We’ve moved!

November 13, 2010

Please visit us at our new address: www.bhamfamilylawyer.com

Did you know that men are far more likely to walk away from a marriage than women when faced with a seriously ill spouse?  An article on WebMD tells about a study conducted by neuro-oncologist Marc Chamberlain, MD, showing that women who fall victim to a serious illness also fall victim to an unwanted or unexpected divorce.

Chamberlain and his colleagues, “got the idea for the study after noticing that divorces were far more common among their female brain cancer patients than their male patients.”  Once he began the study, Chamberlain discovered similar patters among cancer patients and patients with multiple sclerosis.

The study focused on patients with certain illness who got divorced and found that 90% of these divorces were initiated by men.

Gender Divorce Gap After Illness Strikes

Divorced parents with children looking for a clean getaway from the ex are going to find that they are stuck.  Disputes involving the care and day to day activities of the children will certainly occur, thus  necessitating communication between parents.  This can lead to arguments and uncomfortable situations, and that is why I always recommend that my divorce clients with children develop a solid parenting plan.

A parenting plan is an agreement between the parents stating the time the children will be with each parent, how decisions will be made and how parenting responsibilities will be shared. The plan addresses such matters as how the children will spend the shared time to include days, weeks, vacations, birthdays, holidays, and other times important to the family.

Tracy Achen of WomansDivorce.com discusses several items you should consider putting in your parenting plan such as access to medical and school records, when and where parents will drop the children off for visitation, and recreational activities.

If you have a parenting plan in place, you will avoid conflict for years to come.

For more information, or to set up an appointment, please call my office at (205) 933-9451.

I have the pleasure to be involved with a wonderful workshop series called Second Saturday: What Women Need to Know About Divorce.  This free workshop includes a panel of professionals including divorce attorneys, mental health professionals, and financial advisers, and it happens on the second Saturday of each month (hence the name!).   Candace Bahr and  Ginita Wall started this series of workshops in California, and it has spread nationwide.  It’s an invaluable resource for women who are thinking about or are in the middle of getting a divorce.

Click here for more info on the upcoming Alabama workshop.

You can learn more about other Second Saturday workshops here.

Money talks

June 23, 2010

What are your partner’s views on money and spending?  We all know (or should know) that you need to know that before you become husband and wife, but the conversation should not end there.

Jason Alderman, a director at Visa, recently published this piece about the conversations people should have before they get married.  But what about after you say, “I do?”

Although money may not be the biggest cause of divorce, Alderman says that candid conversation will help your marriage stay strong and will save you money in the long run.  He says the couple should discuss “credit histories, your savings and spending philosophies, and your long-term financial goals as a couple.”

Keep the lines of communication about money open, and you and your partner are more likely to live happily ever after.

If you are interested in setting up an appointment, please call my office at (205) 933-9451.

Here is your assignment.  I want you to look at what’s been posted on your Facebook profile over the last month.  What were your status messages?  What pictures did you post or did other tag you in?  Now, think of it in the context of a divorce.

If you have an account with Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, or if you use any other form of social networking your life is an open book.  If you are considering a divorce or in the process of divorce, this can definitely hurt you.  Remember that everything you post is discoverable in court.  In other words, your ex can and will use your words against you.

Trying to win custody of your child?  You’d better take those pictures of yourself doing a keg stand off the internet.  Trying to show you don’t have money to pay child support?  Take down the pictures of your shiny new truck.

Let’s take it a step further.  Who do you know who might be posting information about you?  What do you think your ex is saying about you.  This is all information that you need to know and share with your attorney.

Here is a great piece from Time magazine on the subject

To learn more and to set up an appointment, please call my office at (205) 933-9451.

Once you’ve decided that you are getting a divorce, what do you do?  You want to choose a divorce attorney who you are compatible with and who you can trust to do a good job, but first you need to know what to look for.

First and foremost, you want your lawyer to have experience handling divorce cases.  It is important to find someone who knows the nuances of the law where you live.  If that lawyer specializes in divorce, they will not only know the law but also the other lawyers.  This can help when it comes to the negotiation of your divorce agreement.

The attorney you choose should talk to you in plain English, but more importantly, the lawyer should listen to you.  Each person that comes in my office is an individual with his or her own set of circumstances and should be treated that way.  The lawyer you choose should not rush to get you off the phone or out the door.  After all, divorce is hard enough without your lawyer making it more difficult for you.

One point that I stress with my clients, above all else, is that you have to trust me as your lawyer.  I not only need to know everything about your spouse and your relationship with that person, but I need to know everything about you.  I will always keep what you tell me confidential, but I have to be prepared if any surprises come up in your case.  Here is an example:  if we are asking the court to award child custody solely to you, it is important that I know all the details.  What you don’t tell me will hurt you, and it will ultimately hurt your child.

Need to set up an appointment?  Please call my office to set up an appointment at (205) 933-9451.