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Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Can you guarantee I will get the resolution I want?”

 

Two Minnesota State legislators say the very idea of divorce implicates the court system, and that implication leads to another, critical assumption: that parties to a divorce case are adversaries.

Small Meeting Charlotte Divorce Lawyer North Carolina Family Law AttorneyState Rep. John Lesch and state Sen. Sandy Pappas do not believe that all divorces—or even most—involve genuine adversaries. Instead, they allege, many “divorces settle out of court and people just file paperwork for court approval,” according to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

If that is the case, the Legislators reason, why force parties into a court system in which they are assumed to be adversaries, and are therefore more likely to “respond with hostility in the very situation that calls for generosity of spirit?” Because divorces require a court order, the process of divorce is suffused with conflict, wrote William Doherty, a professor of social science at the University of Minnesota, in the Star-Tribune.

Doherty was joined by Hennepin County District Judge Bruce Peterson in an editorial supporting a bill recently introduced by Sens. Lesch and Pappas that would create “an administrative pathway that skips the court system” and which would enable—in the representatives’ eyes—a “cooperative private divorce.”

The process would work this way, according to the Star-Tribune: First, couples would submit an online form titled an “Intent to Divorce.” After a 90-day waiting period, couples would be required to submit another form, titled a “Declaration of Divorce.” This document would provide for property division, if any, and any agreements regarding child custody. After that, parties would be issued a “Certificate of Divorce.”

The process—Professor Doherty and Judge Peterson write in their editorial—would mean that couples could enjoy “complete privacy” and would not need a judge’s approval for their divorce. If issues in the divorce did become contested, they could “modify their agreements or scrap the private system and go to court any time they wanted.”

Professor Doherty and Judge Peterson do not believe couples divorcing without the assistance of lawyer-advocates “will screw it up.” They believe, instead, that “the private market will respond with supportive services that not only would reduce mistakes but may prevent some divorces.” They caution that the non-judicial, administrative divorce process could only “be used… by people who can work together in good faith.” Where that is not the case, they write, “Judges will retain authority to vacate private agreements obtained through misconduct.”

In the editorial, Professor Doherty and Judge Peterson suggest that Constitutional challenges to a cooperative, administrative divorce system would fail, writing that the Constitutional “discussion moves from what is the best course of action to a prediction about what a judge might do.”

Constitutional issues, if any, notwithstanding, one of the most dramatic—and undiscussed—changes an administrative divorce system would produce is the “complete privacy” that Professor Doherty and Judge Peterson envision. In most—perhaps all—states, since divorce actions are litigated in courts of law, records relating to those actions are generally open to the public.

The openness of our court system and the ready availability of court documents to the public implicates one of the hallmarks of our system of a transparent government operating by and for the people. Shifting actions out of court and providing “complete privacy” in actions heretofore open to the public may not—as Professor Doherty and Judge Peterson suggest—further “the tide of cultural evolution… toward empowerment and respect for individuals.”

In reality, secrecy may do the opposite.

If you find yourself facing a complicated family law matter, it is best to consult with an experienced family-law attorney in Charlotte, North Carolina who can help guide you through the often confusing process of divorce. Please contact the experienced family-law attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC today at (855) 370-2828 or find additional resources here.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.startribune.com/opinion/commentaries/296649391.html

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:GLAM_Serbia_Table_4.JPG

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question ” Is there some property that the judge cannot divide?”

 

The split between New York media executive Noah Szubski from the daughter of “Wild Wild West” star Robert Conrad is heating up, with Szubski and Chelsea Conrad waging a courtroom battle over Cash.

Doberman Charlotte Divorce Lawyer North Carolina Family Law AttorneyCold hard cash is not the issue, however, and the split is not quite a divorce, since Szubski and Conrad were not married. The issue between the couple is custody of Cash—their beloved Doberman Pinscher.

Szubski and Conrad broke off their romantic relationship last October, and Conrad moved into a separate apartment not far from Szubski’s townhouse. When she did, she left the 85-pound dog with Szubski, but he allowed Conrad to visit the dog, take it for walks and to care for it when he was out of town.

