Archive for February 2011

Why Divorces Get Ugly and How to Have a Good One

In my experience­, the process of HOW one gets divorced has a huge impact on the ugliness. The early selection of a divorce process is crucial. If possible, avoid litigation and choose a form of alternate dispute resolution like collaborat­ive divorce or mediation.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

The Non-Custodial Mother

Interestin­g article about non-custod­ial women. As a family law attorney, I am meeting more and more women who choose this arrangment for various reasons. It is still true that many women feel stigmatize­d. I find this phenominum similar to the visceral reaction that many women exhibit when they are asked to pay their husband alimony. After all, millions of years of evolution and biology have programed us to understand that the man is the provider. Society will look upon a male recipient of spousal support as a dead beat. Traditiona­l societal values do have a strong impact about one’s feelings towards such basic institutio­ns as the family and our roles within those institutio­ns.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Pacific Divorce Management : Alimony Taxation – Part 7

My friend and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst, Justin Reckers, recently did a great post on alimony and taxation.  It’s worth a read.  Pacific Divorce Management : Alimony Taxation – Part 7.

What does “best interest of the child” mean when litigating custody in California?


Child Custody document

Best Interest of the Child is the California Child Custody Standard

You hear it mentioned over and over again, “The Court makes a custody order in keeping with the child’s best interests.” However, seldom do you hear anyone define what “best interest of the child” really means. The factors that the court

Calfornia Family Code section 3041 defines “best interest of the child” for child custody

The factors that the court must consider in determining the best interests of the child are spelled out in California Family Code section 3011 as follows:

“In making a determination of the best interest of the child in a proceeding described in Section 3021, the court shall, among any other factors it finds relevant, consider all of the following:

(a) The health, safety, and welfare of the child.

(b) Any history of abuse by one parent or any other person seeking custody against any of the following:

(1) Any child to whom he or she is related by blood or affinity or with whom he or she has had a caretaking relationship, no matter how temporary.

(2) The other parent.

(3) A parent, current spouse, or cohabitant, of the parent or person seeking custody, or a person with whom the parent or person seeking custody has a dating or engagement relationship.

. . . .

(c) The nature and amount of contact with both parents, except as provided in Section 3046.

(d) The habitual or continual illegal use of controlled substances or habitual or continual abuse of alcohol by either parent. . . .”

Cal. Fam. § 3011 (West 2011).


Check out this further reading:

The Irreplaceable Dad: The Importance of Dads Stepping Up In Co-parenting and Moms Letting Them Do It

California Child Custody: What is the difference between legal custody and physical custody?

Holidays After Divorce – Bring Peace on Earth to Your Kids

Divorce Options Workshops

This is Not Your Parents’ Prenup: Debunking Prenup Myths

This article on Huffington Post has some excellent points about the modern prenup. I believe that the prenup conversati­on forces couples to discuss their money and expectatio­ns PRIOR to getting married. To me, that makes for a better marriage. If you can’t have the conversati­on, then perhaps you should think about whether you can have the marriage.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost