Monday, March 31, 2008

Signer Beware

The following article is about a couple's divorce and the aftermath of not making good on the terms of the settlement. Before you sign a Marital Settlement Agreement, make very sure that intend to follow through with the terms of the Agreement or you may wind up in jail.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Free Legal Advice

Free Legal Clinic To Help Eligible Residents
By Dan Fearson of Highlands Today
Published: March 27, 2008
SEBRING — Receiving legal advice and consultation is expensive for everyone, but it's especially tough for those with low incomes.
Today, Florida Rural Legal Services Inc. will hold a free legal clinic for the economically disadvantaged, allowing citizens to receive legal advice and consultation.
It's the first time FRLS, a non-profit organization, has offered a free clinic in Highlands County."We will have seven or more attorneys on site (for the clinic) that would typically offer advice and counsel that could cost a substantial amount of money," said Doris Dunn, of FRLS.
The clinic will take place from 5:30 to 7 p.m., at the Highlands County Children's Advocacy Center, 1000 S. Highlands Ave., in Sebring.To qualify to receive help, people have to meet income eligibility requirements.
Dunn said that as of Thursday, 10 people had qualified for the session. Walk-ins are also welcome but they would first have to fill out a questionnaire detailing their eligibility.
A diverse group of attorneys, with expertise in different areas –– including bankruptcy law, property law, family law, consumer law and criminal law –– will be available.
"During past clinics, we've had a number of people seeking advice when it comes to family and divorce issues," said Dunn. "Often, they purchase divorce paperwork from courthouses and have no idea how to fill it out; this clinic can help with those types of issues."
Dunn also said foreclosure issues and elderly credit issues have been popular during past clinics."We've had a number of elderly people come in who don't understand credit issues and don't understand consumer issues," said Dunn.
Dunn said that the FRLS often ends up working with people who don't meet eligibility requirements by finding income deductions.
"It's just free advice," said Dunn. "People are not going to walk out of the clinic with an attorney provided by us."
The Highlands County branch of the FRLS operates out of a Lakeland, which also services Hardee and Polk counties.
For information about the clinic, call 1-800-277-7680 or 863-688-7376.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Make Sure To Show Up For Court!!

One of the major things that you have to do in order to protect your legal rights and interests when you are going through a divorce or attempting to get an injunction (i.e., restraining order) is show up for Court!! Seems that Ms. Donaghy filed a request for an Injunction and the Judge appears to have denied it because she failed to show up for Court. This will affect her ability to get the injunction put into place for past abusive behavior and surely will affect whether she she gets an injunction in the future if she makes further claims of abuse.

To read the story upon which this blog is based, see:

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Blogging About Divorce

I just received a comment on one of my previous blogs from a reader who has started a blog for children who are going through a divorce. I'm not sure whether the blog is from an actual child or not, so I have no listed it here, but it brings up the question of how do you help your children through your divorce, especially when there is a custody battle that is on the brink. The following link provides some helpful tips, and some common sense advice on how to help your children cope with your divorce:

Monday, March 24, 2008

Difference Between Fault and No Fault States

There are many differences between fault and no fault states when it comes to divorce. One of the major differences is that the reasons behind a parties' divorce in a no fault state are virtually irrelevant. When it comes to emotionally cruelty and the like, those issues are rarely ever a factor in equitable distribution, alimony and child custody issues in no fault states. However, in fault states, these factors come into play. See the following story regarding New Jersey's ex-governor to see how fault can come into play.

Friday, March 21, 2008

New Take On Fresh Start After Divorce

A man in Australia is selling his life on eBay. Seems that he recently got a divorce and wants a fresh start. Many people move, get a haircut, have a makeover or do other small things to signify a fresh start and a new life after divorce. This man is taking this concept to a whole other level by selling his life, including his home and job in order to pick up the pieces and move on. I'm not sure whether this person will have any bidders, but its an interesting concept.

Enjoy the story!!!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Using Divorce As A Reconciliation Tool

Most people who come to my office for an initial consultation are ready to file for divorce. Sometimes, a party comes to my office because they are simply attempting to find out what their legal rights are in the event they do file for divorce, but they still think that they may be able to work things out with their spouse. Sometimes people want to file for divorce to try to "scare" their spouse into working out their marital problems. I rarely see this as an effective tactic in reconciliation. However, it still happens. Seems like Linda Bollea. Hulk Hogan's wife, may be using this tactic to attempt to reconcile with her husband.

