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Donald G. Criscuolo
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Donald Criscuolo’s Answers

72 total


  • Can I enforce a divorce decree from Dominican Republic in Florida?

    I got married and divorced in the Dominican Republic. My ex-wife and I have property in Florida and we both live here now. How do I get Florida to recognize the divorce so that I can enforce our settlement agreement?

    Donald’s Answer

    You need to file a lawsuit called Petition to Domecticate Foreign Divorce Decree. You will need a certified copy of the foreign decree and properly file the lawsuit and serve your former wife. She then has 20 days to respond. This should result in a Florida court order which establishes that the foreign decree is now considered a Florida decree and entitled to be enforced. I assume the divorce was done with the Wife being aware of the proceedings in the Dominican Republic. In other words the Florida court will only enfoce the decree if it is convinced that the foreign proceedings were conducted properly and all parties were afforded due process. You should consult an experienced family lawyer in Florida for help with this.

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  • Married for 17 years and owns a company with the husband being the grantor at the time of divorce is the wife entitled to a

    certain percentage of the company. Both husband and wife funded the company. The company has been in existance for 14 years.

    Donald’s Answer

    It is a little difficult to answer your question with particularity since the details are a bit lacking. The short answer is if the business was acquired during the marriage it is a marital asset and should be distributed between the parties. It does not matter how title to the business is held as long as it was acquired during the marrigae. That begs the question what is the value of the business? At the very least it is the book value, assets minus liabilities. However the value could be much, much more but that analysis needs to be made after more facts are made known such as is there is "goodwill" associated with the business. Further be aware that with a marriage of 17 years duration alimony could be a significant factor in any dissolution of marriage. You should consult with an experienced family law attorney to help you with this or else you could be substantially short changed if you represent yourself.

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  • Once a divorce mediation is signed .notarized .and is filed. with the court. but not finalized by a judge can it be changed ?

    The mediation says I have a year to refinance We both signed it. We filed and are waiting on a court date now she hired a lawyer She wants me to re fiance in 60 days or she will petition court to force sale the house. I live in the h...

    Donald’s Answer

    In general the answer is no. Once a mediation is signed by both the parties and their lawyers, if they have lawyers, the agreement is binding and may not be modified. The exception would be the portions of such an agreeemnt that related to children such as custody and child support are able to be modified. If one or both of the parties hads no lawyer, then the rules provide for a 10 day periord to consult with a lawyer and file an objection to the agreement. Based on the facts set forth in your question I cannot give you any further information. You should consult with an experienced family law attorney.

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  • Prepaid college refund

    Divorced 2012 Set up prepaid college in 2010 with marital money - Now with new rules getting 32k back out of 100k put in. But I'm the survivor. Ex is the account holder. How do I get half the 32k. Called prepaid and won't split. Please advise.

    Donald’s Answer

    It is hard to answer your question without knowing more facts. What does the final judgment provide regarding this asset? It could state that it is to be used solely for the college education of the child. It may also state what happens if it is not necessary for the college education. If, for example, the child joins the military, or gets married or decides not to attend college. Sometimes it goes to the child. Sometimes it is divided equallty between the former spouses. I would need to look at the final judgment to better answer your question.

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  • Is there such a thing as legal separation in Florida?

    I am under the impression there is only divorce. Is there such a thing? If there is legal separation, what does it entitle a person to do or not do?

    Donald’s Answer

    Yes there is such a thing but it is called an action for seperate manitanance and support. No divorce can be entered in this type of action so you will reminn married. Also, the court cannot make any type of property distribution. The court will only deal with children issues such as timesharing (custody), child support and alimony. The court may also award attorebey fees. You should consult with a experienced family law attorney so you understand the what the remidies are in such an action and the differences betweeen that action and a divorce.

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  • My wife and I have been separated for 20 mo and now she is 5 months pregnant with her lovers child. What are my obligations?

    I caught my wife cheating in Dec of 2012. We share two minor children. She filed for divorce in March of 2013. We have been living in separate residences since March (she has exclusive possession of the marital home and her lover lives with he...

    Donald’s Answer

    It sounds like you believe that you are not the father of the child. Unfortunately in Florida if a child is born while you are married there is a legal presumption that the Husband is the Father. You will probably need to ask for a DNA test to establish that you are not the Father. If you are not careful then you could be paying child support for 18 years for a child that is not yours. You should hire an experienced family law attorney.

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  • Seeking a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage no dependent or minor child or property. I earn more than $50,00 can I file ?

    Do I need a lawyer to represent me? or are there Family Law Affidavits that I can download to fill out myself? Hubs also needs to sign over title to auto I drive, he has another vehicle that he drives.

    Donald’s Answer

    You may or may not need a lawyer. If there is an agreement you can probably file the lawsuit yourself and if you do not become frustrated easily and after multiple trips to the court house should wind up with a final judgment of divorce. If you had a lawyer it would go much more easily.

    If there is no agreement you probably should get a lawyer.

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  • Florida, can you set-aside judgment from a Financial Affidavit that omitted pension? 95% value of assets was omitted.

    Would this constitute intrinsic fraud or misrepresentation or overreaching under 1.540(b)? or because a judgment is entered and we had opportunity to discover this somehow through the court are we out of luck?

    Donald’s Answer

    The answer is yes. But you should not sit on your rights. The more time that passes after you learn of this misrepresentation and you do not file something with the court, the harder it will be to prevail. I would like to know more. Were you represented? Were documents provided in Mandatoery Disclosure that omitted this pension? Is the pension marital? Were interrogatores answered? You should consult with an experienced family law atttorney.

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  • Can my estranged husband and I file an agreement for spousal support with the court without getting divorced?

    My husband and I are separated for the past 2 years and we share a young child. He has been paying me religiously a few thousand dollars consistently to assist me and our daughter. I would like to find out if we can file an agreement with the cour...

    Donald’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Yes, the type of lawsuit you would file is called an action for seperate manitenance and support. The statute is 61.09. In it, the Court would resolve issues like custody, child support, alimony and attorney's fees. If you are getting supppoort now, but there is not court order, he could stop paying and you would then have to scramble and rush to court and ask for an order and that could take months. If there is an agreement, you could file the lawsuit and submit an order on a agreed to basis and it would go much more quickly. However the Court in a case such as this could not decide any property issues. For that you need to file a divorce.
    You should consult with an experienced family law attorney.

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  • Will wife receive 25% of actual value of home? Currently, four are on the note - mortgage & deed.

    My son is currently looking to seek a divorce from his wife of three years. His primary residence has been established for 15+ years. Approximately 1 1/2 years ago he did a loan modification adding her to the mortgage. Currently, myself, husban...

    Donald’s Answer

    It sounds like you are correct in that the "marital" portion of this home will be 50% and the starting point for dividing marital property is equal and the 50% marital interest may well be divided equally and therefore 25% to each spouse. Each spouse also has an obligation to pay their fair share of any obligations associated with the property like taxes and insurance and homeowners, if any. The other people on the deed, I assume your and your spouse, may also file a partition lawsuit to force a sale of the property in which any one of the owners may buy the other out.

    You should consult with an experienced familt law attorney.

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