Written by Canterbury Law Group

Mother Not Letting Father See Child? | What Are My Options?

There are fewer contentious and high-stress events often causing extreme behavior in its participants than custody and divorce proceedings. A trend that has come to be known as “malicious parent syndrome” has been identified based on the original theories of the psychologist, Ira Turkat. In this theory, Turkat describes patterns of behavior that are abnormal during the process of divorce. It should be said that malicious parent syndrome is not currently identifiable as a mental disorder. However, it describes a behavioral type some people adopt in court cases and some proponents of Turkat’s theory are asking for further research and studies to be conducted.

The occurrence of this syndrome has been identified as when a parent who is going through a divorce or has been divorced has a desire to punish the other parent. This can take many forms but includes causing harm to their child or children or depriving their child or children and then attributing blame with the purpose of making the other parent appear neglectful of their child or children. Both fathers and mothers can be culpable. Traditionally this has been called “malicious mother syndrome” but in this article, we will refer to its more contemporary title: “malicious parent syndrome.”

Malicious Parent Characteristics

Initially, Dt. Turkat wanted to identify a condition where one parent acts with deliberate vengeance towards the other during or following the process of divorce. He identified four major criteria:

  1. Attempts to punish the other parent by using their child or children to alienate the other parent and involving the court or others in actions designed to separate the parent from the child or children.
  2. Looks to deny the child or children communication and visitation and limit the other parent’s involvement in extra-curricular and school activities.
  3. Tells lies to their child or children and may repeatedly violate the law.
  4. There is no other mental disorder that adequately explains the above actions.

Malicious Parent Examples

After examining cases where parents became vindictive in legal and clinical cases, the idea arose to identify a mental disorder or a syndrome. In some cases, this has included false accusations, arson or deliberately sabotaging parenting time. In one case of malicious parent syndrome, the children were told by their mother they could not afford food to eat because the father had spent all their money. In a different case, a parent repeatedly told the other parent bad information regarding school activities so the other parent could not participate fully in the school life of their child. The whole purpose was to cause harm to the other parent.

Malicious Act Consequences

Many behaviors of malicious parent syndrome have possible legal, civil and criminal consequences. Some acts can clearly be identified as criminal, for example, damaging the property of the other parent or attacking them physically. Making the other parent look bad by depriving the children of money or food may be an act of child abuse violating criminal and family laws. If a malicious parent lies when they are under oath they may also be charged with perjury in some instances.

Some actions may be violations of civil law. The denial of visitation rights to a parent can result in fines as well as adjustments to visitation and custody plans. Similarly, lying about the actions of the other parent that damages their reputation and results in loss or injury can constitute defamation. Custody arrangements and parenting plans can also be impacted. When a parent has been partaking in illegal, cruel or alienating behavior, it may come under consideration as a factor would there be proceedings to adjust or gain custody.

What Are My Options For Dealing With A Malicious Parent?

These are the primary courses of action you can take should you have been a victim of malicious parent syndrome:

  • Modification of support and custody agreements
  • Obtaining supervised visitation
  • The malicious parent seeks court-ordered counseling

Get Professional Legal Counsel for Your Paternity Issues

Obviously, parents want their children to have the best possible beginning to their lives and it can be very upsetting when you have to deal with a malicious parent. However, there are legal processes you can utilize that can provide a resolution to these issues. A Family Law Attorney can help in these dire circumstances.

The Mother Of My Child Will Not Let Me See My Child Or Children

The main thing is to stay calm even though it is very frustrating and upsetting. You can call the police if you have a court order in place stating you have visitation with your child or children at that time. The police will fill out a report making sure you have a record of what is known as “Visitation Interference.” The police will not remove the child or children from their Mother even when you have visitation time that the court ordered as these are “civil matters.” An exception may be made if there is an imminent threat of danger or harm to the child or children. Then notify your lawyer that you did not get your visitation time as the mother could be charged with custodial interference governed by ARS 13-1302.


“What Is ‘Malicious Parent Syndrome’?” Findlaw,

Speak With Our Father’s Rights Attorneys In Scottsdale

Our Father’s Rightschild custody, and guardianship attorneys in Phoenix and Scottsdale address your case with concern and personal attention, and always have you and your children’s best interest in mind when offering legal solutions.

