Divorce lawyers don’t fight for divorced parents to share their kids in peace. But why? Texas lawmakers should be asking.
There is no doubt that going through divorce is a difficult process. It wears you down financially, emotionally and physically. A common area of contention in divorce is the very symbol of the marriage itself – the engagement ring. A symbol of the excitement of what the future may hold now becomes a painful reminder of the past.
In 2018, Business Insider reported that American men spent an average of $6,351 on an engagement ring. With the CDC reporting over 2 million marriages and 800,000 divorces per year in the United States alone, many individuals wonder what to do with the ring upon divorce.
Regardless of any sentimental value, the engagement ring is by itself best treated as an asset – and a costly one at that. Like all assets, the engagement ring is one that must be dealt with upon divorce.
Be it a separation over an unfaithful spouse, mutual disinterest, or simply for economic reasons, one question remains pertinent – who gets the engagement ring after divorce?
What the Engagement Ring Means
Although marriage has changed significantly since the outset of the engagement ring, the meaning behind the ring has remained largely the same. Scholars have postulated different and distinct meanings of the engagement ring that reveal ancient ideological values of marriage. These ideological values have survived to the present day in some shape or form, but one question remains – is the engagement ring merely a gift, is it is a symbol of love or is it representative of some type of legally binding agreement?
At its outset, scholars believed that the imagery of clasped hands often engraved onto ancient Roman wedding rings invoked the idea of a marital agreement. They also believed that the groom may have offered the engagement ring as a gift to embody the agreement of marriage and the additional responsibilities that come with it. In many ancient societies, the imagery symbolizes both a bond during life and a farewell in death – reminiscent of the poignant vow “until death do us part,” similar to that of modern society.
Who Should Keep the Ring?
Most states treat the engagement ring as a “conditional gift,” meaning that the receiving party is allowed to keep the ring on the condition that the marriage occurs. Should the marriage not occur, the receiving party must return the ring. States that abide by this rule include Iowa, Florida, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
In the state of Montana, engagement rings are treated as “unconditional gifts,” meaning that the receiving party will be allowed to keep the ring no matter what.
In California, Texas, and Washington, the engagement ring is treated as an “implied conditional gift.” Simply put, if a party backs out of the wedding, then the non-backing party can keep the ring.
More specifically in California, Civil Code Chapter 3 Section 1590 provides that “where either party to a contemplated marriage in this State makes a gift of money or property to the other on the basis or assumption that the marriage will take place, in the event that the [receiver] refuses to enter into the marriage as contemplated or that it is given up by mutual consent, the [giver] may recover such gift or such part of its value as may, under all of the circumstances of the case, be found by a court or jury to be just.”
The California statute states that any gift made in anticipation of marriage can be recovered by the giver in the event that the receiver no longer wants to become married, or both parties agree to no longer getting married. Thus, if we consider the engagement ring a gift, this statute would entitle a groom to recover his engagement ring if his fiancée backs out of the engagement, or if they no longer agree to get married.
On the other hand, the landmark case of Simonian v. Donoian set a precedent that allows the receiver of the gift to keep that gift if the wedding is called off by the giver. The California Court of Appeals found that “the clear meaning of [Section 1590] is that the [receiver] of an engagement ring is entitled to retain possession thereof when the marriage contract is breached by the [giver] without any fault on [receiver’s] part.” Thus, a fiancée would be entitled to retain possession of the engagement ring if the groom calls off the wedding unilaterally.
Additionally, engagement rings are sometimes considered to be a family heirloom. The Court of Appeals of Oregon found in the case of In re: Domestic Partnership of Ewing that the giver of a family heirloom ring was entitled to receive that ring back after separation. However, it is always highly advised that future husbands and wives draft a prenuptial agreement when a family heirloom is involved.
The law can be unclear on who gets the engagement ring if the marriage is terminated at the fault of a giving party’s actions, such as an affair. There are arguments yet to be explored – the existence of common law marriage and contractual marriage lend credence to the notion that the engagement ring can symbolize some type of agreement, just as it did with the ancient Romans.
The post A Painful Reminder of The Past: Who Gets The Engagement Ring After Divorce? appeared first on Divorced Moms.
Parental Alienation: Allegations and the Favored Parent
Copyright © 2018 by Monika Logan, M.A., LPC, LSOTP
When a parent is identified as being the favored parent and accused of undermining the relationship between the other (rejected) parent and their child, the favored parent may feel discouraged and indicate that he/she is doing everything possible to promote the parent-child relationship.
