De Ita, Lowe & Wald, LLP

Phone: 650-918-4999

San Mateo Family Law And Workers' Compensation Blog

Dealing with a home and mortgage during a divorce

Residents in California who own their primary residence and are getting divorced will have to make the decision about what to do with their home once their marriage is over. For many people, a home represents their single largest asset so this decision has the potential to play a big part in the ultimate divorce settlement. From an emotional perspective, people often have deep ties to their family homes which may lead them to want to try and keep their home.

As explained by The Mortgage Reports, if one spouse wants to keep the house after the divorce is finalized, it is recommended that they seek a new loan in their name only. This is truly the only way to absolve the other person of financial responsibility for the property. Even if a divorce decree assigns responsibility to one spouse, a lender may seek payment from both spouses if both names remain on the loan.

Encouraging good parental relationships despite divorce

When a couple decides to get divorced in California, the upcoming changes can create significant anxiety and uneasiness for their children. While each child copes differently with divorce, younger children are usually at a higher risk of suffering emotional distress when their parents separate. Fortunately, parents can help their children cope with the changes in a productive way, but it will require them to be flexible with each other and respectful in developing a custody arrangement that allows their children to continue a healthy relationship with both parents. 

According to, children will be curious about what is happening and why their parents are no longer living together. Explaining this situation is difficult for a lot of parents who struggle with being able to honestly describe what has happened without harming their children or creating opinions that may not be true. Parents should encourage their children to ask questions and communicate their concerns and then listen intently. They should provide enough detail to give clarification, but refrain from sharing information that may be inappropriate for their age or maturity level. 

Divorce: 7 things not to do

Whenever you tell people about your upcoming divorce, they always give you advice about what you should do. One friend tells you to try to get a postnuptial agreement first. Another tells you to make sure your spouse does not clean out the bank accounts. Another says that you should make sure you are together when you break the news to your children.

As helpful as advice can be, it's also important to know what mistakes to avoid. To help you, here are seven things not to do:

Overdosing on painkillers not uncommon among injured workers

When people are injured on the job in California, they have to follow a specific process to begin receiving workers' compensation benefits. Often, they are required to disclose the timeline of their injuries with their employer, seek the medical attention of a health care provider that is in the network with their employer and carefully follow all of the recommendations from their doctor to return to work with confidence and full health. 

Researchers in Maryland have conducted an interesting study that revealed that drug abuse is not an uncommon issue among workers who have received a job-related injury. While the research was conducted with a general group of injured workers, attention was paid primarily to those who were considered to be at risk. Among them were people who were the victims of a crush or sprain injury, as well as those who were aged 60 years or older. People who made at least $60,000 were also considered to be more likely to request continual refills of their prescription medication. 

Depression and child custody cases

There are many issues to consider with regard to child custody cases, from how courts decide what is in a child’s best interests to the type of parenting plan that will work out best for a particular couple. The emotional side of child custody cases should not be overlooked, and some people may struggle with depression in the wake of a custody decision that is unfavorable, from their perspective. Moreover, some children may experience depression after a custody dispute and it is crucial for parents to help them handle these feelings properly.

Whether a parent is upset that they will not be able to spend time with their child or they are sad for some other reason, these negative emotions are not uncommon following a tough family law case such as a dispute over how a custody plan will work out. There may be a number of options for parents to improve their circumstances, however, both before and after a custody ruling. If you are struggling with these matters, it may help you immensely to go over your different options.

Keeping your divorce out of your work and career

When you and your spouse are going through a divorce in California, it can be next to impossible to keep your thoughts from wandering to your failed relationship during the day. While it is good to give yourself time to feel your emotions, allowing your thoughts to creep into your work can cause you to become distracted and less able to be efficient and focused in your career. At De Ita, Lowe & Wald, LLP, we have helped many people to finalize their divorce as quickly as possible. 

Your career is an integral part of your life and now more than ever, it is crucial that you maintain as much stability as you can with the drastic changes in your personal life. Maintaining a reliable and steady income may allow you to begin preparing for your future and rebuilding financial assets that you may have had to split during divorce proceedings. 

What are my options when my workers' comp claim is denied?

Though workers' compensation is meant to be a no-fault compensation system for injured workers, the workers' compensation board can and often does deny claims. If the administration sent you a denial notice, it is because it believes that workers' compensation does not cover your injury. If you received a denial, you are not without options. You can contest the board's decision by filing a claim at one of the 24 Division of Workers' Compensation offices throughout California.

The Department of Industrial Relations details the three-step process necessary to object a claim denial. First, you must submit an Application for Adjudication of Claim with the DWC. You must file your application in the county in which you live or where you were injured. You must also serve notice to all other involved parties. Shortly after you file your claim, the DWC will send you a case number, which will begin with the letters ADJ.  

Letting the kids keep one home even through joint custody

For children, perhaps the hardest part of divorce is how different their lives become after the split. Not only are their parents no longer married, but they have to move to a different home. They may switch schools. If the parents have joint custody, they may bounce back and forth between two homes. They could lose friends and neighbors.

All in all, it feels like the parents' decision to divorce uprooted everything they knew and loved in their lives. Their routines get shattered and it's hard for them to move forward.

Financial recovery for occupational illnesses

If you become ill because of an event or exposure in your workplace, you may be eligible for workers' compensation. This may true even if the event or exposure merely aggravated a condition but did not cause it. At De Ita, Lowe & Wald, LLP, we serve as staunch advocates of workers who suffer occupational illnesses in California and diligently work to maximize their benefits.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, recordable cases of occupational diseases are those that result in missed work, restricted work activity, medical treatment or even death. If your case involves any of these damages, you may be eligible for compensation for medical care, continued rehabilitation, lost wages or temporary disability. If you lost a loved one to an occupational illness, you may be able to recover to death benefits.

How does psychology affect division of property during a divorce?

Joint ownership of property, often considered a boon to California couples when they marry, can become a burden to a couple if they decide to divorce. If you and your spouse have decided to dissolve your marriage, the court will attempt to divide your common property as fairly as possible. According to the American Psychological Association, however, the division process can be difficult not only because of the emotional aspect of divorce but because couples often do not keep records of which property belongs to which partner.

Further complicating the matter is the fact that, from a psychological point of view, you may feel or perceive ownership over property that does not legally belong to you. Research suggests that you will tend to feel more ownership over an object that you hold, touch or use, regardless of who originally paid for it or who owns it in the eyes of the law. For example, if your spouse owned a tool set prior to your marriage but you used it more often than your spouse for maintenance of your home or automobile during your marriage, you may feel more ownership over the tool set, and therefore value it more, than your spouse does. Conversely, you may feel less ownership over property that is largely intangible, such as a retirement account or a stock portfolio. Therefore, even though your joint retirement account may be worth more money than your spouse's tool set, you may value it less because you feel less ownership over it.

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