We are experienced family law attorneys and will work with you to obtain the best possible outcome in your situation. You can trust us to represent you fully, so you can get on with your life. Call today for an initial consultation! 480-744-7711.

*This information is not intended to be legal advice. Please contact Canterbury Law Group today to learn more about your personal legal needs.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

How to Move Forward After a Divorce

If the time comes when you’re face to face with divorce papers, it can be a difficult time. You entered into your marriage with the hopes that it would last forever. Whether you’ve only been together for a couple of years or a couple of decades, a divorce can happen at any point in a marriage.

Once you’ve made it through the divorce process, one significant question remains – what do you do now? Depending on what your situation is like, that will help answer that question. However, there are a few general points that can help out anyone who just wrapped up a divorce.

Here are some steps to take to help you move forward after a divorce.

1. Mourn the Loss

Even if the divorce was your idea and no matter how long you were together for, you want to allow yourself some time to mourn the end of the marriage. There was something about that person that you initially enjoyed being around, and that can be difficult to let go. Before anything, allow yourself to have some time and space to gather your thoughts and go through the different feelings you may have.

2. Learn to Be Yourself Again

You may read that and think that you know who you are and you’re okay. Learning to be yourself again is more than that though. It also includes working through your feelings and getting used to being by yourself once again.

Depending on how long you were married for, it may take more time than others to rediscover yourself. Spend some time reminding yourself of what you love to do. Maybe you and your friends used to go out all the time, or you had a hobby you forgot about over the years. No matter what it is, embrace what you’ve forgotten.  Create a new here and now and future.

3. Accept You May Be Different

If you found through your rediscovering yourself that you don’t enjoy the same things that you used to before your marriage, which is okay. Part of the process after a divorce is accepting who you are today and that things will be different.

4. Do Something For Yourself

When you’re in a marriage, you live life with someone by your side. Sometimes that can get to be too much and make couples go their separate ways. If there is something you’ve always wanted to do but never did in your marriage, take some time to do it now.

Going through a divorce is stressful. Carrying that stress with you won’t help with anything. So, do something for yourself that makes you happy. Maybe it was a trip somewhere around the world or an exciting adventure your partner never wanted to participate in. Whatever it is, do something that will make you happy.

5. Take Life One Day at a Time

No matter how you feel after your divorce, take things slow for a while. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation in which you realized you’re not ready and you’ve moved too quickly. Take some time to do the things listed above, and wait until you are genuinely prepared to move forward.

6. Don’t Be Afraid To Be Alone

Being alone doesn’t mean you will never see anyone or that you will be isolated. Your just not in a rush to be coupled up. Society accepts singles, sometimes more than couples. This will give you plenty of time to rediscover yourself and work on you!

7. Consider Dating Again

The best way to move forward after a relationship is to start something new. This could be the perfect time to start dating someone new. Move forward without thinking that the new relationship has to be a permanent one. Just have fun!

8. Take On New Roles

Your partner probably handled specific roles in the relationship but now it is up to you to take on all of the responsibility. Don’t look at it like extra work, look at it as a new and exciting venture!

Further Reading


Shaw, Gina. “After Divorce: 8 Tips for Reinventing Yourself.” WebMD, WebMD,

Canterbury Law Group

The Canterbury Law Group is an experienced divorce lawyer in Scottsdale. We can protect and advise you regarding: Divorce and property division, child custody, child support, child visitation, marital home and real estate matters, allocation of investments, retirement savings, and pensions, personal possessions, valuables, vehicles, closely help businesses, alimony and spousal maintenance, and debt division. To find out how our divorce attorneys can help your matter, schedule your initial case evaluation today.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

What Rights Does A Father Have To See His Child?


Fatherhood comes with many responsibilities and rights. It is important to understand your rights especially when it comes to child custody proceedings. Read more to learn about your rights and how to protect them.

There is a big difference between a married father’s rights and an unmarried father’s rights to see his child. What rights does a father have to see his child? A married father shares equal custody rights (legal decision making and parenting time) to see his child vs an unmarried father who has no custody rights unless he can establish paternity. A married father shares legal and physical custody of their child. Legal custody includes welfare, health, educational, and legal decision making involving the child.

