Veterans In Politics Foundation had an opportunity to Court Observe this case in less than an hour we were intrigued by this case that we wanted to learn more.
We pulled the entire case file and were furious about the way the Eighth Judicial District Court Family Division would allow this father to continue to rack up financial legal bills for the mother and refuse to charge the father with the frivolous filings. In addition, allowing the father to continue to violate court orders by not paying his child support.
The biggest frustration we observed with this case is the hate the father has towards the mother. The hate is so great towards the mother that it blinds the father and his revenge for the mother made his daughter a casualty of his narcissistic world.
The child always pays the price of their parent’s mistakes.
The Court Cautioned Victor Sal Victoria “of letting the child down” The Court suggested the Father “stand by his word and … not disappoint the child.” The Court made note of Victor’s already limited visitation, which he has not been exercising, and his lack of involvement in his child’s life. Victor has been an absentee parent for the majority of his child’s life. Instead of spending time with his child he spends time filing frivolous motions in court and pretends to be someone he’s not.
Victor makes a six-figure income which he should be contributing to the care of his child. He has failed to pay a significant amount of money for child support, health insurance, unreimbursed medical expenses, etc. Therefore, the child has to suffer because Victor will not contribute to his child’s needs.
For a few short months, Victor was allowed to have more visitation with his child than the few hours a week schedule. Then the Judge quickly revoked that order due to Victor’s unsupervised behavior. This proves that he is not a fit father and has no intention of ever being the dad his child deserves.
Don’t take our word for it. Please click on the case file videos below:
https://family-court-corruption.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/No-Justice-in-a-Family-Courtroom-A-REAL-MAN-TAKES.jpg169300adminhttps://family-court-corruption.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/fcc-logo-jpg.jpgadmin2023-05-02 08:45:062023-05-02 08:45:06No Justice in a Family Courtroom; A REAL MAN TAKES CARE OF HIS KIDS!
Veterans In Politics International has exposed the criminal, unethical, and violations of Federal and State Laws regarding Family Court since 2016 none-stop. Since our involvement, this topic has garnered much attention.
The behaviors in this article are horrendous, to say the least, and we felt it would be best told by the litigant herself.
Here is her nightmare:
Hello, my name is TARA KELLOGG. I am the ex-wife of ALEX GHIBAUDO ESQ. I filed for divorce, which was finalized on February 1, 2017, after 16 years of marriage. We have one child together, born May 17, 2001. I will now give you a relatively brief summation (infra) to establish the basis/foundation of what has transpired. From there, you can see why I reasonably believe a Federal Lawsuit is warranted against the State of Nevada for egregiously blatant, undeniably intentional, and unimaginable willful violations of my Civil and 14th Amendment due process rights. Further, I have all the evidentiary documents and documentation to prove my powerful FEDERAL CIVIL CASE against the STATE OF NEVADA well beyond a reasonable doubt.
My record keeping is impeccable and thorough, as you will soon find out if/when you need anything related to my following assertions and claims. Now comes my factual timeline and the prima facie elements to prove The State of Nevada’s intentional and willful misconduct towards me. The State’s misconduct has actually and proximately caused my disability damages (actual and punitive). Alternatively, at the very least, the facts below will prove the prima facie case for unthinkable negligence, in which the State owed me a duty, breached that duty, and as such, has actually and proximately caused damages to which I am entitled.
STATE-LICENSED ATTORNEY ALEX GHIBAUDO graduated from law school in 2006 and started his first (failed) law firm in 2008. By August 2009, Ghibaudo was suspended from the practice of law for the following reasons:
Several acts of (physical, emotional, financial, and psychological) Domestic Violence from 2003 through 2014 (Ghibaudo’s reinstatement).
Repeated violations of Protective Orders.
Repeatedly abandoning clients.
Failing to provide an accounting of client funds.
Criminal misuse of clients’ IOLTA accounts, past and present).
Failing to respond to the office of bar counsel after repeated requests regarding multiple grievance files.
Making several “unprofessional, threatening, and demeaning telephone calls” to other attorneys.
Alex Ghibaudo Misconduct: (A) Foundation and summary:
Judge Lisa Brown was my first Judge. Judge Brown recused herself to avoid the appearance of impropriety because Ghibaudo repeatedly contacted her by email and phone.
Judge T. Arthur Ritchie was appointed the new Judge. I had an opportunity to “spin the wheel” for $500.00 and get a judge better or worse than Ritchie. Attorney Creel and Willick said Judge Ritchie was the best option; “Judge Richie is by the book Ritchie.” I now know that Willick and Creel fed me a lie. They believed I was a big fish and would pay substantial fees, knowing damn well Ritchie would drag out enforcement of my Decree indefinitely.
Judge Ritchie had the simple task of enforcing my divorce decree signed by Judge Lisa Brown.
Throughout 2017-2023, Judge Ritchie has NEVER enforced any provision in my Divorce Decree.
Ritchie despised my divorce decree and had no intention of ever enforcing the decree resulting from the required settlement conference.
In 2019, my attorney of record was Sigal Chattah. During a hearing in 2019, Ritchie threw down my Divorce Decree on his bench while shouting,” This is crap.”
All that was needed from Ritchie was to enforce Judge Brown’s finding of facts and enforce my divorce decree “as is”, “not make up his version of “Ritchie Law instead.”; Hence, this is where all the” judges-attorney’s club” privileges, corruption, blatant bias towards non-attorneys, judicial misconduct, and Ghibaudo misconduct begin and end since no one in power is doing anything to end it, even now. Unfortunately, this same misconduct persists going back eight years.
Refused to require Ghibaudo to produce personal and business tax returns annually to determine child and spousal support per Divorce Decree.
I AGREED TO THE TERMS OUTLINED IN THE DIVORCE DECREE/CONTRACT IN CONSIDERATION (THE MUTUALLY AGREED UPON BARGAINED-FOR EXCHANGE), RELIEVING GHIBAUDO OF HIS EXCESSIVE MARITAL WASTE.
I AM NOT GETTING THE BENEFIT OF THE AGREED-UPON TERMS IN THE DIVORCE DECREE BECAUSE JUDGE RITCHIE DISCRIMINATES AGAINST PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES.
On 3/6/2017–I sought and received a TPO against GHIBAUDO. Ghibaudo and his girlfriend, Elske Shipp, sent illegal, unwelcome, unsolicited pornographic images on my cell phone of the two engaged in sexual intercourse. The text messages lasted 44 minutes.
On 7/18/2017–Trevor Creel Esq. filed a STATE Bar complaint against Ghibaudo. (Trevor Creel’s Bar complaint was systematically dismissed and disposed of)
Rule 8.3. Reporting Professional Misconduct.
(a) A lawyer who knows that another lawyer has violated the Rules of Professional Conduct that raises a substantial question as to that lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness, or fitness as a lawyer in other respects, shall inform the appropriate professional authority.
Hearing on 8/22/2017
Alex – “Your honor, just like what I put on the record, what I mentioned to you off the record before Court.
Ritchie – What did you say?
Alex – just like what I put on the record, what I mentioned to you off the record before Court.
Ritchie – I don’t want you to make some notion that we had some dialogue before Court.
Ritchie and Alex had dialogue before Court, and I believe they have had several conversations outside of Court. This is highly improper and constitutes extreme judicial misconduct. No other Judge on the “up and up” would ever allow such a private conversation with one party (an attorney, no less) without the other party being present. Since Ritchie allowed as much, this reeks of corruption and strategizing as a co-conspirator with Ghibaudo on exhausting my attorney funds until I drop out.
I believe wholeheartedly that Ghibaudo and Ritchie communicate regularly about this case.
Ritchie knows Ghibaudo’s false allegations before he spews them from his mouth.
Ritchie knows Ghibaudo’s request for unrelated relief (not written in motion) before he requests such.
Hearing on 10/6/17
Judge Ritchie provides Ghibaudo with tax and business advice while I pay attorney fees to Willick, Creel, and Creel’s paralegal. Alex pays nothing.
Alex continues to lie about his financials disseminated online by me without a single shred of proof.
EVIDENTIARY HEARING-Ritchie avoids the unsettled divorce decree provisions because he refuses to hear them.
Ritchie – “I’m going to do my best to close this thing out.” (a lie, or even worse, could be construed as “closing this thing out” as the functional equivalent of “until Ms. Kellogg’s attorney’s fees are exhausted, and she can’t afford to come back into my courtroom.”
My case is still ongoing 8 years later. Does that seem like “closing this thing out” to you or any reasonable person or Judge?” Hell no.
On November 7, 2017, a JUDGMENT against Ghibaudo was signed by STATE ELECTED Judge T. Arthur Ritchie. Including:
Child Support Arrears.
Medical Insurance Arrears for the minor child.
Family Support Arrears (the Judgment is still unpaid).
2017 – Numerous status checks occur every six days to ensure Ghibaudo paid the MINIMUM amount per the divorce decree, which rarely happens. Continued status checks cost more attorney fees than the minimum support obligation. This was, and still is, Ritchie’s intentional design to financially force me out of further litigation against Alex by completely exhausting my attorney funds to continue.
Not an attorney fee award is in sight from Ritchie (I stopped counting after Ritchie hit one dozen (12) deferred attorney fee requests, even though the relevant statute Ritchie is supposed to follow states that all litigants need to be on equal financial grounds. If not, the litigant with the higher income is statutorily mandated to pay the lesser-earning litigant’s attorney fees. The statutory relevance here is to keep everything equally balanced between the parties (especially when the higher-earning litigant is filing frivolous motions to exhaust the lower-earning litigant’s attorney fees deliberately).
Per the Decree of Divorce, Ghibaudo is to provide his tax returns for 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 to determine child support and alimony amount according to Ghibaudo’s income. Ritchie Never enforced the production of tax returns, Schedule C Profit and Loss statements, DFDF, etc.
To avoid a Writ of Execution, Writ of Garnishment, Alex filed a fraudulent motion indicating that HIS registered agent did not serve him with the documents. Alex’s ridiculous claim is that his registered agent is mine and my family’s 20+ years of friends.
