Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Season's Greetings!

Wishing you every happiness this Holiday Season and prosperity in the New Year.

Amaral & Associates, P.C. and Luciano


Recent Press!

I was recently interviewed on BNN by Lucy Rivera, and talked about some the benefits of divorce mediation. In "Know Your Rights About Divorce Mediation" we talked about the process of mediation, cost, time and who should use divorce mediation as an alternative to divorce litigation.

Be sure to check out "Know Your Rights About Divorce Mediation"!


Divorce Vouchers

Here's an interesting article from Digital Journal about a British law firm offering divorce vouchers to arguing couples for Christmas.
With the United Kingdom having one of the highest divorce rates in the world, it was only a matter of time before lawyers started looking at ways to lure in unhappy couples. The London law firm, Lloyd Platt & Company is now offering vouchers to couples for half-hour or hour-long advice sessions with a lawyer.

According to Reuters, the law firm normally charges about $530 per hour long session with a lawyer but the vouchers run at approximately $200 for a half-hour session.

The company has reportedly sold 60 of the vouchers since the start of the offer three weeks ago.In an interview with the Telegraph, senior partner Vanessa Lloyd Platt said, “Christmas can be a very stressful time for families as we have always seen by the huge increase of people seeking advice in January. The vouchers seem to appeal to an enormously wide spread spectrum of people looking for that ‘must have’ gift for Christmas.” Continue reading»

What do you think about divorce vouchers?


Should All Divorcing Couples get an Objective Market Evaluation of their Real Estate?

Here's a discussion from LinkedIn's Collaborative Family Law Group about getting an objective evaluation from a realtor during your divorce.
We suggest a market analyis be done and updated (every 45 days or as needed) for every divorcing couple. Foreclosures and short sales can erode the equity that the sellers imagined or wanted so much to believe. Honesty is the best policy and getting an objective evaluation from a realtor...not an appraiser or someone looking to "buy a listing" for whatever price the seller wants to set, is paramount to the financial well being and future of both spouses.

Let me know what you think about the situation! here»


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

American Divorce Lawyers Discussion

Here's a discussion from LinkedIn's American Divorce Lawyers Group about a mother snatching a child from his grandmother.
Parents joint custody. Mother snatched child from paternal grama. I represent dad. Prior joint custody order. Two fight and split last week. Dad had son. Dad had paternal grama watch son during day. Mom comes and snatches son from paternal grama and injures grama and child in process. Police will not file a/b..Any advice. Opposing counsel will not return child. Father filing po tomorrow. Believe mother very unstable.

Let me know what you think about the situation, and if your a member of the group, you can also leave your own comments here»


Virtual Visitation

Read the latest Newsletter from Amaral & Associates, P.C.! Included in this issue are:
  • Visitation Over the Internet
  • Making Gifts or Loans to Children? Mention this in your Will
  • Cities and States can be Sued for Dangerous Roads
  • Supreme Court Limits Age Discrimination Lawsuits
  • Check the Zoning Rules Before you Buy a Property
  • Trademark a Sound
 You can read our winter newsletter here»


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Children of Divorce

Here's an interesting blog post from Divorce, it's just the beginning, about the effects of divorce on children. "Stereotyping Children of Divorce" examines research that found children of divorce are at a disadvantage.
Numerous articles have been written about divorce, the effects of divorce, and how children of divorce are at a disadvantage. The problem with some of the research that has been conducted on divorced children was that extraneous variables weren’t always considered.

For example, in research citing that children of divorce are less likely to perform as well academically as their peers who are from intact families, no consideration was given to whether or not the child was performing poorly due to the divorce, or due to arguing and fighting that was still occurring between the parents.

It would also be beneficial to see if these were children who had a history of poor academic performance prior to the divorce. Continue reading» 

What to do think about these findings?


Some New York Times Articles

(via) Collaborative Divorce Professionals Group

I thought I'd pass along some interesting New York Times articles people have posted in LinkedIn's Collaborative Divorce Professionals Group

"Postpartum Depression Strikes Fathers, Too" is about a first-time father who become "anxious, sad and withdrawn" after the birth of his child.
The pregnancy was easy, the delivery a breeze. This was the couple’s first baby, and they were thrilled. But within two months, the bliss of new parenthood was shattered by postpartum depression.

A sad, familiar story. But this one had a twist: The patient who came to me for treatment was not the mother but her husband.

A few weeks after the baby arrived, he had become uncharacteristically anxious, sad and withdrawn. He had trouble sleeping, even though his wife was the one up at night breast-feeding their new son. What scared her enough to bring him to my office was that he had become suicidal. Continue reading»

Someone also posted this NYT report about the increasing rate of divorces in the military.
The divorce rate in the armed forces rose again in the past year, the Pentagon said, and is now is a full percentage point higher than around the time of the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

There were an estimated 27,312 divorces among roughly 765,000 married members of the active-duty Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps in the budget year that ended Sept. 30. That is a divorce rate of about 3.6 percent for the fiscal year 2009, compared with 3.4 percent a year earlier, according to figures from the Defense Manpower Data Center. In late 2001 the reported rate was 2.6 percent.

As in previous years, women in uniform had much higher divorce rates than their male counterparts — 7.7 percent in 2009, compared with 3 percent for men. There is no comparable annual system for tracking the civilian divorce rate, though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in 2005 that 43 percent of all first marriages ended in divorce within 10 years. Continue reading "Divorces Rising in Military"»


Wednesday, December 2, 2009


I've posted a few blogs on the benefits of divorce mediation (see: Divorce Mediation), but I recently saw an article in the ABA Journal about a new nonprofit company that will start rating arbitrators and mediators.

International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution is the first of its kind to "connect practitioners to the best practices in dispute resolution," and will begin providing online ratings early next year. Here's an excert from the ABA's article, Rate-a-Neutral: Group to Offer Evaluations of Arbitrators, Mediators:
With Fortune 500 companies demanding more transparency in the dispute resolution process, a New York City-based nonprofit has decided to start rating arbitrators and mediators.

The International Institute for Conflict Prevention & Resolution hopes its online ratings will be available early next year. Its members will be able to use their passwords to access the information on the organization’s website.

The service is believed to be the first of its kind for alternative dispute resolution. It was developed after institute members—largely Fortune 500 companies and their lawyers—complained there wasn’t enough information available on mediators and arbitrators, called neutrals, according to Kathleen Bryan, the organization’s president and chief executive officer. Continue reading»


Paternity Fraud

I came across Sam Hasler's Indiana Divorce & Family Law Blog and found an interesting post about the problems concerning paternity suits. Hasler has some interesting information about this "very large problem" that isn't talked about too often.

He also includes some good articles from the New York Times and Men's News Daily. Check out "More on Paternity Fraud" and let me know what you think about the issue!