Monthly Archives: September 2014

Divorce & Stay-At-Home Mothers

Whether you are the one filing for divorce or you were served with papers out of the blue, the overwhelming question of “What do I do now?” strikes stay-at-home mothers harder than most. Before you panic, take comfort in knowing that Brad Crider and his team of experienced family law attorneys are here to help you. With his expertise in the Complex Division of Assets and Debts, Brad will help you gain financial stability to ensure you and your children are taken care of throughout the divorce process. Here are some tips for stay-at-home moms to consider when meeting with your trusted Crider Family Law attorney.

Before you meet with an attorney, you will want to get a good handle on your present financial situation. Obtain documentation of all your assets and debts to show to your attorney so that he can determine your net worth independently of your spouse. Some of these documents include:

  1. Tax returns
  2. Mortgage statements
  3. Checking and Savings account statements for the past 2 years
  4. A list of all debts in your and/or your spouse’s name
  5. Statements from IRA accounts, pension plans, or mutual funds
  6. Title, registration, and outstanding debts on all vehicles

What you learn from your attorney and financial planner will help you determine what opportunities you have for re-employment and/or continuing education.

With this information, you should begin making a plan for your future. It is unlikely you will be able to continue the same lifestyle you had before, so plan ahead and be proactive. Begin exploring what opportunities you have available to you and make a list of things you would like to accomplish in the near future. Begin by finding ways to meet your basic needs, such as finding housing, income, and care for your children. If you have been unemployed for quite some time, this may seem daunting. However, you have probably developed several marketable skills and unique interests since becoming a stay-at-home mother. Use your resources to network with family, friends, old co-workers, your community, and ask your attorney for help.

At Crider Law, we understand that every circumstance is different and unique. Our informed and experienced attorneys will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome for you and your children.

Losing Sleep After a Divorce

A divorce is one of the more stressful experiences people go through in their lives. It involves changes in relationships with loved ones, the disruption of routines and the adjustments of schedules. For some, the stress of a divorce steadily declines once it’s finalized. But others continue to deal with anxiety and tension for weeks and months after their divorce.

One of the most common problems many divorcees experience is the lack of quality sleep. The stress they feel during the divorce proceedings may keep them up at night. Others find that the inability to get a good nights rest persists long after the divorce is finished. Research shows that this long-term lack of sleep can lead to health problems such as high blood pressure.

Doctors point out that sleep problems are pretty normal for the first month or so after the separation and as the divorce proceedings begin. It’s an adjustment that most people are able to deal with. It’s when these sleep problems continue for an extended period of time that the red flags go up. Experts say this can be a sign of depression. If left unchecked, it can play a significant role in the body’s ability to fight off sickness and disease.

A recent study reported on the quality of sleep of almost 200 participants who had recently either separated or divorced from their spouse. They specifically kept an eye on the correlation between lack of sleep and blood pressure. What they found is that the longer a person’s sleep problem persisted after their separation or divorce, the more likely they experienced high blood pressure.

The magic number seems to be 10. The study found that people experiencing lack of sleep up to 10 weeks seemed to be okay. It was after they hit that 10-week mark that the blood pressure problems began to manifest themselves. In fact, the research was able to show that “each standard deviation increase in sleep complaints corresponded to a roughly six unit increase in subsequent systolic blood pressure.” (Health Psychology)

For people who find themselves losing sleep after a divorce, it is recommended that they seek out cognitive behavioral therapy, make adjustments in their daily schedules that will help promote healthy sleep, or find better ways to relax at bedtime.



How Should I Prepare for Mediation?

Mediation can be a useful process for couples going through a divorce who want to avoid the courtroom. By agreeing to meet for mediation on a voluntary basis, the couple can discuss the points of their divorce and, hopefully, resolve any conflicts without having to go before a judge. Though a neutral third-party mediator may be present, along with attorneys representing their clients, the ultimate goal for a mediation session is to allow the divorcing couple to settle things on their own.

Mediation can be used to resolve a multitude of issues including the following:

  • Division of Property
  • Child Support
  • Parenting Time
  • Spousal Maintenance
  • Taxes

Parties might turn to mediation both during and after a divorce as different issues arise.

