Which Spouse Gets the Girlfriend in the Divorce?

Husband and Wife have three Children.

They have been married for twelve years.

Now they have decided together to get a divorce.

So that one of them can marry … their shared Girlfriend.

They haven’t yet decided which one of them will marry their Girlfriend.

In the end, it may not really matter.

They are a “threesome”.

They apparently share everything, including Husband’s and Wife’s Children.

Children apparently understand that they have acquired a bonus parent.

Husband and Wife actually want to extend parental rights to the Children to Girlfriend.

And New York is a state which appears ready to go along with that.

Read more in this New York Post article: Couple wants to divorce each other to marry live-in girlfriend .

Husband Granted No Fault Divorce Due to Wife’s Possession … By the Devil

Italian Husband and Wife are married for years.

They have two children together.

The last several years have been – trying.

In 2007, Wife reportedly begins exhibiting unusual, “inexplicable” behavior, in the presence of witnesses.

Levitating. Fits. Overturning a church pew and then hurling it towards the altar.

For all of the above reasons, Husband seeks a divorce, claiming that Wife is … “possessed by the devil”.

Husband doesn’t suggest that Wife is blameworthy for this though. Rather, just spooky, one may infer.

His claim snags Husband a no-fault divorce in Italy.

One can only hope that it wins Wife an examination by an epilepsy neurologist or psychiatrist.

Read more in this UK Daily Mail article: Italian man is granted a divorce by claiming his wife is ‘possessed by the devil’ after witnesses said they’d seen her LEVITATE

Grandmother Dresses as Scary Witch To Punish Young Child

Young Children are in care of Oklahoma City Grandmother.

Grandmother dresses up in a witch’s costume. Not to entertain Children.

But in an apparent punishment ritual.

Child pleads for Grandmother to “stop”, promising to behave better.

Grandmother allegedly burns Children, cuts them, whips them,withholds food from them, grabs them with pliers, and engages in other abusive acts.

Some of them captured on video taken by unknown parties.

Grandmother is charged with and convicted of felony child abuse.

Grandmother is sentenced to three life terms in prison.

A Man who also reportedly lives in the home with Grandmother and Children is also arrested and convicted of felony child abuse.

Man is sentenced to life in prison.

It is not stated how Children came to be in Grandmother’s care or whether they were taken into child protective custody.

Read more in

  1. this Tribune Media Wire Service video: Video Shows Grandmother Dressed as a Witch While Abusing Child and
  2. this KFOR News Channel 4 article: Video shows Oklahoma City grandmother dressed as a witch while abusing grandchild

Taxes After Divorce With Children

The ripple effects of divorce on taxes can be far-reaching and both lasting and recurring. Yet often glossed over during the divorce process. Clear, succinct and comprehensive summaries do not abound.

Some conceptual highlights to keep in mind:

  • Tax deductions and credits will have a greater impact to the ex-spouse with greater earnings. In the abstract, this means more benefit to parents and child collectively. Therefore, who takes these deductions and credits can be optimized to extract the maximum benefit for that collective.
  • The Internal Revenue Service expects exes to follow their divorce decrees and agreements correctly. It isn’t equipped to delve into those documents and make sure that deductions and credits are applied to the correct party.
  • This can make for a mess that will require going back to family court for a divorce judge to set right. Cooperation between exes can avoid hassles and expenses related to more litigation and dealings with the IRS.

Some practical highlights to keep in mind:

  1. The ex who pays court-ordered and/or contractually-mandated alimony gets a deduction, so the ex who receives it must include it in their income … sooner or later, with or without penalties and/or interest
  2. Unlike alimony, actual child support is tax neutral or irrelevant
  3. The dependency exemption is worth several thousand dollars … but only one parent is allowed to take it in any particular year
  4. Tax credits (child tax, earned income, dependent care), which add up cumulatively, vary in amount but, again, only one parent may claim the same credit for the same child in any particular year
  5. There is a tax credit for college expenses but that is outside the scope of child support in Florida
  6. the deductions for interest on the home mortgage and property taxes require that the taxpayer is the one who pays the expense and is an actual owner of the home

Read more in this Wall Street Journal article: Divorced Couples, Put Aside Your Differences…for the Tax Break .