Alex then embellished his initial lie under penalty of perjury (again) with another completely fabricated falsehood (by saying his registered agent would spend Christmas with my family, celebrate birthdays, take trips, etc.). These are All Lies under oath, no less.
Ritchie then unreasonably determined that Alex’s absurd and blatant lies somehow warranted scheduling another expensive evidentiary for which I would have to foot the bill and based on no reasonable grounds. Each time Ritchie forces me to humor Alex’s lies and fabrications in Court, I am the only one forced to pay attorney fees.
Alex, a somehow licensed attorney still, represents himself pro bono.
Further, Ritchie never mandates that Alex pay my attorney fees even though it’s the law, which is also required in my divorce decree.
Here, Ritchie set aside two full days in August 2021. Alex repeatedly lied, perjured himself, and could not remember his numerous lies; thus, he constantly got tripped up by my attorney, Jonathan Nelson.
On Day 2 of Evidentiary Heating, Alex requested a continuance. The request was denied. At the end of day two, Ritchie ruled that “the beef” between Alex and his Registered Agent was between them. This was a fact Ritchie knew or should have known before even scheduling such a ridiculous evidentiary hearing premised on such a frivolous motion filed by his buddy Alex.
Thus, I prevailed (as Ritchie couldn’t appear that blatantly corrupt, especially if there were a chance his bias toward Alex might be publicized on YouTube, etc).
This is why courtroom transparency is needed, or judicial corruption would continue to be buried under cover of & “sealed case adjudication without cause”).
However, this little “evidentiary hearing stunt” pulled off by Ghibaudo and Ritchie, in cahoots with one another, still cost me thousands of dollars to defend the ridiculousness orchestrated by both Ritchie and Alex (to drain my attorney fee resources continually).
Further, on the same day, Ghibaudo changed his LLC (Limited Liability Company filed with the Secretary of State), making it impossible to collect the 2017 judgment.
Judge Ritchie knew about this, allowed it illegally, and did nothing to remedy Guibaudo’s wrong. Once again, Ritchie is exhausting more of my attorney fees ($250K to date and counting) on an unnecessary evidentiary hearing causing me even more financial hardship (without ever awarding attorney fees) that no other reasonable judge would have ever entertained over Ghibaudo choosing his Registered Agent. (a registered agent, my family nor I had any input or influence over Ghibaudo’s decision to do such). Unbelievable.
GHIBAUDO’S suspension lasted for five years, and he was reinstated in 2014, followed by a two-year (“stay out of trouble”) probationary period. However, that was a seemingly impossible State Bar requirement. GHIBAUDO could not escape trouble and was arrested on January 1, 2016.
Further, GHIBAUDO did not report his arrest to the Nevada State Bar as per the terms of his suspension.
Hearing 2/26/18 – Trevor Creel files a request for a lien against me for non-payment of $61,000, although I paid them well over $50,000.00. Ghibaudo is a working attorney with a substantial income. He refuses to pay support, judgments, etc. In contrast, I was a full-time housewife and mother to our ill daughter. My level of education at the time of separation was high school, and I received an AA degree in 2017. Ghibaudo was present at the hearing. He wants Judge Ritchie to confirm that he is in no way responsible for the attorney fees from the Willick Law Group, and Ritchie assures him that this is my debt.
On 3/19/2018—Alex Ghibaudo was held in Contempt of STATE Court for failure to pay court-ordered support in January, February, and March 2018.
On 9/13/2018— Sigal Chattah submitted a STATE Bar complaint against Alex Ghibaudo Esq., for threats and harassment. (The complaint was systematically dismissed and disposed of).
On 10/31/2018-Ghibaudo unilaterally and illegally stopped paying all court-ordered support per the established and controlling divorce decree on October 30, 2018.
On 3/20/2019— Tara Kellogg and Nicole Ghibaudo were granted a TPO against Alex Ghibaudo for threats to cause physical harm, harassment, and stalking.
On 6/27/2019—ELSKE SHIPP (under GHIBAUDO’S direction again) hacked into my USAA account to receive unauthorized information on my two children and me. I received a text message from USAA stating: “You were recently added to the personal profile of ELSKE SHIPP. If you have any questions, please call 800-292-8995.” I discovered that SHIPP accessed the account I opened in 2014, and SHIPP wrongfully added herself as a fiancé. I immediately worked with USAA to secure my and my children’s personal information to circumvent any identity theft by Shipp (who was arrested and/or convicted of various crimes herself independently of GHIBAUDO).
On 8/9/2019—I, Tara Kellogg, submitted a STATE Bar complaint against Alex Ghibaudo
Failure to pay court-ordered support obligations.
Failure to disclose a conflict of interest between Ghibaudo and Hearing Master, Jennifer Henry assigned to cases adjudicated Complainainant’s Request for Temporary Protective Orders, all in violation of Nevada Rules of Professional Conduct 3.5 (a-b): 8.4 c-(f):
On 8/26/2019—I received a letter from Phillip J. Pattee (STATE Bar Counsel) at the Nevada State Bar. The letter concluded, “No further action will be taken in this matter.”
On 9/5/2019—I, Tara Kellogg, sent STATE Chief Justice Mark Gibbons a certified letter with supporting documentation about Nevada State Bar Counsel Phillip J. Pattee. “I believe the investigatory and disciplinary process is being abused or ignored. I also believe that Bar Counsel Phillip J. Pattee is biased, lacking objectivity when reviewing complaints about Alex Ghibaudo.”
On September 25, 2019—the STATE Supreme Court of Nevada Re: Your Correspondence Dated September 5, 2019
“Your letter dated September 5, 2019, along with exhibits, has been forwarded to me for a response. As there is pending litigation in this matter. Chief Justice Gibbons is unable to intervene or advise you in this matter. Your letter and exhibits will be forwarded to the Executive Director of the Nevada State Bar for consideration. Sincerely Elizabeth A. Brown Esq. Clerk of Court.” (I never heard from the Nevada State Bar).
On 9/26/2019–Criminal Conspiracy by Ghibaudo, Elske Shipp, and Heather Bekish.
The inception of the first Fake Facebook page, “Hekela Koa” developed and devoted to disparaging, harassing, and stalking me (Tara) incessantly.
In total Ghibaudo, Shipp, and Bekish developed 7 Fake Facebook pages.
On 10/2019–SHIPP (“high as a kite”) contacted my then family law attorney Sigal Chattah and demanded that my bank statements be directly sent to Shipp’s email address without authority or authorization whatsoever. SHIPP has no reason, right, or basis for requesting my bank statements.
On 10/28/2019–I contacted the STATE-appointed Henderson Police Department because of the relentless and continued online harassment from SHIPP/GHIBAUDO. Upon information and belief, the Henderson Police Department contacted SHIPP and advised SHIPP to stop engaging in this behavior and misconduct. However, SHIPP flouted authority and continued engaging in said behavior. SHIPP was empowered and emboldened by GHIBAUDO as a STATE licensed officer of the court.
Ghibaudo continued telling SHIPP “It was “okay” to carry on with the harassment. Thereafter, the Henderson Police Department inexplicably closed the case within minutes after learning GHIBAUDO was a STATE licensed attorney. Ghibaudo threatened to sue them (calling the officers “pigs” in the process).
On 10/30/2019–GHIBAUDO and SHIPP unlawfully and without permission attempted to access my Capital One account. I received a message from Capital One that my account had been locked out due to too many failed attempts. Henderson Police Department Incident Report No. LHP191025000778.
AGAIN, the Henderson Police Department did Nothing because they were intimidated by a STATE licensed attorney (Ghibaudo) threatening to sue them.
On 10/30/2019–GHIBAUDO and SHIPP attempted to unlawfully and without permission access my PayPal account from an unknown mobile device.
November 2019—Conference call with STATE elected District Attorney Steven Wolfson, Suzi Trubi, Assistant Director of Child Support Enforcement, my dad, Dr. Joseph Kellogg, and me.
The conference call addressed Alex Ghibaudo’s failure to pay Spousal Support since October 30, 2018, and child support arrearages and Child Support Enforcement’s ultimate failure to enforce.
In addition, we further discussed NRS 201.020. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, this conference call resulted in nothing of consequence (like virtually everything else at the STATE level whenever my CIVIL OR DUE PROCESS RIGHTS are at issue.
NRS 201.020 Penalties; jurisdiction.
1. Except as otherwise provided in subsection 2, a person who knowingly fails to provide for the support of his or her:
(a) Spouse or former spouse;
(b) Minor child; or
(c) a Child who upon arriving at the age of majority is unable to provide support for himself or herself because of infirmity, incompetency, or other legal disability that was contracted before the child reached the age of majority, Ê as ordered by a court, is guilty of a misdemeanor.
2. A person who violates the provisions of subsection 1 is guilty of a category C felony and shall be punished as provided in NRS 193.130 if:
(a) The person’s arrearages for nonpayment of the child support or spousal support ordered by a court total $10,000 or more and have accrued over any period since the date that a court first ordered the defendant to provide for such support; or
(b) It is a second or subsequent violation of subsection 1 or an offense committed in another jurisdiction that, if committed in this State, would be a violation of subsection 1, and the person’s arrearages for nonpayment of the child support or spousal support ordered by a court total $5,000 or more and have accrued over any period since the date that a court first ordered the defendant to provide for such support.
3. A prosecution for a violation of subsection 1 may be brought in a court of competent jurisdiction in any county in which:
(a) A court has issued a valid order for the defendant to pay child support or spousal support;
(b) The defendant resides;
(c) The custodial parent or custodian of the child for whom the defendant owes child support resides;
(d) The spouse or former spouse to whom the defendant owes spousal support resides; or
(e) The child for whom the defendant owes child support resides.
In direct reference to this statute supra, GHIBAUDO OWES ME OVER $300,000.00 IN SUPPORT ARREAGES, which are still unpaid, yet the STATE-elected D.A. Wolfson never found such egregious criminal violations by STATE-licensed GHIBAUDO “necessary enough” to pursue, past or present.
