Guatemala and Enforcement of Foreign Judgements

Executive Summary What we are going to discuss here is whether or not a creditor can come to Guatemala with a judgment from a foreign (Non Guatemala) court and enforce it or make it collectible in Guatemala. We will look at the complications involved and the chances of success which are miniscule at best. I would like to point out that this is a topic not covered by our competition. There are collection law firms that discuss international judgement collection but they are trying to sell their services. In spite of this I have never seen one collection law firm getting enthusiastic about collecting foreign judgements. It is best done through a treaty which Guatemala does not have with any country. We will discuss the matter in depth below.
What is a Judgement A judgement is a decision from a court based on a trial or it could be based on a summary judgment where there was not trial held because the odds of success for the defendant were so small the court just goes ahead and railroads him. Sometimes this happens because the defendant can not afford a legal defense. This is prevalent in the USA. In this discourse we are addressing judgments for money damages. A judgement can have other aspects to it like an eviction proceeding ordering one to leave a house. It does not matter if it is a local court or a national court for this discourse. This is because Guatemala has no treaties for enforcement of foreign judgments but more on this later. The court would need to be contained in a country that Guatemala has diplomatic relations with. Guatemala also insists that the country of the judgement allows Guatemala judgements to be enforced in that country.
What is Not a Judgement A tax lien is not a judgment. Tax liens can come from local or national governments. There is normally no trial preceding a tax lien. There was no judge, no jury, no due process, no right to defend yourself, no attorney present for the defendant, no right to examine your accuser, no chance of jury nullification, etc. This is a government administrative procedure that is not enforceable offshore in other countries. A tax lien would need to be reduced to a judgement by filing a lawsuit in a court of appropriate jurisdiction in the home country. It would be like any other lawsuit. The defendant would have the right to present a defense and have a jury trail. Such a judgement would also then be dischargeable in an ordinary bankruptcy case. Tax liens are practically never converted into a judgement for these reasons and of course the expense involved, time delay to go to trail and so forth.
Guatemala Has No Treaty for the Enforcement of Foreign Judgements It is good that Guatemala has no such treaty. If a treaty like this was present the process of collecting a foreign judgment would be simplified. The judgment itself would be sufficient evidence to proceed with collection. With Guatemala, foreign judgements are anything but a cost effective easy thing to collect on.
Guatemala Corporations and Foreign Judgements Before we get into the ins and outs of the nightmares associated with collecting foreign judgments in Guatemala lets look at the initial problem a judgment creditor would face. We always have our clients use corporations for asset protection. This applies to banking, real estate, cars etc. We prefer to start with fresh corporations formed in the jurisdiction as long as they are anonymous bearer share corporations. Guatemala has very anonymous bearer share corporations. The names of the owners of the corporation do not appear in any public registry, database and the government does not know who owns the corporation. In places like the USA where the legal system has run amuck you will hear a lot of talk concerning piercing the corporate veil. This piercing the corporate veil tactic is nasty and effective in the USA. Try it in Guatemala and you will fail and have one angry judge to deal with who will be less than appreciative of your attempts to import sleazy legal tactics from the USA into his or her courtroom. The corporate veil is not going to be pierced for foreign cvil judgement collection matters. So how does the creditor attack real estate or a bank account owned by a corporation in Guatemala? He doesn’t! You are the owner of the corporation but he does not know that and cannot prove that. Ownership of Guatemala corporations is not in any public registry or database. Going to court and saying well the judgment debtor wired funds from his home country bank account to a bank account owned by this corporation, is not going to prove a single thing in Guatemala regarding corporate ownership. The judgment debtor may have invested in this corporation, he may have bought real estate from this corporation or bought a boat, a plane a car, etc. It does not prove any ownership. The judgement creditor is not going to be able to get into any Guatemala banking records using a foreign judgment as grounds. Guatemala has serious bank secrecy. You must understand that in Guatemala a corporation is a free standing judicial person (artificial person) that has its own assets and liabilities. Your liabilities are not the liabilities of the corporation. This means personal debts do not transfer over to a corporation.
Fraudulent Conveyance The catchall used to attack offshore bank accounts is fraudulent conveyance. A fraudulent conveyance references activity where funds or assets were removed from a jurisdiction to prevent a creditor from recovering the debt. The term can also apply to transferring title of real estate or a car to another to keep it from being attached by a creditor. Panama allows a creditor to pursue a fraudulent conveyance action based on a foreign judgment and this even applies to their foundations. As a comparison Guatemala is not a fraudulent conveyance friendly jurisdiction. Such cases are seldom ever heard of in Guatemala because the chances of success are extremely slight. The plaintiff would need to show that the transfer was specifically designed or intended to remove the assets from the reach of the creditor. If the defendant could show this was not the case then there is no fraudulent conveyance. The money could have been moved to say a Guatemala corporation to pay for services, goods, make an investment, buy a residence, invest in real estate, buy a boat, and so forth. Please bear in mind that in Guatemala the creditor is in the dark. He cannot just subpoena bank records like in other countries. He has no idea who owns the corporation. There are a lot of just about insurmountable obstacles in the path the creditor has to follow. This is why we do not really see these cases in Guatemala.
