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Yes, It Is Possible to Go to Jail for Bad-Mouthing Your Ex-Spouse in Front of Your Children

By Patrick L. Looper |

You might have heard that contempt, in the sense of an overall negative attitude toward someone and a lack of respect for them, is one of the “four horsemen” that signal that a relationship is doomed, but in a legal context, “contempt” has a different meaning.  Contempt of court is when someone disobeys a… Read More »

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When the Family Business Falls Apart When the Marriage Does

By Patrick L. Looper |

Running a business with your spouse can be beautiful, but it can also be an enormous source of stress.  You don’t have to worry that your spouse has a “work spouse” who understands their career ambitions better than you do, because you are both the work spouse and the home spouse.  You share the… Read More »

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What Happens to the Marital Home If You Divorce While You Still Owe Money on the Mortgage?

By Patrick L. Looper |

For many couples, buying a house is a powerful sign of commitment to each other.  When you are happily married, making mortgage payments on your forever home feels like a gesture of love, something you do together, rather than a source of financial stress.  Paying off the mortgage on your family home is truly… Read More »

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When Your Ex-Spouse Refuses to Communicate About Your Child’s Special Medical Needs and Expenses

By Patrick L. Looper |

For many families, summer camp is a luxury.  You might expect that, if an appeals court needed to resolve a dispute between divorced parents over reconciling a child’s plans to attend a residential summer camp with parenting schedules and child support, it would be in a high net worth divorce where the court’s recitation… Read More »

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Child Custody Is Not All or Nothing

By Patrick L. Looper |

When you vent to your friends about your divorce, it is easy to say something to the effect of you are worried that your ex-spouse will take your children away, or that your ex does not deserve to have custody.  You probably know, even as you are speaking, that child custody is not a… Read More »

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How Much Alimony Do You Pay Your Ex-Spouse If You Relied on Your Parents’ Financial Support During Your Marriage

By Patrick L. Looper |

Many families live beyond their means; having a family court scrutinize your finances during your divorce case often comes as a rude awakening.  When you argue that you cannot afford to pay enough alimony to provide your ex-spouse with luxuries, you are also admitting that you cannot afford those luxuries for yourself and probably… Read More »

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Don’t Quit Your Job and Sell Your House Until You Are Sure the Court Will Allow You to Relocate

By Patrick L. Looper |

Second marriages are both easier and more difficult than first marriages.  First, there is the statistic that people who have been divorced before are more likely to get divorced again, but statistics can’t predict your future.  On the one hand, people who are married to their second spouse are more mature and have learned… Read More »

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Is Your House Marital Property If Your Spouse Bought It While You Were Engaged?

By Patrick L. Looper |

In order for a divorce court to make an equitable distribution of a couple’s property (equitable means “fair”), it must first determine which assets are marital property and which are separate property.  Only the marital property gets divided, but the court looks at factors like earning potential and separate property when deciding whether and… Read More »

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The Court Has the Final Say About Whether Your Alimony Agreement Is Fair

By Patrick L. Looper |

Some couples spend years in court arguing about alimony, while others decide about it long before they divorce, or even before they marry.  If you and your spouse agreed in a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement about how much one of you will pay the other in alimony in the event of your divorce, then… Read More »

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The Purpose of Alimony Is Not to Compensate You for the Pain of Divorce

By Patrick L. Looper |

Anyone who has been through a divorce can tell you that it was one of the most painful things they have ever experienced.  Having to disentangle yourself from something you thought would be permanent is never easy, even if you and your ex did not part as enemies and do not have minor children… Read More »

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