The Smart Divorce® Weblog

Move forward with focus, hope, and confidence.


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Considering divorce? Good reasons to wait for January

By Geoff Williams

Fri Dec 21, 2012 11:43am EST

(Reuters) – Going through a divorce during the holidays can be emotionally wrenching, which is why many people don’t do it – they put it off until January.

“People don’t want to upset the apple cart over the holidays, and they want a peaceful Christmas, Hanukkah or New Year’s. And then, because they don’t want to spend another damned year with that spouse of theirs, as soon as the holidays are over they pull the plug and file,” says Alton Abramowitz, president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers.

While there are no hard numbers on how many divorces are filed in January, Abramowitz says it’s undoubtedly a popular time to act, rivaled only by September, when marriages break up after the summer holidays. Yet waiting for the holidays to pass doesn’t all come down to simply wanting a harmonious holiday season. There are sound financial reasons to wait until January.

1. Waiting for the bonus

A husband or wife who waits until January is likely to be entitled to any year-end windfall that might come from a spouse’s job.

“In New York, at least, once you file for divorce and you set the cut-off date, anything you obtain afterward is separate property,” says Steven Goldfeder, a matrimonial attorney in New York City who acknowledges that year-end bonuses are often fought over, even if a spouse declares he or she wants a divorce in January. “Someone could claim the bonus isn’t really for that particular year, but a payment to entice someone to stay at the firm for the future.”

2. Cool your emotions

The holidays are a time when emotions run high. “If your spouse always has it in her mind that Christmas was ruined, she or he may not be so eager to settle with you,” says Goldfeder. “Your divorce might drag out for months or years longer than it would have.”

Once, shortly before Christmas, Goldfeder received a call from a client who said a co-worker had had a baby they both believed was his. The client, married and the father of three, planned to tell his wife and assumed she would leave him. Goldfeder talked him into first getting a paternity test. The client’s family had a nice Christmas, and the day after, the client learned he wasn’t the father.

Not exactly a warm holiday tale, but by cooling your emotions, you may save your family a lot of stress.

3. Avoid disastrous shopping

December is the shopping season, and that can spell disaster if an angry spouse is set loose with a credit card. “The spouse served with divorce papers may feel that they deserve some kind of emotional gift because of this horrible thing their spouse did to them,” says Kevin Worthley, a certified divorce financial analyst and certified financial planner in Warwick, Rhode Island.

An angry spouse may also be more inclined to want to drain the bank accounts and run up the credit cards. “That’s a danger any time, but past the holidays, when everything’s been bought, there’s likely less inclination to buy a big-ticket item out of revenge,” says Worthley.

4. Think about April

At year-end, taxes come to mind. “Obviously, the better records you have, the better position you’re going to be in,” says Andrew Katzenstein, a Los Angeles lawyer, referring to paperwork that you might want to start collecting now.

Katzenstein, who specializes in assisting high-net-worth individuals, businesses and charities, says that in the past there haven’t been many tax advantages to filing for a divorce in January rather than December. Filling for divorce is just a beginning step, after all. Many couples end up filing their taxes jointly until the divorce is completed.

But tax brackets may go up in 2013, depending on whether the U.S. budget dispute is resolved. So going forward, the calculus may be different. “The person who pays alimony will get more bang for their deduction buck, and the person receiving the payments will pay more taxes,” he says.

5. More time to plan

If you’ve made up your mind that a divorce is going to be one of your New Year’s resolutions, there are things you can do now. Whatever side you end up on — paying alimony or receiving it — you need to start preparing.

“You should start collecting all of your end-of-the-year statements,” says Worthley. “You really need to know everything — your household budget, your assets, what’s in your checking account, how much you’re paying for the mortgage, all of your debts and your credit card balances. It’s important to get all of that.”

Your financial records will be needed to determine how much spousal support will be paid out, and how the finances will be divided. “The more information you get, the less complicated it’ll be when you’re negotiating and working things out with a financial mediator, attorney or judge,” says Deborah Moskovitch, a divorce coach in Toronto who counts January as her busiest month for new clients.

To read the whole article click here


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The Family Support Expo is coming to Toronto!

Don’t miss out on the 1st annual Family Support Expo  — Raising Awareness, Reducing Stigma Separation and Divorce The Toronto International Centre will be the home of the Family Support Expo on October 20 -21, 2012

Supporting families in transition, from pregnancy through adolescence and beyond!