Instead, Woflson nonchalantly stated, “He did not want to get involved in pursuing this blatant CRIME.” This is coming from the D.A. which has a statutory and elected duty (that was breached) to pursue willful and egregious crimes against victims, including but not limited to families and especially children!
Then Nevada State Bar renews Alex Ghibaudo’s law license annually. The State Bar knows full well that he does not pay his court-ordered support obligation, judgments, and attorney fees.
In 2019 and 2020–GHIBAUDO, SHIPP, and a new player/agent in their sick and twisted game, one HEATHER BEKISH (Bekish is a disgruntled ex-girlfriend of my boyfriend), posted a Craigslist ad offering “my” sexual services to strangers. The ad provided my phone number. I received numerous terrifying, unwanted, unsolicited, and lewd phone calls and voice messages (I have one saved voicemail for evidentiary purposes).
In 2019-2020, BEKISH, SHIPP, and GHIBAUDO publicly shared my medical information, bank statements, bank account numbers, and Deposition of Tara Kellogg. My private information was posted online, in emails, and in text messages. The trio disseminated my information in my sealed Family Law case. I repeatedly requested STATE elected Judge Ritchie safeguard my protected information just as Ritchie would a juvenile. He ignored my request, just as he had done for years (multiple breaches of his duty as a STATE elected family law Judge).
As discussed supra, and on other occasions, SHIPP, GHIBAUDO, and BEKISH have engaged in an online and in-person campaign of harassment, defamation, abuse, stalking, and other atrocious conduct towards me, as explicitly discussed above and below.
SHIPP, BEKISH, and GHIBAUDO admitted to their goal and purpose of accomplishing the above-discussed objectives and admitted the same in writing and orally.
On 4/3/2020–I received a letter from my health insurance provider (Aetna). The letter said that Alex Ghibaudo from the Law Firm G Law contacted Aetna to inform them of his power of attorney status. This assertion by GHIBAUDO to Aetna was a blatant lie and completely misrepresentative and illegal since I gave GHIBAUDO no such authorization to say or do so.
On 8/2/2020—An email to STATE-elected Steven Wolfson outlining Ghibaudo’s failure to pay child support, court-ordered spousal support payments, and Larry Bertsch’s Forensic Accounting report. The report concludes Ghibaudo’s misuse of two (2) IOLTA accounts and refusal to provide documents, statements, and tax returns.
On 8/9/2020—Phil Pattee (Nevada STATE Bar, Bar Counsel) emailed my attorney, Chris Reade.
Please note that the email is dated one month before the court granted Ghibaudo’s Law License Suspension for failure to pay Court-Ordered Child Support.
The email explicitly states as follows verbatim (an unimaginable STATE-authored admission of an intentional and willful breach of duty):
“I got a call from Phil Pattee at the State Bar Office of Bar Counsel. He noted that they had received the information on child support from the CCDA and would be doing Nothing further with it. He said that the District Attorney has no authority to suspend a law license and knows it has no authority to suspend a law license. He said as he chuckles when he gets another complaint against Alex, he puts it in his 3” thick file on Alex. He said this one would likewise be put in Alex’s file but Nothing further would be done at this time.”
On 8/12/2020—STATE sponsored Child Support Enforcement-District Attorney’s Notice of Motion and Motion to Suspend Alex Ghibaudo’s Law License to Practice Law in the State Of Nevada is granted. (Yet, Ghibaudo did not pay, nor was his Law License suspended per order).
Here, another breach of duty is shown by this agency since such an ordered suspension is specifically what their job is (enforcing payment or imposing the appropriate penalties).
On 8/21/2020— An email from STATE elect Steven Wolfson to me confirming that Child Support Enforcement is pursuing the suspension of Alex Ghibaudo’s Law License for failure to pay child support.
ORDER September 17, 2020:
The Court finds that Tara is willfully underemployed to maximize her spousal support claim, that the income should be imputed to her for the period between October 2017- the present (8 months after the Divorce decree was signed) (The NRS code states that you cannot retroactively decrease support). The Court can appropriately calculate the NET (the divorce decree states that all calculations are determined GROSS, not NET) support that is due during this time and that amount based on the evidence presented is $2,000 a month.
The Court further finds that Alex is employed as an attorney who incorporated his law firm with the Nevada Secretary of State about six months after the settlement conference on December 19, 2016. (Per the settlement agreement, all assets will remain community property until divorce).
The Court further finds the duration of the marriage, which was 13 years. (WRONG 15 years, 6 months) YOU DUMB FUCK. SIX YEARS ON MY CASE, AND YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW THE YEARS OF MARRIAGE!
The Court further Finds that the Court considered the earning capacity, age, and health of each spouse. Alex has an earning capacity of $140,000 per year; Tara’s earning capacity is $24,000 per year.
The Court Further Finds that the Court considers the standard of living during the marriage and finds the marriage, both parties had financial and personal issues. So that is not a compelling consideration in this case. (Ghibaudo had personal and financial issues; hence, drugs, alcohol, hookers, strip joints, and supporting random girlfriends).
In 1999 Alex moved into my 3,000 sq ft house with a pool valued at $650,000.00 and drove my $60,000 car to begin his education at CSN. (Alex had nothing.) He pissed everything away). Please see my attached deed. I stupidly added Ghibaudo to the deed to my house.
The Court Further Finds that the Court considered the career before marriage of the spouse who received alimony. Here, Tara has been taking college courses for years and has received an Associate Degree. She is currently seeking a bachelor’s degree and made effort in that regard.
I started school at CSN in 2013 while being the sole caretaker of our minor child and housewife.
I was unable to continue school and graduate from UNLV. However, Alex strategically stopped paying support on October 30, 2018. He knew full well that I would soon receive my Bachelor’s Degree. Ghibaudo does not want me to obtain an education and has made this known throughout our marriage.
The Court Further Finds that the Court considers the award of property granted in the Decree.
There was not much property granted in the Decree of Divorce to either party. (DUH! Alex stole over $700,000.00 from me. He took out a second and third mortgage on my house to afford his deplorable, vile lifestyle while living in San Francisco and attending Law School. My money provided “UNKNOWINGLY” his animalistic lifestyle behind my back.
Additionally, Alex sold my $80,000.00 vehicle and $10,000 engagement ring. He sold all the furnishings in my house and borrowed over $100,000.00 from my parents without repayment. My home foreclosed in 2009.
The Court has continuing jurisdiction to modify unaccrued periodic alimony payments outlined in a Decree of Divorce upon showing changed circumstances. NRS 125.150(8) (Ritchie imputed income retroactively back to 2017).
The only change in circumstances is the substantial increase in Ghibaudo’s income. Alex’s income increasing x 3.
The Court may consider, among other factors, a party’s earning capacity, not just income, when determining a fair and equitable alimony award. NRS 125.150.
Ghibaudo and I participated in a settlement conference and agreed on all terms, At any time any party could petition the Court for a divorce.
September 17, 2020, JUDGE RITCHIE REDUCED MY ALIMONY RETROACTIVELY DUE TO MY DISABILITY.
My disability was never mentioned in the settlement conference and agreement.
My disability is NOT mentioned in Divorce Decree. Why? Because it’s nobody’s business.
Judge Ritchie used the required Financial Disclosure Form (FDF) questionnaire against me. The FDF asks two questions under penalty of perjury.
Do you have a disability? Yes
If yes, please provide supporting documentation. I provided the same documentation supplied to the College of Southern Nevada (CSN) and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) required by the Disability Resource Center (DRC).
On 8/21/2020— An email from STATE elect Steven Wolfson to me confirming that Child Support Enforcement is pursuing the suspension of Alex Ghibaudo’s Law License for failure to pay child support.
Judge Ritchie never enforced any provision in my Divorce Decree in six (6) years.
Refused to enforce child support
Refused to enforce health insurance for Ghibaudo’s daughter, EVER.
Refused to enforce Marital Debt.
On 9/26/2020—Shipp, Ghibaudo, and Bekish created a Facebook account (“Hekela Koa”). The newly aligned trio created seven (7) Facebook accounts for inflicting emotional and mental distress upon me through relentless cyberstalking, cyberbullying, harassment, and other unlawful, actionable acts on a criminal and civil level. AGAIN, the Henderson Police Department did Nothing to protect or secure my 14th Amendment due process or any of my civil rights. Multiple breaches of their express duty to the public to protect and serve ALL victims, not just selectively.
On 10/19/2020–Cease and Desist letter was mailed to Elske Shipp and Heather Bekish from Chris Reade Esq. The letter went ignored and the harassment continued.
On 1/11/2021— Chris Reade Esq. filed TPO against Alex Ghibaudo for threats against Tara Kellogg and family members.
Ghibaudo said he would physically, financially, and personally “fuck Ms. Kellogg up” and would make her wish that she were dead.
Ghibaudo doubled down on his threats and said he would take out his frustrations on Ms. Kellogg physically and her family, whom Mr. Ghibaudo alleges was behind Ms. Kellogg’s litigation.
Ghibaudo said he would retract the physical threats if Ms. Kellogg agreed to “specific settlement terms in good faith. This physical threat by Ghibaudo, in exchange for a compromised civil settlement, is unequivocally clear, blatant, and illegal extortion, in which the County D.A. and various STATE courts of competent jurisdiction deliberately turned yet another blind eye to STATE-LICENSED Ghibaudo’s criminal conduct.
On 1/11/2021—An Email from STATE appointed Assistant Director Suzi Truby (Child Support Enforcement) to my Attorney Chris Reade informing Mr. Reade that Assistant District Attorney Adam Hughes will not suspend Alex Ghibaudo’s Law License for failure to pay child support after all.
Note: STATE attorney Hughes had no discretion or authority to make such a unilateral move outside his scope of authority. This decision came after Hughes spoke with STATE Bar counsel Phil Pattee, and was told by Pattee that Hughes had no such authority to suspend GHIBAUDO’s law license even though the STATE statute clearly says otherwise.
