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Yale Lewis III
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Yale Lewis’s Answers

308 total


  • By law, in Washington state, must you divide retirement funds & 401K in divorce settlements?

    My husband has 30 years ($350,000.00) in his retirement pension fund. We were married 14 years (1994-2006). I have $35,000.00 in my 401K. We are just now divorcing. By WA state law, am I entitled to some of his retirement?

    Yale’s Answer

    WA state law says that the division of assets and liabilities must be just and equitable. Yes, you are entitled to your community property share of his retirement and he is entitled to his share of yours. The court won't necessarily do a 50/50 split, but it usually does something close, based on the facts.

    For example, if you have a house and other assets worth $350,000, he might get his retirement and you might get the house and other assets.

    If you have this kind of $ at stake, you really should get a lawyer.

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  • Minor modifications of parenting plan

    I'm asking the other parent to join me in mediation to resolve our different interpretations of plan (repayment of travel $, information exchange, etc) and to amend plan to protect our son's confidentiality given her new relationship with a very h...

    Yale’s Answer

    if the other side won't mediate, you need to take him/her to court. Your chances in court will improve if you have a competent atty.

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  • When to file for child support and custody

    I am 7 months pregnant. The father and I were never married. We do not get along and he is not interested in partcipating in raising the child. He has stated "I will sign away my rights because I don't want to deal with this the rest of my li...

    Yale’s Answer

    after the child is born, you need an order of child support and a parenting plan. DCS can help with the order of child support. If Dad signs the birth certificate, the process will be easier. if he doesn't, you or DCS would need to file a petition to establish paternity.

    dad can't sign away his parental rights unless someone else is willing to adopt. short of adoption, dad must pay child support, but he doesn't have to see the child if he doesn't want to

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  • I received a settlement from an auto accident 3 years ago. My husband now wants a divorce - is he entitled to any of these funds

    Last week after he informed me that he wanted a divorce, he took half the money out of the account in which the settlement was deposited. I understood that the settlement for my pain, suffering and further surgeries was mine alone. Is he entitle...

    Yale’s Answer

    the court will probably consider personal injury award separate property, under the theory that you were the one who experienced the pain and suffering, not him.

    However, both community and separate property are before the court for division at divorce, so, the fact that it is separate, doesn't necessarily mean you get it and he doesn't.

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  • What should I put on the parenting plan and child support documents for divorce?

    I live in WA state. My husband and I are divorcing and we have one child. We have both agreed that he will pay no child support and I will receive full custody - no visitation - of our child. What should I put on the parenting plan and child suppo...

    Yale’s Answer

    you need to fill out the mandatory forms:
    order of child support
    child support worksheet
    decree of dissolution
    findings of fact and conclusions of law
    you also need to take the parenting seminar
    your ex will need to pay whatever figures come out on the forms. Even if he claims he has no $, there is still a $50 minimum he must pay

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  • At what age in the state of Washington do children have the right to chose the custodial parent?

    I currently reside in the state of Idaho and my children are in the custody of their father in Washington.My sixteen year old daughter wants to live with me.

    Yale’s Answer

    if you have a wash parenting plan and it establishes custody in wash, you can only change it if you can prove a substantial change of circumstances in dad's house. The simple passage of time is not enough. it has to be uncontemplated at the time you entered the plan. e.g. dad has become a drunk or a child beater, it must be really quite major

    your daughter could not testify directly about a subst. change of circumstances because that would put her in the middle of the conflict. however, if she talked to a therapist, the therapist could report her concerns to the court and the court would consider the therapist's testimony

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  • What do I have to do to have my little girls real father to sign his rights over?

    He has agreed to sign over his rights. Is it that easy? I have been married for 2 1/2 years. He has had no contact with her since she was a month old. He lives in CT and I live in WA

    Yale’s Answer

    first, you can't terminate parental rights unless someone else is standing by to adopt.
    if that is the case, then you file a petition to terminate parental rights and prepare the proposed orders. if he signs them, you are basically done. If he won't sign them, you have to go to trial.

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  • Is proof of earnings and all other income required in a child support adjustment hearing?

    I filed an appeal/reconsideration for my recent child support (c/s) hearing, on the ground that the amount was not calculated correctly. In our c/s adjustment hearing the commissioner could not determine the respondent's income because he avo...

    Yale’s Answer

    both sides are required to submit the following documentation:
    last 2 yrs fed income tax return
    last 6 mos paystubs
    last 6 mos bank statements
    and, if the other side requests, last 6 mos credit card statements
    this is in the parental support statute and the local rules for king county
    what you say the commissioner did, if, in fact, true, is ludicrous and you should hire an attorney and appeal

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  • I pay $350 a month for child support.My son wants to go out for wrestling, my ex wants me to pay for his uniform, am i required?

    I pay $350 a month for child support, this was not court ordered, just a verbal agreement. My ex wants me to pay for my sons wrestling uniform, but doesnt my child support cover this expense?

    Yale’s Answer

    without an order of child support, you don't have to pay anything, so, ethically, you should pay whatever you think is right. Legally, you don't have to pay anything at all.

    you really ought to file a petition to establish child support and then fill out the child support worksheet, otherwise, the child doesn't have a guaranteed source of income and you are exposed a potentail claim for back support.

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  • What steps should I take to protect an upcoming inheritance should I decide to divorce.

    My wife and I live in wa state and my mother lives out of state. Do I need to take any steps to protect the assets I inherit from her beyond setting up a separate account for those assets.

    Yale’s Answer

    an inheritance is considered separate property, assuming it was given to you and not the community. However, if the inheritance funds are co-mingled with community property funds, a court may decide the funds have become a community asset. For example, if you put the funds in a community bank acct and use them to pay bills and groceries, the funds will be deemed community.

    The solution is to put the funds in a separate bank acct and never add any community funds e.g. your paycheck or other fruits of your labor, into that acct.

    However, this won't necessarily guarantee that you get your $ in the event of a divorce. If you get divorced, the court will divide all assets, separate and community, and a manner that is just and equitable. Thus, even if the court awardsw you your sep. property, it may award the other side a higher portion of the community assets.

    The only real quarantee is to get divorced, or at least separated now, before you actually recieve the inheritance. right now, you have an expectation interest in the inheritance, and that would not be in front of the court for division.

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