Opportunities for Surrogacy In Mexico Diminishing

American Man (Father) wishes to become a father. After due consideration, he decides upon using a surrogate mother as the means to this end.

After investigating the options, he hires a Mexican woman (Surrogate) from the state of Tabasco for this purpose.

Eventually the times comes, Father travels to Mexico and Surrogate gives birth to Baby.

Father and Surrogate enjoy the moment – almost literally – before Mexican authorities take Baby away.

The laws of this Mexican state have recently changed, outlawing surrogacy for foreigners.

To the mutual detriment of Mexican women hoping for the income and of foreigners hoping for less expensive and time-consuming surrogacy paths than they would face at home.

Father is eventually reunited with Baby, about six weeks and four attorneys later. The Tabasco government didn’t make it easy for him. Or his Surrogate.

And won’t make it any easier for the next would-be parents and surrogates.

The nonprofit agency that intervened on Father’s behalf recommends that states in the US improve access to surrogacy within the US to avoid problems such as Father encountered in Mexico.

Read more in this New York Times article: As Mexican State Limits Surrogacy, Global System Is Further Strained .

I’m Back Living with My Ex – And His New Girlfriend – and I Can’t Wake Up!

You’ve heard the story. “Oh, my ex and I, we had an amicable divorce. We’re still good friends.”

Your eyes roll. “Yeah, right, get real”, you think silently. How could anyone really feel that way?

Well, if you’re nodding your head at this point, imagine this.

Husband and Wife have Boy and Girl together.

Husband and Wife divorce.

Husband gets the marital residence (House).

Husband gets Girlfriend.

Girlfriend moves in with Husband.

Girlfriends helps out with Boy and Girl during Husband’s timesharing.

Oh … and Wife lives in a little apartment built on to the House.

And Husband, Wife and Girlfriend divvy up child care responsibilities and cooking up family meals which … they all eat together.

Well, statistically, you probably don’t know anyone living a post-divorce lifestyle such as this.

But, truth be told, this may not be the exclusive province of the Sci Fi Channel either.

Husband is real. But he is the first to admit “I’m probably the luckiest divorced man on the planet”.

Yet, reportedly, he and his situation are not entirely unique.

This is an emerging trend. Well, “trend” may be overstating it.

But it seems that this is a real thing. Some people are actually doing this.

And, once / if you can wrap your head around it, like most things in life, it may have its pros, for children, and cons, for the exes.

Well, at the very least, it may make getting through exchanges of the kids and meeting the ex’s new significant other – without incident – seem a lot less daunting.

Read more in this New York Post article: ‘I’m probably the luckiest divorced man on the planet’ .

Boyfriend Convicted of Scalping Girlfriend

Kentucky Boyfriend and Girlfriend are in relationship. Girlfriend has a Son.

A picture of Girlfriend and Son can reportedly be seen on the Facebook page of some other man.

And see it Boyfriend does. And it sets him off.

He allegedly assaults Girlfriend, not only commanding his dog to attack her … but also himself using a knife to scalp her.

Boyfriend is arrested on two counts of assault.

Boyfriend is tried and convicted, and the jury recommends the maximum sentence of twenty years for his brutality.

During a post-conviction hearing, Boyfriend reportedly blames Girlfriend’s injuries entirely on his dog … and advises the presiding judge that “I don’t need a lecture”.

Girlfriend sustained severe injuries to one of her ears as well as extensive tissue damage to her scalp, and has since undergone six surgeries. She also suffered permanent nerve damage.

For all of which Boyfriend is sentenced to twenty years in prison (plus additional time for an unrelated parole violation). Boyfriend’s dog is euthanized as well.

Read more in

Prenuptial Agreements: Perception is Everything

In the US (and the Western world generally), it is stereotypical to suspect that a prenuptial agreement benefits a wealthier and/or better earning party, more likely the future husband, at the expense of the less advantaged spouse.

After all, why else would they bother with a prenup? Right?

Well, there are actually a number of reasons, which have been explored at length in many other posts on this blog.

Attorneys are reminded daily that every case is unique and one size does not fit all when it comes to agreements and creative solutions to family law problems.