On 1/19/2021—I drove to the Henderson Police Station at 225 E Sunset Rd. The previous police reports made at my home were fruitless. As such, the “trio’s” threats and harassment increased exponentially because the Henderson Police Department enabled their misconduct towards me and essentially encouraged it by their non-action.
Upon request, I provided a detailed police report, including violations of the protective order issued on 1/11/2021. Police Officer Hendrickson “conveniently,” said the TPO does not mention/cover social media. Therefore, the threats, harassment, and stalking continued and increased substantially, even though clear and unambiguous NEVADA STATE STATUTES are in place that say otherwise.
Hearing February 3, 2021:
Attorney Chris Reade filed a motion for an order to show cause, attorney fees, and costs.
Ghibaudo failed to pay 39 months of court-ordered support out of 40 months. Monies paid to enforce divorce decree $300,000.00, Ritchie – Denied.
Hearing June 2, 2021- Clark County Family Court Judge Arthur RITCHIE THREATENS ME!!
Ritchie – that should Plaintiff attempt to enforce this Court’s prior orders or her awards of support Plaintiff would be acting at Plaintiff’s own risk.
On 7/16/2021–Email correspondence between Chris Reade Esq., and Alex Ghibaudo Esq., and cc’d to my dad, Dr. Joseph Kellogg.
The emails said as follows:
“If your client refuses this reasonable request (continuance), I will seek sanctions and attorney fees. When Ritchie denies it because he’s covering your client, because he’s white like you all are, I will appeal it. (Alex calls Ritchie Racist).
“If you think this is a fucking game I’ll play and mine will be to drain those ghoulish parents of hers (Tara’s) of every fucking penny he may have…you listening Joe? (Tara Kellogg’s father, Dr. Joseph Kellogg). Do you want to reconsider or not? Respond.
“By the way, tomorrow every single unflattering picture of hers (Tara) is going up and I will tell the story publicly. It’s all coming out now. Fuck this, I will not be extorted by a POS.”
“Just keep getting that retainer refreshed because this won’t end anytime soon so long as your old POS daughter keeps playing her stupid fucking games old man.
Just wait till I tell the world what a piece of shit you and your family are.
Chris Reade Esq. emailed me the following:
“He is high as a kite, But Tara, if you don’t think this email accusing Ritchie of racism is not an exhibit, you are grossly mistaken. WTH was he thinking?
“He also indicated that he intends to vexatiously drain your parents. That’s an abuse of process that he just admitted to.”
Email dated August 12, 2021. In the email from Ghibaudo to Shipp (Ghibaudo’s girlfriend) and cc’d to Bekish (the disgruntled ex-girlfriend of my boyfriend Mike A/K/A Hoyt Torrey).
The email directs Shipp and Bekish to create another fake Facebook account or send disparaging, deplorable, disgusting flyers to my neighbors sent anonymously.
The intent is: “I aim to force this bitch to kill herself.”
To date, Ghibaudo, Shipp, and Bekish have created seven (7) fake Facebook accounts to stalk, harass and threaten me to “the point I kill myself” (as intended by the email I provided you from Alex and cc’d Elske Shipp (Ghibaudo’s girlfriend) and Heather Bekish (the disgruntled ex-girlfriend of my boyfriend Mike A/K/A Hoyt Torrey).
Ghibaudo’s threats throughout the years must be taken seriously. Ghibaudo has a long string of severe DV arrests and convictions against me and his current girlfriend.
In 2020, Ghibaudo disseminated my bank statements and deposition to his minions and many others.
Ghibaudo makes physical threats directly to my 80-year-old dad, Dr. Joseph Kellogg.
Ghibaudo threatens my dad with his intent to continue litigation indefinitely. (Emails in my possession).
TPO sought and received by attorney Chris Reade against Ghibaudo. (See TPO in my possession).
Phil Pattee enables Alex (Read the Chris email about the 3-inch binder BS).
The State Bar runs unchecked in Clark County (DA Wolfson does not want to “get involved”).
Ghibaudo and Shipp commit perjury (See perjury folder in my possession). Discuss the videotaped lying testimony by Alex and Shipp vs. the phone records exposing those lies.
Here, the courts, DA, or state Bar have done zero. about it.
On August 12, 2021, an email authored by GHIBAUDO (on his business letterhead, no less) to SHIPP and BEKISH read verbatim in its entirety as follows:
“Heather, are you opposed to starting another Facebook page about them both? I can feed you all sorts of information and shield and protect you from any kind of liability. My goal is to utterly destroy both of them. I’m not fucking around with these pieces of shit anymore. One idea I like is to print out pictures of the two of them together, attach them to his disbarment doc, and distribute them to her entire neighborhood; all, of them. I’m willing to mail it if we cannot get in.
“I AIM TO FORCE THIS BITCH TO KILL HERSELF.”
SHIPP, BEKISH, and GHIBAUDO admitted to their goal and purpose of accomplishing the above-discussed objectives and admitted the same in writing and orally.
On 8/16/2021— STATE-backed judge Ritchie required an unprecedented, improper, unfounded, abnormal, and unheard-of two-day Evidentiary Hearing on a Writ of Execution/Writ of Garnishment.
On August 17, 2021, Ghibaudo changed his LLC to defraud me in violation of NRS 89.022.
From 2018 through 10/2021, I, Tara Kellogg, filed twenty-eight (28) police reports for continued threats, harassment, and stalking with the STATE approved Henderson Police Department.
ALL police reports were closed without investigation (blatant breach of duty).
Seven police reports were left blank.
Eight Police reports had basic information incorrect, such as my name.
On 10/03/2022, Officer Eric Bohn from the Henderson Police Officer reopened my case(s) and forwarded it to the Cybercrimes Unit.
In March 2023, Detective Vargason from the Henderson Police Department (Cybercrimes Unit) contacted me three (3) months after I provided:
The flash drive included threats, harassment, relentless stalking, grotesque, deplorable, vile, repugnant photos of me, including my name: Tara R. Kellogg, Tara Rae, Tara Rae Kellogg
My sworn declaration/affidavit.
Detective Vargason dared to inquire how long it would take to view the flash drive (as if he did not want to be unduly burdened from doing the exact job he is paid very well for).
I was incredibly insulted by Detective Vargason and “matter of factly” assured him that the length of time it might take him to do his job would be substantially less time than it took me to put all of the “nightmarish documentation together for him (unpaid no less).
I contacted Detective Vargason approximately one (1) month later for an update. Not surprisingly and conveniently, Detective Vargason “did not see any crimes, harassment, stalking, threats, etc”. Although, the last email I received from Ghibaudo specifically stated, “I aim for this Bitch to kill herself.” There is Nothing to see here, I guess (unbelievable).
On November 23, 2021– Ghibaudo was exactly three years (36) months behind in his court-ordered-support obligation.
Jonathan (JK) Nelson said, Ms. Kellogg is continually prejudiced by your failure to act.
Ritchie set an Order to Show Cause for February 2022. Why?? Because Jonathan Nelson was spot on!
Michancy Cramer said in Open Court, “Tara can go sleeping around with half of California.
Ritchie said NOTHING!!
Ghibaudo held in contempt. However, Ritchie emphatically refused to implement a $500.00 fine for each month Ghibaudo failed to pay support or incarcerate Ghibaudo for failure to pay Court ordered support for a whopping 39 months.
Instead, Ritchie held me in contempt for sharing hearing videos (currently on appeal).
Ghibaudo disseminating my bank statements and other financial docs, deposition, etc., from the evidentiary hearing from May 2019-September 2020. This can be proven.
Ritchie decreased my alimony retroactively and substantially. Ritchie declared that I do not have a disability. However, my disability was never mentioned in the settlement conference or the Divorce Decree. Why? Because it’s nobody’s damn business.
When did this Family Court Judge become a medical doctor?
Ritchie was seeking any reason to decrease my alimony by any means. I stupidly answered honestly on an FDF, “Do you have a disability? Under the Penalty of Perjury, I answered yes.
(Although, it’s nobody’s fucking business) The question further asked me to provide documentation. Thus, I logged into My UNLV account and provided the same documentation I had provided the Disability Resource Center (DRC) at UNLV.
The letter from my psychiatrist and the document from the Social Security Administration. I have the evidence to support this as well.
Ritchie discriminates against people with disabilities, and he is sexist and racist.
Judge Arthur Ritchie, needs immediate removal from the bench before continuing the mountains of destruction, and he MUST be stopped.
On 1/27/2022—Tara Kellogg was ordered to be present for a Deposition at Ghibaudo’s office by Ghibaudo.
Such an order was inherently dangerous since it put me at severe risk of having to be in the same room with an individual who had been arrested and/or convicted more than 30 times for assaulting me in the past.
Including two acts of strangulation. The STATE discovery commissioner ruled against me and my legitimate safety concerns in favor of being unreasonably placed in danger at Ghibaudo’s office. What is so outrageous here is that this was during the height of COVID when such depositions were routinely conducted by” bluejeans” for far less.
Thus, I employed a retired Metro Police Officer to accompany me during the “ridiculous” seven hours Ghibaudo kept the deposition going for his amusement (like a cat taunting a defenseless mouse).
Additionally, Ghibaudo refused to allow the former Metro officer in his office. Ghibudo said, “I hate fucking pigs.” I was terrified the entire time and was legitimately convinced he would kidnap or kill me based on his past actions and current physical threats.
In 2022, GHIBAUDO and SHIPP signed me up for many services and contact lists without my consent. For example, SHIPP signed me up for a job search service that resulted in several unwanted calls and voice messages. SHIPP has no right, privilege, or reason to be concerned about my unemployment status or personal life.
On 2/11/2022–GHIBAUDO and SHIPP created a Facebook account under the name of Lisa Jakobsen (“Jakobsen Account”). The Jakobsen account was created solely to harass, threaten, insult, intimidate, ridicule, defame, stalk, and other legally impermissible behavior toward me.
SHIPP has admitted to being the creator of the Jakobsen Account, and GHIBAUDO admitted to several threatening, harassing, stalking posts (I have the text messages confirming such for evidence provided by Heather Bekish in a lapse of Judgment on her part).
