Family Law Blog

How to Survive the Holidays after Divorce

Monday, November 24, 2014

In the first year following a divorce, few times are as painful as the holidays. This is the time when families are meant to be together in the spirit of joy and cheer. However, if you have recently been through a divorce, putting on a cheerful front is the last thing you feel like doing.

The holidays do not have to be a disaster. Plan ahead to make sure that your holidays this time involve people that you're the closest to, and who you really care about. In other words, don't make plans to include people that you don't have much in common with. Keep your holidays intimate this year.

Many people who have just been divorced prefer to take a vacation, either by themselves or with a group of friends, to get away from all of the festivities. Los Angeles divorce lawyers do recommend this option.

It's also good to break away with past holiday traditions. Consider celebrating your holidays on a different date than you did last year. Consider different types of festivities, or a different guest list. Change the menu entirely. Making a clean break with the past is is very therapeutic, and the holidays are a good time to do it.

Children can find divorces traumatic, but they will expect holidays to be just as enjoyable and memorable as they always have been. Encourage your children to participate in any new rituals or traditions that you want to start this holiday season. Ask them to pick out a ritual that they would like to begin with this year. Children are much more likely to be receptive to all the changes happening in their lives over the holidays, if they get to participate.

The key word to make holiday celebrations memorable is “simple.” Simple menus, easy guest list, easy parenting schedules and visitation time - all of these can make your holidays enjoyable.

How to Handle a Divorce from a Difficult Spouse

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Divorce is never easy or painless at the best of times, but it becomes infinitely more difficult when the one of the spouses chooses to be difficult or has a difficult personality. In such cases, you can expect the divorce to be prolonged, delayed, and even more expensive.

Some spouses are much more likely to refuse to compromise, refuse negotiations, and will want their day in court. How do you deal with a spouse who insists on making the divorce as ugly as possible?

Unfortunately, there isn't much that you can do to change your spouse’s behavior. In fact, it is probably better for you to come to the understanding that a person can't change his or her ways, and therefore, you need to make the best of your situation. If you plan to try mediation, get a mediator who is very well experienced in handling a contentious or difficult client.

Hire a Los Angeles family lawyer, who has experience in practicing trial law. In other words, you need an attorney who is ready right from the start to take your case to court, because that is where your case will probably end up.

If it's difficult for you to maintain face-to-face communication with your spouse, then limit personal contact to the minimum. Use e-mails and messages to communicate as much as possible.

Realize that just because your spouse is being difficult doesn't mean that you have to be too. That means that you don't necessarily have to dispute every little point that is brought up. Compromise on some issues simply to end the matter, and if the issue isn't really that serious anyway. In other words, don't try to prolong the divorce, simply because he or she is doing so.

Adult Children Can Find It Difficult to Cope with Parental Divorce

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Parental divorce is a traumatic and stressful time for children. Studies show that divorce can have an impact on children, when parents separate during childhood. But what happens when adult children have to deal with parents going through a divorce? Such situations are actually becoming increasingly common because of the increase in senior divorce.

According to statistics, the number of gray divorces or senior divorces has actually doubled since 1990. Older couples getting divorces now constitute approximately 25% of all divorces in the United States.

Increasing senior divorce rates mean that many adult parents have to deal with the fact that their parents, who have been married for many decades, are now making the decision to separate. Obviously, the trauma and stress involved when you're an adult watching your parents separate is very different from the experiences of a child. The concerns that you have as an adult when your parents divorce, are unique.

However, divorce lawyers in Los Angeles do see that when adult children watch their parents get divorced, there can be a much longer- lasting and deep impact, because adult children may have many more memories of their family, than younger children. Adults may find the prospect of meeting the mother’s or father’s new romantic partner even more stressful and painful.

Additionally, adult children may be placed in the uncomfortable position of having to become referees when their divorced parents argue with each other at family events and celebrations. The focus at these events may shift from celebrating to keeping the parents away from each other. Some studies indicate that adult women seem to take a much longer time to get over the emotional trauma of a parental divorce, compared to adult males.

What Happens to Your Business during Divorce?

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Among the many assets that you can expect to be on the division table during a divorce, the most painful one to part with is your business. You have invested many years of effort in building your business and making it successful. Although divorce can be traumatic even when there is no business involved, it can become much more complicated and stressful when there is a business to be divided.

If you own a business and are currently involved in divorce proceedings, then you know that this is probably the most valuable asset that you own. Division of this asset depends on whether the business was community or separate property. Typically, the business may be considered a combination of separate or community property.

