Piercing the corporate veil

The unanimous judgment of the Supreme Court in Petrodel Resources Ltd v Prest led to a media circus. Now the dust has settled, we have more clarity on the repercussions of the case for those involved in family and company law. Even we were surprised by the rasp of admonition from the Court of Appeal last year in Petrodel Resources Ltd v Prest. Rimer and Patten LJJ identified a particular practice followed in the family courts, which Moylan J at first instance had adopted when giving judgment in the financial claims on divorce between Michael and Yasmin Prest (pictured). That practice was: where a spouse was the only shareholder of a company, which held assets but did not have third-party creditors, those assets could be transferred directly to the other spouse in settlement of his or her claims. Allowing the companies’ appeal, Rimer LJ described Moylan J’s reasoning as ‘heretical’; Patten LJ thundered that the practice ‘must now cease’. The unintended effect was of a Victorian maiden aunt impressing on some unruly charges the need to behave with rectitude and sobriety henceforth.

Written by Nicholas Bennett. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com

California Spousal Support Basics

If you’ve just started researching California spousal support basics (or, if you need a refresher), this article will get you started in the right direction. However, if you need specific advice about your individual situation, it’s likely in your best interests to consult with a qualified family law attorney. In the meantime, it will help you to know…

Spousal Support is NOT Automatic

In California, spousal support is not automatic. If you need it, you must ask for it.

After you file your petition for dissolution (initial divorce papers), file your request for temporary spousal support immediately. If you don’t, you may miss out on several months of payments.

In addition, when you consult with your family law attorney, be sure to let him or her know if you want to explore permanent spousal support.

Written by Robert S. Kamin. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com

Florida Gov. Scott vetoes bill that would end permanent alimony in state

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Gov. Rick Scott vetoed a bill late Wednesday that would have ended permanent alimony in Florida.
Scott vetoed the measure (SB 718) just four hours before the midnight deadline to approve or veto it. The bill automatically would have become law if Scott had done nothing by then.
If it had become law, Florida would have become the fifth state to abolish permanent alimony.
In a letter to Senate President Don Gaetz, Scott commended bill sponsors Ritch Workman in the House and Kelli Stargel in the Senate — both Republicans — and said there are “several forward looking elements of this bill.”
But alimony “represents an important remedy for our judiciary to use in providing support to families as they adjust to changes in life circumstances,” Scott wrote. “As a husband, father and grandfather, I understand the vital importance of family.”

Written by Fox News. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com

Divorced, but Still in Business Together

Judy Rosenberg and Eliot Winograd have been business partners for 35 years as co-owners of Rosie’s Bakery, a 30-employee, $2.5 million Boston institution with four locations. Their marriage was less successful: It lasted two years, from 1979 to 1981, and “was not a good personal dynamic,” Rosenberg says. Despite their failure to make their marriage last, they attribute their ability to remain in business to mutual trust and admiration for each other’s business skills, among other reasons.

Figuring out how to sustain a family business after a divorce is important: Roughly 65 percent of U.S. businesses are family owned, with about 30 percent co-owned by spouses, estimates Glenn Muske, an entrepreneurship professor at North Dakota State University who has spent 14 years researching couples in business. Between 40 percent and 50 percent of all first marriages will end in divorce, a rate that has declined slightly over the past decade as marriage became less common, according to the National Center for Health Statistics.

Written by Karen E. Klein. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com

Domestic violence is a global disease – but we are not powerless

Recently, I watched a policeman (and several onlookers) stand by as a man dragged a weeping, shoeless woman along the street by her hair. Central Beijing is generally very safe but not, it seems, if your assailant is your husband.

Repeated requests that a policeman help her were ignored; only after I tried to restrain the man myself, and another passerby assisted, did the officer take action. The couple were eventually driven away to the nearest police station. I have been unable to find out what happened to the woman, but it is highly likely they returned home together: victims usually drop charges. That’s not surprising since previous domestic abuse cases suggest that the police response to such cases is woefully inadequate. I’d be shocked if a British policeman simply stood by as his counterpart did in Beijing, but this is not about blaming the Chinese officer. Domestic violence is not a China problem, it is a global disease. And it is not just a matter for law enforcement, but for all of us.

Written by  Tania Branigan. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com

Reuters/Ipsos poll: Views on gay marriage still divided after court ruling

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – As the dust settled on two major Supreme Court rulings this week that advanced gay marriage, a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll showed that while about a third of Americans oppose the decisions, a majority are either in favor or had no strong opinion.

Forty-three percent of those surveyed agreed or strongly agreed with the court’s decision to strike down the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which limited federal recognition of marriage to that between a man and a woman. The poll of 410 people who were asked separate questions about each ruling was conducted from Wednesday, the day of the rulings, and Friday.

Written by Lawrence Hurley. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com

Child support payments could go up significantly

Some child support payments in Maryland could soon go up – a change that state Human Resources Secretary Brenda Donald called “long overdue.”

For the first time in two decades, lawmakers are poised to revise the guidelines that courts use to set child support when divorcing or unmarried parents cannot agree on an amount. Those guidelines are based on household expense data from the 1970s, and although they accommodate rising incomes, advocates say they don’t account for the escalating costs of raising a child.

Human Resources officials estimate there are about 500,000 child support orders in Maryland – a mix of private agreements and court cases.

Written by Julie Bykowicz. To read the full article, click here. For more information on family law attorneys, visit our website http://www.jwbrookslaw.com