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Topics - TPK

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Dear Socrateaser / Trial Prep
« on: Apr 08, 2005, 12:48:06 PM »

My divorce trial is starting 5/12.

Attended a meeting today with my lawyer, spouse and her lawyer. Presented the tax returns both personal and corp. Right away wife's attorney isn't buying it. Wife's attorney insists on still using 2003 income for CS because it's higher. My lawyer says no, it will be 2004 income.

My attorney argued that if the 2004 income was higher than 2003, opposing attorney would be asking to calculate based on 2004. I thought that was a good point, and opposing counsel did not respond.

The car issue was brought up. Opposing counsel wants a "contribution" from me on wife's car insurance. I said no. My lawyer later told me in private that if they don't comply by policy end 5/7/05 to just go get the plates with the police.

Parenting time was then brought up. I want EOW Fri. 5pm to Mon. 10am. Wife refused but strangely her lawyer didn't defend wife's refusal, she remained silent.

1. Am I asking too much on the Fri. 5pm to Mon 10am?....I have been researching this and this seems more common than not.

Wife suggested just Fri to Sun. I said no.

Opposing counsel suggested a law guardian might have to get involved.

2. It's a waste of time (and $$) to get a law guardian involved over a visitation disagreement no??.....we're talking about less than  15 hour difference between a Sun return and a Mon. return.

Wife looked spooky today, and clearly out of it. I really believe she needs a physch eval.

3. Would an eval of her be necessary even though there's no custody dispute?....any benefits??

I just want to make sure she's fit to care for our daughter.

Thanks as always.


Dear Socrateaser / Child Support (Mod)
« on: Apr 06, 2005, 09:22:26 AM »

Weeks back I posted that my income was going to change from 2003 to 2004. I own a subchapter S Corp, thus the company profits filter thru me so the co. doesn't get taxed and it's a lesser % personal rather than corporate.

The co. took a loss in 2004, we have just gotten the numbers back from the accountant for me and the business. This loss means my income has been greatly decreased. The CS I'm paying (not ordered from bench) was based on income for 2003. CS will now be cut in 1/2 going by NY's 17% of the gross income CS laws.

I know wife will dispute this, but it's all there on paper and we did not cook the books either.

1. Can the NY court base CS on a 3 year income average?

Wife's attorney awhile back suggested a forensic financial evaluation might happen. I say let them do it, I'm not hiding anything.

2. Would I have to pay for the forensic eval??..or part of it??

3. Will I have to show co. tax returns for 2004??...or should I voluntarily do it?

4. Being that CS is not court ordered yet, should I expect trouble now that I'm cutting it in 1/2 based on 2004 income??



Dear Socrateaser / Child Support Questions
« on: Mar 14, 2005, 08:19:52 AM »
Hi Soc.

Currently I am paying X amount of dollars to spouse for CS. This amount was determined by her & my attorney. It is not court ordered yet. The judge did ask me how much I make and I gave her a number as to what I made last year (2003).

After court the attorneys hammered it out.

Being that I own an "S Corp" the profits of my company are tacked onto my earnings and I pay taxes on it. Apparently it's cheaper for me to pay the taxes rather than the company (accountant advice).

After going over the numbers for the 2004 tax year I see sales were about $50K less than the year before.

It seems that my salary would change almost every year based on this, unless the profit stayed the same each year.

I'll know for sure what my salary was in a month once the accountant tackles the books.

1. If there is a change in my salary can I recalculate my CS??

2. Can I get away with reducing CS if it's not court ordered yet or will I have to do so in court??

3. Correct me if I am wrong about this not being court ordered yet and if what I told the Judge I made ($$) would be "minute orders"

4. If no court order than I can't be held in contempt if I change the CS?

We have not been back to court since mid Jan 2005 and the motion to transfer to Ulster County has been filed to be heard today. It has been difficult to get in touch with my NY attorney to ask questions.



