“That’s the way it is”… and other stories of bad parenting

 

 Blindly following your court orders does not make you a good parent!

In court today I observed a hearing between two parents involved in a hearing which involved their seventeen year old child.   The parents were at odds over how the child child should share the summer, attend SAT workshops and go to Student Counsel activities.

From the dad:

“Well I never could get along with mom, I followed my orders and well she had her life and I had mine……there was truly no point in communicating with her.  I made sure I followed my orders and that’s about that.  Our child’s resilient so she can handle the court schedule. Its my time and I can do what I want with my child.”

From mom:

“Dad hasn’t budged, dad won’t work with me.  Dad won’t trade off time.  Dad won’t listen to what our child needs or wants.  Dad is not going to get time he wants if I don’t get the time I want.”

From the court:

If the child was younger I’d spend more time with you.  I can’t believe that you actually call yourself parents.  I hope your child survives and can be happy.”

Both Mom and Dad argued their case based on their wants and needs ARGUING best interest of the child WITHOUT ADDRESSING the child’s actual needs.  Both mom and dad lost their ability to parent because they failed to work together, failed to be flexible and failed to coparent.

 

 

 

 

Connecting through Baseball

The smack of the cracked wooden bat, the roar of the crowd and the smell of popcorn in the stands. For many kids a baseball park is a church, a sanctuary.   For parents, a baseball park can create memories to treasure and can build bonds that last well into adulthood.

For the young kids they look forward to seeing the mascots dance to fun lively music.  For the older kids they look to playing beyond outfield wall playing catch with their moms, dad.  Pre-teens and teens learn how to work the score sheet and learn techniques to help their own game when they come home.

As a kid,  this is where you learned about the balls and strikes and how many outs in an inning.  You learned how runners stole bases, baseball players held their bats and chewed bubble gum.

Baseball was where you found who your first heroes were and cheered them on to do their best.  This is where you saw what it was like to fight for something you wanted.  This is where you saw how your team handled victory and bitter defeat.

The baseball stadium becomes a second home to you, drawing you back in when the next season starts, and the next and the next.  You follow your team online or in the paper.  For San Antonio you root for those players who you think might make it to the big league and you follow them after they make it to the major league.

You find that baseball is a bond that you will have with your kids when times get bad and there is nothing else to talk about.  You find that baseball seems to bridge the gap with your kids when it seems to be moving apart.  You find that baseball has helped you teach your kids how to face challenges and move forward.

Take your kid to the game.  Life isn’t fun for you during the divorce, know that he or she feels the same way.  Give them a sanctuary, give them a second home and help create a bond that they know that you and they have the love of baseball.

We are promoting Kids First Outings at the San Antonio Missions in July, we will have more information as it comes out!  Matt Sossi Executive Director Kids First Parents Second

 

 

 

 

 

Serviceman and women’s guide to divorce: Texas

“Texas attorney Matt Sossi goes over the applications of the UCCJEA and UIFSA that typically affect servicemen and woman when they file for divorce in the State of Texas.”

Servicemen quickly must understand the basics of the UCCJEA and the UIFSA to determine issues relating to custody, possession and access and child support.

#1.  Meeting the Jurisdictional Prerequisites to get a Divorce.

Servicemen and women must meet jurisdictional requirements of that State to file a divorce. Meeting the jurisdictional prerequisites to file for divorce does not guarantee that the court granting the divorce will also hear issues concerning custody, visitation or child support.  For example, if your child did not live in the State you are filing it for the past six months you most likely will only be able to get a divorce and not be able to obtain relief on any custody issues you may have.

#2.  Why are there different jurisdictional prerequisites for custody vs. child support?

A Texas court can only exercise jurisdiction (in the absence of an emergency)  over a child when there is a finding that it is the home state of the child.  Once the child’s home state is found that state has jurisdiction over custody and possession and access issues.

Jurisdiction over custody is granted pursuant to the UCCJEA.  A different statute, the UIFSA is used to determine jurisdiction over child support issues.

Child support requires personal jurisdiction to render orders for income withholding, etc. Personal jurisdiction over a serviceman or woman is obviously different than establishing a child’s home state based upon the number of months a child has lived in a given location.

#3.  Servicemen are presented with a multitude of scenarios that require them to answer the following questions when hiring an attorney:

Can I obtain a divorce in my home of residence?

Should I simply file for divorce in my spouse’s place of residence?

Which state should I pay child support?

#4.  Servicemen and woman must receive guidance on how child support obligation is calculated.  Child support may be calculated very differently between states across the U.S..  Texas, for example, has a statutory percentage that is presumed in all child support that is assessed.  Likewise, Maryland, Missouri or Minnesota calculate child support by reviewing each parents relative income.  Servicemen and women must understand how calculating child support is calculated based on state to state.  A serviceman or woman might be better off consenting to child support in a state that favors the lowest obligation possible.

 

Matt Sossi is a family law attorney practicing in San Antonio, Texas.  For more information visit his website at http://www.sossilaw.com or send him an email at mattsossi@bsossi.com

 

 

How do you factor Social Security Retirement when dividing the marital estate?

UNCLE SAM

[Advertisement:  Law Office of Matt Sossi – State of Texas ONLY]

Social Security benefits are not something that is considered community property and can not be subject to division upon divorce.   So why mention Social Security benefits during your divorce?

Many clients receive their a pension from a school or government municipality that does ALSO allow them the right to seek social security.  Upon divorce many family lawyers simply agree to have their clients’ retirements divided WITHOUT reviewing the social security benefits that the other spouse receives.

A Just and Fair division does not always mean a 50-50 division of marital assets.  Make sure to request that the mediator or consider your spouse’s social security retirement award when dividing the marital estate.

At the Law Office of Matt Sossi we calculate your annuity retirements over your projected life time and then compare them with the social security benefits your spouse is projected to receive.  Comparing the two retirement plans gives you the best option of walking out of your divorce with the fairest and most equitable award for your divorce.

Divorce does not have to impact you long term provided that you have the right representation.

 

 

Kids First Parents Second – London Project

RE:  KIDS FIRST PARENTS SECOND MAGAZINE FOR THE U.K..

Kids First Parents Second is looking to create a Kids First Parents Second magazine for the U.K. in 2016.

Why?

1.    The basic message of Kids First Parents Second is given greater weight by parents when local experts express their views and opinions on ways to minimize conflict during the divorce process.

2.    The magazine helps promote our “Kids First Day”  an event our nonprofit is  developing for parents and kids in the U.S. and in the U.K..

3.   In Kids First Parents Second’s short existence, the professional community in the U.K. has seen eye to eye on our vision to create resources for the entire divorcing family.

We want to see this magazine in print and disbursed throughout London (For starters).  To accomplish our mission, we are going to need advertisers and sponsors to achieve this goal.

Matt Sossi

Executive Director Kids First Parents Second

Kids First Parents Second Magazine is coming to San Antonio!

I am so proud to have a local bar that shares Kids First Parents Second vision to help parents minimize conflict during the divorce process.  While we are building our magazine, enjoy the work experts have shared with us in both the U.S. and U.K.  Simply put, Kids First Parents Second is becoming THE RESOURCE to help divorcing families.

If conflict is hurting your child, why are you engaged in it?

So is it worth it?  Is wanting to fight that important to you?  Is conflict beneficial to your health, your children’s health and long term happiness?

Don’t get caught regretting your decisions that you made during the divorce process.  Stop and think.  How will your actions affect your family?  Remember you can not only litigate, you can mediate and also collaborate.  Find ways to protect your family from harm.

For more information to help your family please view our FREE resource on line at