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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 06-28-2015, 07:48 PM
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I'm just a random stranger on the internet, but here are my thoughts:

1. I think you're out of luck with the cottage. It was a gift to your ex alone, it was never mingled with shared marital resources, and it sounds like it was never used by the family. HOWEVER, that doesn't mean you can't use it as a bargaining chip. Tell your ex you'll drop all claims to the cottage if he agrees to take on all credit card debt in his name. It's a bluff, but it might work.

2. I believe you are entitled to a share of his pension, especially if you can prove that you supported him throughout the process of training as a teacher.

3. If your lawyer doesn't explain things clearly to you, I suggest you tell him (once) that you have difficulty following his explanations, and could he please slow down. If he doesn't, find another lawyer. You're paying too much money to not understand the process.

4. Your ex can move back to his parents or anywhere he wants to go. But he can't move the kids. Stability for children is paramount. At the moment, you have de facto joint custody, which means he can't make any decision about the kids without your involvement. If you think he is trying to move the kids to his parents', write a letter to the kids' school(s) indicating what the situation is and that no transfer request should be considered without your approval. And then write a letter to your ex (I know it's ridiculous when you're in the same house), registered mail, stating that you do not consent to any movement of the children from their current schools.

5. If the current situation is too comfortable for your ex, make it uncomfortable. Give him a deadline for financial disclosure and tell him that if you have not received his information by the deadline, you will write up a separation agreement which reflects your current knowledge of his finances. Or you could go further, and tell him you will initiate a court application for sole custody of the children and sale of the house unless you have disclosure. Once again, it's a bluff, but it might get him moving.

6. You mentioned looking for another apartment - there is no reason why it should be you that moves.

7. Others have suggested counselling to deal with the emotional fallout, and I think that's a really good idea. You need somewhere to spill the emotions, so that you can be coldly rational when it comes to negotiating the divorce.

8. I know it doesn't feel like it now, but you really are better off without your ex and ex-BF. A double betrayal is painful, but these are sleazy people who don't deserve your respect. A couple of years from now this will be very clear. Don't be embarrassed to have other people know about the situation. As Links said, these kinds of things are surprisingly common, and you may find you have a lot of support. After all, you're not the one who violated your marriage vows. You still have integrity.
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old 06-28-2015, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arabian View Post
SSlang: sorry to hear of your situation. I understand about the embarrassment of divorce. Once you start getting substantial bills from your lawyer you will find the embarrassment part dwindling and anger/frustration part increasing.

curious - how did you happen to hire the lawyer you have now? Have you had to give the lawyer a large retainer?
Hi. I hired him after googling a few lawyers in my area. He seemed to have good reviews on lawyerratingz. Maybe I'm just too sensitive right now. I paid him a $3000 retainer at $350 an hour.
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 06-28-2015, 10:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stripes View Post
I'm just a random stranger on the internet, but here are my thoughts:

1. I think you're out of luck with the cottage. It was a gift to your ex alone, it was never mingled with shared marital resources, and it sounds like it was never used by the family. HOWEVER, that doesn't mean you can't use it as a bargaining chip. Tell your ex you'll drop all claims to the cottage if he agrees to take on all credit card debt in his name. It's a bluff, but it might work.

2. I believe you are entitled to a share of his pension, especially if you can prove that you supported him throughout the process of training as a teacher.

3. If your lawyer doesn't explain things clearly to you, I suggest you tell him (once) that you have difficulty following his explanations, and could he please slow down. If he doesn't, find another lawyer. You're paying too much money to not understand the process.

4. Your ex can move back to his parents or anywhere he wants to go. But he can't move the kids. Stability for children is paramount. At the moment, you have de facto joint custody, which means he can't make any decision about the kids without your involvement. If you think he is trying to move the kids to his parents', write a letter to the kids' school(s) indicating what the situation is and that no transfer request should be considered without your approval. And then write a letter to your ex (I know it's ridiculous when you're in the same house), registered mail, stating that you do not consent to any movement of the children from their current schools.

5. If the current situation is too comfortable for your ex, make it uncomfortable. Give him a deadline for financial disclosure and tell him that if you have not received his information by the deadline, you will write up a separation agreement which reflects your current knowledge of his finances. Or you could go further, and tell him you will initiate a court application for sole custody of the children and sale of the house unless you have disclosure. Once again, it's a bluff, but it might get him moving.

6. You mentioned looking for another apartment - there is no reason why it should be you that moves.

7. Others have suggested counselling to deal with the emotional fallout, and I think that's a really good idea. You need somewhere to spill the emotions, so that you can be coldly rational when it comes to negotiating the divorce.

8. I know it doesn't feel like it now, but you really are better off without your ex and ex-BF. A double betrayal is painful, but these are sleazy people who don't deserve your respect. A couple of years from now this will be very clear. Don't be embarrassed to have other people know about the situation. As Links said, these kinds of things are surprisingly common, and you may find you have a lot of support. After all, you're not the one who violated your marriage vows. You still have integrity.
Thank you for this information. I just feel very intimidated by my lawyer. He talks over me and with everything going on right now he just seems to be another person who isn't helping.

