3 Common Mistakes People Make when Filing their own Divorce

Divorce Mistakes

There are a ton of divorce mistakes that I often see people make when they file their own divorce. When I was preparing to write this post, I did a brainstorm and could find no fewer than 10 major mistakes – any one of which could doom your divorce, cause you major legal/financial trouble, or both. So I went ahead and prepared this video outlining the 3 biggest mistakes I see people make: They file too soon They don’t properly serve their spouse They don’t properly preserve claims for spousal support or equitable distribution in their divorce If you are […]

Does Alimony hurt your ability to qualify for a mortgage?

I recently received an email from a past client that got me scratching my head. Here is the email (with identifying information removed to protect the innocent and so as not to divulge protected client information…): Hey Jim, I just wanted to let you know my current situation so that you can use it as a warning to any of your current or future clients. I have been house hunting lately and went through the process for qualifying for a loan. I ended up getting turned down because the banks limit the amount of debt to 43% of gross income. […]

Taxes and Divorce in North Carolina – 5 Things you need to know

Taxes and Divorce in North Carolina - 5 Things you need to know

Taxes and Divorce have been a frequent topic of discussion during the Family Law Intensive Seminar that I attended today and yesterday in Charlotte.  In addition to taxes and divorce, there has been much discussion of business valuations, custodial evaluations, alimony experts, etc. Going to CLE’s like this always gives me lots of great ideas to talk about and share legal tips and information with my readers. Not surprisingly, whenever there is a small business or professional practice involved in a divorce case, the entire case is going to get very complicated very quickly.  The use of experts in these […]

Alimony Guidelines in Colorado – Could North Carolina be next?

Alimony Guidelines in Colorado - Could North Carolina be next?

Alimony Guidelines will become law in Colorado beginning on January 1, 2014. The new alimony guidelines will affect couples who have been married between 3 and 20 years, and who have combined incomes of not more than $240,000. According to the Denver Post, Colorado will join Maine, Texas, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma and New Jersey as the next state that uses a “maintenance formula” to determine an appropriate amount of spousal support. Under the new formula, the court will take 40% of the “supporting” spouses income, and subtract 50% of the “dependent” spouses income, resulting in an alimony amount that can be […]

What does “Complex Divorce… Made Easy” really mean?

I’ve recently changed the tagline on my website to “Complex Divorce… Made Easy”. You may be wondering what that means. Here’s the quick and dirty explaination. Not all divorces are complex. Some cases are actually relatively simple. If you are in a situation where you don’t own property, you have a relatively short marriage, there are no spousal support issues, and you don’t have kids, then I would consider that to be a relatively simple divorce in North Carolina. If you go to an attorney under that factual situation and they quote you an unrealistically high fee to accept you […]

NC Divorce Papers – Who should file first?

The question of who should “file” NC divorce papers first depends in large part on your unique personal situation and what is meant by “filing” legal paperwork. In North Carolina, when we refer to “filing for divorce”, you could be referring to filing for the absolute divorce, or filing for any of the other legal remedies you may be seeking (i.e. post-separation support, alimony, equitable distribution, attorneys fees, custody, child support, etc.). If we are discussing the sole act of filing NC Divorce papers for absolute divorce after all of the other issues have been resolved, then it really doesn’t […]

Alimony and Taxes in North Carolina

Alimony.  Taxes.  People cringe and the thought of either of these topics, and here I am, writing about both in the same blog post.  I represent a lot of people who are either seeking alimony from their spouse or are going to have to pay alimony to their spouse.  The issue of taxes and alimony is an important one, regardless of whether you are paying or receiving spousal support. For instance, if you are fortunate enough (or unfortunate enough, depending on your perspective) to be entitled to receive alimony in North Carolina, did you realize that the payments you receive […]

We have a simple, uncontested divorce – do I really need a lawyer?

Yes. No. Maybe.  To be honest, I’m not really sure.  What I do know is that lots of people make the mistake of waiting too long to call a lawyer – like when things have gone bad and there is nothing that we can do to help.  I’ve written previously about this here.  Here is another article that talks about when you should hire a lawyer. For example, today I received a call from a man with an out of state custody matter.  He lives in North Carolina, but got divorced elsewhere.  His ex-wife filed for a custody modification (she […]

Collaborative Divorce is great for the kids

I came across a great article today that illustrates just why collaborative divorce can be such a great thing for the children of divorce. The article profiles a family from Rochester, New York that is going through a collaborative divorce with children – successfully. On anther note – I was forced to go to court this past week for one of my last litigation cases, and if I ever thought that I might continue litigating family law matters, this case put that idea to rest.  Here are a couple of reasons why: Collaborative Divorce is much better for the kids […]

Preparing for Divorce – The Final Tip: Be Good!

This is the last in a series of blog posts I have written during the past several weeks on how to prepare for divorce and separation.  Today’s tip focuses on the practical – be on your best behavior while going through the middle of a divorce.  Whether you are considering a collaborative divorce, or a more “old school” divorce, the idea here is the same – be good! You are about to be put under a microscope.  You are reading this blog, so I assume that you may be facing a divorce and you want this unpleasant process to be […]