Posts Tagged ‘strategy’

“She’s cutting me out of their lives!” – PARENTAL ALIENATION IS CHILD ABUSE

In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Domestic Violence, Gay, Parental Alienation, Paternity Issues, Perjury, Strategy Issues, Uncategorized on August 19, 2010 at 7:46 am

I frequently hear from dads, that mom is “cutting me out of their lives” and to varying degrees this is called Parental Alienation (“PA”). There is much debate about whether it’s a psychological syndrome or not. But to men who are fighting it, they don’t care. They just know it hurts and it’s a very difficult battle to wage.

Dad Defending Himself
What you need in a Parental Alienation Battle

Fathers have a difficult time staying involved in their children’s lives. The courts usually keep the kids with mom when dad moves out. Mom expects dad to continue working as much as he did, for two reasons, so that he has as much money as before, and to keep him so busy he doesn’t have time for the kids, which she then uses against him.

There are three main categories of PA, Mild, Moderate and Severe. All of them are abusive, to the father, but more so to the child. Harming or destroying one parent’s relationship with their child is, and should be treated as, CHILD ABUSE.


According to www.Keep


Mild Parental Alienation: Parents who lose control, make negative comments or exhibit negative behavior towards the other parent in front of the child, but feel bad about it later. Most parents going through a divorce engage in this level of Parental Alienation at some point. But they recognize they are wrong, worry about the effects on the child (or children), and take steps to stop inappropriate actions directed at the other parent. They understand that their child needs to have a healthy and loving relationship with both of their parents, to have the best chance of developing into a healthy adult someday. These parents rarely use the family court system to control or attack the other parent, and are rarely involved in starting a child custody battle.

My law firm has fought these battles for years, they are nasty and difficult. Many times it looks like Mom is just being a protective parent, and if you’re in this fight, you need to know that it’s a long war, not just a one day event.


Divorce and Child Custody Video – Parody? Kinda, sorta, not really.

In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Domestic Violence, Gay, Parental Alienation, Paternity Issues, Perjury, Prenuptial Agreements, Property Issues, Restraining Orders, Spousal Support, Strategy Issues, Uncategorized on August 6, 2010 at 11:02 pm

Okay, so, this video deals with a man after a divorce, and whether or not he’s still a dad, and what his child custody and visitation is going to be like. I like it because it’s kinda funny, but I’m also really touched by it, because it’s also WAY  too true of what many men and fathers feel like after going through a divorce and child custody battle, especially when they are unprepared or representing themselves.

I really want you to watch it, remember, DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU !!

Call me. Write me. Let me help you.

No Prenuptial Agreement for Kelsey Grammer

In Prenuptial Agreements, Property Issues, Spousal Support, Strategy Issues on July 15, 2010 at 1:19 pm

Perez Hilton is reporting that Kelsey Grammer didn’t have a prenuptial agreement for this marriage. At the time he was making 1.6 Million per episode and had 7 years to go on the series.

That’s gonna hurt! PRENUPS! PRENUPS! PRENUPS!

A Father’s Best Weapon In A Child Custody Battle

In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Parental Alienation, Paternity Issues, Perjury, Property Issues on July 15, 2010 at 6:49 am

Here’s a video I did, talking about Child Custody and Child Support battles with RJ Jaramillo from www.SingleDad.Com, where I’m the legal expert. I tell guys the tools I need to win their child custody case and track the child support so they can prove they’ve paid it.

There are more videos on the MensFamilyLaw channel at Youtube.com.

Solicit Murder – Lose Your Community Property Rights

In Property Issues, Spousal Support, Strategy Issues on June 15, 2010 at 3:20 pm

From the AP:

Calif. bill would target spouses who hire hit men By CATHY BUSSEWITZ (AP)

 SACRAMENTO, Calif. The story behind the legislation reads like a movie pitch. The wife of a Southern California police detective, distraught because she had lost custody of her children, tries to hire a hit man from the Vagos motorcycle gang to kill him. Instead, gang members alert police, who disguise themselves as biker thugs and secretly tape a conversation with her, leading to the wife’s arrest and ultimate conviction for solicitation of murder. But later on, in divorce court, she is awarded half the couple’s property, even though she tried to have her husband whacked. He then calls Sacramento, determined to change the divorce law.

              A bill scheduled to be heard Tuesday in a state legislative committee seeks to close what its author says is a loophole in the state’s no-fault divorce code. In part, the legislation will specify that spouses who solicit the murder of their husband or wife are not entitled to collect financial rewards in divorce proceedings. The bill was prompted by John Pomroy, a police detective in Pomona, about 30 miles east of Los Angeles. His wife collected about $70,000 from their estate after she was released from prison in 2004.

I think this is an interesting development, and it’s great for headlines, but in reality how much time is the Legislature going to spend on this matter for what is in reality a very rare occurrence? How often does this happen? In 11 years of practicing family law in Los Angeles, Riverside, Orange and Ventura Counties, I’ve never seen it. I’ve had many a client who wanted to kill ex, ( and a few of the opposing counsels!) but most people are not this outrageously angry.