That all changed—or as Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Geoffrey Wright wrote, “The cordiality of the separation was sundered on Valentine’s Day 2015”—when Conrad showed up at Szubski’s pad to take Cash on a walk and found Szubski with three women.

Conrad took Cash on the walk but never brought the dog back. Apparently Conrad’s mother—Lavelda, then visiting from California—convinced Conrad to keep the dog.

Szubski brought an emergency legal action seeking return of the dog. In a court proceeding last week, Conrad testified that she had always intended for Cash to live with her full time, but she had acceded to Szubski’s desire to have the dog stay with him because she was fearful of his temper.

Justice Wright said he did not believe Conrad, according to the New York Daily News. He noted that Cash has lived the majority of his life with Szubski, that Szubski has paid all of the dog’s expenses, and that Szubski even bought a French Bulldog (named Bernie) to keep Cash company.

Szubski’s petition for emergency relief was granted, and Conrad was ordered to meet Szubski on West 22nd Street—near where both Szubski and Conrad live—to return the dog. Szubski was reunited with Cash last Friday.

The matter did not end there, however; a full hearing on the issue of permanent custody is set for April 3. Mia Poppe—Conrad’s lawyer—said Szubski’s case for custody of Cash is weak because Conrad never gave him the dog.

Furthermore, Poppe told the New York Daily News—while courts have decided custody issues of pets in divorce actions, there is no legal precedent for a court to decide “who is able to keep personal property—including animals” in a boyfriend-girlfriend breakup.

If you find yourself facing a complicated family law matter, it is best to consult with an experienced family-law attorney in Charlotte, North Carolina who can help guide you through the often confusing process of divorce. Please contact the experienced family-law attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC today at (855) 370-2828 or find additional resources here.

 

 

About the Author

ARNOLD & SMITH LAW Matthew Arnold is a Managing Member of Arnold & Smith, PLLC, where he focuses on the areas of family law, divorce, child custody, child support, alimony and equitable distribution.

Mr. Arnold was born and raised in Charlotte, where he graduated from Providence Senior High School. He attended Belmont Abbey College, where he graduated cum laude, before attending law school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on a full academic scholarship.

A board-certified specialist in the practice of Family Law, Mr. Arnold is admitted to practice in all state courts in North Carolina, in the United States Federal Court for the Western District of North Carolina, in the North Carolina Court of Appeals and Supreme Court, and in the Fourth Circuit United States Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia.

In his free time, Mr. Arnold enjoys golfing and spending time with his wife and three children.

 

 

Sources:

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/media-exec-temporary-custody-dog-heated-battle-article-1.2150977

 

 

Image Credit

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Proud_Doberman.JPG

 

 

See Our Related Video from our YouTube channel:

https://www.youtube.com/user/ArnoldSmithPLLC/videos

 

 

See Our Related Blog Posts:

Experts Say Pet Custody Battles On The Rise

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “Does adultery affect my divorce case?”

 

Some call it a midlife crisis; some call it a wandering eye; some call it downright bored. Whatever “it” is, 50-year-old self-described “good girl” Robin Rinaldi decided to give it a whirl for one year, agreeing with her husband of seventeen years to try an “open marriage.”

Woman on the beach Charlotte Family law lawyer Mecklenburg Divorce AttorneyThe concept—called polyamory—is nothing new. It is almost as old as infidelity—a concept most people call cheating, except an open marriage takes the “cheat” out of cheating. In effect, a spouse is allowed—if not encouraged—to cheat.

Rinaldi, of San Francisco, California, said that prior to the year of her “wild oat project,” she had only slept with four men, including her husband Scott Mansfield. Her once-a-week love life with the brewer and winemaker was in a rut, and his refusal to bear a child with her was the final straw, she wrote in a recently published book titled The Wild Oats Project.

Her agreement with Mansfield was as follows: Rinaldi would rent an apartment and live there through the week. On the weekends she would return home, where she and Mansfield would live as a married couple. They were not to sleep with mutual friends, not to get into any “serious” relationships, and they were not to have unprotected sex.