I made countless calls to the Henderson Police Department and numerous Police reports that fell on deaf ears yet again. Shocker. I am now a prisoner in my own home because no one at the STATE LEVEL is doing an iota of what they are required to do by law to protect and serve me as a daily, never-ending victim of this trio.
On 2/12/2022—Again I filed a police report for threats and harassment. Please note that I had a previous appointment with my physician on Friday, March 24, 2023. The appointment was to renew my Disabled Placard. My doctor determined that I will no longer require renewal of the disabled placard. My physician determined that I was “completely disabled.”
The Henderson Police Department is one of the NEVADA STATE agencies that have actually and proximately caused by Federally recognized SSA disability and damages (in which compensatory and punitive damages are highly warranted in Federal Court). The police failed to do a simple investigation. Had the Henderson Police Department (an agent of the STATE OF NEVADA) done a sliver of work between 2018-2023, my future would look drastically different for the better.
However, they chose to do NOTHING instead but ensure the aforementioned “trio” continued to haunt me daily with their antics and with unfettered discretion.
The Henderson Police Department would rather have me employ an expensive PI and do an investigation on my own than do their actual job.
However, “but for” the Henderson Police Department’s willful, intentional (or at the bare minimum, wanton and reckless negligence) over the years, I would not be disabled (ACTUAL DAMAGES) at this point in my life. I would not be diagnosed with PTSD. I would not be depressed every hour of every day, I would not have debilitating anxiety and a life not worth living, as my psychiatrist astutely diagnosed).
Further, I have now developed a reasonable fear toward STATE law enforcement and elected officials based solely on the prolonged mistreatment and injustice I have been forced to endure needlessly for over eight years. I have had to learn “the hard way” that these institutions seemingly are not in place to protect me in the least, especially if a STATE licensed attorney is the criminal hell-bent on seeing me ultimately “DEAD.”
Click on this Powerful interview:
Tara Kellogg victim of Family Court Torture by Nevada Attorney Alex Ghibaudo & Judge Arthur Ritchie
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If you’ve been through a divorce or, you are thinking about divorce one of your main concerns will be how your divorce will impact your children. Study after study relates to the ways in which divorce negatively impacts children. It’s no wonder parents worry about their children’s welfare based on common information about the subject of children and divorce.
Divorce can negatively impact children but there are ways to keep that from happening. You should know that the impact your divorce will have on your children dependents mainly on how you and your spouse choose to treat each other during and after divorce and, how you choose to parent.
Children who witness conflict between their parents during and after divorce or, feel as if they have been put in the middle of that conflict are negatively impacted by divorce. If you want your divorce to do little harm to your children, it’s your job to keep down the conflict and keep them out of the middle of problems between you and your ex.
You may feel that conflict during divorce is unavoidable or the fault of the other parent, regardless of what you feel, it is imperative that you take the steps needed to keep your children from witnessing conflict and feeling stuck in the middle of two angry parents.
Below are 4 ways children are caught in the middle during divorce:
When parents use their children as a messenger or a means of finding out information about the other parent’s home, dating life, and social activities.
Negative comments about the other parent made by you, friends or family members.
Sharing adult details about the problems between the parents. Details such as information about infidelity, legal divorce proceedings or the reason for the divorce.
Garnering the child’s favor in an attempt to use the child to punish the other parent.
Talking to the child about money issues. A late child support check, a lack of money needed to pay the rent…adult financial problems that children have no control over.
Divorce brings an end to your marriage, it doesn’t bring an end to your duties as a parent. One of those duties is to put a concerted effort into positively co-parenting with your child’s other parent. Below are a few suggestions that will help.
Choosing the parenting style that fits well for you and your ex will keep your child out of the middle:
Parallel Parenting After Divorce
If there is a lot of conflict between you and your ex, parallel parenting is appropriate. Why? Parallel parenting allows each parent to remain a part of the child’s life while reducing the need for contact with each other. When parallel parenting, there is very little communication which, in turn, keeps down the conflict and protects the child from being impacted in a negative manner.
When parallel parenting, parents:
Communicate through email, a third party or an app like Family Wizard to stay informed about issues involving the children. Discussions are strictly about the children and no personal issues between the parents. Use of a phone to communicate is only done in cases of an emergency.
Schedules such as visitation, vacations and holidays are strictly kept. There is no negotiating for different days and times to keep down the likelihood of conflicts arising.
There is a set residency agreed upon or ordered by the courts. When the children are in the care of one or the other parent in their residence neither parent interferes with social activities, routines or anything that takes place in the other parent’s residence.
Neither parent has any influence over the other parent and how that parent chooses to spend time with their children. If one parent has an issue with the way the other parent is choosing to parent in their residence, the court is used to settle the issue.
Parenting is treated as a business arrangement. Common courtesy is shown at all times and agreements are honored because the sole purpose of parallel parenting is to do what is best for your children.
When communication or negotiation is necessary, parents can choose to have a third party involved to witness and if needed mediate and conflict that arises.
Child support payments are filtered through the court or a child support collection bureau to keep down any possibility of late payment or conflicts of over payments.
Cooperative Parenting After Divorce
Cooperative parenting works best when there is low conflict between parents and the parents are able to work together for the sake of the children. With cooperative parenting, there is more flexibility when it comes to visitation schedules and residency issues.
When cooperative parenting, parents:
Parents form a friendly business relationship that revolves around the needs of their children. A courteous and polite relationship is one that will go a long way toward making sure children have what they need from each parent.
Parents are able to talk, face-to-face about parenting issues as they arise. They are able to stick to the topic at hand without becoming distracted by old relationship issues.
They don’t expect praise or emotional support from each other. They realize that part of their relationship has ended. But, they are able to show empathy and to support each other during difficult parenting issues.
Keep all discussions about parenting, visitation, schedules and such to themselves and don’t involve the children. They come to a firm decision, as parents, before involving the children in their decisions.
Are able to, at all times, put their children’s needs above their needs and feelings. Their relationship with the other parent is strictly about what is best for their children.
Are able to communicate via phone or in person without engaging in conflict.
Child support checks are mailed directly to the parent receiving the support. Due to their business like relationship, they both understand the importance of meeting their financial obligations to their children.
Whether parallel parenting or cooperative parenting, it is important to remember that one method is not better than the other. Each method will result in lower conflict and, as a result, better parenting. And, that is your goal as parents, better parenting and keeping your child out of the middle of your divorce issues.
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Kindness. Oh, how I have reflected on this concept for most of the past twenty years that I have been a single mother. The act of kindness holds an importance to me now that I never would have held had I not been a single mother.
As I sit here thinking back on the years behind me and the many acts of kindness that were bestowed upon me by my family and friends, I get quite emotional. Those people can never know how much their actions of support to me, to my family have meant.
In many instances, these actions meant that I could continue providing a home for my family, food on the table, clothes on their backs and joy in their lives. These Good Samaritans will forever be a part of my family’s story.
Kindness and the Single Mom
Happiness is the new rich. Inner peace is the new success. Health is the new wealth. Kindness is the new cool.
When I was married, I never had a real concept of how kindness would affect my life one day. I lived very comfortably in a well to do neighborhood, close to the beach and surrounded by the word “abundance” in all its forms.
I wanted for nothing and woke up every day with the assumption that this was forever. Well, it wasn’t.
Little did I know that one day, one man, one person… could take this vision of my own life concept and destroy it by leaving my family for another family.
Leaving my picture.
Leaving me to reconstruct it all.
How do I do this?
That was my question for much of the past 20 years. When your two children are 4 weeks and 4 years old, you have a very long road in front of you.
How do I do this? How do I still do this?
This question has been at the forefront of many mornings that I wake up.
My answer? By receiving the many acts of kindness that I have been and still am fortunate enough to receive as I walk this long road.
The first question which the priest and the Levite asked was, “if I stop to help this man, what will happen to me? But… the good Samaritan reversed the question. “If I do not stop and help this man, what will happen to him?
Martin Luther King Jr
Good Samaritan Number One
The first Good Samaritan that comes to mind is a wonderful General Contractor named Paul. Oh, how I will never forget this man and his kindness to me.
When my ex-husband left the family, we were in the middle of remodeling our home. We were living in a very small two-bedroom apartment while the house was being built. So, it was me, my 4-year-old son and newborn baby girl.
I showed up at Paul’s home office a complete wreck. He received me with a kindness I have only seen in my father. When I told him, what had happened I begged him to get me back into the house as soon as possible.
I was terrified at the prospect of being responsible for finishing a home that was still looking like a bunch of wood walls. He sat me down, got me a cup of tea and left the room. When he came back, he said that he had pulled his crews off the other building sites and will have them at my house the next day and promised he will finish this build ahead of schedule.
He promised that he would help me. He promised me that I would have a proper home for my babies. He checked in on us every day. He brought me little care packages and gifts for the kids. He eased my fears in ways that no one could ever imagine. He had my back and he did indeed get us into our home ahead of schedule.
Behind the scenes of my daily horrors at that time, he was working hand in hand with my Dad to get me shored up. He was my Guardian Angel. He was and will always be so special to me. And because he is by nature a kind man, he will never know this, because to him that’s just what you do. You help people in need.
Good Samaritan Number Two
The second Good Samaritan that comes to mind is my twin sister, Sharon. Ten years into being a single mother I thought my life was going fine. I had a good job and the kids were now 10 and 14 years old. I had moved through infancy, toddlerdom, and now we were well into grade school and junior high. I had sold the beautiful home we had built because my ex-husband wanted his money and move on with his soon to be wife.
I had purchased a new, smaller, and older home away from the beautiful community we were living in. But it was mine. Every day in that home was a balancing act of finances, but it was our home and we were a family in it.
Then out of nowhere, I was laid off from my job. When you are a single mother, a single provider there is no room for mistakes. No room for voids or gaps. When I told my ex-husband of this and asked him to increase his support for the kids, he told me NO.
I had to act quickly and rally my network. I had a mortgage to pay and that was always the primary subject on my brain…on my nervous system. Within two weeks I had a new job offer. The pay was half of my original salary, but it held a promise for a rapid promotion. I had to take it.