To read this story, see:

Monday, March 17, 2008

Health Insurance and Divorce

Once you are divorced, under most circumstances, you are not going to be able to continue to have your spouse under your current health insurance policy. If you fail to inform your employer that you are no longer married, its possible that may have to repay the company and the insurance company for a sort of insurance fraud. Read the following story and remember to remove your ex-spouse from your health insurance after you are divorced.

Friday, March 14, 2008

McCartney Divorce Settlement

It looks like the Judge that is presiding over the Heather Mills v. Paul McCartney divorce is about to make a decision and Ms. Mills may be receiving 25-30 million pounds in her divorce decree. It is reported that this amount was what was originally offered by McCartney, but with the offer also came a confidentiality clause. Therefore, if Ms. Mills wishes to not appeal the Judge, it seems that she went through close to two years of fighting and being crucified by the press so that she can publish a book about her marriage to McCartney. It seems crazy to me that you would not settle a case that would give you over $50 million just so you can blab your story to anyone who will listen, but I guess it'll be worth it for Ms. Mills. Hopefully there are no appeals, and everyone can move on with the rest of their lives.

To read more about this story, visit:

Thursday, March 13, 2008

You Heard It Here!!

Every now and then I come across an article that is so strange that I feel the need to share it with my readers. It appears that a woman was allowed to annul her marriage after she divorced because she found out that her husband used to be a woman. In fact, the husband in question was still physically a woman, but had changed his/her name. In most states, same sex marriage is not allowed, so I'm not sure how you annul a marriage that was never legally binding, but it seems that you can in this particular state.

To read the article upon which this blog is based see the following:,2933,337531,00.html

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Men and Cheating

I'm sure most everyone is aware of the problems that are facing the current governor of New York, Elliott Spitzer. If you are living under a rock and haven't heard, there are accusations about him using high end prostitutes and possibly facing criminal charges for transporting a prostitute across state lines. While watching the news yesterday on The Today Show, in conjunction with this newsworthy item, there was a statistic that stated that 1 in every 5 men cheat. I was flabbergasted by that statistic and it got me thinking of why would that number be so high. If anyone out there can shed some light on why men cheat, please post to my blog so that I can enlighten myself and my readers.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Divorce Parties

I've blogged in the past about divorce parties and how more and more people are finding ways to celebrate their divorce. Whether you wanted to plan a party for your closest friends or throw a shindig for a large group of divorced strangers, there was a reason to let loose down in Fort Lauderdale recently. A bar owner in Fort Lauderdale opened up his club to 400 or so divorced people looking to party and commiserate. I'm still not sold on the idea that a divorce should be celebrated, but I definitely understand the relief that many people feel after their divorce is finalized, and that in some circumstances a party may be appropriate.

To read the article upon which this blog is based, see:,0,1866345.story

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Speaking About Divorce With Children

I often have to tell my clients that it is 100% not appropriate to speak with their children about any of their divorce proceedings. Children, no matter whether they are 1 years old or 21 years old, should not have to involve themselves in their parents' divorce case. They should not have to run interference, nor should they be the bearers of messages between one parent or the other. The court can look unkindly upon a party who is using their children as a way of communicating to their soon to be ex. The following article about the divorce between Hulk Hogan and his wife is a prime example of what can happen if you involve your children in your divorce.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Budget Cuts Affecting Florida Courts

The following article addresses budget cuts and how those cuts will affect the Florida courts, including courts here in Central, Florida:,0,5907779.story

Saturday, March 1, 2008

End In Sight

It looks like the McCartney v. Mills divorce drama is coming to an end. There is a target date of March 17, 2008 for a final ruling in their case to decide who gets what and how much. If either party decides that they are unhappy or not in agreement with the judge's ruling, they can appeal. However, if they appeal, their divorce proceedings will no longer remain private and all prying eyes are going to be able to see exactly what happened in their divorce. I'm not sure whether Ms. Mills cares about their proceedings going public, but based upon all that has been written, it seems clear that Mr. McCartney wants the proceedings to be sealed and kept confidential. I hope for the sake of their daughter that this divorce drama finally comes to an end.