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “When do you get alimony?”

 

Women who devote more time to homemaking and childcare may be in for a series of post-divorce rude awakenings, according to NBC News.

Sad woman Mecklenburg Divorce Lawyer North Carolina Family Law AttorneyBruce McClary, a spokesman for the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, told NBC that some women “have to start right from scratch” at finding a post-divorce job or home and establishing credit.

While “working-class women get hit harder,” NBC reports, women across all income levels—even women from higher-income levels—often suffer large income losses when they divorce. Laura Tach, an assistant professor of policy analysis and management at New York’s Cornell University, said women who are awarded physical custody of children may stand to lose anywhere from thirty to forty-percent of their income.

The costs associated with childcare and the demands placed on women’s time make it difficult to keep apace of a fast-moving and demanding labor market. A 2012 study published by the Urban Institute showed that less-than-half of “employed, working-class parents” were given paid time off by their employers, while more than half worked “nonstandard hours and nearly a quarter had to work nights,” according to NBC. Keeping up with those demands and keeping up with one’s children can be difficult and, in some instances, virtually impossible.

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question ” I’m considering separating from my spouse; what actions should I refrain from doing?”

 

Until death do us part, in sickness and in health? As for sickness, not so much.

Bird watching Charlotte Divorce Lawyer North Carolina Family Law AttorneyThat is, at least, according to a new study spearheaded by Amelia Karraker, an assistant professor of human development and family studies at Iowa State University.

Her study—published in the most recent issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior—shows that married women who are diagnosed with a serious health condition are at greater odds of being divorced by or from their spouses than healthy married women.

Karraker and colleague Kenzie Latham studied marriage data from 1992 to 2010 compiled by the Health and Retirement Study at the University of Michigan. They looked at rates of cancer, heart disease, lung disease and stroke among married women during that timeframe.

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Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “How can an attorney help me with my Divorce or Separation in North Carolina?”

 

In divorce court, as in any court, litigants must tell the truth. If they do not—aside from damaging their own case—they may face charges for perjury or contempt of court, and the fallout from telling untruths under oath may extend well beyond the courtroom, as a recent case involving a Louisiana police chief has underscored.

Oath of office Charlotte Mecklenburg Divorce Lawyer North Carolina Family Law AttorneyThe chief in question is Lafayette, Louisiana Police Chief Kenny Vines. On January 20, Circuit Judge Ray Martin held Vines in contempt of court after determining that Vines had presented false documents to the court during his divorce case. Judge Martin fined Vines $100 and ordered him to serve a five-day jail sentence, although the jail sentence was suspended on the condition that Vines pay the fine.

The Fifth Circuit District Attorney’s office convened a grand jury to consider whether Vines should be charged with perjury in connection with false statements Vines made about the divorce documents while under oath. Last Friday, a Chambers County grand jury indicted Vines on perjury charges. As soon as Vines was informed of the indictment, he entered into a plea agreement with prosecutors.

According to a statement released on Monday by Fifth-Circuit prosecutors, Vines pled guilty to second-degree perjury and the perjury charge arose out of statements Vines had made to the Circuit Court while under oath. Vines was sentenced to six months in prison, but the sentence was suspended on the condition that he complete twelve months of probation.

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question ” I’m considering separating from my spouse; what actions should I refrain from doing?”

 

What stands to reason does not always stand up to reality, and a new study from a team led by a doctor at Harvard Medical School is driving that point home.

Doctor Mecklenburg Child Custody Lawyer North Carolina Divorce AttorneyDoctor Anupam Jena of Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School led a team that analyzed American Community Survey responses from 250,000 physicians, dentists, pharmacists and health-care executives, according to the Washington Post. The researchers also studied survey answers from 59,000 lawyers and 6.3 million non-health-care professionals. The study results were published last week in a journal titled The BMJ.

