Both spouses can share in gift from husband’s family

A recent South Dakota case makes clear that a gift to a married couple from one spouse’s family will count as a gift to both of them in the event of a divorce, even if the benefactor later claims he or she intended otherwise The case revolved around South Dakota land that had been in Dennis Ryland’s family since 1878, when his great-grandfather homesteaded it. Ryland had only one child, who had moved away from South Dakota and had no interest in coming back to farm the land. In 2006, when the farm was worth nearly $2 million, Ryland decided
Continue Reading

Ex-wife can ‘claw back’ millions in hidden assets

When marriages go bad, feelings can be raw, making it tempting to want to hide assets to punish your soon-to-be ex. But if you get caught, the consequences can be severe, as a recent case shows us. The couple in the case, Robert and Janet Foisie, decided to divorce in 2010. They went to mediation, where they agreed to fully disclose and equally divide their assets. Robert also allegedly told Janet during mediation that he had no “offshore assets.” A year later, after both spouses had allegedly fully disclosed their assets in a Connecticut family court, they executed a divorce
Continue Reading

Mom can’t move kids away without consent of court

A mother who wanted to move her kids 90 minutes from their father, who shared joint custody, couldn’t do so without the court reviewing the children’s best interests, a South Carolina appeals court recently ruled. The couple divorced in June 2014 and had joint legal custody and joint week-to-week physical custody of their two children. Neither parent paid child support, although the mother, who apparently earned more money, provided medical insurance and childcare costs. The order also barred either parent from having their children overnight in the presence of members of the opposite sex. A year after the divorce the
Continue Reading

When to Modify Your Divorce Agreement

How long has it been since you terminated your marriage? Have your circumstances changed since then? While your divorce may last forever, your divorce agreement can change over time. There are many reasons to consider modifying your divorce agreement. Some examples include: a significant change in income that will impact child support or alimony payments a job change requiring a move needs of aging children the remarriage of the party awarded the alimony Child Support Modifications With regard to child support, you can request to modify your original order. Regardless of changing circumstances, under the child support guidelines, you are currently entitled
Continue Reading

Court OK’s prenup-turned-post-nup

Prenuptial agreements are a useful way for a soon-to-be-married couple to protect assets they are bringing into a marriage. Essentially, these are contracts that lay out exactly what each spouse is entitled to (and obligated to) in the event of a divorce. If you and your soon-to-be-spouse are considering such an agreement, be sure to work with an attorney who can make sure it’s properly executed. Otherwise it may not be enforced, as nearly happened in a recent Michigan case. In that case, Carla Skaates and her husband Nathan Kayser lived together for before getting married. Skaates had a dental
Continue Reading

COVID-era divorce solutions could outlive pandemic

The Covid-19 crisis has impacted every aspect of life, including divorce. With courthouses closed to the public, divorcing couples have had to contend with technology solutions like Zoom for hearings and trials. This has made what’s already a challenging process even harder as participants deal with bad connectivity and sound, background distractions and getting documents to a judge that can usually be handed over in person. Nonetheless, Zoom and similar tech solutions have improved the process in certain ways that may outlive the virus. Zoom and similar tech solutions have improved the process in certain ways that may outlive the
Continue Reading

What to do when your ex refuses to comply with your parenting schedule?

Going through a divorce can be an emotionally draining process. The hope is that once all of the issues (such as child support, spousal support, division of property and agreeing to a parenting schedule) are resolved, you can finally move forward. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case as the emotional baggage that accompanied the divorce can remain when dealing with an ex. When you’re facing the frustrating reality that your ex simply won’t comply with your legally binding agreements, whether that be alimony payments or a parenting schedule, you have options. You can attempt dispute resolution through mediation or the
Continue Reading

Massachusetts Grandparents, Know Your Rights Regarding Visitation and Custody of Your Grandchildren

When it comes to grandparents’ rights, Massachusetts laws can be tricky to navigate. However, grandparents do have financial, visitation, and custody rights under certain circumstances. To utilize such rights, legal assistance might be necessary to help you take action. Grandparents today are frequently faced with decisions about what is best for their grandchildren under challenging situations. Whether seeking visitation or custody, grandparents can take legal recourse when it is in the best interest of the child/children. Visitation Rights Grandparents who are denied visitation with their grandchildren have a legal right to petition the court. However, grandparents are required to prove
Continue Reading

How to Land on Your Feet After Divorce

Divorce takes a toll emotionally, physically, and mentally on everyone involved. It’s not uncommon for individuals going through a divorce to want to curl up in bed all day and abandon all responsibilities. As tempting as this sounds, it’s not practical. In fact, doing so can even make things worse. The first step to landing on your feet after divorce is finding acceptance. Just because you’re making the right decision to split up with your partner, doesn’t mean it’s easy.  Accepting your post-divorce life means making adjustments to handle new and different social norms and lifestyle changes. This will look different for everyone. However, there are
Continue Reading

Child Support Modification When One Parent Resides in a Different State

Child Support and Out-of-State Issues Whether one parent is living just over the Massachusetts border in New Hampshire but still commutes to Boston every day, or whether the one parent is living on the West Coast while the children live with the other in the Merrimack Valley, issues of state jurisdiction may come into play when seeking to modify a Massachusetts child support judgment or temporary order. Changing Circumstances, Modifying Orders In Massachusetts, child support is governed either by temporary orders or by final judgements. Temporary orders govern the terms of child support while there is still open legal action
Continue Reading