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Entries in Legal Articles (30)
The New Year is a time for making changes to improve our lives.
For many in unhappy marriages, one of those changes is divorce. January has long been a popular month for divorce filings.
Professional lives slow down during the holidays, and people focus on family, togetherness and traditions. But simmering below the holiday cheer is grave disappointment for some.
Spouses may not live up to expectations. Or one too many drinks at a Christmas party could lead to inappropriate gestures or remarks, which, for those who have been unhappy for a long time, could be the straw that breaks the camel's back.
Some couples have decided to keep up appearances for one last holiday season as an intact family.
"I've had a lot of people retain me and say, 'Don't file the papers until the first of the year,'" says Henry S. Gornbein, P.A., and Partner at Gornbein, Fletcher & Smith, PLLC, a family law firm in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.
Back in 1995, I was approached by a therapist and a web designer, talking about the Internet. At that time, the Internet was almost unheard of. I had no idea what it was. The web designer was a man named John Thawley, who I work with to this day. The therapist was involved in the beginning but dropped off the face of the earth shortly after the website was launched. The website was called DivorceOnline.com. It was launched in 1995. In May of 1996, one of the most salient features of Divorce Online, entitled ‘He Said…She Said’, was launched. Divorce Online was a site with a goal of approaching divorce related issues legally, psychologically, and economically. There were many articles posted that are still relevant to this day.
By Ariana E. Cha and Jennifer Dixon
Here are some questions parents should ask themselves when considering joint custody:
Q: How well do you feel you and the other parent can get along?
A: Parents should cooperate with each other. "Support the child's relationship with both parents," Barbara Nordhaus, assistant clinical professor at the Yale Child Study Center, said Thursday. "Drop-offs and pickups should go smoothly. The better a couple can get along, the easier joint custody will be for the children," said Beth Clark, clinical psychologist and a consultant to the University of Michigan Center for the Family and Child. Leslie de Pietro, coordinator of Family Care Resources at the University of Michigan, agreed. "Children shouldn't be used a pawns." Parents should meet regularly to discuss the joint custody situation without the children.
We have been going through some of the worst economic times since The Great Depression. Numerous articles and newscasts have stated either that the housing market has bottomed out, or is still going down. In Michigan, we have the most depressed housing market in the United States. Other states, including Florida, California, and Arizona – just to name a few, are also going through some horrible economic times with regard to housing. In the past, before the economy bottomed out, homes were a family’s most valuable asset. In the last year and a half, that has changed substantially. In many of my divorce cases, the marital home is no longer an asset, but is heavily encumbered by debt. Many people purchased homes in the past ten years, expecting their home to become a piggy bank for future savings and retirement. Sadly, this is no longer the case. Many people were obtaining mortgages, followed by home equity loans and second mortgages, based upon numbers that no longer exist.
Parenting time is the number of overnights that each parent has with the child or children as the result of a divorce action or a paternity action. It is based upon the Child Custody Act, and the same factors that are reviewed by the courts in determining child custody, are also looked at with regard to parenting time. Parenting time can run the gamut from one parent having the children most of the time, and the other parent having a set schedule, such as alternate weekends and maybe one evening a week for dinner and alternate holidays, along with time set forth during the summer and school breaks, to a situation where the parties may have equal parenting time with various schedules being set forth by agreement or set by the court. Every situation is different and a parenting time schedule that makes sense for an infant or young child, will make no sense for a nine or ten-year-old. Teenagers will often need very different schedules because they want to spend more time with their friends, along with their involvement in school activities, and less and less time with either parent.