The Rights Of The Unmarried Father

Traditionally, fathers who are unmarried have found the field of parental rights difficult to navigate because there was a lack of laws in their favor to establish and enforce their rights. However, times have changed, and it is no longer easy for a biological mother to prevent the biological father from creating a legal relationship with their child or children. In today’s world, there are now many options for fathers to assert paternity through the legal system.

Paternity is a legal determination establishing the biological father of a child (or children).   Paternity can be established by filing an “acknowledgment” statement with your state’s department of vital records. To make it valid and binding, it must be signed by both parents. Should the mother of the child (or children) make an objection to your claim of paternity, it can be established once you have a filed a paternity suit in your local court. A judge will consider the paternity case and make a determination regarding the biological father of the child or children. The court will order a DNA or blood test to determine biological fatherhood. A judge can also make a determination on custody or visitation rights as part of the paternity suit process.  If the DNA matches, the paternity case proceeds.  Without a DNA match, the case will be dismissed because you are not the Father.

Married Father’s Rights to His Child

According to Arizona Law, married fathers share equal custody rights, also known as legal decision making, with the mother of their child. In you are a married father in Arizona, you are automatically presumed to be the biological father of the child. This means you do not have to establish paternity in order to participate in major decision such as religious training, education, or medical treatment. Sharing equal custody also means you could be responsible for child support and more in the event of a divorce.

A Fathers’ Custody Rights

Once your child (or children) are born, the court will make a presumption you are the father, if you were married to the mother at the time of the birth. If you have established paternity, you could get custodial rights to your child even if you were unmarried at the time of the birth of the child. Legal custody of a child gives the parent the authority to do the following:

  • Right to make decisions about the welfare of the child.
  • Right to make decisions about the medical care of the child.
  • Right to make decisions about the religious upbringing care of the child.
  • Right to make decisions about the education of the child.

The term “physical custody” refers to the living arrangements of the child (or children.) As a Dad, you are equal in this regard as Mothers do not have any additional entitlement to the custody of their child (or children) absent a showing of questionable parental fitness.

A Joint Parenting Plan agreement may be arranged between the father and the mother of the child (or children.) Otherwise, the court can decide this on your behalf. A Judge will turn the schedule of parenting into a binding visitation and custody order that must be followed by both parents. If the terms of the agreement are not being maintained, you may ask the court to intervene. This is taken very seriously as the parent who does not obey the terms of a custody order can face fines, even jail time as well as be held in contempt of court.

Child Support Payments

Fathers who have primary custody of the child (or children) have the same rights to receive child support as mothers who have primary custody of the child (or children.) Even in circumstances where a parent is interfering with visitation rights, child support must still be paid on time. When a parent is preventing you from visitation with your child (or children) it is time to consult a family law attorney.

If My Child’s Mother Remarries, What Are My Rights?

Typically, your rights as a biological parent take priority over the rights of a stepparent. Think very carefully, if the stepparent of your child (or children) desires to adopt the kids. Generally, adoption will end your rights as a parent. Visitation previously ordered by the court will no longer be valid. The new parents will have no obligation under current law to allow you access to your child (or children.)

 Frequently Asked Questions To Your Attorney

  • I have already acknowledged paternity as I was convinced, I was the father of my girlfriend’s child. It turns out I have discovered I the child is not mine. I want to get a divorce but need to know if I will have custody rights for a while I have raised as if he were my own child?
  • I want more time with my children. How can I get this?
  • I am being prevented visits by the Mother of my children, what should I do?
  • The other parent has custody but wants the child to move in with me. Once the child has moved in, do I need to keep paying child support to the other parent?


Fathers’ Rights: You’re a Parent Too!

Read More About:

Child Visitation Rights For Fathers

What Are The Chances Of A Father Getting Full Custody?

Child Custody Battles Between Unmarried Parents

Child Custody Rights For Mother’s

Family Law & Child Custody Information

Tips For Fathers Trying To Get Custody

Tips For Fathers Going Through Divorce In Scottsdale

Understanding Parenting Time Under Arizona Law

Child Custody Laws In Arizona

Speak With Our Father’s Rights Attorneys In Scottsdale

Our Father’s Rights, child custody, and guardianship attorneys in Phoenix and Scottsdale address your case with concern and personal attention, and always have you and your children’s best interest in mind when offering legal solutions.