“I spent a hundred grand, now I’m broke, and still not divorced!”

In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Parental Alienation, Paternity Issues, Perjury, Property Issues, Spousal Support, Strategy Issues on June 3, 2010 at 9:17 pm

If I had a buck for every time I’ve heard this same sad line, I’d have a TON of money.

When people are going through a divorce they are in a hightened emotional state and there are many, many MANY lawyers out there who know it, and take gross advantage of their clients. These are the “Sharks” the “powerhouse law firms”, the people who advertise themselves as ‘The Firm to Beat!” I call BULLSHIT.

In eleven years of practicing, I have seen exactly ONE case I can point to where a client REALLY NEEDED TO SPEND six figures. She came to me and said her husband had hidden 12 million dollars in the Bahamas, and the truth was he had.

Most of the cases where people are spending such large amounts of money it has NOTHING TO DO with the case, but with the amount of money the lawyers can talk the clients in to spending. I’ve gone up against the biggest law firms in town and frankly, at the end of the day, the results are the same, only my clients still have the bulk of their money in tact.

A client needs to have clear, simple, direct advice from their lawyers. I can generally tell you in the first 15 minutes of an interview what the most likely result of a case is going to be, and what is the most practical course of action. If you don’t get a simple, direct answer from your lawyer, odds are, you’re going to get a really large bill, and when you’re out of money, and they’ve dropped you.

When that happens, you’ll end up in my office saying something like, “I spent a hundred grand, now I’m broke, and still not divorced! can you get this over with?” Yes, yes, we can.


In child custody, Child Support, Perjury, Spousal Support, Strategy Issues on May 28, 2010 at 11:41 am

The biggest frustration most people have in court, is the lying. In theory, no one is lying, because testimony is taken under oath. In reality, every case is riddled with lies, half truths, shades of fact and the greatest of all, the omission of a critical fact that totally changes the situation.

In the court’s eyes, as a lawyer I’m supposed to be the champion for my client, and I’m expected to have vetted their testimony to make sure that it’s true. Most of the time I’ve spent a great deal of effort to explain to the client that judges hate liars and I coach them to be as truthful as possible.

Inevitably when I get in to a child custody hearing or a divorce trial, it gets heated and the cries of “She lied!” “She’s committing perjury!!” “That’s a lie!” start.

In every courtroom, those phrases are said, every day. And frequently it’s true. Some days it’s her, and some days it’s him, but no matter what, someone, somewhere is shading, spinning, omitting or outright lying.

I know it. You know it. The judge knows it.

The angry and frustrated clients always say “Put her in jail!” That’s not going to happen so much. Judges can’t put away everyone who lied in court, there’d be no room for the real criminals.

So what’s the point of having people testify under penalty of perjury, if there’s no penalty ? Well, it’s about credibility. Once a judge knows, or even suspects, that someone’s lying to the court, their credibility goes out the window.

I had a case earlier this year, where the ex-wife said she was married in a Michigan court, and then said she was single in a California court. The judge looked at the other lawyer and said, “so either she lied in Michigan, or she lied in California, either way, she’s a liar!”

It was a bad day for that lawyer, because now they’re fighting up stream with a judge who’s experience with the client is that she’s not to be trusted. In Family Court, when the judges are making decisions on issues like who should be the primary custodial parent, that sort of taint can kill your case.

Which is why I always advise my clients that lying is a very bad thing. No they’re not going to go jail, but they’ll never have the same, and in some courts any, credibility again.

The question then becomes how to prove your case, if you know you’re dealing with a liar. Fighting a lie, is like shadow boxing, for so often it comes down to: he said, she said. Generally the best way to get rid of the shadow is to turn on all the lights and face them to your accuser and make them fight a battle that they don’t want.

If my client is accused of being a pot smoker, we provide the prescription, then we attack with bad parenting and lack of time to devote to the child. That’s how we fight a war, in which there are no winners.

“Who steals my purse steals trash; ’tis something, nothing;
‘Twas mine, ’tis his, and has been slave to thousands;
But he that filches from me my good name
Robs me of that which not enriches him,
And makes me poor indeed.

Shakespeare, OTHELLO,
Act III.