Even as I think back on the transactions of this, I remember it took a wonderful colleague named Steve, who was the man who connected these dots for me and referred me for the fast hire. He is added to my list of Good Samaritans too.
But upon taking this job it became quick to see that I couldn’t make the mortgage and uphold all the other responsibilities of my life. I soon got behind on my mortgage and was working with the lender to help me modify my payments under the lower salary. They would not lower them and the only way I could not default on the loan was to catch up on the delinquent payments which meant that my new mortgage payment was almost $5000 a month.
I couldn’t lose this house, our home, and have this experience be part of my children’s blueprint. The timing of the paychecks and the child support left a gap inside the month. My sister and her husband, a man who by the way was my former husband’s best friend stepped in and every month they floated me the difference and every month I paid them back. It was a balancing act all based upon timing and I have no idea how I made it through.
I was literally left with pennies in my bank account every month. Trips to even McDonalds were not an option. I maxed out my credit cards in order to provide food on the table and any other living expense required. But I was able to make the mortgage and keep my house. The house my children called home.
I know my sister and her husband know how much I appreciated their help, but they will really never know how important this was to me. It meant that I slept a few more minutes every night soundly. I endured this for 13 months. It aged me and made me ill to get through this, but I survived. After being forced to sell our home the first time, before, I swore to my kids I would never ever put them through that again. And my children never lost their home again.
Good Samaritan Number Three
Though there were far too many other Good Samaritans that crossed my path and helped me to name, the last and primary figure that stands out and shines above all, is my Father. I was blessed with a Dad who my ex-husband will never even dare to come close to. He had the values and honor of no one I have ever known since.
He was far too involved in keeping me sane, and solid to even try to attempt to itemize all his acts of kindness to my children and me. He is in Heaven now and I know he watches over us every day along with my mom who has joined him. But the most profound thing he did for me was to let me just collapse in front of him continuously, almost constantly until I got to the other side of the catastrophe of the week.
He allowed me to show my vulnerabilities, my fears, and my heartbreak, all without judgment. He was always there to glue me back together, remind me of who I am and love me unconditionally like no other human on the planet. When I asked him how I could ever repay him for all of the support he gave me, he just said that he expected me to do the same for my own children should they ever need it.
I promised him I would. I hope I have done a good job and he is proud of me. I hope my children feel that same sense of security with me as I did with him. I have certainly done all that I can in order to meet that goal.
Accepting help is its own kind of strength.
So, single moms, I share these three examples which represent a multitude of acts of kindness that crossed my life path, from the minute to the gargantuan. These acts of kindness are not random. They reflect the person you are and the way our best world sees us.
We are the very essence of nobility in the fact that we are responsible for picking up the pieces of a broken family and giving our children a firm foundation to grow and thrive on. In other words, we are worth the investments made by these amazing kind people who have presented themselves on our paths and that are still there showing up every day.
Be open to accepting the kindnesses that come your way. They can literally mean everything to your family. They do to mine.
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Parents and guardians can arrive at various forms of shared custody. Even when everyone involved puts significant time and effort into planning the arrangement, it doesn’t always work out.
When Shared Custody Isn’t Working
These are a few steps people can take when their shared custody arrangement isn’t working and how they could improve the situation.
1. Shrink the Distance
Distance is a big culprit in failed custody arrangements. Commuting to pick kids up or visit them at a partner’s house isn’t always easy. Personal or professional obligations may cause one parent to move to a new location in the same city or state, leaving them farther away from their kids.
The co-parents should discuss commuting alternatives if the distance is the main problem for their shared custody arrangement. One parent could drive farther to meet the other in the middle when switching kids between their houses. Many possible arrangements could improve the situation with a productive conversation.
2. Find Proof of Unfit Parenthood
Many times shared custody has a state-based legal definition with a specific amount of time guaranteed to each guardian. Providing hard proof of someone being unfit to supervise kids alone may be the only way to change the custody arrangement. Guardians can research their state’s definition of abandonment, like physically neglecting a child for a year or child support for the same period.
This may be especially crucial when a parent with physical custody is making bad legal custody decisions. The two are different because legal custody grants the power to decide where the kids attend school, which religious services they attend and which medical services they get.
If one parent makes continual unsafe or unhealthy legal decisions, proof of unfit parenthood could change the shared custody arrangement based on each parent’s legal rights. A parental rights lawyer can help each individual decide their best path forward to proving this case, if they can at all.
3. Start Going to Therapy
People often think that going to therapy with someone means getting a romantic relationship back, but that isn’t always the case. In shared custody parents or guardians can attend therapy to mend their relationship as long-term parental partners.
Their communication styles may have broken over the year or they could hold resentments from their shared past. There may also be new issues no one knows how to address. A therapist can provide tools to repair these problems and help make shared custody work better for everyone involved.
4. Reflect on Personal Schedules
Schedules change for numerous reasons. A parent or guardian could start working more hours after changing jobs or getting promoted. The other could have to care for sick family members who need to age in place at home. Revising how shared custody works is always possible without adjusting what the law requires of both parties.
5. Establish New Boundaries
People always need to adapt their boundaries because life never stops changing. When a shared custody arrangement isn’t working, both parties should consider if their boundaries still receive respect.
New rules regarding appropriate communication and in-person interactions might make shared custody more manageable. Simple conversations addressing specific needs are the most helpful.
For example, one parent may prefer that if the other needs to fly with their baby, they take new steps to keep them comfortable, like packing specific formulas or paying for an extra seat. Voicing that concern and taking action when the other guardian crosses that boundary around the child are steps for anyone still striving to make shared custody work.
6. Request Supervised Visitation
Shared custody may be easier with a new supervised visitation schedule. Both guardians will continue their legally provided time with their child, but the tension may disappear with a third party watching one or both parents while the kids are in their homes. The children and teens would be safer and it could encourage irresponsible guardians to change their behavior for the better.
7. Call the Authorities for Emergencies
Dangerous behavior isn’t negotiable. However, it may be difficult to prove to a custody judge. Even though calling 911 may seem drastic, getting the other guardian’s behavior on a police report could help the shared custody arrangement change more quickly.
One or multiple repeated 911 calls would be immediate proof that the arrangement should change, especially if the police officers are witnesses to the state of the home environment or partner. It’s worth considering if one parent or guardian continually puts the kids at risk with their behaviors.
8. Ask What the Kids Prefer
When a child becomes old enough to make their own decisions, they could become part of the shared custody discussions. Teenagers get the ability to drive as well, so they can change custody schedules based on their responsibilities or preferences.
Teens could also join monthly logistics meetings between partners to discuss their schedules and travel preferences. Everyone would feel included and valued, which makes any tough conversation easier to figure out.
Figure Out the Next Steps
Requesting sole custody is a significant step, so consider trying these tips when shared custody isn’t working. Parents or guardians will have much more success by trying every possible avenue before building a case for a sole custody trial.
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In a 2019 survey, 23 percent of participants cited domestic violence as a significant contributor to their divorce. The numbers prove that domestic abuse is one of the major causes of separation.
Recovering from Decades of Domstic Abuse
For those suffering from decades of abuse, life after divorce should teach them how to move forward, heal, and recover. Whether you are a divorced woman or a man fresh out of a long marriage, you can use this guide to help you get started on your journey to recovery.
Defining Domestic Abuse
Domestic abuse refers to a pattern of behavior in any relationship to gain power and control over a partner. It is also known as domestic violence or intimate partner violence (IPV).
This type of abuse includes any actions meant to intimidate, frighten, terrorize, hurt, or manipulate someone. Humiliating, blaming, injuring, or wounding a partner are also forms of domestic abuse.
It can happen to any person of any age, race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender. Abuse can also occur within a range of certain relationships, including married couples, older couples, people living together, or couples who are dating.
It can affect all sorts of people from all education levels and socioeconomic backgrounds. Domestic abuse survivors may also include a child and other members of the household.
Domestic violence incidents are rarely isolated. As time passes, the incidents usually escalate in severity and frequency. The abuse may lead to serious physical injury or even death.
In this section, let us take a closer look at the different types of domestic violence. Knowing the various forms of IPV will make it easier to spot the signs of abuse.
IPV in the form of physical abuse can involve the following behavior:
Scratching, grabbing, biting, or spitting
Throwing objects to intimidate or hurt you
Pushing or shoving
Slapping or punching
Breaking things or treasured possessions
Hurting your children or threatening to hurt them
Harming your pets or threatening to hurt them
Exhausting you by disrupting your sleep
Any threats or attempts to wound or kill you
Psychological or emotional abuse
This type of domestic abuse involves behavior your partner uses to control or damage your emotional well-being. The following actions are examples of this type of abuse:
Yelling or standing threateningly
Mocking, name-calling, or making humiliating gestures or remarks
Interrupting you while you speak
Not listening or responding when you ask questions
Manipulating your children
Dictating what you can and cannot do
Placing little value on what you think or say
Saying negative things about you, your friends, and your family
Belittling you publicly
Preventing you from seeing friends or relatives
Being overly jealous
Blaming others for their abusive behavior
Monitoring your communications
Economic or financial abuse happens when someone makes their partner financially dependent on them. The following behaviors are indicative of financial abuse:
Hiding family assets
Not letting you go to work or attend school
Sabotaging employment opportunities
Sabotaging educational opportunities
Denying access to or destroying a car so you cannot go to work or school
Refusing to provide financial support or child support
Denying access to bank accounts
Running up debt in your name
Signs of Domestic Abuse
In 2021, the number of divorced men and women in the age group of 45 to 49 reached approximately 3 million. The figure shows that it is never too late to leave a relationship, especially if you are stuck with an abusive partner. Do not be afraid to call up a divorce attorney, regardless of how many years you have been married.
To recover from domestic violence, you must first recognize the signs of abuse. These signs can be little things that you might miss if you are not actively looking for them. To know if you experience domestic violence, ask yourself this: Does your partner:
Belittle you yourself and your accomplishments?