We are experienced family law attorneys and will work with you to obtain the best possible outcome in your situation. You can trust us to represent you fully, so you can get on with your life. Call today for an initial consultation! 480-744-7711.

*This information is not intended to be legal advice. Please contact Canterbury Law Group today to learn more about your personal legal needs.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

4 Tips for Handling a Divorce While Working

Going through a divorce can affect all aspects of your life. It can be mentally draining, financially challenging, and even seep into your work life. Although you try your best to leave life at home at the door and enter into your professional mindset, if you’re going through a divorce, it’s likely going to be brought into the office at some point.

It’s important that you know how to handle a divorce while you are working. By getting ahead of the game and preparing for anything, you’ll be able to better manage each curveball or tough day that may come. To help prepare you, here are a few tips from your divorce lawyer in Scottsdale for handling your divorce while working full time.

Inform Your Boss

You don’t want to leave your boss in the dark about anything going on in your life that could affect your mental health and daily work performance. Since divorce can be mentally draining, it could interfere with your daily tasks at work. From phone calls to meetings and even court dates, those will all interfere with work at some point.  Be honest and transparent with your employer.

Inform your boss that you are going through a divorce. This is a life-changing event that your boss can help you with on the working end of things. No one says you have to pour your heart out and go into detail about what happened. However, informing him or her of the situation, that you may require some schedule flexibility to attend any court-imposed obligations, all while you are still committed to your own work responsibilities.

Speak With Any Officemates or Teammates

If you work closely with a co-worker, whether it be on projects or sharing an office, you should also inform them of what is happening in your life. Preparing them for any mood changes, more phone calls, and unexpected appointments, or having to take a mental health day, they will be able to handle the situation more delicately.

Anyone you work closely with, you don’t want to leave them in the dark. By letting them know of your pending divorce, you can lean on them if needed. If you fall behind, they’ll have a better understanding of what is going on and be able to help you out.

Speak With HR

Going through a divorce will likely affect work because of your insurance and retirement plans. All of this information will come from your HR department. Once you know the divorce is happening, sit down with HR and go through the details of any plans and coverages that will need changing later on or retirement account balances that may need to be split with your spouse.

Keep Personal Feelings at Home

Although you’ll likely have conversations here and there about the divorce and how you’re feeling, you should keep your personal feelings at home as best as you can. This means that you should avoid any negative comments of your spouse and anything that could make people feel uncomfortable. If you do not want to go into detail, make sure your coworkers know that you prefer to keep things private.

Do not let your pending divorce take over your work. Think of your job as an escape from the stress at home. However, there will come a time when the divorce process may interfere with work. By keeping on top of things and informing your boss and coworkers of what is going on, you can help make the process go as smoothly as possible.  Transparency and truth, tempered with your discretion and professional judgment, is a careful balancing act.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Rediscover Yourself After a Divorce

Going through a divorce is no easy matter. It’s emotionally, mentally, and even physically draining. It’s easy to find yourself alone and wondering what went wrong that got you to this point.

One of the hardest parts of a divorce comes after signing the papers – rediscovering who you are. Many find themselves asking this question after years of putting other’s needs before their own. One is left wondering who they are and what they are going to do next with their life.

Whether you commenced the divorce or not, this new phase in your life can be looked at like a fresh start. Between your divorce attorney in Scottsdale, your friends, and your family, all of them can help you along your journey of rediscovering yourself after dissolution.

Get Lots of Rest and Recover

The first thing you should do is take some time to rest. You are likely to go through the grief process because the truth is, you’re losing many things as you go through a divorce.  Many years or decades may have been shared with your former partner. After final separation, you are likely to mourn the loss of that past life.

Give yourself time to go through the grief process and to rest. You will need to have the energy and peace to get yourself back up on your feet.  Think twice about dating new people right away.  Do not rush into the dating market.  You need to reset your internal clock and moral compass first.

Connect With Your Old Self

Change happens when you are with a partner for a long time. You start to pick up your spouse’s traits and sometimes have to give up ones too.  Not only that, many find themselves falling out of touch with certain hobbies and activities they used to enjoy before getting married.

