Rebuild Your Life After Divorce – Useful Information

Divorce is also messy and difficult. You don’t want a lawyer who has never referred to as or who communicates with you. Ahead of hiring a lawyer, you can need to note a few of the laws of one’s nation of separation, so that a better understanding of the situation. Have to find a lawyer and ask your attorney about particular laws, which may perhaps present low. You should know what you do not get what he deserves as a Pre-Nup.

You ought to also other cases, should you know what to expect. Sometimes, your attorney, the situation of sugar, but should you are in a position to some items that may possibly support your case, be identified, your lawyer is a lot more probably that you know the truth. It’s believed for getting general knowledge with the law and your attorney, you’re ready to be straight and sincere with you.

If you’ve a beneficial separation plan is significantly of what you go using a company representative. You are able to also help your attorney to prepare by giving them issues that may be utilized against their spouses, but also research. In case you are on a correct that can use for the advantage then you are far more probably to win because it is some thing that I by no means believe of his lawyer could.

If you possibly can not afford a decent lawyer will hire a lawyer for free. They have limited knowledge and resources. You can not know the law and hopes to solve alone. If you find out to research, his personal divorce is what you ought to be in a position to your pro bono lawyer say the situation against her husband to build, then it’s likely that what you earn inside case.

You have to also verify the laws with the early settlement. Right after a quick review, it truly is deleted and you are able to end up with much less than they began the process. You need to know that to pay the payment of taxes. Every land has laws when it comes to divorce quickly. They will also investigate to pay any other taxes or fees for issues for example household or ownership interest.

This contemporary look for can, please do your lawyer what they do and help as you can. It is possible to also go on-line and start to identify cases and laws that may be useful, not you. You desire to generate sure which you retain all financial records that have been saved during the marriage. This way you know that everything is paid for and would be the depreciation of these assets. This are going to be a very good aid as he be a divorce.

If you have children, you should investigate numerous nation laws. This way you know exactly what the chances of full custody, and what it methods to share custody. You would like to also check to see what are the limits of their parents. It may perhaps not be possible to take children out of land during the divorce, so you would like to know what you are able to do and what your spouse, and not under the law. Desire to know what you are able to do legally for getting facts and as soon as points needs to be files that you know exactly what’s happening in their divorce proceedings.

Minnesota Divorce Can We Not Just Agree

As a Minnesota divorce attorney, a question that is often posed to me by my divorce and child custody clients is, “Can’t my spouse (or the other party) and I just agree to something on our own?” Normally, my answer to that question is a resounding “yes” the more you can agree to, the less there is to argue between the attorneys and the less Court involvement that will be necessary. What this normally also means is the divorce or custody proceeding will be easier on your pocket book as well.

However, there are a few exceptions to the “lets just agree to this and follow it” approach. First, if the agreement pertains to minor children in any manner, the Court will always apply an independent “best interests of the child” analysis. In other words, just because you agree to something, if that agreement impacts minor children, the Court could reject the agreement.

With regard to child support, there is a legal presumption that the statutory child support guidelines must be used in all child support determinations. If the parties wish to agree to a different amount, they must provide to the Court an explanation on why this “deviation from the guidelines” is in the children’s best interests.

For an initial child custody determination, the standard for the Court would be “what is in the best interests of the children.” If the parties agree to the child custody and parenting time schedule and provide an explanation for it, generally the Court’s will defer to this agreement. The Courts generally appreciate the parties reaching an agreement on custody and parenting time because in most cases the parents know their children the best and know what is best for their children. So, if they can agree on custody and parenting time, the Court should adopt that agreement.

The tricky part arises when the parties wish to modify an existing Court order (a post-decree modification). For example, John and Jane got divorced. They had two minor children, Jenny and Jimmy. In the divorce, Jane was awarded sole physical custody, the parties were awarded joint legal custody, John was awarded parenting time every other weekend and was ordered to pay $1,000.00 per month in child support. One year after the divorce, John was terminated from his employment, began receiving unemployment and was home for the majority of the days. Based on this, the John and Jane agreed between the two of them that they would modify their agreement to provide for joint physical custody, each spouse alternating every other week of parenting time with the children and that neither spouse would pay to the other spouse any amounts for child support. John and Jane agreed to this in writing, each of them signed it, but they did not submit it to the Court for a Judge to sign and file with the Court.