Say you are nothing without them?
Blame you for how they act or feel?
Embarrass you in front of other people?
Intimidate you to gain compliance?
Make you feel inadequate?
Tell you that you cannot make your own decisions?
Physically hurt you?
Use substance abuse as an excuse for hurting you?
Call or show up unannounced to ensure you are where you said you would be?
Pressure you sexually?
Try to stop you from leaving after a fight?
Leave you stranded somewhere after a fight?
Stop you from doing things you want to do?
Another way to know is to ask yourself if you do or feel the following:
That you can help your partner change only if you change yourself
Scared of how your partner may react
Make excuses and apologize to other people for your partner’s actions
Prevent anything that would make your partner angry
Never do what you want since you are always doing what your partner wants
Stay with your partner because you are scared of what your spouse would do if you left
How To Recover From Domestic Abuse
On average, 24 people per minute experience stalking, physical violence, or rape by an intimate partner in the US. This means 12 million people experience domestic abuse over the course of one year.
These statistics underscore the importance of resources that can help survivors recover from their trauma. In this section, you will discover crucial tips and reminders that can help you start your recovery after decades of abuse.
Recognize the effects of trauma
The first step of recovery is to acknowledge that you need help. If you recognize the effects of trauma on yourself or your loved ones, you must seek professional help. The effects of trauma include:
Feelings of self-hate
Difficulty in sleeping
Flashbacks of physical or sexual abuse
Fear of relationships and people
Learn to trust
Emotional abuse can lead younger survivors to fall into similar behavior patterns as they reach middle age. One common reaction to trauma is to distrust others.
After divorce, survivors might be scared of making new friends, meeting new partners, and forming new relationships. They might be afraid of intimacy.
However, there are still plenty of good people out there. To heal, survivors of domestic violence need to begin to let people into their new life.
Understand why recovery is important
Some people might not understand why it is crucial to make an effort to get better. However, they must understand why recovery is important for their recovery to be successful. Otherwise, the process can be more difficult.
It is crucial to know that healing is the key to overcoming traumatic experiences. Yes, healing is different for everyone, but for any individual, it requires the intention to recover and release past traumas. This intention can encourage the following scenarios:
Domestic violence and divorce recovery allow survivors to develop closer relationships with others. This way, you do not have to spend more time thinking about your abuser. It is crucial to let your friends and family support you as you start the healing process.
It will enable survivors to focus on themselves and not on their negative feelings. While healing, survivors can take their focus away from the negativity and do what helps them.
It allows survivors to relieve their pain by finding new avenues to cope. You can take up a new hobby or return to your once-abandoned hobbies.
It also helps survivors experience their feelings again after releasing all the emotions from past mental health trauma.
Ask for help
Asking for help is a crucial form of self-compassion. Those hurting should not be ashamed to ask for help. However, this could be easier said than done for survivors of domestic violence.
Survivors have a natural tendency to downplay the negative effects of abuse, especially if the abuse is not physical. Survivors often think if they’re not feeling extreme physician pain, they will handle things on their own.
If you want to move on from an abusive relationship, there is no shame in seeking help.
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Whether you’ve recently been married, legally separated, or divorced, if your marital status has changed in the past year, you’ll need to think about the tax implications. To better understand the potential tax implications of a change in marital status, we consulted H&R Block®. Keep reading to learn some of the ways your recent change could affect your taxes.
Regardless of your marital status, your name on your tax return must match what the Social Security Administration has on file. Name changes, even those resulting from marriage or divorce, must be reported to the IRS. Otherwise, delays in processing tax refunds could result.
Something to Remember:
Keep in mind that, at this point, federal tax-filing rules are different for same-sex spouses. According to the IRS website, “Same-sex partners may not file using a married filing separately or jointly filing status because federal law does not treat same-sex partners as married for federal tax purposes.” This also goes for registered domestic partners, since they are not spouses as defined by federal law. However, same-sex couples in community property states must report their income and expenses under the community property rules. See Form 8958, Allocation of Tax Amounts Between Certain Individuals in Community Property States, for more information.
If you’ve recently been married, chances are you’ve had the money talk with your new spouse. But even if you decide not to combine your finances, you’ll no longer be able to file your federal tax returns as “single.” Generally, married taxpayers file a joint return because of the added tax benefits, including eligibility for certain credits and deductions. However, filing separately can sometimes lower your overall tax bill. You may consider consulting a tax professional to learn which filing status is most advantageous to your individual situation.
Getting Legally Separated or Divorced
Marital status as of December 31 of the year tax returns are being filed is one important factor in determining your filing status. This means that, even if you’re divorced today, if you weren’t divorced or legally separated on December 31 of the filing year, you and your former spouse must continue to use one of the filing statuses for married couples: married filing jointly or married filing separately. In some instances, you or your spouse may qualify to file as head of household if you are not married, or considered unmarried for tax purposes as of December 31. To file as head of household, you must meet several requirements. To learn about head of household status eligibility, read the H&R Block Tax Tip on Divorce or check out IRS Publication 501: Exemptions, Standard Deduction, and Filing Status.
Marital status as of December 31 of the year tax returns are being filed is one important factor in determining your filing status.
Alimony—also known as spousal maintenance or spousal support—is deductible by the payer. According to H&R Block, alimony is an above the line deduction, which means that if you pay alimony, you don’t have to itemize to deduct it. But if you receive alimony, you must claim the amount you receive as taxable income, which means you might need to make estimated tax payments or increase your withholding on income you earn from your job. To learn more about alimony and how it impacts your tax return, visit H&R Block Tax Tip on Divorce or check out IRS Publication 504: Divorced or Separated Individuals.
Unlike alimony, according to the IRS, child support isn’t tax-deductible for the payer, and it is not considered income for the recipient. As a result, child support should not be reported on your income tax return, regardless of whether you make or receive child support payments.
If you claim your child as a dependent, you may also be eligible to claim the child tax credit. You can learn more about child tax credit eligibility in the H&R Block Tax Tip on Child Tax Credit or in IRS Publication 972: Child Tax Credit.
Remember that every situation is unique. If your marital status has changed in the recent past and want to learn more about the tax implications, consult the IRS website. You can also learn more on the H&R Block’s website.
For more advice on navigating the finances of getting divorced, visit Women & Co., Citi’s personal finance resource for women.
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Some are committed to their marriage because they love their spouse. Some are committed because they fear what they would lose if they left their spouse. Some are committed to their marriage out of a sense of obligation.
A three-component model of commitment was created by John Meyer and Natalie Allen when studying why people stay in jobs or careers. These same components can be used when identifying why someone stays in a bad marriage.
Basically, according to Meyer and Allen, “commitment to an organization is a psychological state, and that it has three distinct components that affect how employees feel about the organization that they work for.
The 3 Components:
1. Affection for your job.
2. Fear of loss.
3. Sense of obligation to stay.
It only makes sense that commitment to marriage would have the same three psychological components, (1 affection for your spouse, (2 fear of loss if you leave, (3 a sense of obligation to stay in the marriage.
Think about each of the following reasons people fear leaving a bad marriage and which of the 3 components above is driving you or drove you to stay in a bad marriage?
2. Fear your spouse wouldn’t remain involved with the children.
My ex took a hike a few years after we divorced. He isn’t part of our son’s lives and I don’t know if he will be again. So, this is a reasonable fear. Here is how I’ve learned to look at it, though. If a father cares so little for his children that he will abandon them, is he of any value to them if you remain married?
Let’s face it, there is something inherently wrong with anyone who can leave and not remain in their children’s lives. I don’t know about you but, when it comes to sharing parental responsibilities in marriage, I’d rather not be doing that with someone who has that deep of a character flaw.
3. Fear your children would lose contact with extended family members like grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
I don’t believe this to be a fear that is based on reality. If the extended family loves your children, with her help they are going to find a way to stay involved. Children can be as close to extended family after divorce than they were before divorce.
4. Fear you wouldn’t be able to make it on your own financially.
This is definitely a reality based fear. And, it is one that should keep you in an unhappy marriage but, only until you’re capable of taking care of yourself and your children financially. If you aren’t working, get a job. If you are working but aren’t making enough money, get a better job, go back to school if need be so you can increase your income.
Let me qualify what I’ve said by making it clear that, if you are in an abusive marriage and are in danger of physical harm, you need to leave now. Fear of your physical wellbeing trumps financial fear!
5. Loss of home or nowhere to live if you divorce.
No marital home is worth living in a bad marriage. If you are working and can afford to take care of yourself and your children, you will all be happier in a small apartment than in a miserable environment in the home you’ve established.
6. Loss of health care and other benefits from your husband.
Yeah, I get this fear! Here is the thing, if you are on your husband’s healthcare plan, a judge will, more than likely, order him to continue to cover you under the plan until you are able to receive Cobra coverage or, your own coverage.
A local attorney can tell you how this is dealt with in your family court jurisdiction. And, with Obama Care, there is no reason anyone should have to go without healthcare insurance.
7. My spouse might not pay regular child support.
Yep, he might not pay his child support. Especially if he is the kind of abandon his children. Here is the thing, though, the court will order him to pay child support. If he doesn’t pay, your state has a child support enforcement agency that will collect it for you. The state has your back so, no reason to stay in a bad marriage out of fear he won’t pay.
8. Fear of what others will think if you divorce.
You can’t live YOUR life based on what others may or may not think. Seriously!
9. It will feel like a personal failure.
It is a failure but, it is a failure you will learn and grow from. That is what failure is, an opportunity to do better, be better, and live a fuller life than you are now. Don’t allow a fear of failure to stop you from leaving a bad marriage.
10. Religious beliefs.
God gave you free will for a purpose. Use it to better your life and your children’s lives!
11. Fear of facing an uncertain future.
Yes, that is pretty scary. Especially if you’re in a long-term marriage. But, look around you at other divorced women. The vast majority went through a divorce and came out the other side happier and more excited about their futures.
12. Fear of being alone and never marrying again.
Never marrying again doesn’t mean you will be alone. And, if you do find yourself spending more time than you are comfortable with alone, isn’t that better than spending time with someone you no longer want to be married to?