If you or a loved one is facing mediation, there are some key things you might consider that will help you be better prepared and ensure your mediation time is spent in the best way possible. Because it is a legal matter, you’ll want to be careful how much time is spent in mediation.

1. Know the Issues

Be sure that, as you head into mediation, you are well aware of the issues at hand. Discuss your strategy carefully with your attorney and come prepared with the correct documentation. Consider what your demands are and their priority in your life. For example, you may want to be better prepared for issues regarding your parenting time rather than how to split up the furniture.

2. Choose Your Battles

As you prepare to go to mediation, you might ask yourself what you feel is most worth fighting for. You’ll want to choose carefully as you decide what issues are most important to you. The last thing you’ll want to do is spend precious mediation time, which typically includes attorney fees, fighting or arguing over something that isn’t that big of a deal. It’s easier to decide before you enter mediation what issues you’re willing to be flexible on rather than waiting until the heat of the moment when tempers may be hot.

3. Understand the Risk

You may go into mediation with high expectations only to end up disappointed with the outcome. Take some time to prepare yourself mentally and emotionally of how you will deal with the possibility of not settling in mediation. Not only should you consider your emotions, but also how much you’re willing to fight for your cause. Are you willing to go to the next level and take it to court? Are you able to afford that? What happens if you go to court and lose? Taking a step back and looking at the big picture can help you be more prepared for mediation.

Having an experienced attorney in your corner can make a big difference as you prepare for mediation. You’ll be able to rely on their expertise and experience. A good family law attorney, such as Brad Crider, will work with you to make sure you are prepared and ready for mediation.

The Challenges of a Gray Divorce

Research shows that the number of people getting a divorce past the age of 50, often referred to as a “gray divorce,” has nearly doubled in the last 20 years. While the overall numbers show that divorce in the general population has actually slowed, baby-boomers continue to divorce at a high rate. There are different ideas and theories about what may be leading to these divorces, including the transformation of views on marriage over the years and an increase in spouses focus on their own levels of happiness.

No matter what the reason may be, going through a divorce at this stage in life can present unique challenges that younger divorcees are unlikely to encounter. In some ways, the longer the marriage has lasted makes it more difficult to end. Listed below are some of the more difficult challenges of a gray divorce.

Dividing incomes and property

Once people reach a certain age in life, they become more settled and dependent on a set income, from savings, social security, pensions, or any other retirement fund. Figuring out how to split that income in a way that is fair to both spouses can be tricky. Equally as tricky is dividing any and all properties and possessions that may have been acquired during the marriage. Many people find that once they’ve split up incomes and properties, they can no longer afford to live the lifestyle they were once used to. Senior couples especially should consider finances carefully as they make a decision to divorce.


On the road to divorce, some important details, including some of the financial advantages of being married, can be easily overlooked. A perfect example of this is taxes. Once divorced, the previously married couple will have to file their taxes separately, which automatically puts them in a higher tax bracket. This can sometimes come as a shock after years of filing jointly as a married couple. Taxes also play a major role in the division of funds in any retirement plan. There are very specific steps that must be taken in order to ensure both parties are protected from owing taxes on these funds. In some cases, if these steps aren’t completed properly, both parties can incur tax penalties.

Health Insurance

Obtaining health insurance once you’re past a certain age can be extremely difficult. Insurance companies have stricter requirements, not to mention that the older we get, the more health complications we usually face. Many people are insured by their spouse’s health coverage at work or through a family policy. This could lead to a gap in health insurance coverage as the divorce finalizes. In fact, some attorneys are even known to encourage legal separation instead of divorce for seniors with health issues. This allows them to remain covered by the current health insurance policy.

With any divorce, there are many different aspects and details to consider. Every situation is different and presents its own challenges. Attempting to navigate through a divorce on your own can be very difficult. It’s not worth the stress, especially when there are knowledgeable and reasonable divorce attorneys available to help.

Brad Crider has worked with clients going through a “gray divorce” and has helped them see a favorable outcome. Give the offices of Crider Law a call today to schedule your consultation.