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Would this be considered a sham/fraudulent marriage?

Los Angeles, CA |

My ex and I divorced on good terms 8 years ago. We have a 16-yr old son; he remarried 3yrs ago to a non-US who lives in Italy; he lives in CA; never lived 2gether. 12 mos after marriage he changed life ins bene from me to new wife for immigration purposes.

6 mos later: NW is visiting him here in the US; he dies in a questionable motorcycle accident; The next day NW calls his employer for insurance benefits totaling $500k; No will; They spent a total of 3 months together; NW had the body cremated asap. Our son is left with nothing. She didnt even give any ashes to him.

We asked her to give $100k for college trust for my son or we report her for sham marriage; at first she agreed, but has since changed her mind. Her INS case continues because she was in US when he died.

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Attorney answers 3


Wow, the real question is was she responsible for his death and how to prove it, you need an Attorney as soon as you read this message. Please feel free to call my office even on the weekend. I have connections in Italy which might help you uncover vital evidence for the type of suit I contemplate and we need to stop the insurance company from disbursing the proceeds.

My name is Stephen R. Cohen and I have practiced over 38 years and can be reached at 213-819-1171. I practiced mainly in Los Angeles and Orange County, California. I am not seeking clients from existing relationships with other attorneys, and give only limited advise over the phone (the phone is primarily used to set appointments), these services do not create an attorney client relationship. I apologize for mispelling< as I am a lousy typist, My answers may offend as I do not believe in pulling punches or sugar coating the truth. Further regarding courts in other states my opinions are largely based on logic and what I think is the modern trend which is to consider the needs of the child.



Thank you for your response. NW already has the ins $$. We are in probate over personal property, but NW is stalling and playing games over the trust fund. She wants to be the trustee; NW fired her attorney and now ours quit because she sees it as a losing case and doesnt want us to waste any more $. Our hope was to use the sham marriage as leverage to get NW to start agreeing. NW is from Germany not Italy. We are trying to get NW back to mediation to finalize the trust fund, otherwise we proceed with a sham marriage case and notify the ins co. just to shake her up. Any ideas?


Does not look like a sham marriage for immigration purposes to me.

J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.


Not clear on what your motivation is or what you are trying to accomplish. With respect to the life insurance, a person can name anyone he or she wants as the beneficiary his/her life insurance policy. There is no legal obligation to name a family member, to provide for your family via life insurance, or to be married to the person you name as a beneficiary. If you have any information about the policy - who the carrier/provider is and what the insurance policy number is, personally (and this isn't really legal advice), I'd contact the insurance company and express your concerns with them.

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