In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Property Issues, Strategy Issues, Uncategorized on November 2, 2009 at 9:43 am

“I just got served with a Restraining Order. I can’t go to my house, see my kids, or get my clothes. What do I do?”
Tis the season for family fights, lover’s quarrels and the annual issuance of Domestic Violence Protective Act – Temporary Restraining Orders. Each year around this time, we begin to see more and more these situations where one party has become angry at the other, they high-tail it down to the courthouse and fill out the paperwork for a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and before you can say Welcome to Santa Monica, someone has been issued a court order.
By their nature, TRO’s are short, usually lasting less than three weeks, because by law, a hearing must be held within 20 days of issuance and can be obtained by any family member, romantic partners whether or not they live together, or co-parents, by showing “abuse.”
“Abuse” has an amazingly wide definition and is so large that you could fly a 787 through it. The courts define it as “sexual assault, violence resulting in injury, or acts
or statements causing fear of imminent physical injury.” The courts are necessarily liberal in their definition because they want to protect people, and the philosophy is to keep the situation as calm as possible, which it done by keeping people apart.
The problem with this, that I see, is that it is very easy for anyone to “stretch the truth” or outright lie, to get a TRO. Because the courts will issue a temporary order on just one side’s statements, it makes it easy for a party to use a TRO as leverage in a family fight. When you consider that one party could get a “kick-out order” based merely on a statement to a judge that they “saw my roommate break a glass in anger, and I was afraid they were going to attack me” it becomes clear how easy it is to manipulate the law.
People sign declarations ‘under penalty of perjury’ that what they are telling a judge is true. This means that the judge then MUST accept as fact what is in the declaration, at least for the issuance of the TRO phase. Hard as it is to believe, people will lie under oath.
This is not a gender issue, both men and women are completely capable of lying under oath, and do so with surprising regularity. It is a sad truth that people who are angry become irrational, and when in that state, they will do anything. When humans are in fear we are capable of doing the most horrific of acts against others.
That fear can lead to abuse of another type of protection order, one that is less frequently used, it is the Emergency Protective Order. When one party is being physically abused, or faking it, they can call the police. The police are the only ones who can provide this short term protection, but it must be requested by the victim. The responding officers will then speak to a judge and if the judge then find that there is ‘reasonable grounds to believe that an immediate and present danger of domestic violence exists AND that the order is necessary to prevent the occurrence or re-occurrence of domestic violence, he can order an EPO, which is good for 5 court days or 7 calendar days, during which time the victim must apply for the DVPA TRO.
So who gets these orders? Usually women are seeking them against the men that I see in my office. Occasionally we see it the other way around, but for the most part, men do not feel comfortable asking for the assistance of the police or the courts. It has to do with the power dynamics of relationships and the role that men play in society. Most men will feel emasculated asking for this type of help. They think that they don’t need someone else to protect their rights. It’s that whole macho ethic of being able to take care of myself. Sadly his strength is frequently what attracted these couples to each other, and then when the relationship sours, his great strength is his biggest weakness.
Most of the men that come to me after they have been served with a TRO have had more than enough reason to seek their own TROs, but haven’t done so, as they feel that it is ‘unmanly’ and makes them appear weak.
I just don’t agree that getting help makes a man less masculine. The best athletes in the world need coaches, the President has his cabinet, and most superheroes have a partner.


In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Parental Alienation, Paternity Issues, Strategy Issues, Uncategorized on October 15, 2009 at 5:59 am

Here’s a great, and I MEAN GREAT article on holding Dads accountable! It’s the best way to increase the rights of fathers and protect fathers interests in raising their children. When more people hold fathers responsible, more fathers will BE EXPECTED to step up, and that will make it easier for all fathers to exercise their rights.

Dads, This Is Your Challenge To Step Up

Child Support Help for Unemployed Dads Accused of Sexually Molesting

In child custody, Child Custody Issues, Child Support, Parental Alienation, Paternity Issues, Strategy Issues, Uncategorized on July 29, 2009 at 6:15 am

Parenting has become war for some people. It’s a shame that some people use their children as a means to help make ends meet. I know the custodial parent will say that raising a child costs more than they will ever receive in child support and they are right. But that doesn’t stop some custodial parents from trying to increase their support any way they can.

For others it’s a matter of control. They hate the father. There’s a variety of reasons, from “it was just a one night affair – why wont he go away” to “he’s a low-life scum and I KNOW he’s molesting my baby.”

When a father is accused of sexually molesting a  child, it triggers a whole host of problems. Depending on who did the reporting, when it gets investigated by Child Protective Services, the case will either be closed for lack of grounds (this frequently happens when the reporter is the Mom and she is doing it only to cause problems or lay the foundation for Parental Alienation) or investigated further. If a mandatory reporter (doctor, therapist, psychologist, school counselor etc ) does the reporting there is a much greater chance of a full blown investigation because usually the child has said something that has triggered the investigation.

An unemployed dad, who is accused of sexually molesting his child, and who has to pay child support, needs help, badly. The first thing any father who is unemployed should do, is file a Motion to Reduce the Child Support he owes. In California it is called an Order To Show Cause, basically it’s an application for the order, and a declaration under penalty of perjury that your income has dropped and the child support needs to be recalculated.

This is important to do as soon as possible, so that you can get a court date and reserve what is called Retroactivity. That means the court can modify the amount of child support you owe going back to the date you filed – that’s called Retroactive Child Support Modification. This is important because you may not be in front of a judge for 3 months.

You need to do this, because if you are unemployed and facing sexual molestation charges, you need an attorney who specializes in that area, and they will need to be paid up front. This is a VERY very VERY serious matter. I call it the Nuclear Option and more and more moms are using against dads.