Foreign Judgement Enforcement Complications in Guatemala There are a lot of conditions that need to be met to enforce a judgment in Guatemala from another country.
Default judgments are not enforceable in Guatemala. The defendant must have been served personally. This means a live process server gave them the legal papers. If the service was by mail, by courier, by publication it invalidates the entire lawsuit and judgement as far as Guatemala is concerned. Dropping the papers on the doorstep or taping them to the door is not going to work. This right off the top eliminates a large amount of judgements.
The judgment must be final in that there is no more room for appeals. This is usually going to mean a few months in most cases.
The court that issued the judgment has to have had proper jurisdiction over the matter. Frivolous cases filed in foreign jurisdictions with incorrect venue or authority are not going to be enforceable. The debtor can always argue that the jurisdiction or authority the court asserted is incorrect. This can then make it a triable issue of fact in the Guatemala courts. The defendant would try to get the plaintiff to retry the entire case in Guatemala if he could not find another way to dispose of the matter. To do this means two sets of lawyers for the plaintiff, one in Guatemala and one from the foreign country. Think big money. Remember that Guatemala has no treaties for the enforcement of foreign judgments. This opens up the playing field to counter attack the plaintiff attempting to collect the judgement. When there is a treaty the judgment itself stands as admissible evidence and the grounds for objecting are most limited.
There is no enforcement if no such claim would be possible under Guatemala law. Guatemala will refuse to enforce the foreign money judgment if the claim on which the foreign judgment is based could not have been brought in Guatemala. The foreign case has to be consistent with Guatemala law. Guatemala law is not as crazy as USA, UK law. If you were sued for sending out faxes that were unsolicited, this judgment would be void in Guatemala since they have no such law in Guatemala. Many USA lawsuits are for civil violations that are absent from Guatemala law and thus not enforceable in Guatemala. This means the foreign attorney will have to retain foreign counsel to review the case and see it is consistent with Guatemala law. Can be expensive. He may have to have the entire matter translated into Spanish by a certified translator at a cost of $10 to $15 a page. Some cases are hundreds of pages. Then the Guatemala lawyer has to read the case which means billable hours. He will ask questions to the foreign attorney so now we get into double billable hours. In any event to enter the judgment into the Guatemala court system in an effort to collect there would need to be a translation of the judgment into Spanish. Then when the debtor started making objections the entire case file would most likely need to be translated into Spanish.
If the judgment was for contempt of court it makes the judgment not valid in Guatemala. This sort of judgment would not be collectible in Guatemala.
The judgment has to not be for default. In other words if you failed to respond to a foreign court action and were in domicile in Guatemala and they got a summary judgment that would not be a valid judgment.
More Foreign Judgment Collection Obstacles in Guatemala The creditor wishing to collect on a foreign judgment in Guatemala is basically on a financial mission, to collect funds. His path is like walking through a minefield. He can hit a number of unexpected or hidden tactics presented by the debtor that will make a financial recovery very unlikely.
First, we have to look at the appeals process open to the defendant. These are the things a creditor will be advised to consider before proceeding with an expensive and time consuming foreign judgment matter in Guatemala. Please bear in mind the defendant (debtor) can appeal any negative decision from a lower court two ways. The defendant can appeal to the Supreme Court claiming the law was not followed correctly applying any of the above noted objections, or all of them. He can also claim procedures were not followed correctly. He can claim the case is not consistent with Guatemala law. He can attack the way he was served. There are many things he can do. He can even file a counter claim against the creditor. The other appeals option is to appeal to the special Constitutional Courts Guatemala has to just decide constitutional issues. How hard would it be to argue that the defendant had some constitutional rights violated in the process somewhere.
If all that fails after years of waiting for the process to work its way through the courts, then there is the bankruptcy option. Guatemala has a complex bankruptcy court system that could be utilized for shelter from creditors. Using these appellate processes is going to run up the bill for the plaintiff substantially. Without the appeals system, the time required for cases can run up to the 3-5 year mark easily. Then add in appeals. and the bankruptcy for even more years. The plaintiff could conceivably go broke or die of old age before the appeals process runs out. They might recover nothing especially if a bankruptcy is used. The plaintiff might never prevail. The expenses involved could be more than the amount of the judgment. By the time all the appeals are used, the time limit for the judgment may have expired (7-10 years usually) and then the case could be dismissed because the judgment is not longer valid, thus not enforceable. And on and on it goes. Such collection efforts are indeed rarely ever seen in Guatemala.
Summary If you have read this you are looking for a secure offshore asset protection jurisdiction and structure. We have several excellent options. Please bear in mind the perfect jurisdiction and structure does not exist. There is always going to be a give and take scenario. We have managed to isolate a few excellent options but there is no perfect solution that meets the needs of everyone. We do try though!

