Do’s And Don’ts of Dealing With Abused Children Of Divorced Parents

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmMore than often, children end up becoming victims of divorce. And sometimes, they are the reason why parents get divorced. The latter is common during child abuse cases. Child abuse includes physical, psychological and sexual harm inflicted on the child. Child neglect and abuse is a major ground for divorce and most states including California award custody to the other parent without much pressure. However, once the child goes back to the caregiver, there are certain do’s and don’ts to follow while dealing with them.

Do’s

First and foremost, get your child(ren) individual therapist with a therapist licensed in your state.

Make some organizational planning and re-structuring within the house without making it emotional. Involve the children while you’re making the plans to make them feel that everything is normal around them. Ask for votes and opinions and make them participate as much as you can. But don’t put too much responsibility on them.

Abused children show signs of depression and sadness but some kids can act in the opposite way. If they show unruly behavior, teach them how to behave and this can be done in a fun and creative manner.

From time to time, talk to them about the changes in the house and why the changes are taking place. It will increase communication and help foster a positive relation between you and your children.

Don’ts

Try to avoid any sense of fear or anger around them because it might lead to depression. Even if they are old enough to understand such behavior, any negative emotion can have bad effects on their psyche.

Don’t try to go into a new relationship when your kids are still trying to cope up with the situation. It becomes very confusing for them to adjust around new people especially when they have gone through a bad experience.

Avoid any talk about divorce or the abusive parent in front of your kids. Don’t even mention their name.

Don’t make complicated and philosophical talks with your kids. Talk to them as any other parent would with their children.

Conclusion

Children are tough to deal with when parents undergo a divorce. Abused kids even more because of the trauma they go through. While dealing with such kids, it’s better to keep things as normal as possible. Create activities and allow your kids to become a part of it. Avoid negative talks or anything that has to do with either the divorce or the abusive parent.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

The Role Of Parents & Grandparents In California Child Custody

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County family law attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmIn 2000, a landmark decision was passed regarding custody and visitation rights of grandparents after the Troxel vs. Granville case. The Court in that case ruled that when it comes to child custody, parents have the upper hand because they are the primary caregiver. However, minor children are also allowed to spent time with their grandparents and it depends upon the decision of the parents.

Parents are given more preference

In cases where both parents and grandparents are involved in custodial battles, the court gives more preference to parents. Also, more significance is given to a parent’s objections regarding visitations by grandparents. California courts believe that since children spent the majority of their time with parents, it makes the parents responsible for what their child does. But that does not mean that children should be kept away from grandparents. Building an amicable relationship with every member of the family should be the goal.

Grandparents can get custody too

Despite what the court orders are, there are always cases where grandparents have got the custody of their grandkids. This usually happens when the parent is either convicted of a crime or is unable to provide for the child. In cases where domestic abuse or child abuse is involved, grandparents may win custody battles. Even in cases where there is serious disruption of parental custody or physical unavailability of parents for long durations, grandparents are given the custody of their grandkids.

The role of grandparents during child custody

In general, grandparents play an important role in a family especially in the lives of grandchildren. Grandparents should guide parents when they want to get a divorce or they want to get married again. They should be supportive but at the same time unafraid to talk about the negative consequences.

During child custody and visitation, grandparents should be able to tell the court why their presence is important. They should clearly identify areas in the child’s development where they play an important role.

Conclusion

Parents and grandparents are both important for child custody and visitation. However, after 2000, California courts award custody of children to parents unless some serious crime is involved. The role of both parents and grandparents must be distinct and each should know their importance in a child’s life. The best resolution would be to allow grandparents to become an integral part of the children’s life while parents continue to maintain their custody.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Tips For Becoming A Better Step-Parent For Divorced Kids

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmIf you’re a step-parent who’s in charge of step-kids, then it is needless to tell you how hectic and tough it can become to handle them. Children exhibit a variety of emotions and sometimes it becomes hard to understand what their true feelings are. As a step-parent, you can only put on your best behavior and hope that things get better as time passes. However, it does not always work out and you need to put in extra effort to make sure it does.

Here are some tips to help you become a better step-parent:

  1. Don’t make too many drastic changes

Changes are difficult for children to accept and more than often it negatively affects them if the changes are too drastic. The very reason that you’re in the house means that there are going to be certain changes and the child knows that. So, take it easy and make one change at a time.

  1. Make changes before you marry if you can

The best way to allow kids adjust to the change is by making the changes before you get married. And since you’ll be around the children for most of the time, they will slowly get used to the change.