Dear Socrateaser / Restraint of Trade?
« on: Feb 18, 2005, 07:00:33 PM »

About 2 years ago I had it out with a local auctioneer here. While at one his auctions he falsely accused me of collusion. Me and another dealer had purchased a lot of equipment that day together (partnered deals). Dealer and I had agreed to buy together weeks earlier as we knew what would be at the auction. So there was no collusion at all. Auctioneer was bitter cuz we bought everything so cheap. Reason for the cheap prices was cuz the crowd was small.

Days later auctioneer calls me and tells me not to come to his auctions anymore, I'm not allowed there and he'll call the cops if I come. Fine with me cuz I hate this guy anyway.

Got me thinking though wether this guy could even bar me from a "public auction" that was advertized as "public". This guy has done this same "barring" to many of my friends in my industry.

1. Would it be considered restraint of trade if he barred me?

2. If not #1, then what would you call it?

3. Can he not allow certain people at the public auctions?

He does a public auction at a location where a shop is (NY-NJ-CT-PA etc). He doesn't do auctions in his own bldg.

Just wondering in case I do HAVE to go to one of his auctions if I have a customer for something there.


Dear Socrateaser / Question on Property Equity
« on: Feb 12, 2005, 01:15:55 PM »

I have been speaking with a friend who has been divorced 3 times. I am picking his brain about a divorce (who better to ask!)

My wife owns her house free & clear. I still rent. My friend suggested that I could be entitled to Equity of her house during the time we were married. I have done a lot of work on the property including installing a new front porch, stripping and restaining the house, interior additions, yard maintenance, land clearing etc.

She had always told me it was my house too. I expect that has changed.

Marriage was only 13 months but NY property values in Ulster County certainly have gone up. I used to ride shotgun with her when she was a real estate agent so I have a hint that her property value has gone up.

I really only intend to bring this up if she wants alimony, otherwise I'll let it go.

1. Am I wasting my time bringing the property equity issue up?

2. Would duration of marriage matter at all in determining wether I'm entitled to it?

3. Should I get an appraiser to do an eval on the property?

I noticed in her financial disclosure that she really de-valued her property in excess of maybe $60-70K.

Apparently, if I was entitled to the equity it would only be 1/2. Even if I can come away with $5K I'll take it.


BTW, I did settle up with bro-in-law including having him buy me out of partnered deals, spiltting up of any other items and rec'vd his check today for the buy-out. Thanks for your input with this situation Soc.



Dear Socrateaser / Separation Agreement
« on: Feb 03, 2005, 09:08:59 AM »

Still trying to explain to wife this separation agreement.  I have addressed these topics in a rough draft of what should be in the SA.

Visitation-slight change to Fri-Sun every other weekend.
Custody- I'm giving her custodial but must be joint-legal
Marital property- Nothing to whack up
Child support- keeping the status quo

I intentionally left out alimony cuz I don't believe she's entitled to it based on duration (13 months) and needs. She has no mortage, no car payment and doesn't even live at her home. Her bank accounts dwarf mine as you know.

1. Have I left anything out that you think I should address?

2. Should I include in visitations any holidays I want?

3. If I leave anything out of agreement and at the end of 1 year when someone files for divorce am I SOL if I want to add anything?

Any other insights are welcomed.



Dear Socrateaser / Some Divorce Questions
« on: Jan 17, 2005, 03:25:09 PM »

Divorce will be in NY. According to what I've read the The no-fault grounds for divorce in New York are

-living separate and apart for one year under the provision of a written signed and notarized separation agreement;

-living separate and apart under the terms of a judicial separation decree(Legal Separation).

The following are some of the fault based grounds:

-imprisonment for three years or more

-abandonment for one year

-cruel and inhuman treatment


None of these apply by NY law to my divorce as of yet.

Wife used cruel and inhuman treatment as her grounds for a divorce. She used that phony OOP again and tried to say I assaulted her. Police report says different and shows no injuries, no arrest no RO...nothing.

Her cruel & inhuman treatment examples were laughable, baseless and unproveable I believe.


1. How difficult is it to prove cruel & inhuman treatment?...and how do the courts define what is considered cruel and inhuman?