If the business is considered community property, then you need to come to a compromise, and work together to make sure that the business does not suffer. One option is to sell the business, and divide the proceeds. This is one option that divorce lawyers often recommend. However, this isn't always easy, because disposing of a business is difficult and takes time. Besides, you have to ascertain the value of the business. Additionally, if you sell the business, at least one of the spouses is going to be left without a source of income or employment.

Another solution is to divide the business itself. A third option is for the couple to continue operating the business as partners together. This may be seem uncomfortable for the partners, but there's increasing evidence that partners who were married earlier actually make good business partners, provided they are able to keep their personal lives separate from their business.

The court may also award the business to one party, and order him to pay the other party his share of business. The court will determine the value of the business in such cases.

People in Unhappy Marriages at High Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Americans, who are in unhappy marriages, are much more likely to report symptoms of cardiovascular disease. Those are the findings of a new study that clearly find a link between a higher cardiac disease risk and marital friction.

Researchers have known for a long while now that unhappy marriages or conflict at home can increase stress and have negative influences on a person's health. In fact, studies earlier have clearly found an association between a negative health impact, and marital stress. This study only corroborates that fact. The researchers analyzed a group of 280 healthy, middle-aged adults, and found that those who reported negative influences in their marriages were at a higher risk of reporting greater carotid artery thickness. The study's findings were published recently in the Psychosomatic Medicine journal.

When the hostility level in a marital relationship becomes too much to ignore, persons may be placed under severe stress. Marital strain is a contributing factor to several lifestyle conditions, including diabetes and hypertension, and is also linked to an earlier risk of death. Other studies have found that divorced people are much more likely to develop chronic illnesses, and also have a higher risk of premature fatality, compared to married couples. However, that only applies to those cases in which the married couples actually had happy marriages. If you are in a hostile marriage, it makes sense to get out of an unhappy situation, and start all over again.

Often, people who are stuck in unhappy marriages continue to remain in the marriage only for the sake of the children. However, there is no evidence to show that children in a home, where the parents are clearly not happy with each other, benefit from being in a situation like this.

Can Divorce Parties Help with Closure?

Monday, June 16, 2014

It is a new trend that’s catching on across the country. New divorcees are throwing parties to celebrate the end of their marriage, and sometimes, in a trend that reminds one of conscious uncoupling, those parties are actually being jointly hosted by the couple.

Most of the parties however are being thrown by individual husbands and wives, after the end of their marriage. Event planners across the country are reporting an increase in the number of requests for such parties. The highlight of the divorce party is the divorce cake. Interestingly enough, the design of the cake seems to reflect the environment in which the marriage ended. Some of the cakes feature miniature brides with weapons, and depressingly black icing. However, not all of these divorce parties are all gloom and doom. Very often, couples actually prefer to celebrate the end of their marriage and mark the beginning of this new phase in their life with enthusiasm, positivity and optimism. Many couples want to celebrate the fact that this is a new phase in their life, and possibly even a new phase in their relationship with each other.

In an interesting diversion of this trend, couples are actually hosting divorce parties together. That typically happens when the couple has had an amicable split, and wants to continue maintaining a relationship with each other on friendly terms, and prioritizing the children above all else. In these parties, the note is very positive and optimistic.

Los Angeles divorce lawyers find this trend towards divorce parties encouraging, because it possibly does allow the people involved to move towards closure. Treating divorce as if it's shameful or something that should push you into months of depression doesn't help with closure.

Divorce Tied to Excess Weight Gain in Children

Monday, June 02, 2014

Children can be exposed to emotional trauma when their parents divorce. A new study finds that children of divorced parents also struggle with excessive weight gain.

The study was conducted in Norway, and analyzed a group of 3rd graders. This analysis found that boys whose parents were divorced, were approximately 63% more likely to be obese or overweight, compared to boys whose parents were married. These boys also had a staggeringly high risk for abdominal obesity. They were approximately 104 percent more likely to suffer from this condition.

The researchers believe that they have found a link between obesity and divorce, but say that they cannot confirm that divorce was the only cause of this weight gain. For instance, the study did not take into consideration how long the parents had been divorced, and did not account for the presence of other factors that affect weight gain, like diet and exercise.