But other legal systems, religions and cultures apparently have a completely different take and frame of reference on the antenuptial agreement.

For example, in Iran today, prenuptial agreements reportedly require husbands who divorce their wives to pay them exorbitant amounts of money. Amounts that could easily take them fifty years to satisfy their obligations. Impossible burdens that send many men to jail.

That’s an extreme but nonetheless eye-opening illustration that, within limits, parties are free to devise outside the box customized outcomes that work for their particular family.

They aren’t limited to what some other family – or even most other families – thought would work for their families.

Learn more about how diverse prenups (or other agreements) can be in this AFP video: Iran pre-nups land thousands of men in jail.

No-Fault Divorce Retrenchment: Trend or Fluke?

It seems like only yesterday that New York became the last state in the USA to allow no-fault divorce. But it was actually 2010.

One of the more surprising recent events in the always-evolving universe of divorce and child custody law is unfolding right now in the state of Texas.

After decades of no-fault divorce, the Texas legislature is considering restricting – not abolishing though – the availability of no-fault divorce.

The bill has been debated and refined over several months. The original bill was more expansive.

As currently constituted, the proposed legislation restricting divorce to fault-based grounds would come into play only in marriages where there are minor children and only if one of the spouses opposes the divorce. So, if there are no children of the marriage or if both spouses agree to getting a divorce, proof of fault would not be required.

Interestingly, to all appearances, the proposal has gained considerable traction in the state. And adoption into law is not unlikely in due course.

The reasons behind the bill are the same policies that kept no-fault divorce (and before that, divorce of any stripe) at bay for so long in so many places: a desire to protect children and strengthen the structure of the family unit.

If adopted, some divorces in Texas will almost certainly take longer and cost more. And some simply won’t happen. Good, bad or indifferent.

The larger question for those of us who follow such things is, of course:

What – if anything – does this proposed legislation in Texas possibly portend for Florida and other states in the US?

Anyone who has been contemplating divorce, strictly on the back burner, may want to follow developments in Texas as well…

Read more in

  1. this Texas Lawyer article: No-Fault Bill Could Make Divorce More Expensive, Increase Conflict
  2. this [Houston] Eyewitness News ABC TV 13 article: TEXAS BILLS PROPOSED TO MAKE DIVORCE MORE DIFFICULT and
  3. this [Austin] kxan-TV NBC article: Texas bill making divorce harder gets early movement .

New York Boy Ruled to Have Three Legal Parents

Husband and Wife had no children.

Husband and Wife meet Girlfriend, who lives in an apartment in their house.

Husband and Wife begin a “threesome” with Girlfriend.

Since Wife was not able to get pregnant, Girlfriend becomes pregnant by Husband.

This happens according to plan and agreement of the three to raise Boy together after his birth.

Wife and Girlfriend both attend all obstetrical visits and alternate overnight feedings and care of Boy after his birth.

In time, Husband and Wife drift apart and … Wife and Girlfriend become a couple. And move out of Husband and Wife’s marital residence, which they had all been living in.

Again, in time, Husband sues Girlfriend to establish his paternity rights.

Whereupon Wife sues Husband for divorce.

In the meantime, Husband and Girlfriend settle their case by agreeing upon joint custody of Boy.

Then, for good measure, Wife sues Girlfriend and Husband to establish herparental rights to Boy.

Now, up until this point, the law has only recognized two legal parents per child.

But this is a pretty unique case.

And based on the unique facts of the case, including the parties’ agreement, the New York Family Court finds that all three, Husband, Wife and Girlfriend have parental rights over Boy.

Also key is Wife’s established maternal relationship with Boy.

Timesharing (if parties don’t agree otherwise) is divvied up as follows:

  • Wife has Wednesday overnights, one week of vacation during the school year and two weeks over the summer
  • Husband has weekends and
  • Girlfriend has the rest.

Read more in

  1. this New York Post article: Historic ruling grants ‘tri-custody’ to trio who had threesome and
  2. this New York Magazine’s The Cut article: Ex-Polyamorous Trio Granted ‘Tri-Custody’ of Their Child by a New York Judge