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Los Angeles Divorce Law Blog

California child support collections remain high

Young children often imitate the people with whom they spend the most time. Many California parents will be familiar with hearing their children repeat the phrases they use the most, or watching a child pretend to be mom or dad on the phone.  August is Child Support Awareness Month, and noncustodial parents who make regular payments in respect of child support give their children something to imitate that will stand them in good stead for the future.

The levels of child support payments that are collected across California remain consistently high year on year. The amount distributed among 1,425 families in one county alone last year was $8.4 million. Making regular child support payments will not only improve the quality of a child's life, it also gives the child a positive example of taking responsibility. Children are always watching how their parents behave, and this is often how they learn life skills that they then take forward into adulthood.

Avoiding tax problems with retirement accounts during divorce

One of the Founding Fathers of our country once said that two things are certain: death and taxes. Every California adult will have had dealings with the IRS at one time or another and will be familiar with how complex tax issues can be. When it comes to divorce, unfortunately, they are no less so.

The division of retirement accounts, in particular, can have serious tax implications if done without care. With so many different types of funding available, it is impossible to use one method to deal with all of them. The consequences of carelessness in this area could be catastrophic. One of the worst-case scenarios may be that one could potentially find himself or herself in a higher income bracket, left with the entire tax bill, and subject to a number of different penalties – while the ex-spouse gets all the benefit.

Ron White, Margo Rey divorce: are they actually married?

Relationships can be difficult to define and complicated to explain to others. One's marital status is usually clearer cut. For one California couple, each party has a different opinion over whether or not they are able to divorce, since they cannot agree on whether they are indeed married.

Singer-songwriter Margo Rey has recently filed for divorce from stand-up comedian Ron White, following a brief separation. There are no children as a result of this marriage; however, Rey is reported as having requested spousal support. White has allegedly responded to this by stating that Rey and he are not legally married. He claims that the couple participated in a marriage ceremony in 2013 but that there was no marriage licence.

The inadvertent witness to an episode of domestic violence

Many things happen over the course of the day, for which there are no witnesses. While it can be disappointing that one was unable to get the evidence of an unexpected and pleasant experience, it can be frightening to be subjected to events that leave one shaken or hurt. Many California residents who have been victims of domestic violence will understand that feeling all too well. 

One incident of domestic violence took a surprising turn, when technology inadvertently stepped in to help. A man was house sitting with his girlfriend when she received a text message that prompted him to accuse her of infidelity. He became violent with her, and at some point during the altercation, he allegedly asked the question: "Did you call the sheriff?" A voice-activated personal assistant that was connected to the home's telephone land line picked up on this phrase, interpreted it as a command and dialed 911.

Infertility treatments do not raise risk for divorce

Researchers have long wondered about the key factors that cause a marriage to end. Many studies have concluded that money troubles lead to divorce, and others indicate that infidelity causes couples to split. Some analysts believe that infertility brings many spouses to the end of their romance. However, California couples who struggle with infertility may be relieved at the results of a new study.

Doctors followed tens of thousands of couples in Scandinavia as they endured the frustration and disappointment of fertility treatments. The mission of the research was to determine if such stress was too much for a marriage and if there is any link between infertility treatments and divorce. Surprisingly, the research showed that couples who bear the anxiety of invitro fertilization may actually grow closer as they bond through the process.

What happens to health insurance after divorce?

People often don't think about insurance until it becomes necessary. Many California families are reliant on the health coverage, as well as life insurance, provided by the employer of the highest earning spouse. No one wants to consider the worst-case scenario in marriage, whether that means divorce or the death of a spouse; however, some things require attention before they become urgent.

Two years ago, the Kaiser Family Foundation found that almost one quarter of women in this country under 64 years of age received their health coverage through the plans provided by their spouses' employers. In general, women are more likely to be dependent on this than their husbands, although this is not always the case. Spousal benefits are subject to a number of variables, making it more complicated to determine how one's insurance may change following divorce.

Good parental communication is in the best interest of the child

No matter what else happens in life, a parent will always love his or her child. He or she will always do whatever they think is in the best interest of the child; however, they don't always get it right. Many California parents unwittingly put their children in difficult positions when going through divorce, when a little forethought might prevent additional stress and heartache.

However much one may wish to have no further dealings with an estranged spouse, a certain level of communication is still necessary when a couple has a child. Whether custody is shared equally or whether visitation is more restricted, there will still be a necessity for the parents to discuss the welfare and progress of the child they share. It can be easy to ask a child to remind the other parent to check the child's homework, or to ask him or her to show a note from school to the other parent. However, a child will often forget such requests, or pass the message on incorrectly.

New domestic violence program being trialled in California

It is easy to think that whatever happens in a person's own home is his or her own business. While this is true the majority of the time, there are times when help is not only necessary, but is vital. For victims of domestic violence, a new program being tested in one California county may bring new hope.

Police representatives from across the country gathered in the Bay Area recently to learn about the work being piloted by the Contra Costa Alliance to End Abuse. The program receives funding from the federal government, and is also being tested in a number of other major cities in other states. Usually, victims of domestic violence would be given a pamphlet by the police about the help that is available, and encouraged to follow up. This is often ineffective for a number of reasons, not least of all because one may have used the last ounce of courage on that initial contact alone.

Will Richard Williams score the match point in his divorce?

It is said that it doesn't matter whether one wins or loses; rather, it's how the game is played. While it is certainly true that the way in which one conducts one's self is important, there are times when California residents may find themselves accused of behavior that is immoral or illegal. When divorce proceedings are contested, they can bring out the worst in people.

Richard Williams, the 75-year-old father of tennis players Serena and Venus Williams, recently filed for divorce from his second wife, 38-year-old Lakeisha. The couple had been married since 2010, and in 2012 Lakeisha gave birth to their only child, a son named Dylan. In his divorce petition, he states that his wife vacated the marital home the previous year, leaving their son in his care. He also claims that she sometimes picks the child up late at night, and alleges that his wife is in a relationship with someone who he believes has a criminal record, and thus has concerns about the safety of his child around this person.

Divorce isn't just another day at the office

For most people, business is just business. For some California couples, being in business together can seem like a natural extension of their personal relationship. When divorce rears its head, things can become complicated.

Many things will contribute to the way in which a business may be viewed during the division of assets. If the business was started or owned by one spouse prior to marriage, this may give that spouse a stronger claim to the asset. However, this may be balanced by the level of input that the other spouse has had in the business since becoming a part of it. Also, being a partner in a business is not necessarily the same as being an owner, whether wholly or partially.

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