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New York City Divorce Law Blog

Help make Father's Day special for your kids

Are you a divorced mom who was less than satisfied with the effort (or lack thereof) that your ex put into helping your kids make the day special for you? If so, you're not alone. However, to be fair, perhaps he wasn't great at doing Mother's Day when you were happily married. Now that you live apart, he may feel even less inclined to spend money and time helping your kids buy gifts or make cards.

However, that doesn't mean that you should show similar disinterest when Father's Day rolls around next month. Remember that these holidays are special for kids -- maybe more so than the parents they're celebrating. The fact that their parents are no longer together shouldn't change that. Parents need to put aside their animosity toward their exes and help their kids celebrate their moms and dads.

How New York entrepreneurs can protect their wealth in divorce

New York has its share of "old money" families who work hard to protect their wealth and ensure that their sons and daughters enter into airtight prenuptial agreements when they marry.

However, there are many people in and around New York City who have amassed a great deal of money in a short time and at a young age. Not all of the tech titans are on the other coast in Silicon Valley. There are plenty of tech and other entrepreneurs here.

Keep this in mind for successful post-divorce parenting

While things didn't turn out as planned in your marriage, you are definitely not the only parent currently transitioning into a new lifestyle after divorce, and there's no reason not to remain hopeful that you and your children will be fine. Sure, there may be a few bumps in the road along the way, especially if a parenting disagreement arises between you and your former spouse; however, children are generally quite adaptable, and yours will likely fare well if they know you are there to support them.

Part of convincing your children that you can all have a bright and happy future, even though you've gone through some major life changes, involves showing your willingness to cooperate and compromise where needed when addressing parenting issues with your former spouse. As a good parent, you want what's best for your kids, but you also want to protect your rights and avoid legal complications.

What are schools' obligations regarding custody restrictions?

Many divorced parents share physical and legal custody of their children and are both involved in their schooling and extracurricular activities. However, if your co-parent has been granted only limited custody rights or if there's a restraining order involving your kids, it's essential to notify your children's school administrators at the beginning of the school year or as soon as an order is put in place so that they can work to protect your kids.

Provide your kids' schools with any custody documents that forbid your co-parent or any other person, such as a grandparent, from removing your children from school grounds or perhaps having any contact with them. It's the parent's responsibility -- not the court's -- to inform schools of these restrictions and to provide the proper legal documentation. Just telling school officials that your ex can't take your child home isn't enough.

Preventing your child from being taken abroad by your co-parent

Many New York parents have spouses with citizenship in another country and/or family or business ties abroad. If you are divorcing a spouse with international connections, it may be reasonable to have concerns that your spouse could take your children abroad and not return them.

Even if you don't believe that your co-parent would do something like this, you should be aware of the possibility and plan for it just in case the unthinkable happens. There are some common warning signs that a parent is planning to move out of the country. These can include major life changes like leaving a job or selling a home.

Setting boundaries with your ex

One of the advantages of divorce for many people is that they never have to see their spouse again. Of course, if you have children, you'll need to have some interaction. However, whether you're co-parenting children or not, you can and should set clear boundaries for your ex. That's particularly important if your ex still has feelings for you, is controlling or is detrimental to your well-being.

This may be easier said than done. You may still want to rely on your ex for things like fixing your car or being your plus-one at a wedding. However, if you do that, you are blurring the lines. If you want to set clear boundaries with your ex, be careful with these things:

Getting ready to tell your kids about your divorce?

Raising children is often a rewarding experience, but it can be quite challenging as well. Like most New York parents, you and your kids probably have good days and bad days when it comes to how well you get along. Like all personal relationships, turmoil sometimes occurs between parents and kids, especially if an emotionally charged issue arises. Divorce is one of several topics that often causes children stress. Even so, there are several ways to approach the issue to help keep stress levels low.

Helping your kids cope with divorce begins the moment you tell them about your decision to end your marriage. It's likely not the best idea to just blurt it out in a nonchalant way, as this may catch your kids off guard and wind up doing more harm than good. The good news is that most kids are able to come to terms with such situations and move on to healthy, new, productive lifestyles; more good news is that there are support networks in place to help you through it all.

Rudy Giuliani's third wife files for contested divorce

People who live in New York City may already feel like they know far more about former mayor Rudy Giuliani's personal life than they care to. Giuliani's marriage to his second wife ended in 2000 amid his relationship, which he described as a close friendship, with Judith Nathan -- the woman who was to become his third wife.

At the time, however, the mayor gave himself just half of the responsibility for the break-up. In a news conference that he held before informing his wife of his plans for divorce, he said, "In these divorce situations, you cannot place blame, it is 50/50, there are problems on both sides."

Why your parenting style should remain consistent after divorce

It's not unusual for a person's parenting style to change after the break-up of a marriage. For one thing, you are now a single parent at least part of the time, whether you have primary custody of your children or only see them on weekends.

However, other factors related to divorce can change your parenting style. For example, guilt about the divorce and its effect on your children can cause parents to become more permissive than they used to be.

What's involved in reclaiming your maiden name after divorce?

You took your husband's last name when you got married. Now that you're divorced, you want your name back. Maybe you always liked it better. Perhaps you don't want to be reminded every day of that no-good cheating louse. You don't need a reason. It's your name.

You may have forgotten what's involved in changing your last name since it was years ago that you got married. You were younger and had more time and energy. Your life was less complicated. Plus, you were taking on the name of the man you loved, so it didn't seem like a hassle.

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