John and Jane’s agreement would be considered an “extra-judicial agreement.” Is it enforceable? Maybe.

Minnesota courts have approved extrajudicial modification of an existing divorce decree through stipulated agreement. There is a policy favoring the use of stipulations in divorce proceedings. But these stipulations are given considerably less weight when the agreement involves children. The Court is not bound by stipulations involving child custody. Further, child-support stipulations are given less weight to protect “the welfare of the children” as the paramount consideration.

Guatemala and Enforcement of Foreign Judgements

Executive Summary What we are going to discuss here is whether or not a creditor can come to Guatemala with a judgment from a foreign (Non Guatemala) court and enforce it or make it collectible in Guatemala. We will look at the complications involved and the chances of success which are miniscule at best. I would like to point out that this is a topic not covered by our competition. There are collection law firms that discuss international judgement collection but they are trying to sell their services. In spite of this I have never seen one collection law firm getting enthusiastic about collecting foreign judgements. It is best done through a treaty which Guatemala does not have with any country. We will discuss the matter in depth below.
What is a Judgement A judgement is a decision from a court based on a trial or it could be based on a summary judgment where there was not trial held because the odds of success for the defendant were so small the court just goes ahead and railroads him. Sometimes this happens because the defendant can not afford a legal defense. This is prevalent in the USA. In this discourse we are addressing judgments for money damages. A judgement can have other aspects to it like an eviction proceeding ordering one to leave a house. It does not matter if it is a local court or a national court for this discourse. This is because Guatemala has no treaties for enforcement of foreign judgments but more on this later. The court would need to be contained in a country that Guatemala has diplomatic relations with. Guatemala also insists that the country of the judgement allows Guatemala judgements to be enforced in that country.
What is Not a Judgement A tax lien is not a judgment. Tax liens can come from local or national governments. There is normally no trial preceding a tax lien. There was no judge, no jury, no due process, no right to defend yourself, no attorney present for the defendant, no right to examine your accuser, no chance of jury nullification, etc. This is a government administrative procedure that is not enforceable offshore in other countries. A tax lien would need to be reduced to a judgement by filing a lawsuit in a court of appropriate jurisdiction in the home country. It would be like any other lawsuit. The defendant would have the right to present a defense and have a jury trail. Such a judgement would also then be dischargeable in an ordinary bankruptcy case. Tax liens are practically never converted into a judgement for these reasons and of course the expense involved, time delay to go to trail and so forth.
Guatemala Has No Treaty for the Enforcement of Foreign Judgements It is good that Guatemala has no such treaty. If a treaty like this was present the process of collecting a foreign judgment would be simplified. The judgment itself would be sufficient evidence to proceed with collection. With Guatemala, foreign judgements are anything but a cost effective easy thing to collect on.
Guatemala Corporations and Foreign Judgements Before we get into the ins and outs of the nightmares associated with collecting foreign judgments in Guatemala lets look at the initial problem a judgment creditor would face. We always have our clients use corporations for asset protection. This applies to banking, real estate, cars etc. We prefer to start with fresh corporations formed in the jurisdiction as long as they are anonymous bearer share corporations. Guatemala has very anonymous bearer share corporations. The names of the owners of the corporation do not appear in any public registry, database and the government does not know who owns the corporation. In places like the USA where the legal system has run amuck you will hear a lot of talk concerning piercing the corporate veil. This piercing the corporate veil tactic is nasty and effective in the USA. Try it in Guatemala and you will fail and have one angry judge to deal with who will be less than appreciative of your attempts to import sleazy legal tactics from the USA into his or her courtroom. The corporate veil is not going to be pierced for foreign cvil judgement collection matters. So how does the creditor attack real estate or a bank account owned by a corporation in Guatemala? He doesn’t! You are the owner of the corporation but he does not know that and cannot prove that. Ownership of Guatemala corporations is not in any public registry or database. Going to court and saying well the judgment debtor wired funds from his home country bank account to a bank account owned by this corporation, is not going to prove a single thing in Guatemala regarding corporate ownership. The judgment debtor may have invested in this corporation, he may have bought real estate from this corporation or bought a boat, a plane a car, etc. It does not prove any ownership. The judgement creditor is not going to be able to get into any Guatemala banking records using a foreign judgment as grounds. Guatemala has serious bank secrecy. You must understand that in Guatemala a corporation is a free standing judicial person (artificial person) that has its own assets and liabilities. Your liabilities are not the liabilities of the corporation. This means personal debts do not transfer over to a corporation.
Fraudulent Conveyance The catchall used to attack offshore bank accounts is fraudulent conveyance. A fraudulent conveyance references activity where funds or assets were removed from a jurisdiction to prevent a creditor from recovering the debt. The term can also apply to transferring title of real estate or a car to another to keep it from being attached by a creditor. Panama allows a creditor to pursue a fraudulent conveyance action based on a foreign judgment and this even applies to their foundations. As a comparison Guatemala is not a fraudulent conveyance friendly jurisdiction. Such cases are seldom ever heard of in Guatemala because the chances of success are extremely slight. The plaintiff would need to show that the transfer was specifically designed or intended to remove the assets from the reach of the creditor. If the defendant could show this was not the case then there is no fraudulent conveyance. The money could have been moved to say a Guatemala corporation to pay for services, goods, make an investment, buy a residence, invest in real estate, buy a boat, and so forth. Please bear in mind that in Guatemala the creditor is in the dark. He cannot just subpoena bank records like in other countries. He has no idea who owns the corporation. There are a lot of just about insurmountable obstacles in the path the creditor has to follow. This is why we do not really see these cases in Guatemala.