After the dissolution, use this time to reconnect with your old self before marriage. What were your hobbies and favorite activities? What were you good at and what did you want to get better at? Start getting back in touch with the things you love.

Reconnect With Anything Given Up

As mentioned, there is likely something you would have not given up before entering a marriage. Maybe your spouse was allergic to pets, and you always had a dog around. There could have been a hobby you enjoyed that your partner didn’t. The things you used to love but have not looked at in quite some time, maybe a place to refocus your new time and energy now that you no longer have a life partner.

Try New Things

Not only are you rediscovering who you were after a divorce, but it is also a time to try new things. It could be anything that you’ve wanted to try, but never did when you were married. Make a list of all of the activities and adventures you wanted and start working through them.

Surround Yourself With Love

In the end, one of the best ways to rediscover yourself after a divorce is to surround yourself with friends and family that know you best. You may have found yourself becoming distant while going through the divorce process. Your friends likely don’t want to pick sides, or you don’t want to put them in that situation. However with the case now over, keeping in touch with your friends will help keep you uplifted, avoid the feeling of loneliness, and help get you back to the self you have missed for so many years.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

5 Factors That Can Spark a Divorce

When a couple gets married, chances are they aren’t planning to get divorced down the road. Unfortunately, divorce is quite common in the United States. It is a stressful and sometimes quite painful time for both parties involved.

There are many factors that can contribute to a divorce. Some have warning signs in which you and your partner can work on. Others, however, are out of your control and are the result of an unfortunate circumstance.

The Canterbury Law Group, your divorce lawyer in Scottsdale, came up with a list of some of the top factors that can spark a divorce.

Lack of Communication

The lack of communication in a marriage is typically at the top of any list when it comes to divorce. Having good communication is critical in any relationship, but especially in a marriage. Without communication, it is hard to tell what your spouse is thinking, how he or she is feeling, and the two of you need to address any concerns.

High Expectations

Another common factor in a divorce is when one partner has too high of expectations for the other. Whether it be due to finances, household chores, or making someone happy, if a spouse has unrealistic expectations of their partner, it can generate many issues. If someone feels like they can never be good enough for the other person, it can result in them being unhappy and inevitably wanting out of the marriage.


Money is another significant factor in a divorce. If both partners are not on the same page with their finances, it can lead to a lot of trouble down the road. If one spouse wants to keep spending on expensive items, but the other one wants to save for the future, the two of them are bound to clash. Having opposing views with finances can lead right to divorce.

Lack of Intimacy

Intimacy in a marriage is essential for staying close to one another. Having intimacy in a marriage means both physical and emotional. If one partner starts to withdraw from the other and it never gets fixed, it could lead to divorce. Having that strong physical and emotional connection will help keep a couple strong and connected.

Wrong From the Start

In some circumstances, the marriage may have ended the moment it started. Marrying for the wrong reasons (for money or something other than love and having a connection), will likely lead to divorce sometime down the road. For a successful marriage, it is essential that the person you choose is someone you genuinely want to be with for the rest of your life. If there is a hesitation, it could be a sign that it may not be the right person for you.

Marriages will have their problems at one point or another. However, that doesn’t mean a divorce will happen. Depending on how the couple handles martial problems and works to get past them, that will likely determine if a divorce is in the near future or not.

Spending quality time with each other, having those emotional and physical moments will help keep the connecting between both partners thriving. Communicating with one another will help to overcome issues before the turn into something more extreme.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

6 Ways to Help Your Kids Cope Through a Divorce

A divorce is not something you plan for when getting married. Unfortunately, many families face divorce at some point. Going through a divorce can be highly stressful for both parties involved, children especially.

Every divorce will affect kids in some way, whether it be through sadness, anger, frustration, or even worrying. However, as their parents, you can help your children cope with the divorce process so that they use this as a growing experience.

Talking with your divorce lawyer in Scottsdale will help to give you the best advice for your situation. There are also the following top six tips that you can use to help your children cope with a divorce.