  1. Don’t create excessive rules

It is understandable that you want to create rules and impose them on your step-children as part of your parenting guide. But making too many rules can have a negative effect on the kids. When you’re moving into the family, don’t make any rules at all. Instead make everything fun and interactive. Once you connect with your step children, you can teach them certain rules which they should follow around the house.

  1. Don’t be stern

Never ever make the children feel like they’re in a military camp. Be easy on them and even if they make mistakes or create trouble, handle the situation peacefully.

  1. Don’t try showing extra affection

Children are quick to find out who is fake and who is not. If your plan is too show too much affection the minute you lay eyes on them, then in all likelihood, that plan will backfire. Keep things as natural as possible.

Conclusion

It’s a new life for you but your step-children don’t want to feel the same way. They just want the comfort of their mom and dad and as a parent it becomes your duty to make sure you understand them correctly.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.

Top 3 Costly Financial Mistakes to Avoid During Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmThere are many such cases where a divorcing spouse accepts a settlement even though it could be unfair to him or her. However, a few years down the line, he or she may go through severe financial constraints. Irrespective of what the reason for agreeing to such a settlement was, such an occurrence could be drastically improved even though it may not be avoided altogether. This is possible when you learn some of these most expensive financial blunders that are commonly made while arriving at divorce settlements.

Mistake 1: Unable to budget according to a new lifestyle

A common financial mistake that is made after the divorce is the inability to budget on the basis of one’s new lifestyle. This happens quite frequently, especially when one of the spouses retains the house for his or her emotional attachment or for the kids. The cost of house maintenance and the inadequacy of liquid assets at times lead to a fast disappearance of the cash and ultimately being forced to sell the house. However, a scenario like this can be avoided when you take a close look at your income and liquid assets versus your expenses.

Mistake 2: Unaware of the asset liquidity status

The capability of accessing an asset’s cash value is termed as liquidity. Typically in any divorce settlement, one of the parties is awarded the majority of the liquidity assets like brokerage accounts, retirement plans, and so on, while the other spouse gets a majority of the illiquid assets.

In case a proposed divorce settlement has less liquidity in your name, it means there will be adequate cash flow all through the years for coping up with your living costs. However, if that is not the case, you need to think about disposing of your house or other assets or bring down your expenses drastically so that your budgetary requirements can be met.

Mistake 3: Not exercising adequate control over the insurance policies

A majority of divorce decrees require one of the concerned parties to procure an insurance policy for insuring different types of financial needs such as child support or value of payments made towards alimony. In case you are that person for whom the coverage has been procured, it is vital that you should be either the beneficiary or the policy owner.

If that is not the case, your former spouse who held the policy can simply stop paying the premiums without your knowledge till the time there is a requirement of the insurance policy and it is nonexistent. It could be a financially shattering experience for you.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Financial Tips for Divorced Women

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmAre you a divorced woman and are a bit overwhelmed by the amount if bills appear to simply pile up? If that is so, you definitely need some kind of financial guidance. After your divorce, your standard of living changes. So, finding a proper financial assistance, paying bills and organizing are some of the prime tasks you need to embark upon.

Why divorced women need financial help?

According to an estimate, about 40 percent of divorced women have a new standard of living after their divorce comes through. Though in many cases the alimony provided by an ex-spouse could pay for the items they are used to, that still may not be adequate to provide all the luxuries they were used to while being married. Moreover, the alimony they get after the divorce may not be adequate to take care of all the bills.

Moreover, the condition is even worse for some divorced women who do not even know how to pay their bills since they did not do these tasks while married. So, they are at a loss where and how to start from as far as the question of paying the bills and organizing their financial things pop up. In such scenarios, these women require some handy tips for paying their bills so that they are on a right track.

Tips for divorced women to pay their bills

  • Collect all the bills that you have received in one place for each month.
  • Now separate these bills on the basis of their due dates or depending on the frequency of their payment, For instance, if you have to pay twice a month for some bills, you can make two different piles. One pile to be paid at the month’s beginning and the second pile to be paid at the end of the month.
  • Creating a monthly budget is very important so that you know how much monthly income is left with you after making the bill payments. This will also help you to make timely payment for your credit cards. So, paying the bills should be the first priority. You can then use the remaining money for the rest of the expenses.
  • Put all the checks for your bills in separate bill payments to be prepared for the month. In case you make your bill payments through banks, set up your payment in advance to avoid last moment tension.
  • After you get paid, mail your first lot of bill envelopes that are due for the month’s first half. You can repeat the same procedure when you receive your second paycheck.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Top Divorce Survival Tips To Follow

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmThe decision to go for a divorce is not an easy one even though the couple or a spouse has contemplated the pros and cons of it for many days before making a decision. Emotions like fear, uncertainty, distress, anger are very common when the divorce is filed or it has been finalized. A divorce may take a toll on the husband or the wife’s self-esteem too. Here are some important divorce survival tips to survive the divorce process and be able to start life fresh once again.