The favored parent will often insist that he/she does not speak ill of the rejected parent, but rather encourages the child to communicate with the rejected parent. The favored parent may pronounce that the child’s rejection is a direct result of the rejected parent’s (in)actions and/or behaviors. The favored parent may also be inclined to attribute the child’s rejection to the rejected parent’s disposition and/or some other personality and/or behavioral flaw of the rejected parent. The favored parent may indicate that the child no longer wants to spend time with the rejected parent and that he/she cannot and should not force the child to do so.
What can a parent do? It is important for mental health professionals to realize that when working with families that the reason for rejection may be based in some fragment of reality. It is vital, however, that the favored parent does not mischaracterize the incident, behavior, and/or personality trait of their co-parent (the rejected parent). A common example is when a rejected parent has had an inappropriate response to anger during an isolated incident(s) in which he/she resorts to screaming and/or shouting at the child. Consequently, the child may have developed a fear reaction to the rejected parent. In addition, although the fear response by the child was observable in the past, it has now developed into a momentous concern by the favored parent.
After all, what can a parent accused of alienating behavior do, when his/her ex-spouse is “hot-tempered”? It is imperative that the favored parent does not perpetuate the child’s fear. It may become easy to claim that the rejected parent’s unmanaged anger problem is the cause of the child’s rejection, touting “See, his/her temper is why the child does not want anything to do with him/her.”
What can a parent do? Do not embellish your co-parent’s flaw, which only serves to further exacerbate fear(s).
When it comes to faults, rather than resorting to a myopic view, consider how the rejected parent’s flaw(s) were managed during the marriage/partnership. It is unlikely that your co-parent was flawless during the marriage/partnership. Perhaps the rejected parent’s temperament was an irritant during the marriage/partnership, however, it notably was not the reason for the relationship’s demise.
What can a parent do? Do not let the rejected parent’s temperament serve as weapon of rejection that can be used to sever the relationship with the child.
A common example observed by mental health professionals is a rejected parent who has worked outside of the home in order to provide the favored parent the opportunity to remain at home with the child. During the marriage/partnership, the rejected parent’s working hours were sometimes a frustration, however, he/she also earned an income that provided for many of life’s extras. Therefore, during the marriage/partnership the long hours were acceptable. When soccer games or dance recitals were missed on occasion, positive sentiments were made, such as telling the child that the rejected parent did not want to miss the event, and that he/she will attend next time.
What can a parent do? If the rejected parent went above and beyond to pay for activities and/or other extras during the marriage/partnership, do not use time as the weapon of choice after the marriage/partnership has ended by depicting the rejected parent as “absent” and/or “uninvolved” co-parent.
Sometimes, favored parents will verbally say they want what is “best for their child,” but will behave to the contrary. Here are some actions that may aid to offset and/or curtail allegations of alienation:
- Promote time with the rejected parent as valuable.
- Do not schedule activities that your child values during the rejected parent’s parenting time.
- Do not simply say you will cooperate, show that you will cooperate.
- Enforce your parental authority. If your child reports they do not want to spend time with the rejected parent, consider how you make your child eat dinner, go to school, and/or any other activity that your child may not want to engage in.
- Encourage the importance of family. Share positive memories with your child about the rejected parent’s extended family.
- Do not overact when your child tells you something negative about the rejected parent.
- Establish boundaries.
- Do not overschedule your child so that the child does not miss out on valuable time with the rejected parent.
- Seek help from a well-trained and experienced professional who is skilled in working with children, families, and resist/refuse dynamics.
Monika Logan is an owner and the Director of Texas Premier Counseling Services, PLLC (Texas PCS) located in Frisco, Texas. She specializes in Parental Alienation as well as troubled, damaged, and/or strained parent-child relationships. She provides counselling services for parents and their children in conflict and/or those struggling with issues related to separation and/or divorce. Ms. Logan offers Parenting Facilitation Services to help parents reduce conflict, and she helps repair parent-child relationship breaches as a Reunification Counselor.
Child support for my son was initially opened in New York and also closed in New York. I later moved to Texas while my son, who is now 18, moved to Virginia.
Since neither of us no longer live in New York, do I still need to pay child support until age 21 since the case originated in New York?
While I am not licensed to practice law in your state, I can give some general guidance on this issue.
To properly answer your question, I would need to review all of the orders from New York, along with all of the orders from Virginia. If the case was terminated or closed in New York, and a brand new case was opened in Virginia, then I believe Virginia law would control how your child support order is handled.
If the case was simply transferred from New York to Virginia, and if Virginia follows the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act, then I do not believe Virginia can modify the duration of the support order, just the amount of the support order.
