Better Solutions for Family Law Disputes

Divorce, Child Custody, Elder Care, Inheritance

South Bay Mediation Newsletter



January 2013

For Families in Conflict and Those Who help Them
This newsletter offers information and resources to assist those seeking effective resolution of divorce and family conflicts. For more information about South Bay Mediation, informative videos, and how to schedule a free consultation...Click Here


Eric Piety, MA

10 Steps to a Money-Smart Divorce

By Jay MacDonald for
No matter how intense your emotions, it's important to remember that ending a marriage is in fact a business deal.


Here are moves to make sure you don't get taken.


When your marriage breaks up, the last thing you feel like doing is crunching numbers. You're hurt, perhaps angry, and possibly overwhelmed with anxiety, fear and despair. You're focused on the past and present, not the future.


But as many divorced couples learn the hard way, this is precisely the time you need to get a grip and pay close attention to your assets and your financial future, lest both slip away in the flood of emotion.


"First and foremost, it's a business deal," says Gayle Rosenwald Smith, a Philadelphia family lawyer and author of "Divorce and Money: Everything You Need to Know." "That means you've got to get rid of your emotion any way you need to, whether through therapy or going to a gym. Because your divorce should be based on one thing: your property settlement. It's a matter of numbers, that's all it is."


Financial educator Ruth Hayden, author of "For Richer, Not Poorer: The Money Book for Couples," agrees, but admits that's easier said than done. "At least 80% of money is about self-management, about emotions, and 20% is about quantifying and computing," she says. "The counting part is easy; it's the emotional part that's hard."


Clear the decks and set sail

Since money is the No. 1 cause of divorce, it's safe to assume that splitting the financial sheets won't be easy. Here are 10 steps to help you cast off, steady your financial ship and set sail for the solo voyage ahead.

  • 1. Pull your credit report.
  • 2. Open individual bank, credit card and brokerage accounts.
  • 3. Close all joint accounts.
  • 4. Keep separate property separate.
  • 5. Consider selling the house.
  • 6. Change those beneficiaries.
  • 7. Reclaim your name.
  • 8. Check your retirement.
  • 9. Guard your health coverage.
  • 10. Dust yourself off and start living.


 Click here to read full article

Oh Brother!
Managing Sibling Rivalries

by Phyllis Kramer Hirschkop

The last thing aging parents need is children who can't work together to help them. 


couple 1 

Most elderly people get the assistance from their children that they need and desire.  But often they don't.  And when they don't their welfare often suffers and they spend the last years of their lives involved in troubles that, we all admit, they ought to be free of-the unresolved conflicts between their children.  When those conflicts exist, parents' interests take second place to their children's own emotional problems.  That shouldn't be.


Sibling rivalries interfere with helping elder parents in a number of ways.


 Click here to read entire article 

Family Lawyer Advice: 
First Steps In A Divorce 
by Jacqueline Brewster
One's wedding is probably the happiest moment in a person's life. That is why the word 'divorce' is most certainly the last thing he or she thinks of on that special day.
But things do not always turn out to be as great as one wants, things can go really bad between the spouses and marriage becomes the last thing that a person wants to be involved in. Therefore, divorce seems the best solution in that circumstance. The motifs why people may want a divorce are many. The most common are infidelity and lack of communication. Then there are the other reasons such as: physical abuse, personality differences (irreconcilable differences), financial problems, sexual incompatibility, abandonment, incarceration, drug addiction, etc.

You have tried everything to keep your marriage working - therapy, mediation, counseling, etc., especially if there are children in the middle, but your hardest efforts to work things out with your husband or wife have led nowhere and you feel that your marriage can no longer be saved. Nonetheless, if you want to stay in a resentful marriage only for your children's sake, this is not the best choice, neither for you, nor for your children. Your spouse and you will eventually fight and they will inevitably be exposed to your quarrels, witnesses to all the drama between you two. And of course they do not deserve any of that... and neither do you.

If one feels that getting a divorce is the answer, he or she should know what steps there are in a divorce.

Effective and affordable, South Bay Mediation assists families throughout the Los Angeles area. Having been through the painful processes of litigation and divorce, I know how damaging legal battles can be. I also have experienced the power of mediation to create solutions that maintain everyone's dignity while working through painful conflicts and allowing all parties to get on with their lives. 


A workable agreement is always possible, even in the midst of anger and resentment. Contact us for a free consultaion. 


Call (866) 405-2219 or go to our website


Eric Piety
South Bay Mediation

Special Service
military family 

Veteran Family Program

Divorce Services for

Los Angeles Area Vets


South Bay Mediation in Torrance, is offering 3 hours of divorce mediation services at no cost to military personnel, veterans and their spouses. Because mediation reduces the stress and expense of divorce for all involved, this service to military personnel is South Bay Mediation's way of giving back to those who have served.

Military families, like all others, face the difficulties of maintaining a marriage in our modern world and in the midst of a suffering economy and high unemployment. In addition, military families must cope with the daunting stresses that deployment and long periods of separation have on a marriage. As proud as we are of our military families and the resilience they demonstrate, marital dissolution is a reality that cannot always be avoided.  South Bay Mediation wishes to share its expert skills in order to ease the burden for those who have decided divorce is their only option.

To learn more about the Veteran Family Program, or any of the services offered at South Bay Mediation, contact:


Eric Piety

South Bay Mediation


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