The first North American expo bringing together all of the resources needed to support families dealing with Separation & Divorce, Medical, Mental Health, and other lifestyle issues.

The Family Support Expo is for parents, grandparents, caregivers, children and professionals.  The Expo provides information to help build and support a healthy family.

Exhibitors will showcase a variety of services and products and will offer access to community resources, organizations and experts in the industry.

All families experience challenges. Whether it is a child struggling with a medical issue or special need, a senior suffering from an illness, a family on the heels of divorce or separation, or another serious challenge – you are not alone and help is available.

The Expo seeks to revolutionize how families deal with these challenges.

The 3 general areas of focus for the Expo are:

Within these three areas there are many sub-categories.

Separation & Divorce

  • Help finding a professional (Family Mediator, Family Lawyer, Accountant, Real Estate Agent, mortgage broker, etc.)
  • Education and resources to help your family moving forward

Please stop by my booth, Deborah Moskovitch – The Smart Divorce and Divorce Coach, where I will be speaking and selling my resources helping individuals through their divorce  — maintaining their sanity, cutting down on legal costs, and helping to manage the divorce process in a healthier and happier way.

I will also be participating in a panel discussion with Toronto’s leading divorce professionals and moderated by Breakfast Television’s very own Kevin Frankish.

Don’t miss out on this new and unique event.  While the Expo cannot guarantee solutions to all areas of challenge, it stands to provide families with actionable advice and support that will leave them hopeful and optimistic moving forward.

For more information visit: http://familysupportexpo.com


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Be Creative with Your Mediation

New on The Smart Divorce on Divorce Source Radio:

We welcome back our guest, Mark Baer (http://www.markbaeresq.com/), a family law attorney, mediator, and collaborative law practitioner in Pasadena, California and who has been practicing for twenty years.  Mark shares his opinions and views about the family law system, how it can be better and provide more creative ways on getting through divorce.  Deborah Moskovitch, Steve Peck and Mark explore a variety of concepts regarding mediation.  This program isn’t just a standard outline of mediation, but shakes it up a little in this controversial and lively discussion.

 

Divorce Mediation

Mark Baer

How do you think outside the box in mediation? Mark Baer encourages you to ponder as we discuss:

  • The way in which bias impacts family law litigation
  • Why “evaluative mediation” is not really mediation, even though most lawyers and judicial officers believe otherwise
  • Whether family law attorneys should have higher ethical obligations than other attorneys
  • Funding your children’s college/university education when child support isn’t enough or stops
  • What money represents

There seems to be a major disconnect between the way the public views mediation and how the attorneys and judicial officers view as mediation.  This is a conversation that is steeped in controversy.  Tune in and then let us hear your thoughts on our Facebook fan pages…and don’t forget to like us.   The Smart Divorce http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Smart-Divorce/202908933137654 and www.Facebook.com/DivorceSourceRadio


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Be a guest on CBS TV in LA

I got a call from CBS in LA today to potentially be a guest expert on a new daytime talk show. Want to appear?
Is there a “too old” when it comes to divorce? The numbers show “gray divorce” is up. CBS is looking for an older couple who is contemplating divorce, but being older is hindering their decision. I know it’s not an easy for many to discuss this topic, but if there is someone who is willing to come to L.A. and discuss it on television, CBS would love to talk to you and give them more information. You can respond to LADaytimetalkshow@gmail.com


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Resolve Custody Conflicts in Divorce

New on The Smart Divorce – Resolve Custody Conflicts in Divorce

You can protect your kids through Divorce Without Dishonor, and our guest, Mike Mastracci tells us how to resolve custody conflicts in divorce.  Author and lawyer, Mike Mastracci is a nationally recognized family law attorney and mediator with over 20 years of professional experience. He is the author of STOP Fighting Over the Kids, Resolving Day-to-Day Conflict in Divorce Situations.  (To receive a FREE copy of Mike’s book, send your request to: DivorceSourceRadio@gmail.com and the E-book will be emailed to you.)

Stop fighting over the kidsIn addition to his legal, collaborative and mediation skills, Mastracci brings much more to the table: with an insightful, kind and helpful approach. He shares his personal child custody issues and challenges to better serve you in solving your legal, practical, parental, and situational problems.

