5 Things You Should Never Say To Your Kids During A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediation attorney; California Divorce MediatorsWhile a divorce can be hard for the couple going through it, it can be much harder on the children. For children a divorce could shake their sense of security to its very foundations and leave them feeling vulnerable and frightened.

Younger children could worry about things like, “if daddy has left the house will mommy also leave me?” And older children can quietly wonder to themselves if this was their fault and if they did something to cause the breakup.

Here are a five this that you must not say to your kids during this time:

  1. It’s all dad’s / mom’s fault: Playing the blame game will not serve anybody least of all your kids. Blaming your spouse for the divorce can not only create a rift between you former spouse and your children but can also cause emotional distress. Children love both parents unconditionally and these new revelations could prove too confusing for them to handle.
  1. I feel sad when you go: This can happen a lot in cases of co-parenting where one parent can make the child feel guilty about going to spend time with the other parent. A mother telling her kids that she is sad when they go live with daddy puts the child in a position that their young minds can’t cope with very well. The feeling of guilt of wanting to spend time with their father while knowing that it hurts their mother could be extremely damaging for the kids’ self image.
  1. You are acting just like mom/dad: Picking on a child’s behavior and saying that they are behaving just like their other parent has two big disadvantages. The first being that you make the child feel like mommy or daddy’s behavior is not good and the second being that you scare the child into thinking that you will leave them too. You can always correct bad behavior without bringing up your ex.
  1. Is mom/dad seeing someone else?: Trying to get information about your ex through your children is something you should avoid totally. Making children spy on their other parent is a burden they should not have to deal with. Children want to be loyal to both parents and this can be very stressful for them.
  1. That is not my responsibility: While your divorce agreement might clearly demarcate your parental responsibilities, children need not be burdened with legalities. If they ask you something that the other parent needs to approve of as well you can always answer with why don’t we check with mom and see what she thinks. Saying things like, “that’s not my responsibility go ask your mother” undermines the respect your child has for you.

Be loving and supportive of your children while going through a divorce and give them a sense of security during this emotionally confusing time.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation 

The Best Ways To Move Past A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediators; California Divorce MediatorsDivorces can be physically and emotionally draining. If a divorce has dragged on for a while and there is a lot of negativity between the former spouses, it can be very difficult to get your life back together once the dust settles.

When a marriage and the divorce proceedings have all ended there is suddenly a void in a person’s life and it is important to fill this void to move forward. Here are a few ways in which you can constructively fill the void to help you move past the divorce:

  1. Give yourself a break: You life has just changed forever and you might be feeling a bit lost. What you need to do is take some time off for yourself and understand what you have gone through and where you are now. If you are blaming yourself for everything now is the time to stop and be kinder to yourself. Feel and understand all your emotions, work on what is bothering you the most and then make a decision that you can survive and will get on with life.
  1. Get a support system: You don’t have to do this alone. Spend time with family and friends who can give you emotional support. There are going to be days when it all hits you at once and you might need to have a good cry, that’s completely okay. When you have someone beside you in the hard times it makes it easier to bear.
  1. Fill the void: The empty feeling that comes when left without someone whom you have been with for years can be hard to deal with. Whether the relationship was good or bad it took up a space in your life which is now left open. Fill the void with hobbies and doing all the things you love or wanted to try. Learn a new skill, travel, even start dating again when you feel ready, and before you know it you would have built a new life that is whole.
  1. Moving on: No one deserves to be alone and just because you have had one failed relationship doesn’t mean that you can’t make another work. While you and your former spouse might have been incompatible you could meet someone who is a perfect fit for you. Give yourself the chance to fall in love again and have a new relationship.

Ending a marriage is heartbreaking and can be difficult to cope with at first. You need to take the time to grieve your loss but then you need to actively do things that help you to move forward.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

How Divorce Mediation Is A Prototype For Positive Co-Parenting

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce mediators in Orange County; California Divorce MediatorsMost marriages don’t end at the point of physical separation of the two partners, but were most likely dying slowly for a few years before that. In many cases by the time spouses actually separate and file for divorce there are already a lot of negative feelings for each other. When separating couples find it hard to agree on anything and hostilities run high it would be wise to hire a divorce mediator.

While having a divorce mediator is a good idea for the smooth progress of a divorce it is even more important when children are involved. Parents who are going through their own share of trials during a divorce can often overlook the impact the process is having on their children. Having a divorce mediator gives room for an objective third party to step in and provide constructive solutions which is in the best interest of all involved.