If you love yourself and your own company, alone can be a pleasant place to be.
13. The idea of dating is incomprehensible.
Who says you have to date! You don’t have to until you are ready to and when you are ready to date, you will look forward to it with excitement, not apprehension. It’s a date, not a lifelong commitment!
14. Fear that divorce will only make marital conflict worse.
If you learn not to engage with a toxic ex, divorce won’t make marital conflict worse. If your husband is a narcissist, he will try to make your life a living hell after your divorce. Just because he tries doesn’t mean he will succeed.
15. Fear your abusive spouse will become more abusive after your divorce.
Women commit to marriage out of love, fear, and obligation. Many women commit to their marriage because they love their husbands, some commit out of their fear of losing what they have in their marriages while others simply feel obligated.
Do women stay in bad marriages because of children?
Yes, women do stay in bad marriages because of their children. They feel their spouses will neglect children after divorce, which will be a huge setback to their well-being. They fear their children will be cut off from the rest of the family members like grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins.
Can financial reasons make a woman stay in a bad marriage?
Women do stay in bad marriages out of fear of losing financial reasons. They feel their divorce will take away their home, healthcare, and lifestyle. They think they are not worthy of getting jobs, which will make them financially independent.
Do women stay in bad marriages out of fear of not getting child support?
Women do remain in bad marriages out of fear of not getting child support. They think once they get divorced, their exes will abandon children and not pay the money required for their living and education. Their thinking comes out of lack of awareness of laws on child support, which binds an earning parent to pay. If a parent shirks his responsibility to pay child support, a child support agency will make sure he does.
"name": "Why do women commit to marriage?",
"text": "Women commit to marriage out of love, fear, and obligation. Many women commit to their marriage because they love their husbands, some commit out of their fear of losing what they have in their marriages while others simply feel obligated."
"name": "Do women stay in bad marriages because of children?",
"text": "Yes, women do stay in bad marriages because of their children. They feel their spouses will neglect children after divorce, which will be a huge setback to their well-being. They fear their children will be cut off from the rest of the family members like grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins."
"name": "Can financial reasons make a woman stay in a bad marriage?",
"text": "Women do stay in bad marriages out of fear of losing financial reasons. They feel their divorce will take away their home, healthcare, and lifestyle. They think they are not worthy of getting jobs, which will make them financially independent."
"name": "Do women stay in bad marriages out of fear of not getting child support?",
"text": "Women do remain in bad marriages out of fear of not getting child support. They think once they get divorced, their exes will abandon children and not pay the money required for their living and education. Their thinking comes out of lack of awareness of laws on child support, which binds an earning parent to pay. If a parent shirks his responsibility to pay child support, a child support agency will make sure he does.
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It’s Christmas and you’re busy. You’ve got gifts to buy, parties to attend, meals to plan, and family coming in from out of town. Single moms are busy too. They are busy working low-paying jobs, making sure her children have a hot dinner on the table, helping with homework, and worrying about how to afford and fit into her schedule all that comes along with giving her children a “Merry Christmas.”
7 Things You Can Do for a Struggling Single Mom at Christmas
1. Give gifts to the children AND mom
Giving gifts during Christmas comes naturally to most of us. We relish seeing the joy on children’s faces when they open gifts. But sometimes we’re so focused on buying for the children that we forget some parents need a little joy also.
If you know a single mom who needs a bit of caring, buy her a colorful pair of socks, a new scarf, or a gift card to Starbucks. She may not have anyone to take her children shopping for her. She doesn’t have a spouse or partner to shower her with gifts. And, her children will be thrilled to know mom has gifts too.
2. Spend time with the single mom during Christmas
During Christmas, time is valuable. We have gifts to buy, Christmas programs to orchestrate, houses to clean, cookies to bake, and stockings to hang. That’s why spending time with single parents makes the gesture even more meaningful.
Don’t count out the time between Christmas and New Year’s Day. Inviting her to share a meal or a coffee is your opportunity to distract her from all she has to do and give her some much-needed downtime.
3. Send her an encouraging Christmas card
Giving words of affirmation encourages single moms who feel inadequate or overwhelmed. Although remembering to say affirming words helps, a handwritten note is something the single mom can revisit again and again.
Christmas cards abound during the holidays, providing the perfect opportunity to add something special to the typical season’s greeting. Think about the dedication and sacrifices single moms demonstrate and write how much their hard work means. Reading that you value her efforts can be words of encouragement that get her through another day.
4. Offer to sit with her children so she can go shopping
It’s challenging to buy Christmas gifts for children who are glued to your hip. As much as children connive to discover their gifts, anticipation is an integral part of Christmas giving.
It’s hard enough to go Christmas shopping without children when there are two parents, but the single mom has an even more difficult time. And who wants to ask someone to watch children during the holidays when everyone is so busy? Offering to babysit while mom goes shopping is one act of service that demonstrates your caring and concern for her.
5. Give her a hug
Whether or not you’re a “hugger,” the single parent might be. Or, she may desperately need a hug. If the single parent in your life needs the love language of touch, find a way this Christmas to ensure she receives appropriate affection. Touch is healing so, reach out and hug, or pat her hand and let her know she is important to you.
6. Share Christmas goodies with her and her children
Most single moms work full-time, have the lion’s share of caring for their children, and are pinching all their pennies. When baking for Christmas put together a basket of Christmas goodies for her and her children. Being a single mom myself there are no words to describe my appreciation for the cookies and cakes my friends used to give us at Christmas time. I had one friend who made the most wonderful bread pudding. Although my children are grown and gone, this “single mom” will never forget the joy I had sharing that bread pudding with my boys.
7. Make sure she has what she needs to give her children a magical Christmas
If you know a single mom who is struggling financially and can’t give her children a magical Christmas, get to work. Rally neighbors or church family to donate a Christmas tree, a turkey, and the fixings for Christmas dinner. Get a list of the children’s Christmas wishes and do what you can to make sure they wake up on Christmas morning and experience the joy of finding Santa’s gifts under the tree.
Seven in 10 children living with a single mother are poor or low-income. The vast majority of single moms have full-time jobs so, they aren’t poor due to a lack of effort. They are poor because of low wages, fathers who don’t pay child support, and a lack of programs to help families that struggle financially.
Single moms rarely get a break. And, they rarely ask for help. If you’re wanting to ‘give’ this Christmas season, someone in need may be a member of your own family, or church or, she may be a neighbor. Just look around, you’ll find a single mom who will be forever grateful for a bit of Christmas kindness.
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If you’ve recently been through a divorce, you’re likely considering life on the other side of the paperwork. Selling off acquisitions, finding a new place to live, and getting a fresh start on life are all parts of redefining what life looks like for you and your family.
Buying a House After Divorce
Building a New Home
As you navigate your way out of your former living situation, you may be thinking about what buying a house looks like after divorce. Whether you choose to buy out a partner, sell a home, or choose a new residence, you’re likely looking at some type of new mortgage. What does that look like for you? Read on to see what you need to know about buying a house on your own.
If you were a two-income family before, losing your spouse’s income could mean that you qualify for a lower loan amount unless someone else is entering into a mortgage contract with you.
Child support payments and alimony can be factored into your income and used to qualify you for more money, provided that you can prove you’ll be receiving them for some time. If they are counted as a reduction of income, they can also help keep your debt-to-income ratio down, allowing you to qualify for more money as well.
Once you’ve calculated your net income, determine your budget for a new residence. Try to keep your debt-to-income ratio at less than 43 percent to keep lenders happy.
Navigating a divorce can be expensive. Everyone’s situation is unique, but it’s not uncommon to see cash reserves dwindle, particularly if you have to hire an attorney. Make sure that you can retain enough for down payment and escrow costs to keep mortgage terms more favorable, and work with your partner if possible to make sure these pieces are in place so that the two of you can move on.
Joint credit accounts held by you and your former spouse may not work in your favor at this time. On the other hand, if your credit is better than your spouse’s, you can feel good about taking out a loan solely in your name without the hindrance of a subpar credit score.
If you are the one that needs rebuilding, consider establishing a few months of good credit by taking out small credit cards. Using them and paying them off in full each month will begin to build a solid credit history that banks look for when determining who is mortgage material. Even three to four months of this activity can yield a significant difference in your credit score and your creditworthiness as perceived by lenders.
Releasing Old Liabilities
If you want to end your old mortgage, there are two ways to accomplish this. Most lenders will happily release a spouse from a mortgage when they are presented with proper documentation. Submitting a divorce decree and quitclaim deed to your lender will result in the removal of your name from the contract, putting the house in your ex-spouse’s name.
Another option you have is refinancing after the divorce is finalized. This process pays off the old contract, and your ex will be able to start a new mortgage in their name. As you refinance, you can expect to pay closing costs, so you and your ex-spouse should plan for that if this is the best choice for both of you. Regardless of how you choose to release old property, the fine details should be worked out in the divorce decree to make sure that both parties are represented.
While the prospect of cutting and running is preferable for many going through a painful divorce, this is not always the best option for couples who have to slog through the finer details of property division and other marital assets. In the case of children, much thought should go into the creation of two stable residences where children can be cared for so the issue of custody doesn’t further complicate your efforts to separate amicably.
It may not be the best time to consider property purchase right after a divorce. In cases where many of the minor details have yet to be worked out, it may be best for one partner to consider short-term rental of a home or an apartment while other legal matters are being sorted through. Recent statistics reveal that almost eighty percent of divorced couples have one or both spouses renting after a property sale to allow for recentering and re-evaluation of life after divorce. Taking the time to make a smart decision will reduce the likelihood of impulse buying, buying to “get away”, and other situations that you’ll find yourself regretting later.
Life after divorce can be difficult to navigate, but there are things to look forward to as you consider setting up a healthier lifestyle with the ones you love around you. Making smart, thoughtful decisions on purchasing and selling the property will yield better results in the long run than hastily rushing through the process. Enlist the help of a divorce professional to help you along the way, and look forward to a brighter future in the days ahead.
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