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Tag: greed

Why Hiding or Misrepresenting Your Income in a Divorce and/or Child Support Court Case Won’t Work (and why people still try) By Braxton Mounteer

When those who realize they may be ordered to pay child and/or spousal support (alimony) confront the matter, many try to lie about and to misrepresent their income in the hope they can avoid paying, or at least pay as little as possible. Few involved in the support calculation effort–from the would-be support obligee (“obligee” means the one who receives support payments) to the court–believes anyone would tell the truth about his/her income, and this is doubly true for support obligors (“obligor” means the one who pays) who are self-employed.

Those who hope to receive child support are also tempted to lie about their income as well because the less income they can get the court to believe they have, the more they hope to be paid.

While it is tempting to lie about your income in the hope of either receiving more than you should or paying less than you should, that’s wrong (and it most likely would not work anyway).

Many will earn more than they claim to earn by getting paid under the table or working a side hustle.

But how do you enjoy the hard-earned cash that you have cleaned your name from (i.e., the Walter White problem)? If you spend the money you haven’t reported, you risk unraveling the lie. For example, if your personal expenses are $10,000 per month, but you report an income of only $6,000 per month and don’t show yourself incurring $4,000 worth of debt every month, then clearly you have income of some kind that enables you to cover your $10,000 of monthly living expenses.

Avoiding your legal obligations often proves to be more trouble than it’s worth. It is both easier and easier on your conscience just to tell the truth. Most people aren’t good enough liars to keep everyone fooled forever. Don’t give your children reason to hate you for being greedy.

Now, we get it: some of you would feel a lot better about paying child support if you knew the parent receiving the support money was actually spending it for the child’s support and not for that parent’s own selfish benefit. But that’s a subject for another blog.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

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Does greed also have a role in most divorce cases?

In my experience, yes, in most cases. Not all cases, but most cases. And there are varying degrees of greed reflected in the way people approach their divorce cases. Some people get a little greedy (a greed born of fear that they will be destitute if they don’t nail down what they can now), some people are shamelessly greedy (no bounds to an irrational, indefensible desire for as much as they can get their hands on well beyond need).

This is why it is important to understand the laws that govern who is entitled to alimony and in what amounts. Knowing these things helps you better determine the likelihood of whether alimony will be awarded and if so, how much for how long. You can research these laws online and that’s better than nothing, but I wouldn’t rely on what you’ve learned on your own. Talk to an attorney too. After you have done your research (and do the research, so that you have both 1) a baseline understanding and 2) a better ability to determine how well your attorney understands alimony law for your jurisdiction), talk to your attorney about it (if you hired an attorney), and if you don’t plan on hiring an attorney* to represent you in your divorce, schedule a consultation with an attorney to discuss this (don’t schedule a free consultation, those are just sales pitches, and you likely won’t learn much or be given much of the attorney’s time either).

*Some people truly cannot afford an attorney in their divorce action. The rest of you not only can afford one, but you’d be fools not to avail yourself of the help a good attorney will be to you. If you believe that divorce law is straightforward and common-sensical, you are woefully mistaken. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish when it comes to getting legal representation in your divorce action. With the exception of people who have no children and no assets and simply go their separate ways, cutting all ties to each other in the process, a DIY divorce is a terrible idea. Ask anyone who tried to go it alone in his/her divorce whether he/she thinks it was the right course of action.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/Does-greed-also-have-a-role-in-most-divorce-cases/answer/Eric-Johnson-311?prompt_topic_bio=1

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What are ways divorcees reach a mutual agreement when splitting up their assets?

What are ways divorcees reach a mutual agreement when splitting up their assets?

What they often do (but shouldn’t): rationalize and justify their greed and pettiness in advancing their “arguments”* for why they should get what they want. This results in claims for obviously lopsided divisions of marital property and to false and fatuous claims that what is marital property is actually “my separate property” and “that was a gift from my parents to us, so now that we are divorcing, it’s mine.” Being greedy and petty in the division of marital assets is self-defeating because it often leads to wasting more time, effort, and money than the property is worth.

What they could—and usually should—do: 1) think like your divorce court judge will think and do what the law requires your judge to do, i.e., divide all marital property equally (meaning an equal division of the value of the property), unless there are clearly evident exceptional circumstances that equitably warrant an uneven division of marital property.

*the definition of the word “argument” is not what many people believe. An argument is not the same as a quarrel. An argument is “a reason or set of reasons given with the aim of persuading others that an action or idea is right or wrong.”

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/What-are-ways-divorcees-reach-a-mutual-agreement-when-splitting-up-their-assets/answer/Eric-Johnson-311?prompt_topic_bio=1

 

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What are ways divorcees reach a mutual agreement when splitting up their assets?

What are ways divorcees reach a mutual agreement when splitting up their assets?

What they often do (but shouldn’t): rationalize and justify their greed and pettiness in advancing their “arguments”* for why they should get what they want. This results in claims for obviously lopsided divisions of marital property and to false and fatuous claims that what is marital property is actually “my separate property” and “that was a gift from my parents to us, so now that we are divorcing, it’s mine.” Being greedy and petty in the division of marital assets is self-defeating because it often leads to wasting more time, effort, and money than the property is worth.