The Advantages Of Hiring A Divorce Mediator   

  1. You and your spouse can sit down together with the mediator and decide on the terms of your divorce. A meeting like this gives you the space to discuss issues like property division, paying off of debt, etc. and find workable solutions that you both agree on.
  1. Together you can both work out a plan for custody rights and parenting of your children. Decisions like whether you will co-parent or one parent gets full custody while the other gets visitation rights, can be taken with both your cooperation.
  1. If you decide to co-parent, together you can make a road-map for how things will proceed from this point on. Many points like how the child or children’s time is distributed between both parents, who gets what duties and what to do in emergency situations can be discussed.
  1. Any roadblocks that come up during the meeting can be arbitrated by the mediator and a solution can be found peacefully.

How Divorce Mediation Helps Co-Parenting 

When you consider all the points mentioned above, you also see that having a divorce mediator trains you to work as a team. Co-parenting requires teamwork and learning to cooperate with your former spouse peacefully is invaluable to the emotional and physical well-being of the children.

We offer divorce lawyer and divorce mediator services in Orange County, CA. Our practice is based on California specific divorce laws and we follow all the requirements put forward by the state. Our divorce mediator services have facilitated the amicable divorce of several couples and created a smooth transaction for the children.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

3 Things You Must Do Prior to Filing for Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce mediation attorneys in Orange County; California Divorce MediatorsMany couples who are on the verge of getting divorced feel extremely emotional and cannot think rationally while the process is underway. Often, the decision of taking a divorce roots from negative emotions, which can trigger a person to take a leap towards the divorce process.

Similar to other high-impact decisions in one’s life, it makes sense to take some time, know what will be your financial position in the future and where do you stand now, and align yourself with a good divorce lawyer who can help you by protecting your legal rights, prior to and after filing for the divorce.  The following 3 steps are some of the things you should do before going ahead and filing for divorce.

Seek the help of a reputable divorce attorney

You should interview a minimum of three divorce lawyers before hiring one. Opt for an attorney who has an experience between five to ten years and has been practicing divorce and family law. However, your divorce becomes a cakewalk and less costly when you and the other party can settle all matters without litigation. However, when that is not possible, you need to ensure that a capable attorney is hired who will be prepared to litigate your divorce case in the court before a judge.

Collect evidence of income

There will be a requirement of relevant documentation to show your income as well as your spouse’s income. In case both of you are salaried employees, there may be also a requirement to produce your recent pay slips’ copies along with your latest Income Tax Return.

Ascertaining income could be a tough task when your partner is self-employed.  In scenarios like that, copies of financial statements and statements of bank accounts can have proper clarity on your spouse’s income. Make sure that you have copies of all these statements prior to filing for your divorce. However, it will be difficult to know the actual and exact amount earned by your estranged spouse when he or she is self-employed, though you can get a fair idea with the suggestions given above. Collect whatever information you are able to. Later on, your attorney may help you in getting the remaining information through the process of discovery.

You need to have a fair idea of your financial position

One of the major goals of any divorce process is to ensure an equitable division of your marital debts and assets. So, you should have a clear idea of where you and your estranged spouse fare financially. If you want to receive your just share while negotiations for your divorce settlement is going on, it is essential to know what is owed and what is owned.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Tips for Mothers Going Through Legal Separation or Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Once the initial shock settles down and the divorce becomes a reality, you start realizing that your life will change in many ways when you become a single woman once again. A realization like this can be actually scary for many. However, like many others, you will also get used to these new changes gradually. So do not lose your cool and be patient.

It is indeed a gutsy role to be a single mother once your divorce gets finalized. Such a role will also be a challenging one as you transform into a stronger individual with each day. Do not feel scared and prepare yourself for the rainy day. You should start doing everything on your own so that your life becomes less stressful and easier. You may consider the following divorce tips that are helpful for single moms so that you can prepare yourself and plan accordingly.

Spend time in reviewing your financial position 

Do not indulge into self-pity or worry unnecessarily about your inability to provide for your kids. It will not serve any purpose and will end up giving you headaches. Thus, it is advisable to put aside your worries about how to get enough money to purchase a bicycle or doll for your little one. There are various ways of giving toys to your kids without going to the market to purchase them. You can make those toys at home. Let your kids help you out as they are going to love such activities. When you spend your time together and create these toys, it will be a memory they are going to cherish for a long time to come.

Self-education is extremely important 

Self-improvement initiatives and education are important things to work on at this crucial juncture of life as you need to be self-equipped and self-dependent in your new life. You can go online and research for some free courses on the net, find out easy tips to earn money and check available resources as a part of your action plan.

Be well-informed about issues like insurance plans, savings, credit, and taxes as they will come quite handy after your divorce. You can do so by either researching about them online or by hiring a professional consultant. Try to find out whether there are any government sponsored programs along with the benefits they offer to single mothers. The bottom line is you should have all relevant information at your disposal so that looking after your household and finances after your divorce become simpler.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

What To Think About When Reconciling After Legal Separation

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediation; California Divorce MediatorsOn certain occasions, some couples do regroup and reconcile after their legal separation. Contrary to what many people would like to believe, survival from a separation is not an accidental case. But spouses who do succeed in overcoming their discord after a separation are known to exhibit certain behaviors to make sure that their marriages are intact.

