Divorce Wars by P-HarpercollinsPubl


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									Divorce Wars
Author: Jeffery M. Leving

Think the worst won't happen to you? Divorce can turn even the most sensible and perfectly nice people
into malicious cutthroats. And while divorce is never easy, it can get downright nasty if your spouse
wants to turn the process into the ffifiight of his or her life. Whether your spouse is vengeful, abusive,
money-hungry, or just plain angry, a divorce can become prolonged, costly, and psychologically and
emotionally damaging to your children.Here, Jeffery M. Leving, one of America's most prominent and
experienced divorce lawyers, shows you how to win any divorce fair and square, even when your spouse
brings out the heavy artillery.By giving real-life examples, Leving provides essential advice on everything
from picking the right lawyer and devising a winning settlement strategy to getting the most from your day
in court and dealing with an ex-spouse. Divorce Wars will help ensure you are acting wisely and
effectively at every stage of the process, and will help you and your children survive even the most painful
and difffiicult divorce.

It's easy to make mistakes at the very beginning of the divorce process, especially if you're dealing with
someone who is highly manipulative, abusive, or just plain irrational. Even if you are divorcing a
reasonable person, it's tough to think clearly and make the right initial decisions. Most people are so
angry, upset, or anxious to end the marriage that they're not thinking logically about what they should do
to protect themselves or their children from an unfair settlement. As a result, they agree to conditions to
which they should not agree or sign documents they should not sign. Sooner or later, they regret their
actions.If the person you're divorcing is a reasonable person, the damage is usually minor. If the individual
is unreasonable, though, the damage can be significant. Recognize that a vengeful spouse may be
setting you up right from the get-go. She may make a credible argument that she still loves you and
doesn't want the divorce to be acrimonious. She may insist she wants the divorce to be as amicable as
possible, and that, for example, she happens to know a lawyer you can use who will keep the divorce
process on friendly footing. You may be so desperate to please her and convince her to try again that you
accept the lawyer she recommends. As a result, not only do you get divorced, but you may be
represented by an incompetent who doesn't fight for your rights or have the best interest of your kids at
heart.At the very start of the divorce process, therefore, you need to be alert for the following reactions:
denial, naïveté, and irrationality. Over time, you may be one of those people who confronts reality, 
becomes less naïve, and deals rationally with the issues that arise. At the beginning, though, you're 
vulnerable to these three common states. As we'll see, each of them can be a mistake that leads to a
divorce war. Before looking at these mistakes, though, I'd like to share a cautionary tale.Ignoring all the
Clues Erin had been married to Charlie for twelve years when she noticed that he was transferring money
out of their accounts and setting up new ones. When she questioned what he was doing, he offered the
plausible explanation that he had talked to a financial planner who suggested different investments that
could give them a better return. Since Charlie had always handled the finances in their marriage, Erin
accepted his explanation. Besides, Charlie was a tax attorney, and Erin figured that he was always
looking for ways to save money.Charlie, however, was spending more and more time away from Erin and
their two small children. Again, his reasons were plausible—work trips and conferences. Still, in the past,
Charlie had usually traveled during the week and been home on weekends. Now, the situation was
reversed. One month, he was gone three out of the four weekends. When Erin wondered why there were
so many conferences scheduled for the weekends, Charlie just shrugged and said that perhaps the
conference organizers wanted to boost attendance because their members were so busy with clients
during the week. This didn't make sense to Erin, but she let it pass.She couldn't ignore, however, that
she didn't feel as close to Charlie in the past year as she had before. She felt that he was more closed off
to her and that he didn't share his problems or his hopes the way he once did. She had confronted
Charlie about this issue, but he said that he was under so much stress at work since he had made
partner at his firm that he lacked "my usual emotional energy." He promised that things would get better
as he adjusted to the transition.One thing Charlie...
Author Bio
Jeffery M. Leving
Jeffery M. Leving is one of America's best family law attorneys and an internationally recognized custody
litigator. He helped reunite Elián González with his father in what is probably the most famous child 
custody case in recent history, enabling the boy to return to Cuba. Additionally, Leving is author of the
successful Fathers' Rights and founder of dadsrights.com. He has also been featured in many media
outlets, including Nightline, Oprah, and Larry King Live.

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