Foreign Judgement Enforcement Complications in Guatemala There are a lot of conditions that need to be met to enforce a judgment in Guatemala from another country.
Default judgments are not enforceable in Guatemala. The defendant must have been served personally. This means a live process server gave them the legal papers. If the service was by mail, by courier, by publication it invalidates the entire lawsuit and judgement as far as Guatemala is concerned. Dropping the papers on the doorstep or taping them to the door is not going to work. This right off the top eliminates a large amount of judgements.
The judgment must be final in that there is no more room for appeals. This is usually going to mean a few months in most cases.
The court that issued the judgment has to have had proper jurisdiction over the matter. Frivolous cases filed in foreign jurisdictions with incorrect venue or authority are not going to be enforceable. The debtor can always argue that the jurisdiction or authority the court asserted is incorrect. This can then make it a triable issue of fact in the Guatemala courts. The defendant would try to get the plaintiff to retry the entire case in Guatemala if he could not find another way to dispose of the matter. To do this means two sets of lawyers for the plaintiff, one in Guatemala and one from the foreign country. Think big money. Remember that Guatemala has no treaties for the enforcement of foreign judgments. This opens up the playing field to counter attack the plaintiff attempting to collect the judgement. When there is a treaty the judgment itself stands as admissible evidence and the grounds for objecting are most limited.
There is no enforcement if no such claim would be possible under Guatemala law. Guatemala will refuse to enforce the foreign money judgment if the claim on which the foreign judgment is based could not have been brought in Guatemala. The foreign case has to be consistent with Guatemala law. Guatemala law is not as crazy as USA, UK law. If you were sued for sending out faxes that were unsolicited, this judgment would be void in Guatemala since they have no such law in Guatemala. Many USA lawsuits are for civil violations that are absent from Guatemala law and thus not enforceable in Guatemala. This means the foreign attorney will have to retain foreign counsel to review the case and see it is consistent with Guatemala law. Can be expensive. He may have to have the entire matter translated into Spanish by a certified translator at a cost of $10 to $15 a page. Some cases are hundreds of pages. Then the Guatemala lawyer has to read the case which means billable hours. He will ask questions to the foreign attorney so now we get into double billable hours. In any event to enter the judgment into the Guatemala court system in an effort to collect there would need to be a translation of the judgment into Spanish. Then when the debtor started making objections the entire case file would most likely need to be translated into Spanish.
If the judgment was for contempt of court it makes the judgment not valid in Guatemala. This sort of judgment would not be collectible in Guatemala.
The judgment has to not be for default. In other words if you failed to respond to a foreign court action and were in domicile in Guatemala and they got a summary judgment that would not be a valid judgment.
More Foreign Judgment Collection Obstacles in Guatemala The creditor wishing to collect on a foreign judgment in Guatemala is basically on a financial mission, to collect funds. His path is like walking through a minefield. He can hit a number of unexpected or hidden tactics presented by the debtor that will make a financial recovery very unlikely.
First, we have to look at the appeals process open to the defendant. These are the things a creditor will be advised to consider before proceeding with an expensive and time consuming foreign judgment matter in Guatemala. Please bear in mind the defendant (debtor) can appeal any negative decision from a lower court two ways. The defendant can appeal to the Supreme Court claiming the law was not followed correctly applying any of the above noted objections, or all of them. He can also claim procedures were not followed correctly. He can claim the case is not consistent with Guatemala law. He can attack the way he was served. There are many things he can do. He can even file a counter claim against the creditor. The other appeals option is to appeal to the special Constitutional Courts Guatemala has to just decide constitutional issues. How hard would it be to argue that the defendant had some constitutional rights violated in the process somewhere.
If all that fails after years of waiting for the process to work its way through the courts, then there is the bankruptcy option. Guatemala has a complex bankruptcy court system that could be utilized for shelter from creditors. Using these appellate processes is going to run up the bill for the plaintiff substantially. Without the appeals system, the time required for cases can run up to the 3-5 year mark easily. Then add in appeals. and the bankruptcy for even more years. The plaintiff could conceivably go broke or die of old age before the appeals process runs out. They might recover nothing especially if a bankruptcy is used. The plaintiff might never prevail. The expenses involved could be more than the amount of the judgment. By the time all the appeals are used, the time limit for the judgment may have expired (7-10 years usually) and then the case could be dismissed because the judgment is not longer valid, thus not enforceable. And on and on it goes. Such collection efforts are indeed rarely ever seen in Guatemala.
Summary If you have read this you are looking for a secure offshore asset protection jurisdiction and structure. We have several excellent options. Please bear in mind the perfect jurisdiction and structure does not exist. There is always going to be a give and take scenario. We have managed to isolate a few excellent options but there is no perfect solution that meets the needs of everyone. We do try though!