What should you do to get back together after your legal separation? 

The couples must ensure that there is complete transparency in their relationship if they are really serious about reconciliation after their temporary break-up. When there is erosion in the trust factor, transparency can act as a balm. Try to be open about the finances, schedules and personal habits so that some that lost trust factor can be replaced by your relationship. You should also note that coaching is a great idea. When you have professional experts or a good support system in your life that can help you out with your emotions, you can benefit to a great extent. It is also imperative for you to be completely honest with yourself by asking certain tough questions. So think carefully about the answers for the following questions prior to reconciliation:

  • Was it your partner who had ended the relationship of did you do it? Did both of you get an opportunity to have a heart to heart discussion on what could have gone wrong in your marriage during your legal separation? In case the answer is in negative, it is high time that you engage in an honest and open dialogue with one another.
  • Did you know the events in your partner’s life while both of you were separated?
  • Has there been a change in you or your partner’s nature since the end of your relationship? In case the reply is in affirmative, what and how did that change take place? Did such changes bring both of you closer or widened the gap?
  • Can your relationship get affected through certain other crucial factors in case both of you decide to get back together in the future?

You should generally give a chance for reconciliation

When there is a space between you and your partner albeit temporarily in the form of a separation, it shows you what is important and what should not matter to both of you. When you are focused on giving a second chance to your marriage and your partner is also on the same page, you should give a sincere chance to reconciliation.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Questions To Ask Yourself Prior To Filing For Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediation; California Divorce MediatorsThere are several cases where the divorce process is not easy at all. Rather, it can turn messy on several occasions. Whatever may be the reason for you to file the divorce; you should make this decision independent of emotions. In fact, such a step should be only taken after weighing all the options before you. Moreover, you should be all set to fight for the custody of your kids and your assets. While the situation may vary from individual to individual, there are some necessary questions that you should ask yourself first prior to filing the divorce.

Did you try to repair the relationship with your spouse?

Do you feel divorce is the most appropriate resolution before you? In case your married life is unhappy but not a violent one, you should go for a professional help to find out if it is a rough patch that you are going through or ending your marriage and moving ahead in your life is the best solution available for you. When personal issues are the main reasons for your marriage going sour, then chances are that you may go through the same problems in your future relationships too. So, it is important to find out the root cause of your sadness. This is precisely the reason why you should give another chance to repair your relationship before going ahead with your divorce decision. To do this you may try to identify what are the major points of conflicts between both of you. Make efforts to improve your communication as open discussions can solve plenty of problems.  You can even meet a professional counselor to make it work between you and your spouse.

Do you feel safe in your home?

In case you have already made a decision on taking a divorce, whether stay in your ex’s house or leave it may have severe implications.  After all, your children’s safety is of great importance.  However, in case you do not have any immediate danger, you can get in touch with an attorney before you leave your existing home since it could have a bearing on the custody hearing. But when the relationship between you and your spouse is strained and an abusive one, you must take the required steps to remove the kids and yourself from any type of danger. According to a report published by the American Bar Association, about half the assaults take place either during or after separation.

Have you spoken to a good divorce attorney?

Getting in touch with an experienced divorce lawyer is one of the most crucial steps that you must take prior to filing for your divorce.  Different states have different laws on divorce and they keep changing frequently. A good divorce attorney may help you with your queries and doubts and also represent you in court.  In case your case is a complicated one and children are also involved in it, you will need an expert lawyer who specifically deals with family law to represent your case.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Advice On Reconciling After A Marital Separation

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

divorce lawyers in Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmDo you want to improve your chances of reuniting after your legal separation? Then, it is always better to start the process with complete honesty. Both of you should be prepared to honestly discuss all those issues, which resulted in the trouble. It can be various factors such as addiction, an act of betrayal, or abuse. Whatever it is, they should in the open. When the two partners are dishonest about the issues that hurt them, it is unrealistic to expect that they will be sincere about the changes they should implement in their relationship to salvage the marriage. It is always recommended to take the help of an impartial mediator or a third-party therapist or counselor.

What should you do to get back after your separation?

Being completely transparent with your partner is another important step to follow if you are really keen about a marital reconciliation after being separated. When trust factor has disappeared in a marriage, transparency is the perfect antidote for the couple. Both the parties should be completely frank about their personal schedules, habits, and finances. Such a step will make sure that the couple gets back the lost trust to some extent. It is a good idea to contemplate coaching.

