

7.  If all else fails, your answers should be “yes”, “no”, or “I don’t recall”.

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 www.familylawwpb.com.

If You Think You Have A Divorce Settlement, BE CAREFUL!

by Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

We divorce lawyers have a old trick…get the other side to think we are settling the case, but then move forward to the divorce proceedings.  The moral of the story is, in divorce court, if you do not have a signed settlement agreement, or a signed agreed order, you do not have an agreement.  You may think you do, but therein lies the problem for you.

In Florida, it is a statutory requirement that all “agreements” be in writing and signed by the husband and wife.   So if you have discovery that is due, temporary alimony payments that are due, depositions that are set, a court hearing to attend, your lawyer still must prepare as if there is no settlement at all until such time as there is a signed document.  Don’t fall into the settlement trap.

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.

Reasons Judges Delay Divorce Trials

By Robin Roshkind, Esquire, West Palm Beach, Florida

There are many reasons a divorce trial may be delayed.  But there are some recurring reasons that you should know about:

1.  First, the judge may have a personal emergency and needs to reset your trial.

2.  The judge may have a case before him/her that requires emergency action., thus displacing your trial with a more pressing case.  Child kidnapping, child endangerment, and  domestic violence are some examples of emergencies in family court.

3.  The judge feels your case may have a chance of settling if he/she orders the two parties back to mediation.

4.  The judge feels your case may have a change of settling if he/she orders the two parties out into the hallway of the courtroom to discuss the matter one last time.

5.  The case is not yet ripe and motions to compel discovery, attorneys fees, depositions, and the like are needed first.

6.  The trial may be delayed if the issues need to be bifurcated into two parts, for example custody and then everything else.

7.  If witnesses like CPA’s and therapists have sudden schedule changes, the trial may be delayed upon motion and order of the court.

Those are some of the reasons a judge in family court would postpone a scheduled trial.  But don’t think you can do the same.  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 www.familylawwpb.com for more information.

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