The Why and How about a Prenuptial Agreement

Before marriage, couples often shy away from discussions of money, and their reluctance is understandable: Finance and romance seem mutually exclusive.

In fact, however, bringing financial issues into the open can be healthy, and it can be done without a full-scale return to the days of arranged marriages and fiercely negotiated dowries. Today, a couple can enter into a prenuptial agreement before the wedding, and that agreement will govern a wide range of financial matters in the future.

What can you put into a Prenuptial Agreement?
A prenuptial agreement can cover a wide range of financial matters both during and after the marriage.

You can use a prenuptial agreement to specify whether some property individually obtained during the marriage will remain the property of one spouse and will not be treated as community property.

You can keep property, including property that might later be acquired by inheritance, in one spouses family.

You can limit one spouses liability for the debts of the other spouse.

You can define your respective financial responsibilities during the marriage, separating responsibility for household expenses, specifying how bank and credit accounts will be handled, and determining how taxes will be filed.
You can make provision for a spouses children from a previous marriage.

You can decide how property will be divided in the event of divorce and, in some jurisdictions, whether alimony will be part of the divorce settlement.

The precise answer to the question “What can you put into a prenup?” varies from state to state, but its fair to say that almost anything that is otherwise legal can be included, except for an agreement that defines the terms of support for the couples children.

How do you get a prenup?

The hallmarks of a valid, enforceable prenuptial agreement are disclosure and fairness. Unless both parties disclose all relevant details of their finances, the agreement is readily challenged, and it makes good sense to provide that information well in advance of the wedding day. The party receiving that information should have enough time to understand its implications. When information is provided at the last minute, a prenuptial agreement lawyer can argue that it was tantamount to receiving no information at all.

Demonstrating the requisite degree of fairness does not necessarily require that the agreement be fair by some particular standard. It does, however, necessitate the involvement of legal counsel. Each spouse must be provided with his or her own prenuptial agreement lawyer, someone with undivided loyalty to the individual, not to the parties as a couple.

The question “How do you get a prenup?” is only part of the ultimate question. In order to arrive at a prenuptial agreement that works, one that is valid and enforceable, both parties must put their cards on the table and each must have separate legal representation.

Checking the Divorce List Twice

Divorcing isnt easy. Handling the various details required for marriage dissolution in California is enough to send a person into panic.

