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July 2013 Archives

CAN I LOSE MY INHERITANCE TO MY SPOUSE?

Dennis Hopper died more than three years ago now, but the issue of who would inherit his $2.85 million fortune wasn't settled until September 2012. His nine-year-old daughter will receive the bulk of his estate, which is held in a trust for her and cannot be touched by his ex-wife because of solid work on the part of Mr. Hopper's attorneys. During divorce proceedings, his former spouse fought to get some of his money. A prenuptial agreement had been signed, however, guaranteeing that after a 13-year marriage, Victoria Duffy would walk away empty-handed. 

PREPARING FOR YOUR DAY IN COURT

Before no-fault divorce, many couples suffered through grueling court battles to deal with the decisions that must be made when a family splits up. Witnesses were called and damaging evidence was heard, all in the name of making it so difficult for couples to divorce that many stayed together to avoid the trauma.

HAVE YOU FOUND THE RIGHT DIVORCE ATTORNEY?

Cleo Everest (not her real name) had a decision to make following an inadvertent pocket dial call from her husband's smart phone. Ms. Everest, a resident of Marin County, had gotten a routine call from her husband asking how the kids were while he was on a supposed business trip. He hung up and then called back a few minutes later, but it was an inadvertent pocket dial where he'd hit the call button by accident. She was about to hang up when she heard a woman giggling in the background and an order for a bottle of wine for two from her husband. It didn't take long for the whole sordid story to come out and for Cleo to need to make a decision - she needed to hire a divorce attorney. For Cleo, deciding who to hire was part of an online process - she even blogged about it. For the rest of us, here are some tips to help you decide: 

PROPOSED LAW HELPS STAY-AT-HOME SPOUSES ESTABLISH CREDIT

Liz Weston, the famous advice columnist, offered some interesting advice recently in the LA Times to a divorcing reader. She suggested that the reader close all joint credit card accounts to prevent her spouse from trashing their credit once the divorce is final. However, there is one important thing Ms. Weston didn't mention. If you do plan to get divorced, make sure you open a credit card or two under your own name using the joint credit you've built up during the marriage. You should then keep those cards active for several months before you file for divorce by making a few charges and paying off the full balance each month. 

IS IT BETTER TO STAY MARRIED FOR THE SAKE OF THE KIDS?

Amy Poehler and Will Arnett's marriage is at an end. The couple announced in September that they were filing for divorce. However, they still have full intentions of raising their two children in a co-parenting arrangement. Some might argue that the couple should have considered trying to stick it out for the sake of their young children. But parenting experts consistently say that this would be a terrible mistake.

KEEP YOUR PERSONAL LIFE PRIVATE WHEN DIVORCING

Reality TV star Kim Kardashian's divorce from Brooklyn Nets forward Kris Humphries took 536 days to finalize, garnering significant attention as the case dragged on. The couple had been married for just 72 days when they decided to call it quits. The reality TV star has been known to make her feelings public with details leaking out on social networks such as Twitter and Facebook. However, this may be a mistake according to a recent report in the Huffington Post.

WHAT ARE THE GROUNDS FOR DIVORCE IN CALIFORNIA?

Mayim Bialik, the former star of Blossom and current star of The Big Bang Theory, announced on her blog at the end of November that she and husband Michael Stone would be filing for divorce in Los Angeles after nine years of marriage. The couple filed their request citing irreconcilable differences, one of only two options offered as grounds for divorce in the State of California.

RESIDENCY REQUIREMENTS FOR FILING FOR DIVORCE IN CALIFORNIA

Kimberly Buffy Quaid, wife of famous movie star Dennis Quaid, filed for divorce in October but quickly withdrew her request when she realized it would be rejected. The problem is that the couple moved to California only this past summer, and there is a six-month waiting period before she can establish residency and file for divorce.

FIVE TIPS TO KEEP CO-PARENTING POSITIVE

Angela Kinsey, one of the stars of TV hit show The Office, was recently interviewed by She Knows Parenting in a pre-holiday interview published in December. The actress talked about what it is like to deal with being a co-parent with her daughter's dad. They have been divorced since 2009.

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