2.  Can a divorce be thrown out based on the fact that there's no legal grounds for a divorce yet?



Dear Socrateaser / Update on Custody/Visitation Etc
« on: Jan 14, 2005, 12:43:15 PM »
Good afternoon Soc.

I had a hearing in Orange County NY this morning. This hearing was a formality to get the venue transferred back to Ulster County. Being that I wasn't served for the last OC hearing, we had to go back today and appear to have venue transferred. In short, the last hearing never happened so to speak because of no service.

I submitted myself to NY jurisdiction today. No more NJ/NY questions, I just want to get the ball rolling already.

I did get a slight increase in visitation. We asked for Fri 5pm to Sun 5pm. Of course my opponent objected saying child was too young for overnites. Judge didn't care.

Judge gave me what Ulster County OOP hearing Judge was going to give me. I got Sat 9am to Sun 6pm every other weekend. I still have every Tues & Thurs in NY 4pm to 8pm at her brother's house.

Bad news is I got nailed for CS today. Much more than I thought I'd have to cough up but nothing I can do about it. I have no problem supporting my child but I just feel it's partially spousal support as well.

I will be going with wife next Tuesday to the doctor for a child well check. I'm very pleased with this. I can bring up the vaccinations at this Dr. visit.

Looks like the divorce war will start next month...gee I can't wait.

Just a few questions..

I intend to take some sort of parenting class to put myself in a better position to get custody.

1. If I took a class and wife did not, would this be beneficial to my case?

2. Does financial stability matter in a custody case?

3. Generally, would a court opt to not give custody to a parent outside that states jurisdiction? I'm in NJ, case will be heard in NY.

4. Do you have any past cases that you were involved in where you represented a client (in a custody case) that lived in another state.? If so what was the outcome(s) ??

Re deadbeat bro-in-law. I did send him that letter again, this time it was much more detailed. It seemed to have softened him up a bit as he told me today he's ready to settle on the partnership.

Thank you, and have a nice weekend Soc.


Dear Socrateaser / Small Claims Court
« on: Jan 05, 2005, 11:16:53 AM »

This is a business related situation. My brother-in-law (wife's sister's husband) owes me money on joint ventures between our businesses. Amount owed is about $3000.00. The paper trail is there, he just figures now that I'm not with wife that he has no obligation to pay.

His co. is in NY mine is in NJ.

1. Can I pursue this in NJ or does it have to be done in NY?

2. Is it true that in small claims court that if you're going legal on a business that you must have a lawyer?

I have taken him to collection (D&B) on some of it, but still no payment yet.

3. I'd like to know if I file for damages wether this would exceed the limit allowed in small claims court? and what is the dollar limit for small claims court?

4. Can you advise what type of damages I could file suit for if any?

5. In other words, what can I sue him for if I want to go after him for $50K?

I had offered him a proposal to settle on the amount owed, but he laughed it off and said he won't pay because "he didn't have to"

I'd really like to nail this guy, what are my options and how can I WIN?



Dear Socrateaser / Mediation-Divorce-Custody
« on: Jan 03, 2005, 08:43:05 AM »
Happy New Year Soc.

I'm considering offering wife mediation for the divorce. As you know, there's nothing to whack-up regarding property, money etc. She'll keep her things, I'll keep mine and forfeit anything I purchased for her NY home as a kind gesture.

Being a little green on mediation, and online researching not really helping, I have some questions.

1. Is mediation a binding contract enforceable by the court?

2. Can we mediate on everything except custody of our child?

3. If we mediate everything but custody, can an evaluation be done to determine custody? (thru mediation)

4. Is a custody evaluation thru mediation a binding contract recognized by the court?

5. Is it possible to mediate everything but custody and then battle it out in court for custody or does it all have to be done by mediation or divorce thru the court?

I can see a war coming regarding custody, so I'm trying to plan the best angle of attack.

I will have some more questions soon about the "best interests of the child" situation and what holds weight and what is considered petty.

Thank You Soc.


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