Going for marriage dissolution is a tough decision, made even more difficult if there are children involved. Its a time for second guessing, worrying about the welfare of the kids, and about the future. Then there are all the details that need to be attended to in order to get marriage dissolution in California. The stress levels couldnt be higher. In situations like this, discuss your fears with your Orange County divorce attorney. Thats what they are there for; to guide you through the labyrinth of confusion that arises when divorce proceedings take over what was once a normal life.

In order to get a handle on some of the stress, one of the better ways to get mentally organized is to make a checklist; a divorce checklist. While this might sound like the last thing on earth you would want to do with the roof falling in on your head, it offers you the chance to clearly focus on what needs to be done, what is done and what is pending, as well as puts into focus what documents or information you will need to round up.

The other positive thing gained by using a divorce checklist is that it tends to prevent any surprises further down the road if both of the spouses are on the same page during their dissolution proceedings. While this may be a very upsetting thing to do, it will pay off in the long run when all the sticky issues that need to be taken care of are out in the open and ready to be discussed with some degree of equanimity.

A divorce checklist should also have an asset and debt inventory section that covers various items that need to be shown to the court. That usually includes marital debts for the couple and an accurate record of all marital property. The property may include bank loans, bank accounts, student loans, pension plans and retirement plans, IRAs, bonds, stocks, sporting goods, the marital home, jewelry, and the vehicles both spouses drive. If there are any questions on how to classify property or divide your debts, speak to your Orange County divorce attorney for clarification.

One of the hardest things to sort out for a divorce proceeding is the value of assets, and in most instances, a reasonable guess will suffice keeping in mind that you may also need to be able to prove the actual value of the asset at a later date. The value of the asset should also include details about when the item was purchased and which person will take possession of it. Splitting the debts should also be done in a similar manner. In other words, who incurred the debt, how much is owed and who is going to take the responsibility to repay it.

There are other questions that will need to be dealt with over the course of the dissolution proceedings, and if you stay in constant contact with your Orange County divorce attorney, the journey to divorce wont be quite as devastating or confusing.

Divorce Law Myths in Australia

There are many myths about the laws that govern divorce in Australia. A lot of television shows, such as Boston Legal will have many viewers believing that divorce is a complicated and daunting process. However the majority of divorces never make it to court and only about 5% actually have a judge that makes the final decision. The majority of divorce claims reach a mutual agreement between the two parties before entering the courtroom.

The assistance of a lawyer will speed up the process and will guide you through any complications along the way. A qualified divorce lawyer can answer all questions relating to your divorce claim, including child custody, courtroom affairs and division of assets and property. In most cases your lawyer will be able to reach a settlement with the other party without standing before a judge.

Equal Child Custody
The idea that children will receive equal custody by both parents is not true and neither is the thought that mothers receive more custody. There are a few legislations that state equal child custody however these legislations are not mandatory. The truth is child custody is decided by 3 factors; firstly the childs age and their ability to decide which parent is in their best interest.

Secondly, the safety of the venue the child will be residing, including the home, contents and the surrounding area. Lastly is the practicality of the arrangement, including the distance from school and other facilities the child requires. Another myth surrounding child custody is that there is a high abuse rate. The abuse rate is actually higher in intact families as opposed to separated families where both parents have custody.

Half All Assets and Property
Again only 5% of divorce claims settle property and assets before a judge, as the majority of claims are settled outside of court. Even when settling before a judge, the chance of receiving equal amounts is very rare. In contrast to what many people believe, the earning capacity of each spouse is not the basis for the division of property and assets. Rather home duties are weighed together and the home maker will in most cases receive up to 70%.

For example the father may be more employable than the mother; however the mother has more home caring skills and will most likely end up with a larger settlement. There are cases where the main home carer will not receive the majority of property and assets, and that is when assets exceed an exceptional amount, such as property over one million dollars.

The Jury Decides
Nearly all matters concerning family law will not have a jury and will only have a judge. Divorce claims are held in family or federal courts, where only a judge, registrar or magistrate is present. The only exception is criminal acts, which are not treated as family law and are handled differently.

The majority of simple answers surrounding divorce law are myths, because they cannot be explained briefly. If you are serious about a divorce claim, then you should consult a professional family divorce lawyer. The best way is to jump online and Google family lawyers in your area.