An Atlanta uncontested divorce is possible

Residents in the Atlanta area who are seeking or considering divorce may wish to consult with an Atlanta divorce lawyer. Often times, divorce can be a complicated issue and even an amicable divorce may quickly develop into a quagmire as both spouses seek to come to an agreement. However, with the assistance of an attorney, it may be possible to turn the tables and secure a favorable result.

Types of Divorce

Broadly speaking, there are two different kinds of divorce: no-fault divorce and at-fault divorce. In a no-fault divorce, there is no allegation or proof needed of fault on behalf of either party. However, specific rules apply to no-fault divorces, and a period of separation may well be required before seeking the divorce.

On the other hand, an at-fault divorce is where one party committed some act that is incompatible with marriage. The most common example is that of adultery, although grounds for an at-fault divorce may exist under any number of circumstances. To determine if it is possible to seek an at-fault divorce, a divorce lawyer in Atlanta can often help with assessing your legal options.

Uncontested Divorce

In many cases, the divorce may be the result of a mutual agreement between the spouses to dissolve the marriage. This is called an uncontested divorce, and it is often more cost effective and less stressful to go through than a confrontational divorce.

Typically, spouses are already in broad agreement about the terms of the divorce before consulting with an Atlanta divorce lawyer. An Atlanta uncontested divorce may thus be the best way to go, allowing the spouses to settle any remaining issues amicably as well as reducing any preexisting agreements to paper. If no dispute exists as to issues such as property division, child custody or spousal support, court involvement need only be minimal.

In Atlanta uncontested divorces, it is strongly advised to retain the assistance of an Atlanta divorce lawyer even the filing of an uncontested divorce may seem simple. In filing for a divorce and in writing the divorce agreement, it is important that any ambiguities be resolved before both spouses sign the applicable papers. Otherwise, they may have to return to court again in the future. Working with a divorce lawyer in Atlanta may thus be more cost effective in the long term.