Give a chance for marital reconciliation

When there is a space in a relationship, it shows what is important and what does not matter. It also teaches what helps and what can be hurtful. When both you and your spouse are serious about giving your marriage another chance and your partner to echoes your sentiments, you would definitely have one more chance to marriage reconciliation.

Check out these tips when you and your partner intend to get back together especially after your legal separation.

There is no harm in accepting your mistakes

In order to make your marriage work, both you and your partner should accept all those mistakes made in the past, which led to your separation initially. If you and your partner are one of those couples who are interested in reuniting, you should be prepared to apologize to each other. You should realize and appreciate that frankness; trust and forgiveness are some of those key ingredients, which can salvage your marriage.

You should be prepared for certain changes

Being willing to change is perhaps one of the most crucial factors to get back together. You should freely discuss the desired changes you are looking forward to. It is imperative for you to be ready to change yourself for your spouse.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

4 Divorce Myths That Should Be Ignored

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce mediation attorneys in Orange County; California Divorce MediatorsMany people go for a divorce with certain preconceived ideas about how their experience would be. Check out some of those common myths that are often associated with the process of divorce. It helps you to keep your mind open about what may happen while your divorce proceeding is going on.

The divorcing couples must go to divorce court

It is quite likely that you would not have to spend a day in the court, especially if you are little fortunate. In a majority of States, a couple can arrive at an agreement with a divorce lawyer or a mediator, a judge may put his or her signature on the divorce decree and the parties involved need not appear in the divorce court. It is easy to stay out of a divorce court even the couple can sort out their conflicts amicably while the negotiation for divorce settlement goes on.

A divorce lawyer is mandatorily needed for seeking a divorce

On the contrary, it is not compulsory to hire a divorce lawyer. You can choose from certain options that can alleviate the requirement of hiring a lawyer. These options can prevent

Divorce courts can be biased as they often favor the moms

It is true that in the majority of cases, mothers are given the custody of the kids. However, that is not because the judge is biased. It has more to do either many fathers agreeing to hand over the custody to their estranged wives. Mostly, fathers have heard that they should not even try to get custody that they do not even make an attempt to get the custody. In reality, a father does not have to prove that the mother is not capable f caring for or mentally unstable to provide or care for the kids. Who will gain custody while the parents are getting divorced will be ascertained by the concerned judge. In case a father can give evidence to a judge that he is a more suitable parent, custody can be awarded to him.

A child can spend equal time with both the parents in case of a fifty-fifty custody. This is perhaps the most ideal scenario for the children. Both of you should make the best possible efforts to provide the best for your children. But a father has the same legal rights as the mother in the case of child custody.

Divorce will damage the kids 

This is not true because children do not get damaged due to divorce. But parents who do not give a priority to their children’s interests during and after the divorce process damage their kids.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how Orange County divorce mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Can An Orange County Divorce Destroy Your Retirement?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediators; California Divorce MediatorsWhen you have finally made up your mind to get a divorce, it is likely that you may not think too much about how it can have an impact on your retirement. However, it is an extremely valid matter to think about. Insured Retirement Institute conducted a study which observed that about 24 percent of the divorced couples who are born after World War II felt their condition will deteriorate after retirement because of the divorce. About 23 percent of the respondents mentioned that they must work for longer years to combat the hardship. Thus, it signifies that you need to take certain measures for protecting your retirement plans. Additionally, it is better to do so as quickly as possible. After all, the financial impact of a divorce can actually last for many decades. Check out some ways to ensure that your retirement dreams are on a proper track irrespective of your divorce.

Retirement and divorce

Although your divorce could be taking place many decades before your retirement date, it is likely that your retirement savings may be badly affected. First of all, a divorce would typically mean that your retirement funds could be split between your former spouse and you. As a result, you may find a substantial reduction in your retirement savings. Secondly, a divorce also signifies that soon it will be a single income household albeit temporarily. Thus, it is possible what you would be able to save quite less for your post-retirement years as compared to what you had initially anticipated or planned.

Divorce and your retirement savings

Local as well as state laws ascertain the manner in which your retirement savings will be split between your former spouse and you. In case you are residing in one of the community property states, any assets acquired by your spouse or you during the course of your marriage are regarded as joint property irrespective of who saved the money. California is also an example of a community property state along with other States like Washington, Texas, Arizona, Louisiana, Wisconsin, Idaho and New Mexico.

The most certain technique to ensure that your retirement savings are protected is to enter into a prenuptial agreement, which specifies which party will get the exact percentage of the saving in the accounts in the event of a marriage breakup. In case, you have not set up a prenup, you should negotiate with your former spouse and come up with an agreement that will benefit you both. You can hire one of the reputable Orange County divorce mediators at California Divorce Mediators to help you in the process.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation