Articles/Blawg

I’ve presented these articles which I have written because I feel they offer good information for my clients. Reading them at your leisure will help you better understand your situation. If you have any questions regarding what you’ve read here, especially how it may relate to your own family law issue, please feel free to contact my office. We will be happy to arrange a consultation to discuss all your questions.

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Living Separate and Apart: More Than Just Moving Out of the Bedroom

On July 20, 2015, in the seminal case of In re Marriage of Davis, the California Supreme Court ruled that a couple is only living separate and apart when they no longer reside together under the same roof. Thus, while the marriage may be over on an emotional, sexual or even public level, the spouses are not living separate and apart so long as they continue to reside together in the same household.

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The Roles They Play

Spouses, either consciously or unconsciously, take on certain roles in marriages, whether by choice, by default or by virtue of a personality trait.  Common examples are the roles of the breadwinner and caretaker of the children. Another illustration involves the financial dealings for the family: one spouse may handle them all, while the other spouse chooses to not be involved or is kept in the dark. Whichever role a spouse plays in the marriage, that role often continues into a divorce.

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How to value a small business when getting a divorce

Reprinted from the Tuesday, July 14, 2015 Los Angeles Daily Journal, Marlo Van Oorschot’s article titled “How to value a small business when getting a divorce” explores why a small business may have value in a divorce despite the possibility of having no future value if the operating spouse left the business.

Download this article (pdf)

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Is Your Spouse Underemployed (Not Unemployed, but Underemployed)?

He’s making a living, working 9 to 5, but now his wife believes he could be making more. He’s a smart man, with a Master’s degree, and 18 years of experience in his field. However, he earns under $75,000 a year, and with the possibility of a spousal support order in the distant future, his wife believes her soon-to-be ex-husband could earn more; in fact, he has earned more in the past. Thus, how can the wife prove to the court that her husband has the ability to earn more money, and thus increase the possibility of a higher spousal support order?

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Why Does Divorce Cost so Much Money?

When a couple gets divorced, one of the first things either person worries about is the cost.  While managing the cost is a reasonable concern, the reality is….here is the honest answer….divorce is expensive.  Unless there are no children, virtually no assets, each person is self-supporting and there is no issue of domestic violence, divorce is going to be costly.  Think about the reason why.  Likely no other area of the law, in a single lawsuit, presents the parties and their lawyers with the myriad of different and often unrelated legal and emotional issues which must be handled.

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High Risk Investment Strategies Could Bring an End to Spousal Support

The receipt of spousal support and a share of the community property in a divorce does not relieve the spouse who is being financially supported from being accountable for his or her financial future.  Just when one thinks they are free from scrutiny, they are not.

Supported spouses (in other words, a divorced spouse who receives support payments as part of the divorce settlement) are put under a microscope by both the courts and the spouse supporting them in a proceeding to modify or terminate spousal support. In addition to the analysis of their employment capabilities and receipt of other income, a supported spouse’s investment strategies will be analyzed as a factor to determine whether they have reasonably managed their share of the marital estate and are entitled to an increase or continuation of spousal support.

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Child Custody and Visitation: The Grounds For Emergency Relief

In a family law proceeding, one of the most sensitive and emotionally charged areas –for both the family law attorney and the client- typically concerns issues surrounding custody and visitation of the children.

Because the two parents are now adversaries, seemingly innocuous issues (for example, the completion of the child’s homework) may be blown out of proportion.  This can lead to a bigger dispute that may impact the parent’s visitation with the child, or even draw into question the fitness of the parent.

For parties in a family law proceeding where children are involved, all issues may seem like emergencies. As a result, the family law attorney is often faced with the difficult task of balancing the client’s interests, as well as their serious concerns regarding the actions of the other parent, within the boundaries and restrictions of the Family Code.

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Wonder How To Talk to Your Kids About Divorce or Separation?

Parenting is hard work.  For most people, parenting is even harder work after separation or divorce.  One of the added challenges of parenting after separation or divorce is answering the multitude of questions children have about what has happened, including questions about where they will spend their time, about their feelings, about changes to the family, about what the law requires and generally about why is this happening.  Parents have many of these same questions.

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Domestic Violence: A Renewed and Visible Conversation

In the wake of the infamous domestic abuse charges against Ray Rice, the former Baltimore Ravens running back accused of a violent assault on his then-fiancée, and the subsequent media attention concerning how the NFL handled the charges, there appears to be an ever stronger campaign to raise awareness about domestic violence.

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Two Questions Most Often Asked by New Clients

Every January and February, family law attorneys meet a lot of prospective new clients.  It is my opinion that the New Year brings about the desire for action and change.   January has even been dubbed as “Divorce Month.”  Whatever is the reason and regardless of the time of year, people who face divorce or custody disputes have many questions, but the following two questions are asked most consistently:

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Marlo says...
“A great way to help alleviate your concerns is to learn more about the process. Reviewing this information could also help you develop questions you hadn’t thought of before.”