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Should I Appeal My Divorce Case? 10 Divorce Questions To Ask

Nevertheless, it is absolutely critical that you carefully review all the short- and long-term financial and tax implications of your decisions. Therefore, the money in a K account does not have the same value as an identical amount of money in a bank account most likely, you have already paid taxes on the money in your bank account. Although there might be some legitimate reasons to borrow money from your K like purchasing a home or paying medical bills , you should consult with your divorce financial analyst to see if it makes good financial sense to do so.

Even though many are tempted to tap into this ready source of cash, it should probably be a last resort. Many K plans allow you to borrow against your plan balance, but you will lose the earning power of those funds and have to pay yourself back over a 5-year period with interest. However, if the funds were used for marital expenses or were otherwise used for the benefit of both spouses this would not be necessary. There are many financial decisions to make during your divorce.

They often require complex mathematical computations and a thorough knowledge of tax and financial rules. This is especially true when it comes to dividing retirement funds. Dividing retirement funds improperly can result in serious long-term consequences. Having a qualified divorce financial planner will not only keep you out of trouble, but also help secure your financial future. He can be reached at Landers BedrockDivorce. If you require legal advice, retain a lawyer licensed in your jurisdiction. The opinions expressed are solely those of the author, who is not an attorney.

The trial judge concluded that all the money spent on winding down his practice and closing shop dissipated the marital estate. Maurice testified that he did not quit a lucrative profession to visit financial harm upon himself and his estranged wife. His overriding concern dealt with the fact that his medical practice left little time for other duties and enterprises. He explained that the three boys, who were then all living with him, were traumatized by the lengthy divorce.

He felt that they were in need of more paternal support than he could give when practicing medicine.

In addition, he began to realize that the protracted stress of these proceedings over time was harming his clinical judgments and patient care. His employees testified to corroborate this explanation for ceasing the practice of medicine. They told of how Margaret would repeatedly call the office and interrupt work. They observed Maurice's behavior after such calls. His skin complexion would flush and his demeanor would turn dark and sullen. He would cease what he was doing, retire to his office, and silently stare at the walls.

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Maurice, who is a private pilot, stopped operating his airplane and grounded himself because of the mental uneasiness he felt from the stress of the divorce proceedings. Maurice also testified that he was working on a medical text on osteoporosis and that the duties of a full-time practice were inconsistent with the time necessary to author this text.

Lastly, there was one other reason Maurice tendered to explain why his decision to cease practice was well-motivated. He was absorbed in day-trading stock. The Schwab account that served as the vehicle that he employed to engage in this enterprise proved to be the single largest asset in the marital estate.

It was awarded in its entirety to Margaret. We assume that the success involved favorable market conditions, coupled with study and skill. The year was the year in which marital discord surfaced. It culminated in the October initiation of divorce proceedings. Maurice quit his practice in May of at a time when he was experiencing a financial success in the stock market that dwarfed what he could earn toiling at the practice of medicine.

While Maurice was allowed to trade the Schwab account, he was not allowed to harvest any of his gains to defray most of his expenses. Legal fees and litigation costs were siphoned off of the account, but Maurice was not supposed to pay anything else from it. After a hearing on the petition, the trial judge found that Maurice was dissipating marital assets.

The court order directed that "no more payments are to be made out of anything" without Margaret's consent or an order from the court. While it allowed Maurice to pay off property taxes and debts, the order prohibited selling any of the account's stock. Because of her dissipation finding, the trial judge found that the payment of those marital debts that she had authorized to be paid from the account constituted a distribution of marital assets to Maurice. Maurice violated the judge's order two times. In fear of the rapidly falling stock market, Maurice liquidated the account in December of It was uncontradicted that had he not acted, the account's value would have shrunk to less than half of the December value in the ensuing two years of these divorce proceedings.

There were no contempt proceedings for this violation of the September order. Again, Maurice could have been penalized for disregarding the trial judge's order, but a rule to show cause did not issue. Maurice was slowly collecting the remaining accounts receivable from his practice, and a few marital assets were sold and the proceeds divided. But this income was not nearly enough money to defray the costs of living through this divorce, particularly in the style and manner to which this family had grown accustomed.

He did not have the cash to maintain the marital airplane, the marital Colorado estate, the marital home, or his estranged marital partner for four years. His answer was to borrow the money.

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He bought a ski boat and a trailer for the boys and stored it at a marina. He borrowed to pay for these expenses, as well as to pay for the day-to-day living expenses that he and his three boys incurred. He borrowed to pay the debt service on the debt. The judge found that all of these expenses and purchases dissipated the marital estate. She also found that the debt incurred to pay for them dissipated the estate.

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The judge found that Maurice dissipated the marital estate by this amount. Had Maurice sustained his stock market success throughout the divorce's lengthy duration, the bank notes would have been easy to resolve. Maurice, his two boys living at home, and Jonathon, who was off at college, were left with very little upon which they could live.

dazztoringoaston.gq To be sure, Maurice did not live like someone without a job and in the midst of a divorce. He borrowed, and lived on borrowed funds, like someone who had experienced the easy money to be made on buys, sells, puts, and calls, money made in a rapidly rising bubble of capitalism. The ultimate result in this case, forged upon numerous findings of dissipation, has its origin in Maurice's decision to stop practicing medicine.


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Fifth, the scope of dissipation is limited to the time period when the marriage was undergoing an irretrievable breakdown. A spouse cannot complain about money spent while the parties were happily married. Questions about when the breakdown actually began are often the subject of intense litigation.


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In contrast, dissipation which occurs after a divorce case has been filed is typically easy to prove. Once a spouse has been charged with dissipating the marital estate, he or she has the burden to prove, by clear and convincing evidence, how the funds alleged to have been dissipated were spent. Clear and convincing evidence is a relatively high burden of proof.