Contact a lawyer today

If you are considering or seeking a divorce, it is often helpful to consult with an attorney from an Atlanta Divorce Law Firm to learn your rights and obligations. Moreover, the divorce process can often be complicated, and the judicial system has a language all its own that may seem confusing if not intimidating to those not well-versed in it. By working with an experienced attorney who has deep and extensive knowledge of divorce law, it may thus be possible to successfully navigate the court system with an aim toward securing a fair result. Moreover, in an uncontested divorce, a lawyer can help with ensuring that the resulting agreement is air-tight and will not cause legal troubles down the road.

Is it Time for a Divorce

Most of us enjoy fulfilling love from different relationships all through our lives. However, no love can be comparable to marital love that adults are entitled to. This love is unique for it is a homogenous blend of respect, admiration, acceptance, friendship, trust, faith and the need to feel special. Such an atmosphere of love and desire is conducive to a healthy and fulfilling married life.

If either of these is absent from a marriage, the couple should work at fulfilling that particular deficiency.

Lack of Respect

Respect for the marital spouse is the foundation stone for a strong marriage. Lack of it is signified by both, verbal and non verbal communication. Even a simple gesture like an upward eye roll indicates non acceptance and respect denial, lack of caring and aggressive behaviour. This simultaneously induces defensive and negative behaviour from the spouse which in turn aggravates hostility.

A more serious breach of respect is the verbal onslaught and physical and emotional abuse by the marital mate.

Physical Abuse

Physical abuse comprises shoving, slapping, punching, kicking or strangulation. Physical abuse should never be tolerated. The partner might use such acts of intimidation for controlling the spouse or resorting to such behaviour pattern might have been a habit learnt from childhood. Whatever may be the inducing reasons, such negative behaviour jeopardise safety of all the other family members.

Emotional Abuse

Verbal abuse is more serious than physical abuse and people often tend to ignore it for the mere lack of physical symptoms and the fear of not being taken seriously. But, it is much more serious than physical abuse for it leaves an injury on the soul of a person. The abused, loses self respect, courage, self confidence, rational thinking and lives life in self doubt.

Like the eye roll, the very first act must be met with defiance. The partner must be indicated the non acceptance of such behaviour. It should be put an end to before it becomes strong enough to destroy the marriage. If the spouse fails to end aggressive behaviour, needless to say the marriage has to be terminated.

Lack of Trust

Adultery is common and more than 30% of men and 25% of women have indulged in adultery at least once in the span of their marital life. And 65% of adultery episodes terminated marital life. Adultery, as is commonly believed does not occur just for sexual fulfilment. Men have the inherent desire to be loved, respected, admired and have peace at home. These propel a man towards higher achievements. And women desire to be sincerely loved, and love financial and familial commitment from their men. The desire to feel protected is a primeval instinct inherent in every woman.

Non fulfilment of either need drives people toward adultery. The erring spouse soon loses the trust of the aggrieved partner. Both adultery and lack of trust can be easily dispelled before they damage the relationship between spouses. Counselling is a must to help partners get rid of such tendencies. Once either spouse realises what is lacking in a relationship, fulfilling that inadequacy is not difficult. Yet, if each chooses to ignore the needs of the other, then divorce might be the only solution.

Why is a Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles necessary for a divorce to be successful

Marriage indeed binds a man and a woman in a marital union thus to be together for the rest of their life. However, if the love that bonded the two has faded and certain circumstances have dulled the relationship to a point that it is no longer possible to live together. At this point, divorce is the legal solution to resolve this problem hence, dissolving bonds of matrimony of a man and a woman. Because this separation may need to go through a legal process and may involve matters of spousal support, child custody, child support as well as distribution of property and debt, the need for a Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles to properly represent a party in court.

In finding the right Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles, there are factors that you must consider:

You need to interview at least two or three Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles that may handle your case. Whoever answers your inquiries in the most satisfactory way, then that can be a basis for your decision.