Dr. Jena said that going into the study, he encountered “this conception or notion that doctors are more likely to be divorced, not only more than other health-care professionals, but the population at large.” This conception or notion, the Post suggested, dovetailed with the perception that doctors work long hours, have demanding schedules, and operate in high-stress day-to-day work environments.

Those conditions sound like a recipe for high divorce rates.

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What does uncontested divorce mean?”

 

When Fats Domino sings about finding his thrill on Blueberry Hill, you can almost hear in the mournful piano chords he plays that descend into the chorus that though his dream “came true” and though “the wind in the willow played love’s sweet melody,” the vows his lover made “were never to be.”

Divorce Hotel Mecklenburg Divorce Lawyer Charlotte Family Law AttorneyThose whose vows were not to be can climb a different kind of promontory, in Saratoga Springs, New York at the Gideon Putnam Resort, where the Dutch Company Divorce Hotel is offering couples weekend luxury packages that include a divorce.

Jim Halfens—Divorce Hotel’s founder—said the company deploys a team of professionals to settle out divorces during the three-day Divorce Hotel trips. He said couples typically split the cost of the stay, which runs anywhere from $3,500 to $10,000.

Halfens describes the process as “intense, a rollercoaster and a pressure cooker,” but in the end, he said, it saves couples a lot of drawn-out negativity. “When the weekend is over, both will sign the divorce agreement and everybody can go on with their lives,” Halfens said.

Of course, not all spouses will be able to resolve their differences at a one-weekend stay at the Divorce Hotel, and Halfens explained that at a minimum, spouses must “be able to wish each other a positive new future.”

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Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question “What can I do to gain custody of my child in North Carolina?”

 

Finding advice on divorce is like finding advice on dieting or exercise: it is everywhere. Whether you through an expert’s “ten tips,” another expert’s “twenty rules,” or another expert’s one-hundred one-word divorce descriptors, both the divorce process and processing all the divorce advice one is bound to receive can prove taxing.

Broken Heart Charlotte Divorce Attorney North Carolina Child custody LawyerA west-Texas counselor and therapist has made it easy for those contemplating or going through divorce, publishing in the San Angelo Standard a list of “Do’s” and a list of “Don’ts” for those who desire as “mindful a transition as possible.”

The therapist—Adrianne Albarado Ortiz—focuses her practice on children, many of whom experience emotional trauma as a result of their parents’ divorce. As far as “Don’ts,” Ms. Ortiz encourages couples with children not to seek to sabotage their children’s relationship with their spouse or exes by using malicious words against the other parent. Ms. Ortiz said this could actually backfire “and cause the child to generate resentment” towards the parent who is seeking to undermine the other parent.

The focus throughout a divorce process, Ortiz said, should be on the well-being of children involved. That means parents should never use their children as pawns to seek to gain the upper hand in divorce disputes. Ortiz said divorcing parents should never seek to obtain information from children about the other parent, and should not ask their children to choose sides when it comes to scheduling conflicts.

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Charlotte Divorce Attorney Matthew R. Arnold of Arnold & Smith, PLLC answers the question ” I’m considering separating from my spouse; what actions should I refrain from doing?”

 

A spouse’s cruel words and outrageous treatment drove you to a divorce attorney in the first place, but now the divorce attorney is telling you the cruel treatment no more matters to your case than whether you broke your leg skiing or broke it getting hit by a car.

Lady liberty Charlotte Mecklenburg Divorce Lawyer North Carolina Family Law AttorneyThe point is, the leg is broken.

In medicine, of course, the answer is the fix the leg. In the world of marriages, a common answer to a couple’s problems—the opposite of fixing it—is to get a divorce. Many couples who arrive at this point turn to the legal system to find something they never experienced in their marriage: justice.

A family law attorney writing for the Buffalo Law Journal has a warning for justice seekers: In the family law courts, it’s business, not personal.

Family law attorney Steven Wiseman says courts use guidelines to render decisions on matters like child support and spousal maintenance. Courts have some discretion to deviate from these guidelines, but the fact that a spouse may have been “a lying, cheating, son of a you-know-what” is simply not relevant.

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