In divorce cases, victory and defeat are relative. There are many Pyrrhic victories in family law. For example, if you get that support reduction you were looking for but you spent every last dime you had on attorneys’ fees to get it, then that is a hollow victory. Spending $5000.00 to gain a $500.00 reduction in support means that you are recouping that investment over 10 months. It also means that the spouse you just defeated in court will be looking for ways to drag you right back in causing you to spend even more.
Sometimes, but not always, offering more or paying more is the way to go. Recently, I had a case where I was convinced my client could get at least a 20% reduction in the spousal support he was paying. When we went to court on the initial support request, we obtained a great result. Then, his wife addressed the Judge. She told him that she has to tell her college-age kids that they would probably lose their house. My client walked out of the courtroom in tears.
Nonetheless, he hated paying the support and was looking forward to trial. He has two adult children who love both of their parents. The negotiated result was that he offered to pay more. Crazy you say? Not really. He was not thrilled with the idea. Neither was she. She wanted more. She was nuts. Both were reluctantly satisfied and now his children will not have to worry about their mother.
Had we tried the case and won, he probably would have put his ex-wife on the streets. Imagine the burden his kids would have felt. His wife would have been dragging him back to court for years and the only winners here would have been the attorneys.
The negotiated deal was a good result for the whole family – a good holistic result. He paid more than he wants She receives less than she wants. But the key here is that no one is going back to Court. The value of closure cannot be overstated!
Hoffer Family Law Firm
As you know, we are now living in uncertain times. Our society has shifted in ways that were completely unexpected 3-6 months ago. As a result, our priorities and actions need to shift as well. Remember, we cannot control the wind, but we can always adjust our sails. The Courts here in Southern California are closed for the foreseeable future. The Los Angeles County courts are taking filings and are hearing emergency matters. The Ventura County Courts are hearing emergency matters but are not taking filings at all. Currently, both court systems are scheduled to re-open in mid-May; however, given the current state of affairs, it is likely that the closures will be extended.
So, how do we adjust our sails? We set you up for success for when the Courts re-open, your case will be ready to go.
1. Video Consultations: All you need is a phone, an iPad, or a computer with a webcam and a microphone and we can have a video consultation. Please click here to schedule.
2. For Divorce Cases: For existing cases in Ventura County, we can prepare your disclosures, create a discovery plan and ready your case for when the court opens again. For Los Angeles County, we can file your Petition and related documents, prepare your disclosures, create a discovery plan and ready your case for when the court opens again.
My Advice to you!
3. Be physically and emotionally healthy! There is a lot of humor circulating about how people are gaining weight and getting drunk during this period. Don’t give in to that. This is the time to take stock and improve on those things you always wanted. It means reading that book you wanted to read. It means taking that online course you always meant to take. It means gaining that skill that you didn’t have time for. It also means not letting your divorce case sit unattended. There is always work to be done. Let us handle it for you. Take this period of time to be proactive!
Thanks for taking the time to drop by.
Jeffrey L. Hoffer
Certified Family Law Specialist – located in Agoura Hills, CA.