In a California Divorce, “Community Property” Doesn’t Always Mean 50/50

By Diana L. Martinez, Family Lawyer and Mediator, West Coast Law & Mediation, APC – Collaborative Divorce Solutions of Orange County

Ask a family member or friend who lives in California what happens to assets and debts in a divorce, and they’ll probably tell you that everything is split equally. Ask a lawyer practicing family law in California the same question, and they’ll probably tell you “community property”, that is, anything acquired during marriage that isn’t “separate property”, gets split equally between the spouses. Under California law, “separate property” is any asset or debt you acquired before you married, after your “date of separation” or at any time by gift or inheritance.

This equal split of community assets and debts is one of the most misunderstood concepts in a divorce in California. I am frequently asked why divorces are so expensive when “the law says everything is split 50/50”.  While … Read More

Getting Out Of Your Right Brain During Your Divorce

By Jann Glasser, Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT), Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), Coach/Psychotherapist, and Collaborative Coach – Collaborative Divorce Solutions of Orange County

Whether or not you’ve navigated emotional stress in your life before, you are in for a whole new experience during a divorce. Once the decision to divorce is made and the process is underway, don’t be surprised to find your heart pounding and your thoughts racing as if you were driving in the Indy 500. Fear and dread can grab you the instant you get an email, text or voicemail from your attorney, accountant or spouse.

It is all happening because you are being ruled not by your everyday brain, but by your brain on divorce; easily triggered, distraught and overwhelmed. You are reacting as if you are under attack, trying to function while stressed, sad, and sleep deprived. It’s not going so well, is … Read More

How a Collaborative Divorce Coach Can Help You Through This Life Transition With Less Trauma

by Jann Glasser, LSCW, LMFT

Divorce is a major life transition, at least as significant as getting married. But too often, couples spend far less time preparing for this change than they do planning their wedding reception. When they do, their energy goes toward decision about the division of property, instead of the far more important division of two lives.

Couples believe everything will be tidied up and finished when a court issues their decree of dissolution. But it rarely feels this way, making individuals anxious there will be no end to the disorientation and emotional pain they feel.

Closure can come more easily when couples make the conscious decision to pursue a Collaborative Divorce, where a professional team including legal, financial, and mental health experts facilitates peacemaking instead of helping the transitioning couple to wage war on each other.

Depending upon the needs of the couple, various professionals are … Read More

Child Specialists Help Your Kids Understand Their Feelings During Your Divorce

If you think divorce is rough on you (and it most certainly is a difficult experience), imagine coping with divorce when you are a child who lacks the emotional maturity and understanding to grasp what it happening and who is powerless to do anything about it.

Child specialists are an invaluable resource during your divorce. Sadly, child specialists are an unrecognized resource not used as effectively as they could be as part of the Collaborative Divorce process.

Here are four ways you can benefit from working with a trained Child Specialist during your Collaborative Divorce.

1. Your children have a “voice” in the divorce process

Experienced Collaborative professionals agree that children benefit from having their own “voice” in the process. Older children appreciate being able to express their concerns and needs. The Child Specialist is the conduit for the child’s participation in the process. These meetings offer children of any … Read More

Healthy divorce tips when you are over 50

by Myra Chack Fleischer, CFL-S
Fleischer & Ravreby, Carlsbad, California

Divorce among people over the age of 50 is no longer considered unusual; it’s here to stay. The “gray divorce” revolution has changed the landscape for divorce in the United States.

Now statistics are bearing witness to this trend. A report by researchers Susan L. Brown and I-Fen Lin at Bowling Green State University in Ohio found the following:

  • The divorce rate for Americans over the age of 50 has doubled since 1990
  • The divorce rate has more than doubled for Americans over the age of 65
  • One out of every four divorces in the United States involves at least one person 50 or older’ nearly one in ten involves someone 65 years or older
  • More than half of gray divorces are in first marriages; and more than half of these couples have been married 20 years or more

When … Read More

Celebrities and Collaborative Divorce: The New Generation

By Laura Wasser

Family law attorney Laura Wasser, known for representing celebrity clients in Southern California during their divorces and similar legal matters in the spotlight, endorsed Collaborative Divorce during her keynote lunch presentation at Collaborative Practice California (CP Cal) Conference 10 in Los Angeles.

Wasser is a steadfast advocate for private, respectful divorce proceedings whenever possible, and she says Collaborative Divorce makes this possible. Wasser said any revolution must begin with responsible professionals, problem solvers ready to face the challenge of changing the way both professionals and their clients approach resolution.

First and foremost, Wasser says, we need to tell clients, “Don’t let someone in a black robe who doesn’t know you and your family make decisions for you,” and instead urge them to take control of their situation. “Involving clients in the process needs to happen. They have to talk to resolve issues,” said Wasser.

Wasser said many … Read More