You need to make sure that the Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles you will be hiring is transparent in terms of his intentions as well as about the fees that will be charged for the services rendered. If such lawyer could not give you direct answer, he/she may not be the right representative for you.

Though you can now scout for a Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles over the internet, it is still a wise move to personally visit the firms physical address and see how they really work. With this you can see check their professionalism. Also having a lawyer that is a good listener of your concerns may be able to provide you with an effective service

Lastly, you need to make sure that you check the portfolio of the Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles thus making sure how experienced he is in handling such case. To add to that, it has been discouraged to hire friends or relatives to represent you unless they are really qualified enough to professionally represent you.

Once you have chosen your Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles, you will meet and discuss all related matters that have significance in the case. Once this has been done, the important document s that is required for the filing of the divorce at the court of law will be gathered. From there, the probability of winning a decision will be assessed as well as the validity for the grounds of filing a divorce is also being determined. By the time all necessary preparations are done, the next step will be the divorce trial where both parties will be cross-examined as witnesses by the opposing partys representative. After the cross-examination, the close arguments will be given. At that point, the verdict will be rendered by the judge and an order will be signed. Hence, having a good representative will ensure that your rights will be protected in this divorce case.

Whenever there is a need to file a divorce, you need the representation of a Divorce Attorney in Los Angeles. Also, properly screening a prospected divorce lawyer will ensure that all divorce issues will be addressed legally.

Items Of Public Divorce Records

There is no doubt at all that right to freedom of information act has changed the whole society. Few years back, no one would have thought that he could get the information related to the delicate issues like divorce through online application. However, this is now a reality. The public divorce records are available online through some formalities. The applicant has to fill the form online and then he can get the complete record within few days. It is easy and risk as well as stress free. The divorce might have occurred due to violence or abuse. Through the public records, it is now quite easy to find out all the details.

At second marriage, it is quite possible that the other party will like to know about the person in question. This is definitely possible. All these cases are filed in the county where both the spouse lives. However, keeping the divorce record is the matter of the state government. A very huge state repository is being maintained and it has been found that more than 40% of the marriages in United States are being broken within one year due to the various reasons. Thus, it is quite easy to understand that this state repository is huge and many records are being available.

Generally, these public records contain the details related to child, property, assets as well as the venue and the timing of the divorce. It should be kept in mind that majority of divorces are due to brutal assaults and both the spouse will definitely like to hide it. In fact, most of the records are being declared confidential and hence one will find that such records are not being available. However, on special request and on payment of certain fees these records might be handed over to the applicant.

A perfect divorce record will contain the records like time and location, all the settlement details, grounds for divorce, filing number, final decree as well as the pertinent information. There are many situations when the divorce records might be required. It can be simply a gesture made by some friend. Sometimes the spouse might want to remarry and hence he or she will have to present a copy of divorce record. Some of the government processes require the spouse to prove that they are now single and in all those circumstances, the person involved will have to provide the copy of the divorce record, which they can get through email, phone, and fax or by filling online form.

These details are also used for the genealogy research and there is no doubt at all that these records are very useful. Sometimes one will find that the public divorce records are also used for the negative purposes. Sometimes, the enemies might use them for the blackmailing purposes and this can be very dangerous. However, in 90% cases, these records are being used for healthy purposes and hence, there are no issues at that that these records should not be given to all the people. However, only required information should be given.

Quick Divorce Miami — 4 Myths About Divorce Mediation

Are you looking for a quick divorce in Miami? Then I’ll tell you what many people have probably already told you before — hire a divorce mediator. But if you have doubts about divorce mediation, this article will debunk four of the most common myths about this relatively new practice.

Myth #1 – Mediation Is Like Marriage Counseling.

I’ll say it once and for all — mediation is NOT marriage counseling. Divorce mediation operates on the assumption that you, and your spouse, WANT the divorce. And so it works towards quickly and conveniently reaching a compromise that both parties are happy with.

