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Wigan Family Law Blog

In child custody matters, being a Skype dad may not work

Getting a divorce can be so hard on children. They tend to blame themselves and no one wants that to happen. Many times, custody is granted to the mother. Being a dad in this case means you have to be creative if you are going to stay in touch with your kids. Being able to tell them that you and your ex-wife had a difference of opinion and just couldn't get along together is a message that can be delivered by being a "Skype Dad."

Often, our mates can be from another country which adds a layer of difficulty when trying to stay in touch. Four in 10 marriages break up and the mother of the kids goes back home to be with her family.

Jeremy Renner finalises custody agreement

Residents of Manchester who are fans of Jeremy Renner may have heard that he is getting divorced. The Oscar-nominated actor has starred in movies such as The Hurt Locker, The Town and the Avengers: Age of Ultron. In a statement, his attorney said that the custody agreement of their 2-year old daughter, finalised in April, would form part of the terms of their divorce.

A court hearing over the custody dispute was postponed while the couple negotiated the terms of the custody of their child. As part of the settlement, which was approved by a Los Angeles Superior Court Judge, Renner agreed to pay $13,000 each month in child support. The couple, who will share custody, have agreed to consult with a therapist in order to create a parenting plan and pledged not to make derogatory remarks about each other in the presence of their daughter. The agreement also took into consideration Renner's future movie commitments and detailed flexible visitation arrangements.

Wife awarded 80 per cent of family property

Residents in the Greater Manchester area may have heard of the recent divorce case where a husband was instructed to hand over 80 per cent of the family property to his former wife. He was representing himself in an appeal against the ruling but was told that he had no prospect of success.

The London-based executive, who ran a construction company, had property valued at over £2 million. Reports say that his assets included a 5-bedroom family residence in Ruislip, London, valued at £1 million, a Spanish villa worth over £500,000 and a yacht that his former wife claimed was worth £100,000. After their 15-year marriage ended in 2011, he was ordered to hand over 80 per cent of the property to his former partner. She justified the ruling, maintaining that the success of the business was due, in part, to her hard work and that she had gone through hurtful times.

Child maintenance without courts or CMS

Couples with children who have agreed to separate or divorce need to consider making arrangements for child support as soon as possible, since having effective financial arrangements in place is important for the welfare of the children. Residents of Manchester who are in this situation may wish to read about a way to make child maintenance arrangements without involving Child Maintenance Service.

Family-based child maintenance is fast and easy to set up and is free for both parents. It is important to note, however, that the terms of this type of child support is usually not legally enforceable and that child maintenance will need to be paid until the children have reached the age of 20 or have left full-time non-advanced education, whichever occurs first. Paying child maintenance can be arranged by standing order for regular amounts or by a money transfer service, such as PayPal or MoneyGram, for lump sum payments. Whichever method is chosen, parents should keep a record of the monies paid and received.

Male domestic abuse victim speaks out

Male victims of domestic abuse in Greater Manchester may be interested to learn that a man in Peterborough agreed to speak about his abuse in order to tackle the embarrassment associated with male domestic abuse. He had received burns to 14 percent of his body after his wife poured boiling water over him.

The man, aged 65, met his wife seven years ago at a ballroom dancing event after the death of his first wife. The Peterborough Crown Court was told that, in March 2014, he had intended to visit the grave of his late wife on what would have been her birthday. The couple argued bitterly that day and had agreed to divorce. However, after the argument, his wife had gone to the kitchen to make tea, returned with the jug of boiling water and, approaching him from behind, poured the scalding water over his head. As a result, the man suffered first and second degree burns to his head and shoulders and still has scars from the assault a year later.

Multi-million divorce hearing ends in huge payout

Manchester residents following the divorce battle of a multi-millionaire finance executive recently learned the outcome of the proceedings. After a hearing lasting two weeks at London's High Court, the former executive of a U.S. private equity firm was ordered to pay half of his fortune to his wife. He was told to pay the first instalment of 60 million U.S. dollars within 28 days, and the remaining 40 million to 60 million U.S. dollars within 90 days.

Their marriage broke down in 2013 after his wife began an extramarital affair with their physiotherapist. The executive defended his claim that she was only entitled to a settlement of 5 million pounds. He said that, although she had been a good wife and mother during most of their 18-year marriage and would have been entitled to at least 70 million pounds, under the terms of their post-nuptial agreement, by seeking better settlement terms in court, she had forfeited her right to any settlement beyond the 5 million pounds that belonged to her personally.

Individuals may want to take pre-separation preparatory measures

When a Greater Manchester couple chooses to pursue a separation instead of proceeding directly to a divorce, there are many factors to consider in the process, whether it is accomplished by a court order or with or without a separation agreement. In a judicial separation, for example, the individuals must decide how to go about the process of application and whether or not to each use a solicitor. Additionally, in a judicial proceeding there will be a need to state the grounds for the separation.

For a separation involving a formal agreement, the terms of the agreement need to be agreed upon by both spouses. An important topic to address in the agreement will concern the use and division of existing marital assets, such as who gets to keep the family home if the parties decide to live in separate residences, and the couple's savings and investments. With whom any children of the couple will live and who will be responsible for supporting them financially will also need to be agreed upon.

Judge ruling plans to reduce spousal support

Greater Manchester couples are no less affected by divorce than anywhere else in Britain, but the legal implications of such proceedings are starting to change. Previously, there was an obligation on the main breadwinner to continue to provide for his or her partner indefinitely. A recent ruling in a high-asset divorce as denied a woman's request for indefinite spousal support from her millionaire ex-husband.

The judge reportedly ordered the woman to find work, claiming that her position as a mother of two children over the age of seven warranted a job. The ex-husband, a wealthy horse surgeon, claimed that she had made no effort to seek new employment and appealed the duration of payments.

Separation agreements may be written or informal

When a Greater Manchester couple decide they want to end a marriage, they may elect not to head directly toward divorce proceedings. In such a case, the couple have a variety of options, including entering into an informal separation agreement or separating under the terms of a formal written agreement.

If a determination is made that an informal separation arrangement is appropriate, the couple will generally make their own decisions on matters relating to their children as well as such issues as money and housing. This may be done entirely out of court. However, the court may decide to intervene if certain aspects are not in the children's best interest or if other portions of the arrangement are unreasonable. Even with an informal separation, the couple may be required to inform local council, HM Revenue and Customs and their benefits office.

Thousands of disclosures requested using Clare's Law

Clare's Law, or the Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme, was discussed and put into force after an incident in Salford, Greater Manchester. In that case, a woman was strangled and then set alight by her former partner. The man reportedly had a long history of abusive behavior, but this was never revealed to the victim.

In March 2014, Clare's Law was introduced so that an individual can request information about their partner from the police regarding their criminal history. This extends to family members who might be concerned that their relative is in a relationship that might involve domestic abuse. However, police authorities are able to refuse to disclose information if there is no evidence that an individual is at risk.