Mr. Mastracci through his common sense approach provides insight, strategies and an invaluable understanding of Court, costly custody battles. Mastracci encourages divorcing couples to educate themselves in the Collaborative Divorce method whereby they can demonstrate by their words and actions that they love their children more than they may dislike their ex. Mike will frankly tell you that contested divorce and child custody litigation is more often than not a waste of time, money and emotional wear and tear.
Mastracci is committed to preserving parent-child relationships.

To hear this interview, click on the link http://www.divorcesourceradio.com/resolve-custody-conflicts-divorce/


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The Smart Divorce Audio Series Now Available

Get through your divorce as you save time, money – and your sanity! One low price gives you the complete Smart Divorce ToolKit –audios and Smart Guides – a cost-effective way to reduce stress as you help clients and manage the divorce process.

Endorsed by judges, lawyers and mental health professionals, The Smart Divorce ToolKit provides guidance and information from leading family law lawyers, mental health professionals, and parenting experts, well versed on the needs of those in the divorce process. This one smart package makes it uncomplicated and effortless to understand.

Reassuring, informative and easy to listen to, The Smart Divorce  Smart Audios offer more than 2.5 hours of presentations, full of insightful tips and strategies to help you navigate this difficult time.

Deborah Moskovitch educates listeners about the divorce process and provides practical information on getting through it with focus, hope and confidence. She teams with psychologist Dr. Robert Simon , an expert on divorce, relationships and families – with a special focus on children of divorce and custody conflicts.

Audio 1 – The Emotional Divorce

Understand that every divorce has two sides: legal and emotional. The Smart Divorce Audio 1 gives you strategies and tips for coping in healthy ways with your emotions, so you can make clear-headed decisions for your children and yourself. (37.24 minutes)

Audio 2 – The Legal Divorce

Empower yourself by knowing what’s ahead. The Smart Divorce Audio 2 helps you understand how to organize, prepare and work towards a realistic, favorable outcome for you and your family. From selecting the right legal advocate to exploring other divorce options, The Legal Divorce helps you manage the practicalities and take charge of the process. (45.24 minutes)

Audio 3 – Smart Co-Parenting: Putting Your Children’s Best Interests First

Help your kids think of themselves as regular kids, not the children of divorce. The Smart Divorce Audio 3 helps you understand what they are going through, and talk to your children about the divorce. Learn the challenges and issues of co-parenting, and how to make it work. Move forward, maintaining positive connections with your children. (40.61 minutes)

Audio 4 – Rebuilding Your Life Post Divorce

Divorce is a hugely emotional time. But it’s also an opportunity to reevaluate your life and make it better than it was before your divorce. The Smart Divorce Audio 4 helps you embrace an uncertain future, and move forward with focus, hope and confidence. It gives you coping strategies for dealing with your former partner, and ways to develop your most important and lasting relationship: with yourself. (33.66 minutes)

For more information and to buy these informative videos click on the link:

http://www.cdbaby.com/Artist/DeborahMoskovitchAndRobertASim

If you would like to learn more about this unique and innovative program, and how it may help you, please contact Deborah Moskovitch at The Smart Divorce by emailing info@thesmartdivorce.com, or call 905.695.0270.


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Lifethrudivorce.com

There’s a new website out and I’m profiled in the launch site….read on to find more information.

http://lifethrudivorce.com/ltd-bloggers/?contrib=50


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Save Time, Money and Your Sanity When Going Through Divorce

Want to learn more about The Smart Divorce Resource ToolKit, listen in as Steve Peck and I talk about how to have The Smart Divorce.

The very word “divorce” conjures up fear, sadness, anger, confusion and, for some, relief.  But the reality of what divorce really looks like and means with all of its implications are not always clear.  With close to 50% of marriages ending in divorce, we need to better employ strategies that will keep everyone, including those caught in the middle – often the children – moving towards a better life. Divorce can be a beginning even if it looks like an end.

No matter who you are, what your finances look like, whether you have children or working through issues, divorce can be complex and complicated, but it doesn’t need to be.  Almost all of us have questions, deal with problems and are faced with the myriad of concerns as we navigate the maze of divorce.

Hear Deborah Moskovitch and Steve Peck discuss the concerns and questions most of us have through divorce and the importance of making smart decisions – all with the help of The Smart Divorce Resource ToolKit.

Topics include:

  • The emotional, legal and finances of divorce
  • Smart Co-Parenting
  • Rebuilding your life to build a better future
  • Coping with divorce in the workplace
  • Understanding workplace stress
  • How organizations can help employees  stay mindful on the job

“Like” Divorce Source Radio on Facebook between February 8-15 to enter your name in a draw to win a copy of The Smart Divorce Resource ToolKit. 