I will see about a counsellor. Thank you all for your advice.
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 06-29-2015, 01:54 PM
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Is there another family law lawyer in his firm that could take over the file? I would try and get a lawyer switch - especially if I was paying $350/hr.

Sounds like your work has an EAP programme - don't be shy about using it to avail yourself of counselling services. You've gone through a lot and will be going through even more in the coming months - get some help.
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  #15 (permalink)  
Old 06-29-2015, 08:11 PM
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I had a big fight with him today about the finances. He said he was going to claim child and spousal support. I got so upset and we argued about his EA.

He got really mad and admitted that they were having sex since December and that he regrets none of it.

I don't want to go on anymore.
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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 06-29-2015, 09:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSlang View Post
I had a big fight with him today about the finances. He said he was going to claim child and spousal support. I got so upset and we argued about his EA.

He got really mad and admitted that they were having sex since December and that he regrets none of it.

I don't want to go on anymore.
first off get some help to deal with the emotions you are feeling. He may or may not have had sex with you ex bf but he does know that it pushes your buttons and will keep rubbing it in your face to make you upset. You cannot change the past, what is done is done, focus on the future.

Do not waste time talking to him, just send him emails so you don't have to get into verbal battles with him.

Considering you make more then him then yes he may get offset CS if it is a shared custody situation. SS is another matter. From what you have written he never suffered and in fact bettered himself while with you. I really do not think he has a claim. He may think that because you make more he is entitled but I don't think so. IMHO.
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  #17 (permalink)  
Old 06-29-2015, 09:34 PM
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Don't give up. You're in the hard part now, and there is more to come, but there will be a day when you look back on all of this and realize how much better your life is with your ex out of it.

Your ex is winding you up with emotional arguments about his chickie on the side and telling you gruesome unnecessary details about the affair. Who knows why? Maybe he's feeling guilty and trying offload it by making you out to be the irrational, angry one. Maybe he thinks he's punishing you for some imagined transgression in the past. Maybe he's trying to get you to move out by making your life miserable. His motivation doesn't really matter.

The important thing is not to fall for it, which may mean not talking to him. About anything. At all. If you have to communicate, use email (even if you're in the same house). Several people on this site have been in similar situations, where they had to share a house with someone they were literally not speaking to.

He can "claim" anything he wants, but that doesn't mean he is going to get it. If the kids are week on/week off with you and him, you will both be paying each other child support (this is called "offset" - search the term on this site and you'll find the details).

As for spousal support, good luck with that one, dude. From what you've said, he has a good career as a teacher, and you supported him while he was training to become a teacher. You may have a higher income than he does right now, but that does not mean he is automatically entitled to SS. If he thinks so, he is sadly mistaken. Unless you and he have agreed that you will pay him SS (and there is no reason why you should do that). or unless you have a court order requiring you to pay him SS, his talk is just mouthing off.

Tough talk about what they're entitled to and what they're going to get out of the divorce is very common with arrogant exes who think they know everything about family law. He will have some unpleasant surprises.

I really urge you to seek counselling through your employee benefits programme. Talk to your benefits co-ordinator and tell him or her that it's an emergency. Don't be embarrassed - your situation is more common than you realize. You need somewhere safe to spill all the horrible emotions that you're going through.
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  #18 (permalink)  
Old 06-30-2015, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SSlang View Post
I had a big fight with him today about the finances. He said he was going to claim child and spousal support. I got so upset and we argued about his EA.

He got really mad and admitted that they were having sex since December and that he regrets none of it.

I don't want to go on anymore.
Why are you discussing financial issues with him? If you have questions or need to advise him of something of this nature, send him an email.

The only discussions you should be having now relate to the immediate needs of the kids. Outside of that, there is nothing that needs to be said that can't be done by email.

That either of you allowed the discussion of finances to turn into a fight means both of you need to learn coping mechanisms to control your emotions. You need to think of this as a business split going forward. Emotions are unnecessary and will only do more damage than good.
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  #19 (permalink)  
Old 06-30-2015, 10:50 PM
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Quote:
Tough talk about what they're entitled to and what they're going to get out of the divorce is very common with arrogant exes who think they know everything about family law. He will have some unpleasant surprises.
I co-sign on this. And as much as your lawyer seemingly has bad beside manner, s/he may be the exact person you want to shut down whatever tomfoolery your STBX is throwing in front of you.

Aside? I am in a similar situation right now and my coping mechanism is the 'sweet as pie / Pollyanna' routine. Lots of 'good mornings!' 'How ARE you?' 'How was your day?' stuff that immediately changes the tone in the house, especially in front of the kids. I don't discuss the separation unless I have to ('Did you need a ride to mediation?') and I just keep my head high. Just try and project yourself 5 years from now and envision how you handled this (really, really hard) time in your life. Bonus? It drives STBX crazy and his frustrations due to my 'bigger person' routine are much cheaper than my legal fees.
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 06-30-2015, 11:19 PM
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^ensorcelled has some excellent points to consider. A prick lawyer might do you well as you meander your way through litigation.

Yes living well and being happy is, indeed, quite frustrating to the other side.

So quit yar bawling and go out and get a new hairdo and look better than you have ever looked before.

Karma
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