Inform the Kids of the Divorce

It’s not an easy conversation to have, but it is essential to talk to your children about the divorce. They’ll need to know that mom and dad will be living apart. Explain why you made this decision and that it was never caused by them. Keep the conversation appropriate for the age, temperament, and maturity of the child. Stay positive, stay optimistic—do not drench the children in negativity.  To the contrary, tell them they have a new optimistic life ahead.

Let Them Speak

It’s important that kids can express how they feel in these types of situations. This will mean the parents, both if possible, sit down and listen to them and acknowledge their feelings. If they are struggling, help them put how they feel into words.  Provide the children with counseling if needed.  They must repair their internal feelings immediately to avoid long-term emotional scarring.

Be Their Support System

Although you’ll have so many things going on in your life with a divorce, it’s crucial that you remain a strong support system for your children. Be there for them, talk to them, ask what will help them feel better.  Do NOT complain about the divorce, or your spouse, or the lawyers or the court—these kids have enough to deal with if you must vent, do so with capable adults, not your own children.

Keep Your Emotions in Check

If your children see you upset or stressed out, it will start to seriously affect them. As their primary emotional support system, trying to be as calm and collected as possible will be more beneficial in helping your children cope with the divorce. Approaching the situation angry and frustrated will only get them agitated.  Vent your deeper feelings on your own time, in your own space, and not within the sight line of your kids.

Be Kind to Each Other

Kids hear, see, and remember almost everything. You would be shocked to walk in their shoes for 24 hours.  If they see you and your partner actively arguing, or if you’re speaking poorly about your life partner when they’re not around, there’s a good chance that they’ll pick up on these things. Being kind and civil to each other will help prevent putting your kids in a difficult situation, or feeling like they need to choose sides.  Take the high road.  Stay silent when the kids are in the room and handle your “adult business” only with adults in the room.

Reassure They Are Loved

In the end, it’s important to reassure your kids that they are always loved by both parents no matter the divorce outcome. Explain the new living arrangements and express that while you’re with one parent, the other parent still loves them.  Money and property rights come and go, your children are the bedrock of your life today and into the future.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Reasons to Finalize Your Divorce and Save Money

If your marriage is in a rocky place, it would behoove you to be mindful of the timing of decisions; the government has recently enacted a few tax laws that impact divorcing couples, especially those with high net worth. Tax codes are perplexing in the best of times and now, quite frankly, does not constitute the best of times. This makes it more important that you understand how these new laws affect you.

How do you decide if it is in your best interest to settle this year? The first step is to take a deep breath. Second, divorce attorneys in Scottsdale recommend considering the three items below and what effect they will have on you. Third, work with a lawyer as well as a financial advisor experienced in divorce to minimize the impact of the new laws.

Move Fast To Control Taxes On Alimony

Alimony, often called spousal support or maintenance, will have a significant change on New Year’s’ Day in 2019. Under current laws, alimony has been deductible by the paying spouse and taxable to the receiving spouse. This benefited the family unit as the recipient paid tax at a lower rate than the payor deducted it at resulting in lower taxes. Going forward, however, alimony will no longer be deductible by the payor or taxable to the recipient.  Alimony will now be treated the same as child support: tax free.

Tax Benefits Of The Family Home Are Changing

 Your home. This is a popular item in many divorces. Is it a top priority to keep it? Are you itching to leave it behind with the past? How do you split the value? It’s important to focus on your home as a financial asset while factoring in the memories as well as the potential emotional stability it may provide. The new tax law reduced the deductibility of property taxes and the amount of mortgage that qualifies for interest deduction making it more expensive to own a home under the new tax laws.

Kids Are No Longer As Great A Tax Deduction

The new tax code also eliminated the personal exemption amount for tax years 2018–2025. This means that you don’t get a multiplier of kids as a deduction on your tax return. It’s still important, however, to negotiate who will claim the kids for other purposes. While the exemption amount is zero dollars, it may allow the parent to receive additional child tax credits, which are more generous under the new law.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

5 Divorce Mistakes to Stay Away From

Sure, every divorce has unique attributes that make the experience different for each person. Having said that, there are a myriad of mistakes we find to commonly observe during a divorce. If you’re even considering divorce, divorce attorneys in Scottsdale recommend the following critical advance checklist to help you avoid these unnecessary issues.