However, considering that child obesity is a public health problem not just in Norway, but in many other parts of the developed world, including the United States, doctors, parents and pediatricians need to take the findings of the study seriously. One reason why children gain weight when their parents get divorced is the lower supervision that accompanies a divorce in the family. Parents, who are trying to work through their trauma and the division of responsibilities of parenting, may not be able to give their children enough attention. Additionally, children may become stressed when a divorce becomes toxic, and that could lead to children overeating for comfort.

Whatever the reason, when a divorce turns hostile or becomes acrimonious, there can be long-term consequences on the children. Speak to a qualified divorce attorney about divorce mediation before you head to divorce court.

Stressful Marriage Can Increase Risk of Premature Death in Males

Friday, May 16, 2014

Men, who are in stressful or difficult marriages, may have a much higher risk of dying prematurely, compared to men in happy marriages. The surprising results of a new study find that men may be much more vulnerable to the stresses of a difficult marriage, compared to women.

According to the study which was conducted on Danish men and women, men who reported facing pressures from their wives were much more likely to die much before their time, compared to men who did not suffer such marital stresses. The results of the study prove several things. For one, marital stress, and conflict are incredibly stressful on a person, and contribute to negative physical, mental and emotional health consequences. A bad marriage can actually kill you.

It also proves that men may find themselves very ill-equipped to handle the kind of conflict that a demanding spouse can create. They may lack conflict management skills, and therefore, the stress may become simply too much for them to bear. Chronic stress is a risk factor for hypertension, cardiovascular problems, heart attack, and even stroke. All of these increase the risk of premature death.

Overall, married life is believed to be much more conducive to a person's physical, mental and emotional health. Married people are believed to be happier, more fulfilled, and even more financially successful than unmarried or even divorced couples. Overall, they're also believed to live healthier, and live longer lives. Successful people tend to be in satisfying marriages. However, if you are in a bad marriage, just the opposite can happen. A bad marriage could make you depressed, stressed, and develop a negative outlook on life. As the study shows, it could even kill you.

Divorce Risk Is Higher When Wife Gets Sick

Wednesday, May 07, 2014

Many married couples probably do not take those vows to stick with your spouse in sickness and in health very seriously. Severe illness can put a strain on any marriage. However, when that illness involves the wife, the strain is much greater, increasing the risk of divorce.

According to a study that was conducted by researchers at the University Of Michigan, the risk of separation is much higher when it is the wife who falls sick during the marriage. The study was based on an analysis of 2700 couples. The researchers found that 31% of the marriages, in which one person fell sick, ended in divorce. However, the risk of divorce was much higher in those cases in which the wife, and not the husband, fell sick. The threat of divorce when the wife falls sick can be even higher, when the marriage involves senior couples.

The researchers analyzed couples in which one of the partners was at least 50 years of age, and analyzed for the presence of a number of diseases, including cancer, lung disease, heart disease and stroke.

They found that that 31% of the marriages ended in divorce, when one person was sick. Husbands were much more likely than wives to fall sick, and divorce was much more likely when the wife fell sick.

However, in all these cases, it may not be an unfeeling or callous husband who may be to blame. Very often, it is the woman who initiates proceedings for divorce. It is quite likely that women often feel like that they are not getting adequate support from their husbands, and therefore, rely on their family and friends for support during their illness. It’s also possible that men are simply not that comfortable in a caretaking role.

“Hangry?” You Might Want to Avoid a Conversation with Your Spouse

Friday, April 18, 2014

We’ve all experienced it at some point. When you're hungry, your irritability and anger levels simply skyrocket. Those high levels of anger when you're hungry actually have a new name - “hangry.” According to new research, such hunger-induced irritability could also lead to marital conflict.

The researchers evaluated a group of married couples, and followed them over 21 days, during which time the couples’ blood glucose levels were monitored every night. They found that blood glucose levels were actually a very clear indicator of how angry the person would be with their spouse. Persons with low blood glucose levels- an indication that they were very hungry and needed a meal - were much more likely to be hostile with their spouse.

The researchers actually found that there was a link between low blood glucose level and aggression. In other words, it is highly likely that low blood glucose levels are linked to marital conflict, and contribute to domestic violence incidents. The researchers measured aggression by giving the subjects voodoo dolls representing their spouse, and asking them to stick pins in their dolls. The lower the blood glucose levels, the higher the number of pins that the subjects stuck into their dolls.

Sometimes, marital conflict or even an incident of domestic aggression may simply be the result of a body that is starved for fuel. Glucose fuels the brain, and when there's a shortage of glucose supply to the brain, there is a risk of not just aggression, but also irritability.

All in all, it’s just not sensible to pick up an argument with your spouse around meal times.