Advice needed


If she has a lawyer, and does not want to negotiate, then you had better get yourself a lawyer or be able to speak for yourself in court.

My wife got a lawyer and her lawyer has told her that he will make it where she can live a comfortable life and has convinced her that I am the enemy and not to negotiate anything with me. It’s sad that women turn their lives and the lives of children over to lawyers and the courts. The whole process is flawed. They try to get couples through the system as fast as they can and use guidlines to make decisions on who gets what.

My wife quit her job 2 days before she filed for divorce so she could claim that she was dependant on my income. I tried to convince her not to get lawyers involved unless we could not come to an agreement but she is afraid to go it alone. I don’t think she realizes that the legal fees could force us to sell the house and based on what my lawyer is telling me, I will not have much money left to live on. I bring home 4k a month after taxes and she submitted a financial affidavite that says she needs 4k a month to live. Yes, this is just where the lawyers start so each of the lawyers can negotiate. My lawyer has contacted her lawyer to try and negotiate the settlement but her lawyer does not even respond. You will probably find the same if you call her lawyer and try to negotiate. Somtimes, the lawyers will get together just before the court time at the couthouse and try and work out a negotiation but, don’t count on it.

When lawyers and the courts get involved, everyone loses. The children especially since the person who has to pay usually ends up with so little to live on that they are forced to decide upon being a dead beat dad or comite suicide. The suicide rate for men of divorce over 50 years of age is increasing dramatically in this county. Mostly due to the amount of baby boomers facing divorce these days and the court systems that are streamelined to get people through the system as fast as possible to keep up with the high number of divorces in this country. This system is geared to create these dead beat dads and suicidal mem.

The court system does not consider fault in most cases. They just try and do an equitable distribution of assets and incomes. And, in most cases, it is not a fair distribution. Although I have been handling all the finances for my family for the past 14 years, my wife and her lawyer feel they know what it cost for her and I to live a comfortable life. When I submitted my financial affidavite, I just listed my income and all the bills I have to pay for both our home and my apartment and also food, gas and other necessities.

I have been paying out 3500.00 a month in bills out of the 4k of income I reeive each month. One would tink that if I continue to pay the mortgage of 900.00 a month and give her 500.00 a month in child support that I would be able to continue to support myself and she could go back to work and bring home at least 1200.00 per month to go with the 500.00 I give her. That leaves her with 1700.00 per month for utilites, food and gas. Since I have been paying all of these for many months now, I know it is more than fair since after I pay this to her, I only have enough left over to pay the bills I always have since I have to take on all the marital debt.

But, my lawyer tells me that she will get at least half of my 4k of income. That means I can only pay 2k of the 3500.00 of current debt I have to pay and that does not include her legal fees which she has asked that I pay.

Well, since my inaliable right to Life, Liberty and the persuit of happiness will be taken away from me, I have no other option but to quit my job here in NC and move in with a family memeber in Fla. I certainly won’t be able to pay 3500.00 a month in bills with only 2k of income. So, in the end, our house will be forclosed on because she has no job for income to pay the mortage or utilites with. That means we will lose the 50k equity in the house, and she will be homeless with 2 children (Her worst nightmare). You ask why not sell the house? Because the courts will tell you the children need a place to live and the house must go to the person who has custody. Now, if the lawyers cannot be paid, then they change their tune and force you to sell the house if you cannot pay the attorney fees any other way.

My court date is Tuesday and there is no doubt in my mind that I will be forced to either become a dead beat dad or comit suicide and at my age, I am not sure I want to face financial stress again after working all my life to get where I have and having it and my children stolen away.



Dear chucklee:

Greetings. Court is painful - mainly because it is expensive and you have no control over the outcome. If you earn the same amount, you can expect to pay child support and no alimony. Thank you.

Janet L. Fritts
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.256.1665 direct fax

301 McCullough Drive Suite 510
Charlotte, North Carolina 28262
704.644.2831 main voice
704.307.4595 main fax

1829 East Franklin Street, Bldg 600
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
919.321.0780 main phone
919.787.6668 main fax


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.


I agree with Janet; court is quite painful. You need to prepared for anything - both during the actual proceedings and in the resulting order.

Most of us have this rather quaint notion that “justice” is dispensed in our family courts here in North Carolina. Forget about it. 'Taint so. You will get a piece of paper with some words on it, otherwise known as a “ruling.” If the judge is having a good day, the ruling will be a rough approximation of what most reasonable people would call “justice.” But, the court can also use its broad discretion in domestic matters - and I’m talking waaaaaaay huge discretion here - to create a really messed-up situation. You need to be prepared for this possibility if you go to court.


How painful is court? I’ve been seperated for 14mo now and ready to move on. I hired an attorney several months ago. I call about 2-3 times a week for updates on my case. He has not even made the call the get her income to tell me what I can expect to pay in support for my kids. At this point I am planning on relieving him as my legal rep and contacting her attorney to try and work things out. My x and I have no property, 2 kids, and my retirement (she never paid much into hers). We make equal income but she is asking for alimony, legal fees, child support, and my retirement. All the material debt except her student loans have been paid by me since the seperation. I have asked her to settle out of court and stated that I would pay the child support at the state rate, take the bills I have been paying for, leave her with what little retirement she has in a 403b, and give her what she would rate of my military retirement. She will not budge. Is this not fair and what could I expect from the courts.