What they could—and usually should—do: 1) think like your divorce court judge will think and do what the law requires your judge to do, i.e., divide all marital property equally (meaning an equal division of the value of the property), unless there are clearly evident exceptional circumstances that equitably warrant an uneven division of marital property.

*the definition of the word “argument” is not what many people believe. An argument is not the same as a quarrel. An argument is “a reason or set of reasons given with the aim of persuading others that an action or idea is right or wrong.”

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/What-are-ways-divorcees-reach-a-mutual-agreement-when-splitting-up-their-assets/answer/Eric-Johnson-311?prompt_topic_bio=1

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Why not reduce child support when the supporting parent loses his/her job?

Should child support be ordered reduced as soon as (automatically when) the supporting parent loses his/her job through no fault of his/her own?

Of course.

The only reason we don’t have such a law in place is because of greedy people who don’t want child support payments to stop or decrease under any circumstances.

Any politician who would have the guts to stand up for a law that would condition the payment of child support upon the obligor having employment (or some other reliable source of un-earned income) would not be re-elected.

Now clearly the law should not be that one pays child support only if one has a job or steady income because we know that there are many child support payors who would simply quit their jobs or be underemployed to avoid paying child support.

But your question was why don’t we have a law that provides you don’t have to pay child support in the event you lose a job through no fault of your own. Clearly such a law should exist. You don’t have the ability to pay child support if you don’t earn money through your job. And you can earn money through your job if you don’t have that job due to no fault of your own.

If Mom and Dad are married and Dad loses his job, the family’s lifestyle naturally and inexorably decreases in response to the resulting loss of income. This is unfortunate, but nobody can say this is unfair. What’s so perverse is that if Mom and Dad get divorced, and then Dad loses his job, he can (and almost always is) ordered to maintain the lifestyle of his ex-wife and children, even though he has no ability to do so. This is clearly not just unfair, but immoral, and it is not the purpose of the law to impose such impossible burdens.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

https://www.quora.com/Should-US-child-support-orders-reduce-support-if-their-supporting-parent-loses-their-job-through-no-fault-of-their-own/answer/Eric-Johnson-311

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How to Avoid the Primrose Path in Divorce (if you have the will and the guts)

How to Avoid the Primrose Path in Divorce (if you have the will and the guts)

It’s getting harder to stay in contact with reality.

You have men who, as they look in the mirror, claim they are women.

Banks telling you debt buys happiness.

Weight Watchers telling you that you can eat what you want and still lose weight.

Politicians telling you . . . well, you get the idea.

Virtually everyone who wants your attention or support or money is trying to get it by manipulating your perceptions.

This is no accident.

Get them to believe it! It’s essentially downhill from there.

Divorce lawyers are, for the most part, already quite skilled at manipulation, so many of them (I’d even say most of them) have no qualms manipulating your perceptions to get you as a client.

Persuading the masses by manipulation and deceit is easier than selling honestly.

And while it is wrong to deceive people, if you are deceived it is primarily your fault.

Most of your perceptions cannot be manipulated, unless you allow it. How?

  • Badges and “awards” that lawyers literally buy from vendors who are in the business of selling attorney’s fake awards and certifications
  • Glowing reviews that are fake
  • “Personal stories” of trial and triumph that are heavy on fiction and “my passion,” but light on fact and truth
  • Promises that are technically not promises, so you can’t hold anyone to them

It’s easier for lawyers to sell the illusion than it is for them to be the genuine article. All it takes is people who would rather believe what they see and hear than research and analyze.

Some of the easiest ways to manipulate you are: play upon your fears, your anger/vengeance, your greed, your laziness, your vanity, and your ignorance. This is how many ambitious divorce attorneys now get clients. Sell what sells!

  • Ignorance: “Free consultation! Call me!”
  • Fear: “Don’t lose your [children, house, retirement funds, etc.] in divorce! Call me!”
  • Vengeance: “Make that S.O.B. pay for abusing you. Call me!”
  • Greed: “Get all the money/Save all the money you want deserve. Call me!”
  • Laziness: “Affordable. Call me!”
  • Vanity: “We care. Call me!”

Suckers, being suckers, suck this stuff up. It feels so good, compared to reality. But just scratch the surface—if you dare—and it will reveal this stuff for the scam that it is.

The reality is that honesty doesn’t sell quickly, so in an age of information overload and short attention spans, some lawyers feel they can afford to be honest about what they sell.

But here’s the reality of hiring a divorce lawyer:
  • Being told you need courage and patience doesn’t sell, but courage and patience are essential when you’re involved in a divorce case.
  • Staying cool is hard, but the consequences of acting on anger and/or fear are harder.
  • The lesson of greed is: pigs get fed, hogs get slaughtered.
  • Be prepared to have your ego bruised almost to death in a divorce case. Your view of what’s fair will likely be very different from your judge’s view. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.
  • There’s no such thing as a free lunch. Garbage in, garbage out. You get what you pay for, period.

Utah Family Law, LC | divorceutah.com | 801-466-9277

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