I Love You. . .Different Men,Different Meanings

I can sleep with her, marry her, take care of her, but love thats something else,” said Tony, a married man in his late forties. “Guys dont like to talk about love. They dont know what to say. Of course guys do love. But they express it differently.” Despite this fact, most women do not feel happy unless they hear those golden words, I love you. Men need to hear them as well. And yet, as much as men want love, many fight it to the last minute. Love can make men feel vulnerable, childlike, and unable to do whats expected of us, especially those who believe theyre functioning in a dog eat dog world.

Different types of men express their love differently. In fact, love means different things to a man, at different times in his life. A woman needs to be alert to who the man she is with is, and what love means to him. Although most women wait to hear the golden words, “I Love You,” there are many different ways that men use to express what they are feeling.

The first way is simply by saying “I Love You.”

Actually, saying these words is a huge step for some men. It means a lot more than simply expressing a feeling. For some it feels like a life commitment, for others it is fraught with danger.

“When I say I love you,” said Steve, “I feel like Im taking my life in my hands and giving it to her. Its scary. Ive got to really trust her and know she wont throw my love away in order to actually say the words to her.” In this case the fear of rejection comes up strongly. Rejection is enormously painful for most men, and saying “I Love You”, can be an invitation to be hurt. Most men must feel very secure in the relationship and in the womans feelings for him, before hell dare say those words. For others, saying “I love you,” means, Im offering a commitment. Im going to be here to do things for you.

For many men, love is expressed through action, so these words are a promise of what is to follow. Simply by saying these words they feel they are agreeing to be there to give to support her. If they dont do it, theyll feel like a heel.

For others, the words means, Im not leaving, or Ill always be faithful. This can be very scary for some men. They feel the words themselves are a promise, and if the promise is broken, they will suffer as well.

However, there is another type of man, The Lovers, Dreamers and Peter Pans, who enjoy falling in love and letting the world know it. These men will say “I Love You” easily.

There are many different motives behind their words though.

Some say it to get a woman to make love with him, others to enter into a romantic fantasy, some to feel as though they are the great lover of all time. By saying these words, others seem to be offering the woman the world ( that they have no intention of giving.)

Others say it just for the sheer pleasure of seeing how good it makes the woman feel, and how powerful this makes him feel.

California State Divorce How to Start Yours

California state divorce laws are not that difficult to understand if you have good information. With the right advice, instructions, and explanations, you can get your own divorce started without hiring an attorney, and save a lot of money on legal fees.

This article will provide an overview of California state divorce laws in the context of how you can start your own divorce. You will learn what California law says about the roles of the Petitioner and the Respondent and implications of each role in the divorce.

The Petitioner and the Respondent. According to California Family Law Code Section 2330, every California state divorce starts with a Petition. The legal term for divorce in the code is “dissolution of marriage”.

The Petitioner is the person who first files papers and gets the case started. The Respondent is the other party. A Response need not be filed, but it is a good idea, otherwise the inactive person has little say about when or how the divorce is completed, unless there is already a written agreement. In order to become officially involved in the divorce, the Respondent will need to fill out and file California Family Law Form FL-120 (the Response).

In general, the more both parties participate, the better. After a Response is filed, the divorce can be completed only by written agreement or court trial. Agreement is better.

Equality. Once a Response is filed, the Respondent has equal standing and there is no legal difference between the parties or their rights, and either party can take any available legal step.

The Petition. So if you are the one who will start your divorce, you will be the Petitioner, and you will need to fill out California Family Law Forms FL-100 (the Petition) and FL-110 (the Summons) and file them with the Clerk at the appropriate courthouse. According to California state divorce law (as described in Family Law Code Section 2331), you will then need to serve your divorce papers on your spouse.

The only thing you need to know before you do this is that you want a divorce. The issues can all be sorted out and resolved later. However, it would be smart to learn the basics about California state divorce law before you start.

Advantages to serving the Petition:
Starts the clock ticking on waiting periods. California state divorce law states that the Respondent has 30 days to respond.
Causes automatic restraining orders to take effect, as per the instructions on the back of Family Law Form FL-110 (the Summons).
Has psychological value for Petitioner and tells Respondent a divorce is really going to happen.
Helps establish the date of separation. According to California state divorce law, the date of separation is whenever you can prove that one spouse intended to make a complete, final break (not just a temporary separation), with simultaneous conduct furthering that intent.

Possible downside. Serving papers can upset your spouse and stir up conflict if you dont properly prepare him or her ahead of time.

