Sunday, August 29, 2010

Adultery, Cheating, or Running Around: How Can You Prove "It?"

Whether you call it adultery, philandery, or infidelity, or whether you consider it extra marital sex, cheating, or just plain "running around," "it," by whatever name, has been around since the beginning of time. Also, "it" has likewise been present in virtually every culture and in every part of the world, since the beginning of time. And "it" is not going away any time soon. According to Wikipedia, three recent studies indicate that 10-15% of women and 20-25% of men admit to cheating at some point during their marriages.
"It" is a hot topic on the internet, too. This blog gets more hits from folks looking for information about "how to prove adultery" than any other topic. Sometimes, as a divorce attorney in Augusta, Georgia, I wonder if the number of people in those studies who have admitted to "it" isn't a tad bit low! What do you think?
With that focus in mind, I thought it might be helpful, (to all those inquiring minds "out there" who want to learn more about how to prove adultery in Georgia), to recap about some of the ways to prove your worthless spouse "Sluggo" has been "up to no good!" Consider the following ideas on how to prove "it:"
1. HIRE A PRIVATE INVESTIGATOR: While it may get expensive, you can always hire a private investigator to get photographs of the two love birds together. While you may be able to get by with less proof, at least in a Georgia divorce, I don't know any divorce lawyer who would turn down such conclusive proof!
2. GET HIS EMAIL/INTERNET ACTIVITY/FACEBOOK POSTINGS: Of course, as we have discussed here before, (along with the fact that you should first consult with your own divorce lawyer), it is imperative that you must first have legitimate access to "Sluggo's" computer information and passwords BEFORE you attempt to get proof of his "fooling around" on the internet. But if you do, this information may, in some cases, be good enough to prove adultery.
3. GET "SLUGGO" TO ADMIT TO CHEATING: An admission by your spouse may, in some cases, also be sufficient to prove adultery.
4. CELL PHONE RECORDS, UNUSUAL PURCHASES, AND GIFTS: While this circumstantial evidence alone might be insufficient to prove adultery, when combined with other proof, it may constitute a sustainable case. Again, discuss each of these points with your own divorce lawyer.
5. "SLUGGO" HAS A STUPID GRIN ON HIS FACE: I am sorry, but proof of this anomaly alone is probably insufficient to prove adultery, in Georgia, or anywhere else!
In short, whether you call "it" adultery, cheating, or being "up to no good," I hope that this post helps all those "out there" who are looking for information on how to prove "it!"

Monday, August 23, 2010

Celebrity Divorces: Tiger Woods

Various news reports confirm that the 6 year marriage of world-famous golfer Tiger Woods and his spouse, Elin Nordegren, has finally ended in divorce in a Bay County, Florida courtroom. Much has been already rumored and already written about this relationship. Let's just hope that each of these two parties, (and their kids), can get on with their lives now, without the same intense public scrutiny!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Divorce v. Separation: Some Practical Tips To Consider

Let's assume that you and your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," are definitely headed to "splitsville." The only remaining question, as far as you are concerned, is whether to go ahead and file for a divorce, or, instead, simply to try a separation, (and file a separate maintenance action). What should you do?
As divorce lawyers in Augusta, Georgia, we should tell you, first of all, that each situation is different and that one size does not fit all! In other words, you should sit down with your own divorce attorney to discuss the pros and cons in your particular situation.
But here are some practical tips to consider and to discuss with your divorce lawyer:
(a) If "Sluggo" is presently in a cooperative, "signing" mood, then it might be good to go ahead and get him to sign a generous settlement agreement now;
(b) Why pay for two legal proceedings, (separation and divorce), when you can go ahead and pay for just one, (divorce); and
(c) Going ahead and getting a divorce might give you peace of mind, sooner rather than later.
(a) If you are having health/medical problems, and you are on your spouse's health insurance plan, then this might be a good reason to simply file a separate maintenance action, so you won't lose health insurance coverage; and
(b) If you don't want to have to sell your house right now, because, for example, you want your child to have time to graduate from a particular school, or because the housing market is so lousy in your area at the present time.
Again, each situation is different and this list is not all-inclusive. There are many other factors which might be relevant in your case. Please be sure to discuss the pros and cons of separation versus divorce with your own divorce attorney!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Celebrity Divorces: Patricia Arquette

Did you hear the sad news? Hollywood has zapped another marriage. Various news sources report that Patricia Arquette, the star of Medium, and her husband, Thomas Jane, of Hung, have split for good. You might recall that the couple had split once before, at the beginning of 2009, and then had tried to reconcile. This time, the couple appears to be headed for a California divorce court.
In 1993, Ms. Arquette starred in one of my favorite movies, True Romance, written by Quentin Tarantino. That movie has an incredible ensemble cast, including a young Brad Pitt in a minor role.
So, once again, the stressors of Hollywood have apparently claimed another celebrity marriage. Here's hoping that Ms. Arquette will one day find "true romance" again.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

What are the Signs of Adultery? (Or Signs That "Sluggo" Has Been Up To No Good!)