There is hardly anyone who is ready for a divorce

Divorce is not an easy affair at all both legally as well as emotionally. In case you feel uninformed, intimidated and baffled, you need to understand that you are not the only one to go through this roller coaster ride of emotional after all there is rarely anyone who is prepared for a divorce. The exception to this is perhaps the therapists and the divorce lawyers who work with couples on the verge of getting divorced.

The good news for you is that that there will be no dearth of helpful information and useful advice that are easily available on the net and the community where you live. However, before listening to such advice and suggestions, it is imperative to ask yourself about what should be your first step. Do not worry about what others are advising you to do first. Rather, try to figure out that knowing and intuitive voice telling you what should be your next step all about.

Do not neglect your body

Though this may sound cliché and quite obvious, many people try to overlook their fundamental requirements while they are under stress.  These basic needs include decent hours of sleep, regular exercise, healthy and balanced food. When you are physically well, it lays down the foundation for your emotional and mental well-being. Hence, male sensible decisions for your well-being in the coming months and says.

You need not give explanations to anybody

Just remember that you are not answerable to anyone and everyone’s when you start telling people around you about your divorce, they may ask you “why” so.  But most of the times, these people for not ask such questions because they are worried about your well-being. Rather they do it out of curiosity and to get more information. Another reason could be that such people are apprehensive about their own marriages. That is the reason why they want to compare their experiences versus yours.

Self-assurance is crucial

There are different kinds of losses associated with a divorce. It could be the end of a dream, a particular kind of a lifestyle, a home and a marriage. There could be loads of uncertainties and insecurities with respect to your child custody, living arrangements, and finances in the future but whenever you feel down and insecure, you need to assure yourself that you have everything you need.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Is Separation Good For Your Marriage?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmAre you and your spouse continuously at loggerheads with one another? If that is the case, you might have started wondering whether it will be good to separate from one another or not. However, the solution is not as simple as it first appears. It will depend on various factors in your married life and the present situation both of you is dealing with.

Is it the right time to separate from your spouse?

When both you and your spouse discover that staying in each other’s company continuously is causing friction and heated arguments, separation at least on a temporary basis could be a good idea. In all relationships, many people tend to be extra dependent on one another and marriage is not an exception. Some people who do not have their own identity may start resenting their partners that could create major fractions in their relationships. Spending time apart from one another may help people to build up their individual identities. So, when they do decide to reunite their mind and spirit can renew the relationship.

Another scenario when separation could be good in a marriage is when one of the spouses has committed adultery while being married. Spending some time away from each other can help the spouse who was betrayed to think clearly and decide the future course of action. Moreover, staying close up the unfaithful husband or wife can cause more heartbreaks and agonies to the betrayed partner, which is not good to repair that marriage.

You find couples who are in a long distance relationship claim that such an arrangement has a rekindling effect on their relationship. Moreover, many of these couples say that it adds a new fuel to their otherwise mundane relationships. However, that does not necessarily mean you need to always move away from your spouse to generate the same kind of feelings. But, it is not a bad idea at all to separate at times briefly to bring in some passion.

Sometimes it may not be good to opt for separation in a marriage 

In any relationship, effective communication plays a key role. When you have certain concerns that you have stopped communicating with your spouse, the issues may never get resolved and your relationship can become worse. So, before you make a decision to go for a separation, you need to ensure that both you and your spouse have discussed all your issues and concerns. Take some time and speak freely about the issues that are bothering you and try to find out solutions for them. If both of you show a willingness to work towards resolving these issues, you have actually taken a positive step to save your marriage.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

What Does Bifurcating Mean in Divorce Cases?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Best Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmIn some cases, a person in a legal separation or divorce case could request an earlier or separate trial. This could be on a specific issue in that divorce case. It means that the concerned court can reach a decision based on that single issue. The other issues will be resolved later. This is generally done if an important issue exists and it must be be decided. Both parties cannot wait on this particular matter.

There are a number of issues which can be dealt in this manner. These includes visitation of children and their permanent custody. The separation date of the parties can also be decided quickly by this way. Other reasons include prenuptial agreement validity and terminating marital status.