Getting a smooth start. Unless your soon-to-be Ex is an abuser/controller, you will probably want to start things off as nicely as possible. An abrupt start will probably increase conflict as an upset spouse is more likely to run to an attorney who will probably make your case more complicated.

So take some time to prepare your Ex and let him/her get used to the idea that a divorce is about to start. If you arent comfortable discussing things in person, write a nice letter. Let your spouse know you are committed to working out a settlement that you can both agree to and live with. Unless you are under time pressure, dont serve your Summons and Petition until your partner seems ready to receive the papers calmly.

The Response. A Response should be filed within 30 days of receiving the Summons and Petition, but can be filed any time before Petitioner declares the Respondents default.

Filing a Response is not an aggressive act. In fact, it is usually a good idea for the Respondent to take part in the action, especially if you have kids or property or debts to be divided. It is easy to do.

The only disadvantages are Respondents filing fee of about $320 for a California divorce, and the possibility that you might have to file a questionnaire about your case in order to avoid a case conference hearing.

There are numerous advantages to filing a Response. If theres no Response, Respondent has little control over when and how the divorce is completed, so the Respondent feels insecure. By filing, Respondent joins the case on an equal standing with Petitioner, so Respondent feels more a part of the process, more in the loop, more confident. Experience and studies show that the more Respondent participates, and understands the California state divorce process, the better the outcome is likely to be.

The Khul’ Divorce in Egypt

Under the rules of divorce in Islamic sharia, a husband has the prerogative right to divorce his wife any time, any place, with or without any reason. Under certain conditions, the wife may request from the religious judge a judicial divorce in case of harm or maltreatment (darar), as stated by the Maliki School of jurisprudence.

Based on the wide interpretation of the Maliki School, the wife may seek divorce if she can convince the judge that she is suffering a harm from her husband, a provision that is not allowed by the Islamic Hanafi School of law.

In general terms, Islamic sharia allows the wife to seek divorce under the following conditions: (1) impotency; if the husband is unable to consummate the marriage; (2) his apostasy from Islam; (3) his imprisonment for a long period of time; and (4) if he contracts an incurable skin disease.

The additional harm as a cause for divorce in Maliki interpretation of sharia, allows the wife to bring evidence to the judge showing that the husband used systematic maltreatment, and is unable to provide maintenance to her.

Such provisions in Islamic sharia created hardship for thousands of women who were seeking divorce, but unable to prove the harm factor to the satisfaction of the judge. Women were unable to get out of their un-happy marriages because their husbands refused to consent to the divorce, and the judges were not persuaded with the evidence presented by the women. To remedy this situation, the Egyptian government enacted a law allowing judges to approve the divorce through a process known as Khul, or repudiation, without the consent of the husband.

Khul was practiced in early Islamic period; it allows the wife to obtain a final divorce by means of a financial settlement paid by her to the husband in compensation, without having to prove of harm or maltreatment. Frequently, under the terms of Khul, the wife is required to pay back all or part of the “mahr”, which is the amount of money or objects of value that the husband gave his wife when the marriage contract was signed. Also, she has to relinquish her right to the amount of “mahr” he promised to give her in the future. In addition, the husband must agree to the Khul. In other words, should the husband refuse to consent to the Khul, the wife will be unable to get divorce. Faced with that difficulty, the legislators in Egypt enacted a law in which the judge was given authority to separate the married couple based on Khul without the approval of the husband and without having to prove maltreatment.

On January 2000, former President, Hosni Mubarak of Egypt, issued in the Official Gazette [al-Jaridah al-Rassmiyyah] Law No.1, of 2000, granting women the right to file for a “no-fault” divorce (Khul) on the basis of “incompatibility,” without having to provide evidence of harm. Under the provisions of the new law, the wife may obtain a definitive judicial separation from her husband if she desires so; the only condition she has to satisfy is to forfeit her rights to alimony and her deferred “mahr” (muakhar) as well as repay her advanced “mahr” (muqaddam).

First section of Article 20 of the new law provides the following: “A married couple may mutually agree to separation (al-Khul); however, if they do not agree and the wife sues demanding it [i.e., the separation], and separates herself from her husband (khalaat zawjaha) by forfeiting all her financial legal rights, and restores to him the “mahr he gave to her, then the court is to divorce her from him (tatliqiha alayhi).”