But, even if you don’t win the free ToolKit, it’s still a win, email info@thesmartdivorce.com to place an order and mention you heard about it on Divorce Source Radio to receive a 10% discount! To preview the program click on the link – http://wp.me/pbONe-gF

Click on the link to listen to this most valuable interview ad learn how you can save time, money and your sanity on the way to a Smart Divorce.

http://www.divorcesourceradio.com/save-time-money-and-your-sanity-when-going-through-divorce/


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Ten Signs Your Spouse May be Planning to Divorce You

In this episode of The Smart Divorce with Deborah Moskovitch, we discuss The Ten Signs that Your Spouse May be Planning to Divorce You.

Many times, especially in long-term relationships, spouses drift apart.  They may not be having sex much, if at all, and their intimate conversations and sharing of day-to-day life experiences may cease to exist.

You would think that these signs, alone, would be enough to cause partners to wonder if their relationship was in trouble.  It seems, however, that this pattern of distancing themselves was a slow, eroding process, and for some, they feel it was the normal progression of a long-term relationship.

If you and your partner have lost the connection that you once shared, it’s possible that your partner has considered, or could even be planning, a divorce, without your having any knowledge of it.  Deborah reveals the signs that your spouse might be seeking a divorce, as originally mentioned inThe Globe and Mail article, by Tralee Pearce

Click on the link to listen:

http://www.divorcesourceradio.com/ten-signs-your-spouse-may-be-planning-to-divorce-you/


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How You Can Divorce With Focus, Hope and Confidence

The Smart Divorce®  ToolKit

Get Through Your Divorce While Saving Time, Money – and Your Sanity!

Get through your divorce as you save time, money – and your sanity! One low price gives you the complete Smart Divorce ToolKit – Smart Audios and Smart Guides – a cost-effective way to reduce stress as you  manage the divorce process.
Whatever your frame of mind or situation at this stage of your divorce, The Smart Divorce ToolKit is a one-of-a-kind tool that will help you gain clarity, perspective and a smarter next step. This valuable resource provides education, tools and strategies to help you be smart about your divorce while moving on to a happier, healthier future.

Information is Knowledge and Knowledge is Power

Endorsed by judges, lawyers and mental health professionals, The Smart Divorce ToolKit provides guidance and information from leading family law lawyers, mental health professionals, and parenting experts, well versed on the needs of those in the divorce process. This one smart package makes it uncomplicated and effortless to understand.

The Smart Divorce Audios

As an introduction to The Smart Divorce approach in an easy to absorb format, The Smart Divorce Audios provide the reassuring, insightful and non-judgmental information you need when you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed.  Almost 3 hours of information!
Audio 1 – The Emotional Divorce
Audio 2 – The Legal Divorce
Audio 3 – Smart Co-Parenting: Putting Your Children’s Best Interests First
Audio 4 – Rebuilding Your Life Post Divorce

The Smart Divorce Smart Guides

The Smart Guides offer you easy-to-use tip sheets put together in one smart book that guides you through divorce specifics, covering a myriad of helpful topics. Empower yourself with information and knowledge. The Smart Guides offer quick summaries, checklists and memory ticklers to help keep you on track.

Smart Guides:

  • Planning for a Smart Divorce
  • Coping with the Stress of the Emotional Divorce
  • How to Increase Your Ability to Cope When Divorcing
  • The Power of Setting Realistic Expectations
  • Understanding Your Divorce Options
  • Finding a Good Divorce Lawyer
  • Understanding Marital Property Laws
  • Getting Your Finances Organized for Divorce
  • Financial Information Checklist
  • Important Financial Steps Required to Prepare for Divorce
  • Smart Co-Parenting
  • Living Separate and Apart
  • Strengthening the Blended Family Bonds

 

Buy just the topics you need, or get the whole ToolKit.  Prices start at the low price of $9.49!

Yes! I want to order The Smart Divorce®ToolKit. Available in hard copy or downloadable format at http://tinyurl.com/thesmartdivorceaudios or you may purchase only The Smart Divorce Smart Guides paperback or downloadable version at http://tinyurl.com/thesmartdivorcesmartguides  If you would like to learn more about this unique and innovative program, and how it may help you, please contact Deborah Moskovitch at The Smart Divorce by emailing info@thesmartdivorce.com, or call 905.695.0270.