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Mediating Your Divorce

mediation-150x150If you seek a non-confrontational approach to ending your marital relationship, mediation may be the route for you to take. Mediation is a type of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), which can be a very cost-effective and efficient manner of amicably working out divorce related issues.

Mediation, Not Litigation

Mediated divorces are not litigated and there are no court appearances. A trained and neutral third party, usually an attorney familiar with matrimonal and family law, meets with the parties and reviews all issues with them in a non-confrontational manner. If the parties are mature, reasonable, and patient, mediation may be the best route to take with regard to handling a divorce case.

Divorces Where Mediation Won’t Work

Mediation, however, is not for everyone. Situations where the parties are not talking to each other or are not amicable do not present a good prospect for mediation. Cases involving very volatile relationships are also inappropriate cases for mediation. Further, domestic violence matters should not be mediated.

Mediation Requires Good Faith

For mediation to be successful both parties must be honest with each other. If either party hides assests or seeks to intimidate the other party, mediation is not going to work.

Divorce Can Be Difficult

Divorcing your partner can be a difficult process. Long term decisions need to be made on issues such as child custody, visitation (parenting time), spousal maintenance (alimony), equitable distribution of assets, dealing with business assets, valuing professional degrees, as well as the grounds for divorce. If you decide to use mediation, you should choose your mediator carefully. The Matrimonial and Family law attorneys at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo have more than 100 years combined experience dealing with all types of Matrimonial and Family Law issues. We are available to discuss mediation and other divorce related topics. Contact us for a free consultation.

Alzheimer’s Disease and Divorce

alz-150x150Pat Robinson has suggested that a man whose wife has Alzheimer’s disease should obtain a divorce. He takes the position that divorcing a wife with Alzheimer’s is a better solution than committing adultery with a new companion. Pat made these comments in response to a question submitted to him on his television program, “The 700 Club.” He had taken a call from a man who asked a question regarding a friend of his. The friend’s wife had a serious case of dementia and no longer knew who he was. Pat stated, “I hate Alzheimer’s. It is one of the most awful things, because here’s the loved one – this is the woman or man that you have loved for 20, 30, 40 years and suddenly that person is gone.”

Pat suggested he should divorce his wife and start all over again. He also suggested that even after divorcing his wife, he should make sure she has the appropriate medical support necessary to deal with her condition.

Criticism of Pat Robinson’s Position

Pat Robinson has received a lot of criticism for his position on this issue. There are those who believe life long traditional marriage is what keeps our society together, and it is each spouse’s obligation to stay true to his or her marriage and help their spouse in times of illness.

Beth Kallmyer, a senior director of the Constituent Services at the Alzheimer’s Association, stated, referring the Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia, that “this is a challenging, devastating and eventually fatal illness and it affects everybody differently.” The most important thing is for families to get help. She further stated that it was rare for couples to get divorced because one of them has come down with a severe case of Alzheimer’s disease. She did point out that Alzheimer’s disease can go on for many years or even decades. This can put enormous stress on family life.

New York Divorce Lawyers

For more than thirty three years, the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo has litigated all aspects of divorce, including child custody, visitation, child support, spousal maintenance (alimony)and equitable distribution of property. We also represent fathers with regard to proceedings in family court. We litigate issues involving paternity, downward modifications of child support, relocation problems, parental alienation cases and issues involving parental alienation syndrome. We also negotiate separation agreements for our clients. Feel free to call us for a free consultation.

Prenuptial Agreement between American Male and French Woman

divorce1-150x1503Judge Kaplan, sitting in the Southern District of New York (a federal court), was recently presented with an issue as to whether the United States or France should interpret the terms of a prenuptial agreement. The wife in this situation was a citizen of France. The husband was a citizen of the United States. They had entered into a prenuptial agreement and were married in the United States on January 10, 2004.

A divorce action was subsequently brought in the courts in France by the husband. Thereafter, the husband (the American citizen) brought a second divorce action in the state of New York. In his divorce action, he asked the State of New York to render a decision with regard to each parties’ rights under the prenuptial agreement they had entered into prior to the marriage. The case was eventually removed from the New York State courts and was heard before the United States District Court by Judge Kaplan, sitting in the Southern District of New York. The wife requested that the lawsuit be dismissed on the basis of forum nonconvenience grounds because the matter was already pending in France.

Judge Kaplan rendered a decision that the case should be handled by the courts in France. He therefore dismissed the case brought in the Southern District of New York. In his decision, he stated that the French courts could resolve all of the disputes concerning the prenuptial agreement. Since the lawsuit in France was originally brought by the husband – an American citizen – this acted as an acknowledgment that the French court was the appropriate forum to decide all issues involving prenuptial agreements. The court also stated that there was no local public interest that was necessary to adjudicate in the court located in the Southern District of New York.

About Our Firm
Our office has extensive experience in drafting prenuptial and postnuptial agreements on behalf of our clients. In these agreements, we protect both mothers’ rights and fathers’ rights in divorces and Family Court proceedings. We also litigate custody and visitation proceedings in the Supreme Court and the Family Court.
We also assist our clients in cases where the appropriate remedy to deal with their marital problems is to have the marriage annulled. Our office is also handling numerous cases related to the new New York no fault divorce law. Feel free to contact us. You can reach us at 1-800-344-6431, 516-561-6645 or 718-350-2802.

No-Fault Divorce (Finally) Comes To New York

NoFaultDivorce-150x150Governor David A. Patterson recently signed a new groundbreaking “no-fault” divorce statute into law. The statute goes into effect on October 15, 2010 and brings New York into conformity with the other 49 states concerning the issue of no-fault divorce.

The statute provides for a new ground for divorce which does not assign blame or fault to either party. Instead, one of the parties to the marriage need only swear in an affidavit that the marriage is irretrievably broken for a period of six months. This becomes the sole basis for the divorce. All other issues involving child support, spousal maintenance, custody, equitable distribution of property and other issues that arise in a divorce are not effected by the new divorce law. These issues will still need to be worked out.

Prior to the new law, one of the parties either had to prove adultery, abandonment, cruel and inhumane treatment or imprisonment for a period of three years or that the parties were living separate and apart (pursuant to a written agreement of separation or a separation decree) for a period of one year. An individual seeing a divorce under the old law often had to lie in order to obtain a divorce with regard to the issue of grounds.

In addition to implementing no-fault divorce in New York, Governor Paterson also signed into law a number of other statutes related to divorce. One of these new statutes provides new guidelines for temporary spousal support during the course of a divorce. It also authorizes the court to grant a financially dependent spouse up-front attorney fees if necessary.

Although the legal process in dealing with the issue of fault in divorce has been simplified, their are still many complicating factors each of the parties must face involving issues such as custody, visitation, child support, spousal maintenance and equitable distribution. Should you be facing the prospect of a divorce, contact the attorneys at the Law Offices of Schlissel DeCorpo for a free consultation at 1-800-344-6431, or by email.

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