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Overland Park Family Law Blog

Former NFL player Jay Cutler locked in child custody battle

When Kansas parents decide to divorce, they must resolve numerous issues to achieve a fair settlement, especially pertaining to their children and a future co-parenting plan. Most parents want to resolve child custody issues in as swift and amicable a fashion as possible. The problem is that things do not always go as planned, particularly if one parent does something, like file for primary custody, that makes the other parent angry. This is basically what happened between former NFL player Jay Cutler and his ex, Kristin Cavallari.

The two had reportedly agreed to settle their divorce and child custody issues in a peaceful manner. Cutler is said to have gotten upset when Cavallari suddenly turned the tables and requested primary custody with visitation for her ex. In response, Cutler filed a petition for sole custody of his children.

Child custody: Most important issue for many Kansas parents

Kansas parents, like most others across the country, often gain joy from making decisions that bring happiness to their children. Most parents understand, however, that parenting often includes times when decisions are made because of what is best for the children in question, not necessarily what might make them happiest. Divorce is often upsetting to children, although when parents can achieve a fair child custody agreement in an amicable fashion, they increase their children's ability to cope with the situation and adapt to a new lifestyle in a healthy manner.

Determining a best course of action is typically one of the first decisions you must make when you've decided to file for divorce. Do you think that, under your particular circumstances, it is best to litigate your divorce? If you and your spouse can peacefully discuss child-related matters and other important issues, perhaps you'd rather consider mediation as an alternative process to achieve a settlement.

High asset divorce: MacKenzie Bezos one of the world's richest

Many Kansas readers may have been among others throughout the country who closely followed news stories regarding Amazon founder Jeff Bezos's divorce. The high asset divorce involved billions of dollars in assets, and analysts say Bezos's former wife, MacKenzie, knew what she was doing when she surrendered her shares in two companies in exchange for a 25% ownership in Amazon. She is now one of the world's wealthiest people.

Bezos owns many companies, including The Washington Post newspaper and also Blue Origin, a space exploration company. When he and his wife divorced, she agreed to surrender her stakes in these two businesses. At this time, MacKenzie Bezos's net worth is estimated at more than $47 billion.

Child custody: What about new partner introductions?

If Kansas parents decide to divorce, they undoubtedly must resolve numerous issues regarding their children before they can move on in life. Child custody is a top priority, and it often includes issues that are highly personal, such as whether it is okay to introduce a new romantic partner to the children. Parents are wise to write out clear terms ahead of time, so that there is little guesswork involved.

The rules that parents agree upon can be incorporated into the court order. For instance, maybe parents agree that they must first introduce a new partner to the other parent before allowing that individual to meet the children. Some parents insist on being present when their children meet their ex's new partner for the first time. The bottom line is that, if it is written as part of the court order, then both parents must adhere to the terms specified.

Are pets part of property division in a Kansas divorce?

Many Kansas households include pets. It's not uncommon these days for married couples or families to have numerous "fur babies" in their lives. It is sometimes to challenging to keep up with veterinary appointments, buying food and making sure animals get the attention and exercise they need. It can be even more difficult to resolve issues that arise if a married couple who owns a pet decides to divorce. Deciding who gets a pet in divorce has typically been addressed as a property division matter in the past.

Several attorneys and state representatives who have weighed in on the topic say there needs to be a new category of custody law specifically for pets. At least three states have adopted pet custody laws, acknowledging that pets are closer to being family members than they are to being mere possessions or property. Not everyone supports the idea of pet custody laws, however. Some say it opens the door for using the family court system and litigation to take revenge on a former spouse or to harass someone as a way of getting back him or her for past marital hurts. 

New child custody petition in Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt case

Kansas parents who have recently navigated divorce no doubt understand how challenging and stressful court proceedings can be. Especially if co-parents disagree about child custody issues, it can take weeks, even months, to achieve a fair settlement. Many readers have followed news regarding the divorce and subsequent court hearings between Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.

Jolie initially filed for divorce in 2006 after accusing Pitt of being intoxicated and abusive toward one of their sons on an airplane. The situation led to Pitt's admission that he was addicted to alcohol, a condition for which he sought treatment. At one point, his visits with his children were restricted to supervision.

High asset divorce: Is there way to alleviate stress?

When you and your spouse decided you no longer wanted to stay married, you no doubt understood that you would have to resolve numerous issues in order to achieve a fair settlement. In a high asset divorce, things can get messy, especially if one spouse refuses to play by the rules. Hiding assets is a common problem many people in Kansas and elsewhere encounter when the net worth of the marital property in question is high.

It is illegal to hide assets, so if you suspect this problem in your divorce, you can take immediate action to further investigate the matter. Any number of other issues can also cause delays in proceedings, such as if you and your spouse disagree about financial issues concerning your children. Regarding all property and finance issues, you and your spouse are both legally obligated to fully disclose all assets and liabilities.

High asset divorce: These celebrities have regrets

When celebrities end their marriages, it often makes front page news. Kansas readers who are contemplating divorce may wonder what they can learn from these news stories about the private lives of famous people. Many celebrities who have been involved in high asset divorce say one of their biggest regrets is that they did not sign prenuptial agreements before they wed.

Former celebrity wrestler Hulk Hogan not only earned a fortune in the ring but also built a successful business empire. He and his former wife divorced in 2009 and did not have a prenup in place. As part of their settlement, Hogan's ex walked away with a 40% stake in his companies, numerous vehicles and 70% of their liquid assets.

Child custody case in another state involves Kansas man

Many Kansas readers may be surprised to learn that the act of dueling as a means to resolve a legal dispute has never been abolished in the United States. While the most recent use of sword fighting to the death to resolve a legal battle occurred abroad in the 1800s, a man from this state who is navigating child custody proceedings in another state has filed a petition in court to request that the judge order trial by combat with his former wife. The man's petition also states that the woman's attorney may act as a champion or stand-in for his ex.

While the idea of sword battle may seem outrageous to most parents, the father in this case says he is at his wits end because his ex has destroyed him through litigation. He has told the judge that he plans to request trial by combat in every instance from now on when and if his ex drags him into court. The woman's attorney has filed a countermotion, requesting that the court not order him or his client to take part in mortal combat.

De Niro cites prenup in high asset divorce

As many Kansas couples know, it can take months, even years, to resolve divorce issues when spouses disagree, especially when such issue pertain to money. Superstar actor Robert De Niro is currently entangled in a contentious high asset divorce with his former wife, Grace Hightower. The judge overseeing their case recently scheduled the next proceeding for Valentine's Day.

De Niro says Hightower signed a prenuptial agreement before they were married. She reportedly agreed that, if they should ever divorce, she would receive no more than $500,000 cash, an apartment worth $6 million and annual alimony payments of $1 million each. Hightower, however, has requested that the court grant her $250 million, which is half of De Niro's networth.

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