However, this could all be moot if your son is no longer living with his mother.
I would recommend calling a Virginia family law attorney for a consultation first to review the support order that is currently in effect to see what language controls how it is implemented and terminated, along with gathering more information about your case.
The post How To Juggle A Child Support Order In Multiple States appeared first on Dads Divorce.
Self-verified patient of Dr. Alissa Sherry – Posted on November 23rd, 2018
Let me first start off with saying that all of the following comments are my own opinions of Dr. Alissa Sherry: She is the worst psychologist that I have ever come across in my life and should have her ability to practice any type of psychological evaluations severely limited or revoked altogether. In my opinion it borderlines on malpractice at its highest level. Never ever allow her to evaluate you or someone you love no matter who appoints her, fight it to your death as she has the potential to destroy lives by her unprofessional assessments that seemed to be motivated by nothing more than money. This person could be your worst nightmare just look at the other reviews before this one, all rate her at the lowest level possible and basically say the same thing. Has an evaluation been court ordered of you for some reason? In my opinion, you will be risking everything by allowing her involvement with your case in any way shape or form. Go to your attorney, go to the court, go to anyone who will listen and do everything in your power to not allow her anywhere near yourself or a loved one. I personally would not even show up if ordered to. Do not take a chance with Alissa Sherry if you value your children, your marriage, your freedom, your life. Read the other reviews their not wrong in my opinion, proceed with caution and consider yourself warned…..
Have you been affected by Family Court Corruption in Texas or the Travis County and surrounding area?
Self-verified patient of Dr. Alissa Sherry – Posted on September 13th, 2018
Dr. Sherry is not interested in your family or their welfare, only in making money in the divorce industry. Will not take both sides into consideration, is unfair and biased. Pitifully overpriced and underperforming.
Travis County Texas Family Court Corruption
Victims discuss Domestic Violence by Proxy, Abusive Litigation, Parents Being Unnecessarily Denied Access to Their Children, and other important topics:
Host Mike Lee and guests discuss the problems and challenges caused by legal and other professionals of the family law legal complex. They shared personal and professional experiences of the participants and reveal that more problems may be created rather than solved by these professionals. The discussion will suggest that financial gain and self-interest rather than the best interests of the children drive the reality of family law legal injustice. These complexities often negate the best interests of the children.
If you have issues that you feel are unjustified or corrupt please email email@example.com
Professionals of interest are:
Dr Alissa Sherry / Legal Consensus
Self-verified patient of Dr. Alissa Sherry – Posted on April 16th, 2018
This woman is a danger to good parents trying to raise their children in a Christian home. She never met me or my children and only looked at “evidence” provided by my ex-husband. She said what she was paid to say: that I am an alienator.
Following the grief over the loss of life in school shootings, I started researching and realized that others were doing the same thing, trying to find the root cause for the extreme rage and motivation to harm others. I knew from a couple of situations that what happens to children during escalated and prolonged family conflict had something to do with these rampages.
A few insights shared on Mic.com:
“A parent’s death or divorce also appears to be a commonality among some of the lone shooters — Adam Lanza (Newtown, 2012), Elliot Rodgers (Santa Barbara, 2014) and Nikolas Cruz (Parkland 2018). Research indicates boys appear to be more at risk than girls when their parents divorce, particularly when it comes to higher suicide rates.
“It’s one brick or thread that could set a child up to have more a vulnerability if someone doesn’t step in and raise a child, teaching them to respect the rights of others and that actions have consequences,” said Richard Warshak, a clinical psychologist at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, and author of Divorce Poison, which explores acrimonious divorce and the psychological effects on children of parental bad-mouthing.
“Divorce sets in motion a set of changes that put kids at risk for problems in behavior.”
Divorce is not “inherently bad” for every child, he says. But there are risks, especially if it changes the family’s financial situation or parents “bad-mouth” each other.
Several studies over three decades show that divorce — especially an acrimonious one — can increase a child’s risk for developing depression, anxiety and engaging in criminal acts.”
These issues aren’t things we discuss often enough, but we should.
I wish I didn’t have a personal experience to validate these findings, but I do. I witnessed it in my own step-sons, when I was too young and without the authority to help them overcome what had happened to them and their mother. And, I didn’t have the right information at the time. I just knew they were suffering, and it seemed like there had to be a way to help them through it. I wish I could have done more to help them avoid failures in those early years, and the loss of one’s life later on.
No, I can’t go back in time, but I can engage leadership, stakeholders and problem-solves across society to do more with what we know now.