Before the judge rules on Khul, he has to order the couple to undergo a process of reconciliation, and after asking two mediators [hukkam] to pursue conciliation efforts between them for a period that may not exceed three months; and after the wife decides explicitly [tuqarrir sarahatan] that she abhors living with her husband and there is no way to continue married life between them, and that she is afraid to transgress Gods limits of this abhorrence.

It is important to note here that while a woman is required to submit to burdensome and time-consuming court-ordered conciliation, men seeking divorce, on the other hand, are never required to make any efforts at reconciliation. The reconciliation process is rooted in the biased notion that women are not capable of making rational decisions on issues related to divorce. According to one prosecutor in Cairo, mediation was necessary because “a woman may be hasty in filing for a divorce and may not have a strong keenness in keeping the family together. The court has to play this role and intervene. Men are more wise and rationale than women. A womans emotions can overcome her rationality”. (See Divorced from Justice: womans unequal access to divorce in Egypt, Google eBook, p.28).

Section 3 of Article 20 states that the separation order of the judge is “an irrevocable divorce [talaq bain]”; and the courts decision is not subject to any form of appeal. Article 20 of the Egyptian law of 2000 does not accord legal weight to the husbands consent to the terms of Khul divorce. This is based on the Sunnah literature, embodied in the Islamic canonical collections of the sayings and deeds of the Prophet of Islam, and especially the collection of Sahih al-Bukhari, which contain an authenticated version of Muhammads handling of the Habiba separation case in which he ruled to separate her from her husband without asking the husbands permission.

Although Article 20 of the Egyptian Personal Status Law, which grants women the right of Khul is considered a significant accomplishment by womens rights activists, it is harmful to womens financial rights because the wife is forced to give up her mahr, alimony and other gifts provided by the husband during their marriage. Poor women, particularly in rural areas, suffer most of this financial loss.

DISCLAIMER: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

An authorization to republish this article is hereby granted by the author provided that authors name is attached to the article.

The Real Divorce Cutting the Ties that Bind

Your divorce decree is only step one in moving into a new life after divorce. The real divorce is the cutting of the emotional, mental and physical ties that still bind you to your ex-husband. This is the real work of divorce recovery: becoming a single woman possessed of confidence, self-esteem, an enthusiasm for life and most important, a complete break from the emotional turmoil that led to your divorce in the first place.

All too often, women experience the same conflicts with their ex that originally led to divorce: constant arguments, reactive behavior leading to emotional upsets, old patterns of reliance, the barrage of destructive barbs aimed at your self-esteem and deep hurts. To truly be divorced you must put forth great effort and inner work that will sever your ties to your ex and you must build a structure that will facilitate that work.

Let me give you examples: You and your ex have children together therefore you must be in contact with one another on a regular basis. Unfortunately, your discussions with him always end in an argument. Nothing happens easily. The deep resentments and hurts suffered in your marriage and actual divorce remain intact. You each know each others hot buttons and continue to push those buttons resulting in upsets. Its the old marriage still running the game. You continually get sucked into this abyss.

If this is the case for you know that you have not divorced on an emotional level. You are an ex-wife versus a divorced woman. Somewhere inside of you there is still an attachment of some sort to either your marriage or your ex. You need to look inside to determine where you are still tied to him.

Acceptance of your new place in life is mandatory. Acceptance comes from acknowledging that your marriage is over with no hope or wish for it to continue. Acceptance allows you to living in a way that reveals a freedom from the past. It means living in the present and the future. It takes work but before you can do this work, you must put in place new rules that will lay the groundwork for a completely new relationship with your former husband. These rules are there to protect you from any further hurts or upsets.

You must build a new structure that empowers you versus disempowering you. Take the analogy of going on a diet to lose weight. You need to create an environment that will both motivate and move you towards your goal. To do so you remove all of the temptations that lead to over-eating or eating the wrong foods. You clean out all the junk food form the cupboards and replace them with healthy and non-fattening foods. You create a support system with a friend who you can call when you feel yourself slipping into your old eating habits. You take on a partner in your exercise program. In other words, you do everything that you can to surround yourself with ways to achieve your goal.

You must do the same thing when you are working at disentangling yourself from your ex. Create an environment that will help, not hinder your progress towards true independence. Remove all the temptations to stay connected to your ex. Within this framework you are free to do the inner work of healing.