How can you tell if your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," is slipping down that one-way path of iniquity, known as adultery?
You might find some answers in a new article in the latest edition of Redbook. There, Dr. Jane Greer, a noted couples therapist, has written an article on how to stop an affair before it starts. She also details some of the warning signs that your spouse may be headed toward the "cheating zone." For example, Dr. Greer indicates you may be facing trouble if you and your spouse are too busy for one another, or if you have put each other too low on your priority lists. Also, if you have thrown in the towel and don't really argue any more, it may be a sign you are facing the prospect of adultery, too.
Check out the Redbook article for other serious signs of infidelity. But that's enough serious talk about divorce and adultery today! As a divorce lawyer in Augusta, Georgia, I have also compiled my own, (more lighthearted), list of "signs of adultery," or "signs that 'Sluggo' is fixin' to be up to no good!" Consider the following:
1. You probably should get suspicious if "Sluggo" has suddenly started watching the t.v. series Jersey Shore and then runs off his mouth about tips on how to treat a lady!
2. You should also keep an eye on "Sluggo" if he suddenly starts taking a bath, brushing his God-forsaken, tobacco-stained teeth, or if he ever asks you to wash his overalls!
3. You might suspect something if "Sluggo" starts making his beloved bird dawg, "Hoss," ride back in the truck bed, instead of right next to him in the cab, so as to keep the seats clean.
4. Finally, you really should get suspicious if "Sluggo" is constantly humming the tune to Elvira and he keeps goin' to eat at the IHOP, where that hot new waitress, Elvira, now works!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Aggressive Lawyering Versus Obnoxious Lawyering: Which Is Best?

In this blog about divorce, I also try to give you some perspective about what it is like to be a divorce lawyer in Augusta, Georgia. Today, I want to give you my opinion about the effectiveness of what I call "obnoxious lawyering!"
I suspect that, in every community of divorce lawyers, there are at least two or three lawyers who equate being aggressive with being obnoxious. In other words, these "obnoxious attorneys" apparently believe that zealous advocacy means being disagreeable about every issue in the divorce, including everything from child custody to who gets the worthless plastic Star Wars cups in the kitchen.
Now, I have several theories about why some of these "obnoxious attorneys" act this way. Can I be honest!? First of all, I believe that a few of these lawyers want to simply drag out the divorce, so that they can bill their clients for a lot more money! In other words, by infecting the divorce case with their own disagreeable personalities, and their own unreasonable demands, they poison the well for everybody and make a quick, fair settlement less likely.
In addition, some of these divorce lawyers appear to lack sufficient life experiences to understand the difference between the important issues and the unimportant ones in a divorce. Also, perhaps some people over-compensate for a lack of self-confidence.
Finally, in my opinion, a few divorce attorneys simply have obnoxious personalities which spill over into their divorce law practices, along with every other aspect of their Scrooge-like existences! Believe me, when their nasty mop water buckets spill, they tend to get everybody around them dirty! And frankly, I believe that obnoxious divorce lawyers more often fail, rather than succeed, for their divorce clients.
So, in my opinion, when you select a divorce lawyer to represent you, it is imperative that you try to size up their personalities, too. In other words, you must decide whether you want an aggressive divorce attorney, who will cleanly fight for the important issues, or someone who will indiscriminately be disagreeable about everything and drag out your divorce with "Sluggo" into the next century!
Doesn't every profession have these obnoxious types? Is that the type you would want for your divorce attorney? What do you think?

Monday, August 2, 2010

Divorce Costs: The Cost of Justice is Always Going Up!

In this blog by divorce lawyers in Augusta, Georgia, we try to offer, as a community service, some good, practical divorce information and tips for you to discuss with your own divorce attorney. We also occasionally talk about celebrity divorces, and even sometimes throw in a divorce "joke of the day," in order to try to keep it interesting!
Today, I wanted to address the topic of divorce court costs. If you plan to divorce your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," then you need to have some idea as to what it might cost! Of course, this list is not exhaustive and not all costs will apply to every divorce. Again, you will need to talk with your own Georgia divorce lawyer to get a full understanding of the "price of justice!"
First, you need to know that, in Georgia, the filing fee recently went up, from $80 to a whopping $205.00! Isn't that terrible!?
Also, the cost of paying a deputy to serve divorce papers on "Sluggo" was recently doubled, from $25 to $50.
In addition, in some cases, you may have to pay for the services of a guardian ad litem, if child custody is at issue. This can also run you hundreds of dollars, depending upon the hours required for the guardian to investigate the case.
Finally, in addition to divorce lawyer fees, in some divorce and child custody cases, you may also have to pay for mediation and court reporter fees, all of which you should discuss with your own divorce attorney.
Hopefully, this list gives you some idea of some of the costs involved in a Georgia divorce. Unfortunately, as you can see, the costs of justice, including the costs of divorcing "Sluggo," keep going up!