Baby contemplating missing money.
In the “discovery” phase of a divorce, lawyers often depose their client’s spouses. Lawyers ask in great detail how the spouse spent their money over the past few years. Most people don’t know what they did with their money last week, let alone last year.
So, I had to laugh when I read this poem by Robert Frost from “The Hardship of Accounting” (1936):
Never ask of money spent
Where the spender thinks it went.
Nobody was ever meant
To remember or invent
What he did with every cent.
(This was my first post for this blog in February 2008. I am dusting it off in honor of the passage of the marriage equality legislation in Illinois.)
The Daily Show has a hilarious take on what same-sex marriage has done for Massachusetts.
One year after same-sex marriage was legalized, Massachusetts ranks:
- 50th in illiteracy
- 48th in per capita poverty
- 49th in number of divorces.
For information about what a marriage really is, please see my post “What is a marriage?“
Girl with communication device
Apparently, Skype testimony is a novelty. The Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, the Wall Street Journal and the American Bar Association Journal have reported on my divorcing client’s Skype testimony.
Last week, at Chicago’s Daley Center, a judge ruled in my client’s favor by granting an extension to a previous order of protection. The only witness at the hearing was my 72 year-old bed-bound client. He testified from his home through Skype using his laptop.
In the courtroom, the judge swore in my client through my iPad and we saw him testify through the iPad.
As far as I know, this is the first time a litigant has testified through Skype. So, I guess, that made the hearing newsworthy.
The idea of using Skype in court came to me from the weekly Saturday Skype sessions I have with my 89 year-old grandmother. It is impossible for us to physically meet because my grandmother lives abroad. Skyping is the best alternative.
So, when I came upon the problem of having my bed-bound client testify at his hearing, it was a no-brainer. I knew the video conferencing software that my grandma and I use could help my client obtain the extension to the order of protection that he so desperately needed.
I don’t know why Skype testimony is not used more often by attorneys and judges. It is free, it is easy to use and it is the best alternative if your client can’t physically attend a hearing.
Bibi and Poldi, two giant tortoises who have been together since their birth in 1897, called it quits on their relationship this year. The relationship had survived 115 years, a move from Switzerland to Austria, and 300 children (ages 16-85).
Discovery News reports:
… zoo staff are trying everything to save the marriage. They have given the pair “counseling,” “romantic good food,” and have tried to get the tortoises interested in “joint games,” but all to no avail so far.
News reports have failed to mention whether Bibi and Poldi’s long-term relationship was the result of necessity rather than choice. It is possible that they were merely mates because there were no other options.
A tortoise expert has noted
Tortoises don’t usually mate for life. To be honest, normally, if it moves, a tortoise will have it. They’re not fussy.
(For more information on tortoises’ mating preferences please see this YouTube video.)
Maybe after 100+ years Bibi and Poldi wanted to try something new.
The Huffington post has posted readers’ reactions to the demise of this long-term relationship.
The complex situation of a divorce is never easy, and most couples will seek out a legal firm that can help them reduce the anxiety and stress that naturally result. A divorce involves the litigation process, the dividing of assets and taxation of investments. While a divorce attorney may specialize in both out-of-court settlements and lawsuits when necessary, a CPA’s assistance is often necessary for the proper dividing of substantial assets and issues related to taxation. Those who are in a divorce that will involve substantial assets and taxation issues should seriously consider working with a CPA. [click to continue…]