Your Miami divorce mediator will take your needs and expectations from the divorce, and then impartially compares them with your spouse’s. Then, taking the divorce laws of Florida into consideration, your mediator will craft a settlement that both you and your spouse will find acceptable.

Myth #2 – Mediation Is An Unnecessary Expense.

It’s a given that divorce is expensive. When done the “usual way,” you’ll have two lawyers (yours and your spouse’s) battling it out in court, with their endless debates and adversarial letters going back and forth for over a year. As your legal bills pile up, why add the cost of mediation to the mix, right?

Fortunately, that’s not how it works. Hiring a divorce mediator actually happens BEFORE you go to the courts. Couples who do so can look to save up to $12,000 or more, because they don’t need the services of their lawyers yet while the divorce mediation sessions are going on.

Myth #3 – Mediation Only Delays The Inevitable.

Sure, divorce is inevitable between you and your spouse. But hiring a divorce mediator is hardly a delay! In fact, since divorce mediation avoids the usual confrontation and endless debates, it actually saves time by helping you and your spouse reach an agreement much more quickly.

The average time required by a divorce mediator to help couples reach amicable settlements is 90 days — 15 months less than what the courts usually take to do the same! Your mediator will ensure a quick divorce in Miami by helping you and your spouse reach an agreement, drafting it up, and then forwarding it to your lawyers to be finalized with the courts.

Myth #4 – Mediation Is Discouraged By The Legal System.

Yes, some lawyers disagree with divorce mediation, and insist that the legal system is still the best venue to process divorce cases. We can’t blame them for saying so — after all, they make much of their living processing divorce cases!

But today, Miami courts actually like divorce mediation. Since they won’t have to sit through months and months of debates, they speed up the processing of other cases. What’s more, divorce mediation is also recommended by lawyers who sincerely care for the well-being of their clients and their families.

Want A Quick Divorce In Miami?

The answer is simple — find a good divorce mediator! The best ones out there have been doing it for quite a while, have good knowledge of the Florida legal system, and have a long list of satisfied clients in their portfolio.

The Characteristics to Look For in a Divorce Attorney

After all the basic proceedings and other formalities of a marital breakup, a good divorce attorney is needed. Thus, it is vital to start looking for the most excellent San Diego Divorce Lawyers as soon as possible. To find such an expert it is necessary to look for the important characteristics that one should have, in order to achieve optimistic outcome. Below are a few factors that are found in common in some of the best San Diego Divorce Attorneys.

Knowledge, Skills and Practice:

Knowledge, skills and practice, are all the 3 aspects that are always present in an experienced lawyer or attorney as it proves their capability and power of handling different types of cases. Therefore, looking for an attorney that is much more experienced with cases similar to yours will do the trick for you. Because they are much familiar of those cases and there are more chances of better case handling with such lawyers than the others. There are many lawyers who are greatly competent in spousal support cases but the same lawyers are incapable of conducting property division cases. It completely makes sense; therefore, it is vital to search for the right experts.

Competency:

There are numerous fields and subjects of a divorce case i.e. spousal support, property division, child support, enforcement orders and legal counseling, a lawyer who is trained for the most of these subjects and is an expert of handling a majority of such multifaceted cases should only be hired, as they are the only professionals who can help you attain the control of almost 100 percent of this situation. Monetary man wishes to have more of the property while the parent-side of the same person wants to support his child, if an incompetent lawyer is chosen he may be able to get you one or two of the mentioned aspects while the control to others will be completely lost.

Easy-To-Get-To:

Because such cases are one of the most delicate ones, lawyers should be very much reachable. Check by faxing, mailing, calling, and contacting them by other means. If they respond promptly then, accessibility is assured. These cases can take solid turns at any minute, about which the lawyers should be notified right away to lead the case positively; this reason defines this factor as the foremost and primary characteristic. Other than just timely response it is important to see if they are punctual with the time they give for meetings and appointments.