Settlements That Assume Status Quo

One of the main goals of a divorce is to establish an “equitable split” of assets, which requires an understanding of your current situation and true market valuation of all your assets. At times, this necessity to focus on the present state of affairs can result in an analysis that doesn’t take into consideration potential future events. Unfortunate events can occur at any point after a divorce and may include things like job loss, disability, health changes or asset depreciation.

Complications can always arise when it comes to paying for college when a settlement agreement focuses too heavily on the maintenance of the status quo. For example, if college costs are to be split based on salary, what happens if/when you or your spouse lose your job? Unforeseen future events can put you in a difficult situation and pay for a large expense (e.g. maintenance, college tuition) you hadn’t previously planned for.

When negotiating your divorce settlement, remember to consider what might not be the same in the future. You will want to speak with your attorney or financial adviser about considering these potential changes.  There are many moving parts and you should trust seasoned legal counsel to navigate you through the process.

Unrealistic Lifestyle Expectations

Divorce means there is no longer one household, but two households.  The standard of living is likely to drop for both parties post-Decree.   Difficult decisions about who should keep the house, or if it should be sold, have emotional, practical, and financial implications for both parties for years to come. Housing is just one of numerous lifestyle decisions faced when a divorce takes place. Unfortunately, too many divorcees expect to live a similar lifestyle in divorce, including for their children. This is a false reality—both parties are still making the same money, but now two roofs and two sets of bills must be paid.  Quite often, there is simply not enough money to go around for anyone to live the same, let alone better after the divorce.

Avoiding The Details

Facing the logistics of a divorce can be exhausting, especially if it’s a complicated situation (which it usually is). Lengthy legal proceedings require you to reveal the details of your life. At the same time, you’re asked to gather a large amount of data and information to support negotiations, and this usually doesn’t end just because the divorce comes to a close.  Get ready to gather documents and disclosures the likes of which even your worst mortgage refinance would have ever taken.  It’s a reality and part of the process.

Lack of Financial Literacy

One of the main reasons these rampant mistakes occur during a divorce is that both parties lack even a basic financial education. Modern financial literacy is generally learned through experience rather than in school. Take time to educate yourself so you don’t run into problems.  Better still, hand the entire process over to a seasoned professional who has handled hundreds of divorces before yours ever began.

Written by Canterbury Law Group

Talk About Divorce Right After Engagement

It’s THE most exciting time in your life. You’re newly engaged and about to embark on an exciting life journey with the one you love.  You will soon marry!

But guess what? Now, and we mean NOW, is the best time to talk about divorce.

Why is that?

Well, divorce attorneys in Scottsdale see it all the time. Great people with high hopes and optimism for their relationship soon crumble before them with a relationship that ends in resentment and heartbreak. With affections and optimism at its peak during an engagement, talking about divorce is extremely productive.

Generally speaking, people end up filing a divorce because they don’t know their spouse or they don’t know themselves. By simply speaking with your significant other about divorce, you are taking a huge leap in the right direction to avoid this situation.

The only question that remains is, what should you talk about?

Let’s take a look.

Talk About the Why

That’s right. You should have a conversation with your fiancé about why you would get divorced in the first place. This is a very clear path to pinpointing your marital expectations. This includes non-negotiables such as fidelity and honesty in addition things that might change throughout the marriage like friendships and career details. You can take this one step further and discuss what you both feel are good and bad reasons to get divorced.

Discuss Prevention

Experiencing issues in a marriage is inevitable. A perfect marriage, with no problems, simply doesn’t exist. Having said that, it’s important to handle those issues properly and overcome them in the best possible manner. Be candid with your partner about how you would handle problems and what you would do if issues were to present themselves. Would you broach things head on? Would you wait it out? Would you seek counseling? These are all important questions to consider.

Share Obligations If You Were to Get Divorced

While prenuptial agreements may be tough to have at such an early stage of your long-term relationship, they provide a great of insight. They are raw, emotional, and passionate.

It’s important to discuss things like the space you share (your home), financial logistics/needs, professional life changes, family member involvement, and parenting.

While it’s important to discuss individual needs during a divorce, if you devote enough affection throughout your relationship and appreciate everything your fiancé has to offer, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever need to file those divorce papers.

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