This is a story of a two and a half year divorce that has occurred in Florida. I will try to be brief in the things that have happened.
I am a professional. I make over $200,000 dollars a year. My ex wife did nothing for most of her life, including during the marriage. It was a long term marriage at 19years.
Unfortunately, I should have divorced long ago, but felt I had made a commitment. I met someone and did the noble and honest thing and said I wanted a divorce instead of carrying on something behind her back. That started the journey!
My ex wife decided to get a confrontational lawyer that had no regard for her and only for his pocket. The lawyer had a track record already with filing bankruptcy twice, a bar reprimand, married 5 times with one being one of his divorce clients as he was representing her during the divorce proceedings, and most recently, having to pay back 6 million dollars for overcharging his legal fees in an estate battle.
My ex's lawyer represented her on contingency, told her to stop working to create an income disparity, and started building up a $138,000 dollars bill over two and a half years. The lawyer thought he would then have me pay the bill, because she didn't have the money. I, on the other hand, could only afford a flat fee lawyer that unfortunately started off well, then was completely overwhelmed by the other attorney as he sent tons of motions and filings against me, depositions, and on...... to build up his bills.
My attorney was a private practitioner that had numerous other cases and stated he was spending most of his time answering the ex's lawyer and could not devote time to his other cases. I think it drove him mad, as his practice shut down at the end of the divorce, and he is not doing any more divorce work.
At one point my attorney did not show up for a scheduled deposition, and I had to pay a $2,000 dollar bill to the other attorney because my attorney did not show, and somehow I got attached to pay him, AND I WAS THERE! I resisted paying the other attorney on principal, but the judge ordered a sheriff to repossess my auto in order to pay the other attorney's bill. The other attorney lied to the judge and said I owned the auto outright, and the judge believed him I suppose, and sent the sheriff to satisfy the court order. So, I had to pay.
Then through all of this mess, I go to trial. The ex's attorney hires a forensic CPA and I have to get my bank records from 5 years ago to present, business documents, and on.... in order to make a projection on what I would make to pay my wife, her needs and expenses, and so on. My attorney decided not to do the same. Plus the forensic CPA was allowed into all of my depositions, and to pass notes during the trial to her attorney and was given a tap on the hand when my attorney objected.
So, there are many more things that happened, but too much to read. Then after the trial, the judge took 6 months to make the decision, ordered back dated alimony, stated I paid cash for my auto during the divorce proceedings, which did not happen. I was making payments. The judge gave her credit for the cost of the car that I supposedly paid cash for. He gave her the home, and a windfall of about $200,000 dollars because the judge took a lowball estimate form her attorney that was made after the divorce proceedings began, and should have been made on the value when divorce papers were filed. The same gentleman that did the home estimate at the time we bought the home did my estimate for the divorce.
Who do you think had a better idea on what the real value of the home, as compared to their side? Plus, during the divorce proceeding years, the value of the home actually increased. Again there are other things in the judges decision that were horribly one sided, mean spirited, or just plain wrong, plus here is the kicker... she awarded my ex $6,000 dollars a month in permanent alimony.
My ex has a college degree as an artist and master's teacher degree and could teach at even the college level, but do you think the judge imputed her ability to earn to that degree as she did to mine? A big fat NO! My attorney did not want to appeal the decision due to his personal problems, and what the other attorney did to his business and his personal life. So he suggested another attorney. The other attorney said to me it will be $20,000 dollars up front and you may not get anything changed. So here I am. Stuck.
I am now remarried, but I have this fictitious scenario to run past you people out there for comments. Let us just say there is this guy with the same kind of thing that has happened to him and he has a home in a South American country called Brazil that he could move to. This same guy has a buyer for his business that could put him into retirement at an early age, but the business will be purchased over a period of 4 years.
The only thing is, he does not want to pay his alimony anymore, and is trying to find a way to hide his money or make it impossible for his ex wife to get her hands on it, or her attorney. Also he is concerned what the judge could do to him if he decides to stop paying these alimony payments. Any comments on this fictitious story would be welcomed. Just a fun game to play, and it may help you all avoid Alzheimer's early onset. Tchau, and thank you all for taking the time to read my story in advance.
I am at the end of my rope! I just received a notice from the attorney now stating that the court is asking her why I am not living up to my bargain. I don't have $6,000 dollars a month to give to her. How is that? So I have called my attorney for an appointment next week. At that time I am telling her am not paying. I will then go to court and they can put me in jail. I will stay as long as I need and let the state take care of me.
If anyone could tell me of a good newspaper person that may be interested in my dilemma. I want someone to hear and read about my opinion of the imbalance in the decision, the bias of the judge, my ex wife's vindictiveness since.
I will have to shut my clinic down also, and there will be many patients very disappointed. This is the only way that I may be able to be heard, as well as having an attorney that misrepresented, and another attorney that would have appealed but asked for $20,000 dollars I did not have. I don't have the ability to borrow any money as my credit is shot since the divorce. I hope by doing this it may help someone maybe. At least some positive may occur if I am heard a little bit.