With all these characteristics, it is also important to see what people say about these San Diego Divorce Attorneys and Lawyers. This can be done by reading reviews online. These reviews are written by their clients who have won, lost or partially taken over their cases; they are enough to know about the lawyer’s strong and weak points and what their specialty is. This kind of research may consume a few hours but it is necessary to read several review before trusting as such cases usually do not appear more than once in a lifetime.

Property Division, Real-Estate, & Washington Divorce Law

All property division pursuant to a divorce in Washington state starts from the simple premise that all assets accumulated during the marriage will be presumed to be “community property” and split 50/50. But in practice the 50/50 split often does not end up being the result because of such legally cognizable factors as: the earning power of the parties upon termination of the marriage is highly unequal, one party made the entire down-payment, the property came by inheritance, and quite a few others. Often time this arises in shorter marriages where the parties have acquired a piece of real-estate. So how does one answer this question?

The mortgage rule is a legal tool used to characterize property acquired, using both community and separate funds, over a period of time. Harry M. Cross, The Community Property Law in Washington, 61 WASH. L. REV. 13, 39-49 (rev. 1985). The mortgage rule examines whether both parties concerned were obligated to make payments in order to retain ownership of the disputed asset. If there was no such continuing obligation, then the character of the asset is retrospectively determined to be proportionate to the ratio of separate and/or community funds used to acquire the asset. Absent a continuing obligation, the character of the property is retrospectively determined to be proportionate to the ratio of separate and or community funds used to acquire the property It is precisely this mortgage indebtedness that itself constitutes a contribution to effect the final determination of what proportionate share either party should be entitled to. If the other spouse signs the promissory note they become liable to the bank and later third parties for repayment. Even if that party had low income and no assets to secure the loan it is still a contribution. If separate funds are used to make a contribution and are traceable a lien for the down-payment amount could be found but only to that extent of that separate contribution to the down payment. However, In Re Hurd changes this slightly in that the separate character of a cash down payment can be transformed into community property by titling the home in both parties names. (Thus we see some significance in whose name an item of property actually stands.)

This includes such assets as the appreciation of retirement plans that were purchased before the marriage. The value of such an asset must be analyzed to determine what portion grew or accumulated during the marriage and the value prior to the marriage.

Washington state divorce law purposefully vests a substantial degree of leeway to the Judges hearing your case (and I say Judges because the Commissioners only deal with pre-trial issues, modifications, and contempt; they can’t divide the equity in your home or business). Carefully planning from the start of your case is necessary to develop the evidence needed in property characterization. It also gives the attorney time to become familiar with what both parties real financial futures might look like upon final dissolution of the partnership. This is especially important where one is not dealing with a trivial amount of assets, or if you feel your spouse has a significantly higher earning potential.

Division of real estate under Washington state divorce law can also be made not in accordance with whose name is on the title to the property. Whose name the property is titled in, does not settle the matter conclusively but may be considered by the judge among other factors as possible indicia that the parties wished to make it separate.

My Husband Wants a Divorce – Examine Your Role in Your Marriage through Six Questions

My husband wishes for a divorce”; that is a hard fact you have to accept regardless of whether you like it or not. Yet, it doesn’t have to ended that way. Here’s six questions you should consider to help you save your crumbling marriage.

Before the darkness of the night puts her into pensive mood, she looks at the ring around her finger. It was right there at the porch where he proposed to her. No, it wasnt like the movies. He brought nothing else to make the ambiance more romantic but still, she found it the sweetest thing he had done for her. But as she stares at the ring again, a teardrop falls onto her hand. Theyve had big fights recently. Musing on his gestures, justifications and preferences, she concludes, “My husband wants a divorce.”

Giving in to separation seems to be the easiest way out. But a wife who values the sacrament of matrimony will ask herself how she can satisfy her husband in different ways. In evaluating her role in their union, she must answer the questions stated below.

Do you thank him for addressing your familys needs?