One issue addressed before the rest

California courts could permit separate trials as resolving one single issue could be the only factor which bars the rest of that case to being decided. To give an example, a couple about to be separated will squabble on their property or debt and the time when it will cease belonging to both of them. Many couples argue about this date as it means that a specific property could belong to either both of them or any one of the two. The issue can be settled with the decision of a judge. Arguments about whether the debt is both their responsibility or of any one could be resolved.

In case one domestic partner or spouse has filed motion for separate trial, the other can file a response by filling out the “Responsive Declaration to Request for Order” form and filing it. Do note that asking for separate trial is not always easy to do, and may require a motion be filed with the court.  There is a need to convince a judge as to why he or she must grant it. If possible, use the help of a lawyer to do the same.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

What Couples Need to Learn from The Jolie-Pitt Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmWhen one of the hottest and most influential celebrity couples in Hollywood, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, called it quits last year, it was bound to make it to the headlines of every form of media for quite some time. And while the gruesome details of the sensational separation intrigued many, there was more than just entertainment to be extracted from the whole episode. According to experts, there are several ways in which the “Brangelina” divorce could be touted as a learning experience for even the non-celebrity couples who are planning to part ways. Have a look!

Second or third marriages are more susceptible to end in divorce than the first

Studies indicate that couples that have already had bitter experiences in their previous relationships that ended in a divorce are more likely to experience the same in their future alliances as well. For instance, Angelina Jolie was married twice before she got hitched with Brad, who was also married to Jennifer Aniston. The fact is that when you ignore the red flags in your partner and carry your own unresolved issues to a new relationship, there are tremendous chances of its failure.

Strive to keep the details of your divorce private

Despite the fact that the sensational Brangelina split garnered extensive media attention, the duo decided to choose their words with caution and released well thought of statements on the divorce. Although your divorce might not be the most scandalous news for the daily tabloid in your town, it always helps to keep the ugly details of it between you and your attorneys. After all, there are plenty of next door neighbors who are just waiting to sniff a controversy and create skewed rumors out of it.

Keep your parental conflict away from your kids

While Jolie filed for the full physical custody of all the six kids, the couple eventually decided upon a temporary divorce agreement. Experts say that regardless of who gets to keep the kids, it is important to protect your little ones from the ugly details of your disputes and conflicts. You cannot bad mouth the other parent in front of your kid and expect him/her to grow up into an emotionally healthy adult.

While the marriage might be over, you will still be the parents for your kids

Both Jolie and Pitt announced their intentions to put their family before their personal disagreements and conflict. You must know that although you have given up on your wedding vows, your kids haven’t given up on you as their parent. Co-parenting will be the one most important aspect that you and your ex-spouse will have to work on forever in life.

Remember, no divorce is perfect. And, no divorce has a happy ending. It is just a few things that you can take care of to smooth out the process and take away the sting from it.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How To Make Visitation Easier After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmDivorce can be a chaotic stage in a couple’s life, full of upheaval, changes, and uncertainty. Additionally, when there are children in the marriages, things can be quite tough on them. If you want to make things easier and smoother for them as a parent, both you and your former spouse should collaborate in a manner to ensure that there are no hiccups in the visitation process. Divorce experts will vouch for it that parenting the kids is the most crucial task for you as a parent. So, if you and the other parent can work out things in a harmonious manner, it is possible to avoid negative, lasting and long effects on the kids.

As parents, you should demonstrate a united front so that your children feel relaxed and confident during such a trying time. Check out some of the ideas and thoughts to make sure that your child visits are a positive experience for everybody.

Be quick and punctual

It is important to be there and always be punctual with your kids These gestures will exhibit that these visits to your children are extremely precious for you. After all, kids need an assurance time and again that they are vital for you. Hence concentrate solely on them whenever you are in their company. During these visits, you should also reinforce through your actions or words that your children are your top most priority. How about spending some quality time with them by going for a bike ride with them or playing a game together? Do not focus on your text messages and emails while you are visiting your children.

Always try to be positive

Show enthusiasm whenever you discuss your next visit with them. Your plans should not get spoiled or overshadowed just because you have differences with the other parent. It may also help when you are aware of what activities the kids love doing while being with the other parent.

Stop arguing with your former spouse in front of your kids

Children may get upset when they see their parents arguing and calling names, particularly during pickup or drop off time. After all, visitation is such an occasion where you should solely focus on your little ones. Thus, it is essential for both the parents to ensure that the pickup and drop off times are pleasant and tension-free. You should try discussing your differences at a different time so that the process is a smooth one for all. Fix up meetings for discussing contentious matters with your ex-spouse or you can even hire a mediator to conduct your adult conversations in an amicable manner.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

 
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