If my ex has a lawyer, does that mean I need one? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 08-14-2012, 04:40 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My husband and I separated a month ago. We own a duplex so I moved with our daughter into the other half for the time being. He works nights so I bring her over every afternoon so they can have naptime together and lunch and hang out time. Then he takes her on Fridays and Saturdays, his days off. We agree on this arrangement (for now, once we don't live right next to each other I have told him that I won't drive her to him everyday for a nap and he agrees. Plus she won't be napping forever) We also agree on the amount of child support he should pay. (I have been a full-time mom with no income for three years) And generally we get along. We just aren't in love anymore.

  BUT yesterday he asked if I could keep Jo all day Thursday because he has an appointment with an attorney. He wants to file right away and 'get legal and in writing all of the things we have talked about'. And, like I said, we do agree on most things. But not everything. (Who will own the house is what I'm not sure of. Because it might not be worth what we owe, he would like me to just walk away and let him try to keep it. And then Jo and I can live here as long as we want.) I told him that the landlord/tenant situation might not set up the right power structure for our arrangement and he just keeps saying that he's not trying to screw me over or anything.

  I told him that if he retains a lawyer then they are legally obligated to advocate for HIS best interests and he said that his interests are Josephine's (our daughter) and if it's good for Jo its good for me.....

 

Honestly, I feel under-prepared. I have gotten some free legal advice over the phone but I'm not really sure what I want or what I need to ask even, it was less than helpful. I think I need to retain an attorney of my own but I don't have a job and very little money! My ex and I really do have an honest, decent relationship and I believe that he wouldn't try to hurt me but I am still worried.


Newly Single-Mama. Raising homebirth baby, Josephine, July '09.

 

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#2 of 8 Old 08-14-2012, 08:28 AM
 
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Please do whatever possible to get an attorney.
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mom to 14yr dd and 4yr dd
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#3 of 8 Old 08-14-2012, 08:36 AM
 
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Oh yes , definitely , get an attorney somehow , even if you have to apply for some form of legal aid or something like that ! 

Of course , I don´t know your husband , but when I read " what´s good for the kid , is good fr you " my alarm bells went off .

Please don´t misunderstand me , if you guys really can split in a civilized manner and all is well , wonderful !

But for me , it sounds like he is trying to butter you up and then  BAM you´re out in the cold 

I´ve just seen it happen too many times with myself as well as friends 


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#4 of 8 Old 08-14-2012, 01:48 PM
 
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You don't always need a lawyer. It sounds like you have quite a bit settled but in your case I would want one who is familier with such things as jointly owned rental property. Have you checked that the agreed amount of child support is as much as you are entitled to? ALso have you discussed spousal support as having been a stay at home mom for 3 years you are entitled to at least one year of spousal support.

 

Things to think about with the house, did you buy it while married? Did you put any of the deposit down or was that from money he had before you two married, co habitated.How much is the morgage and how much is the rental potential?

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#5 of 8 Old 08-14-2012, 01:56 PM
 
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Originally Posted by hillymum View Post

You don't always need a lawyer. It sounds like you have quite a bit settled but in your case I would want one who is familier with such things as jointly owned rental property. Have you checked that the agreed amount of child support is as much as you are entitled to? ALso have you discussed spousal support as having been a stay at home mom for 3 years you are entitled to at least one year of spousal support.

 

Things to think about with the house, did you buy it while married? Did you put any of the deposit down or was that from money he had before you two married, co habitated.How much is the morgage and how much is the rental potential?

Agree with most of that , but I would definitely get some form of proper legal advice , there are some things us " private " people simply don´t know .

You just don´t want to make any mistakes , that may cost you dearly ! 


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#6 of 8 Old 08-14-2012, 05:42 PM
 
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I'm completely new to this separation things too, but wanted to share my thoughts.  

 

We are going through an amicable divorce and have found a lawyer who does collaborative law.  She specializes in mediation and won't take things to litigation.  It was a relief to find that there are lawyers who practice this way because I was afraid that seeing a lawyer may beging to polarize DH and me when there is no need for that. 

 

Even still... I think you really need to consult a lawyer to make sure you are thinking everything through clearly before signing any separation agreement.  I learned that what I thought was a really good deal from my husband isn't as great as I thought.  It is still a lot better than a lot of women get, but still.  In addition to a lawyer, I found talking to a financial planner to be really helpful.  He is the one that gave me some really hard, but good advice. 

 

One thing that the lawyer said was to try to get the agreement finalized while we are still on really good terms.  You just don't know where things will go.  So, I'm trying to get ours done ASAP even though my husband won't be moving out for a few more months (to save money and make the transition smooth for everyone).  I would recommend getting really proactive about getting advice just to make sure what you and your STBX have decided on really makes sense for you.

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#7 of 8 Old 08-20-2012, 10:57 AM
 
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IMO, Yes when one party retains a lawyer the other party should also get a lawyer. You don't want to have to communicate with his lawyer, get your own lawyer who will do that for you. Especially, if there may be some confusing points on property ownership, custody, etc.
 

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#8 of 8 Old 08-20-2012, 08:15 PM
 
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Is there a possibility you can go to the lawyer together - before he (or she) is the attorney for either of you?  Would that be a good way to get some info/advice?

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