Mens role in our society centers on providing for their families. Centuries ago, they go hunting in the forest and bring food for their families. Presently, with our gender fair programs, it may not be as emphasized as before but still, they would like to attain that feeling of accomplishment and pride for attending to the needs of his loved ones.

Do you give him enough silence?

Women tend to talk much more than men. When they are strained, confused or contemplative, they need minutes to think by themselves. Though this makes them difficult to figure out, they consider the quiet time golden. If he doesnt feel like chatting, dont force him. Though he isnt verbally communicating, he is still thinking.

Do you directly say what you want?

Another difference between men and women is how they convey their message. The former are straightforward while the latter beat around the bush. This unlikeness causes serious arguments and worse, it makes some wives say, “My husband wants a divorce.” Refrain from making long introductions or from letting him read between the lines always. Cut your introductions short and dont let him decipher your coded words. As much as you can, dont be ambiguous. You can still do it with tact.

Do you sometimes make the first move in lovemaking?

Lets face the fact that sex is important for men. Women who are boring in bed disappoint them. If you are too tired to make love, all you have to do is explain and be understood. Moreover, men dont want to be in the driving seat always. They want their partners to do their share of first moves as well. By the way, men love sexy underwear.

Do you let him hang out with his friends?

Like women, men need the company of friends. Talking about sports, cars, art and current events over some bottles of booze makes them realize there is a world outside their home. Dont get easily jealous with the time he spends with his friends. Otherwise, hell think you want to control his life.

Minnesota Divorce Can We Not Just Agree

As a Minnesota divorce attorney, a question that is often posed to me by my divorce and child custody clients is, “Can’t my spouse (or the other party) and I just agree to something on our own?” Normally, my answer to that question is a resounding “yes” the more you can agree to, the less there is to argue between the attorneys and the less Court involvement that will be necessary. What this normally also means is the divorce or custody proceeding will be easier on your pocket book as well.

However, there are a few exceptions to the “lets just agree to this and follow it” approach. First, if the agreement pertains to minor children in any manner, the Court will always apply an independent “best interests of the child” analysis. In other words, just because you agree to something, if that agreement impacts minor children, the Court could reject the agreement.

With regard to child support, there is a legal presumption that the statutory child support guidelines must be used in all child support determinations. If the parties wish to agree to a different amount, they must provide to the Court an explanation on why this “deviation from the guidelines” is in the children’s best interests.

For an initial child custody determination, the standard for the Court would be “what is in the best interests of the children.” If the parties agree to the child custody and parenting time schedule and provide an explanation for it, generally the Court’s will defer to this agreement. The Courts generally appreciate the parties reaching an agreement on custody and parenting time because in most cases the parents know their children the best and know what is best for their children. So, if they can agree on custody and parenting time, the Court should adopt that agreement.

The tricky part arises when the parties wish to modify an existing Court order (a post-decree modification). For example, John and Jane got divorced. They had two minor children, Jenny and Jimmy. In the divorce, Jane was awarded sole physical custody, the parties were awarded joint legal custody, John was awarded parenting time every other weekend and was ordered to pay $1,000.00 per month in child support. One year after the divorce, John was terminated from his employment, began receiving unemployment and was home for the majority of the days. Based on this, the John and Jane agreed between the two of them that they would modify their agreement to provide for joint physical custody, each spouse alternating every other week of parenting time with the children and that neither spouse would pay to the other spouse any amounts for child support. John and Jane agreed to this in writing, each of them signed it, but they did not submit it to the Court for a Judge to sign and file with the Court.

John and Jane’s agreement would be considered an “extra-judicial agreement.” Is it enforceable? Maybe.

Minnesota courts have approved extrajudicial modification of an existing divorce decree through stipulated agreement. There is a policy favoring the use of stipulations in divorce proceedings. But these stipulations are given considerably less weight when the agreement involves children. The Court is not bound by stipulations involving child custody. Further, child-support stipulations are given less weight to protect “the welfare of the children” as the paramount consideration.