No-fault divorce, which has long been American law, is back in the news after the wife of a Washington political consultant alleged her husband told her he was having an affair with Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar, according to court documents obtained by NBC News.
If space is the final frontier, it was only a matter of time for divorce to get there. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration Authorities is investigating divorce fraud: whether an astronaut going through a divorce improperly accessed her wife’s bank account while orbiting Earth on the International Space Station.
Want to lose custody of your child? You might think a post on how to lose custody may be irrelevant. You would be wrong. As it turns out, some parents are trying to lose custody of their children on purpose, as part of the new child custody and college cheating scandal.
Really Desperate Housewives
Felicity Huffman, who played Lynette Scavo on Desperate Housewives, pled guilty to fraud charges in the college exam cheating scandal, for paying $15,000 to an organization that helped her daughter cheat on the SATs.
Not unlike the Felicity Huffman fraud, this new scheme involves families giving up custody of their children to relatives or friends. Their children are then filing for financial independence, opening the door to financial aid they couldn’t get while in their parents’ custody.
The University of Illinois started investigating after high school counselors from “fairly wealthy neighborhoods” had called to inquire about low-income orientation programs they were unfamiliar.
The university dug deeper and found a pattern of students entering into a legal guardianship, though they were still supported by their parents.
The scheme bears similarity to tactics adopted by Rick Singer, the mastermind behind the nation’s largest college admissions scandal. In Singer’s scheme, rich families secured advantages normally dedicated to students in need.
For instance, Singer would instruct clients to have their children diagnosed with disabilities. As a result, they got more time to take the ACT and SAT, college admissions tests, which could translate to higher scores.
Florida Child Custody and College
It is easy to see why a parent could be tempted into giving up child custody for free college tuition. College is expensive, and is getting more expensive. The main reasons for tuition inflation include a surge in demand, a lack of state funding, a need for more faculty members and money to pay them, and ballooning student services. Some states require parents to support their children while in college.
I have written about parents having to support their children into adulthood before. In Florida, the duty to provide support for a child is based upon the child’s incapacity and the child’s need of protection and care.
A parent’s legal duty to support his child usually ends at the age of majority – 18. But a parent will still owe a duty of support to an adult child in extraordinary circumstances, such as when the child suffers severe physical or mental incapacitation.
Recently, Florida’s child support statute was changed to require all judgments awarding child support to include a provision stating that child support will terminate on the child’s 18th birthday unless the court finds otherwise, or it is otherwise agreed to.
To extend support beyond age 18, there must be a child who is dependent due to mental or physical incapacity that began prior to age 18; or the child has reached 18, is still living at home, attending high school, and reasonably expects to graduate high school before age 19.
Florida law does not follow other states in finding that college is a “necessary education” requiring child support. In Florida, a parent’s duty to pay an adult child’s college expenses is moral rather than legal.
When parents in a divorce agree to educate their child after the child reaches 18, the agreement may be enforced. However, the obligation is not viewed as child support in Florida, but a contractual duty arising from the marital settlement agreement.
Not a Full House
Facing a maximum of 40 years in prison, actress Lori Loughlin of Full House, is accused of paying $500,000 to have her daughters billed as recruits for the University of Southern California crew team, even though neither of them participates in the sport.
Since the Loughlin fraud was exposed, more people are taking notice. Recently, the University of Illinois identified three students who had used guardianship to gain extra financial aid and potentially 11 students in the coming academic year.
It’s still unclear how widespread the pattern might be, and ProPublica reported it had found more than 40 similar cases where students may have benefited from the model.
While the practice might be legal, it will likely be seen by many as rich families taking advantage of resources clearly aimed at the less well-off. It also comes at a time when college costs continue to rise and more students take out loans, both private and public, to finance their education.
It’s also unclear how much money these students might have been able to secure. The maximum yearly amount for a federal Pell Grant is roughly $6,200, which students need not pay back.
There is no shortage of targets. The University of Illinois offers a program that promises free tuition for four years to in-state families earning $61,000 or less. There is also the Illinois Promise, which covers tuition, fees, room and board, and other costs.
The Pro Publica article is here.
An American mother just lost custody of her daughter because a Saudi judge ruled she was too Western to raise the child. Her own parents now worry they will lose both grand-daughter and daughter. An interesting case about Western Women in Arabia dealing with child custody is bubbling up in Arabia.
Thicker than Oil
Bethany, a 32-year-old student and yoga teacher, moved to Saudi Arabia to teach at a university in 2011. She recently divorced her Saudi husband, and sought custody of their four-year-old daughter. Recently, the Saudi court concluded that she would not be a good parent.
The judge ruled in his denial of the mother’s custody of her daughter:
“The mother is new to Islam, is a foreigner in this country, and continues to definitively embrace the customs and traditions of her upbringing. We must avoid exposing (the child) to these customs and traditions, especially at this early age.”
In statements submitted to the court, counsel for the ex-husband used her social media postings as evidence of an allegedly un-Islamic lifestyle.
In translated court documents, a summary of accusations against her includes the fact that she had gone to US festival Burning Man, which is characterized as “the world’s strangest festival” where attendees “appear in crazy clothes and stay awake all night dancing and surrounded by people wearing only shoes made of fur, or drinking drugs (sic) or cold drinks.”
According to the judge’s notes, counsel for her ex-husband also accused her of maintaining social media channels “full of nudity, intermingling of the two sexes and a lot of things and actions contrary to our religion and customs and traditions.”
In court, Bethany countered that her ex-husband was actually the unfit parent, alleging that he was verbally abusive and used drugs. “There was drug use and that became an issue,” her mother told CNN. Her ex-husband has denied the accusations, and did not respond to requests for comment from CNN.
Florida Child Custody
I’ve written about child custody issues before. In Florida, the prevailing standard for determining “custody” is a concept call shared parental responsibility, or sole parental responsibility.
Generally, shared parental responsibility is a relationship ordered by a court in which both parents retain their full parental rights and responsibilities. Under shared parental responsibility, parents are required to confer with each other and jointly make major decisions affecting the welfare of their child.
In Florida, shared parental responsibility is the preferred relationship between parents when a marriage or a relationship ends. In fact, courts are instructed to order parents to share parental responsibility of a child unless it would be detrimental to the child.
At the trial, the test applied is the best interests of the child. Determining the best interests of a child is no longer entirely subjective. Instead, the decision is based on an evaluation of certain factors affecting the welfare and interests of the child and the circumstances of the child’s family.
While social media evidence can be useful in determining some of the factors in the statute, being “new to Islam” and “embracing the customs and traditions” of a parent’s upbringing are not factors a court in Florida would consider unless harm to the child can be shown.
Oil Well that Ends Well?
The judge ultimately granted custody of Zaina to her Saudi grandmother, who lives with Zaina’s father.
“The fact that the father is residing with his mother is likely a temporary situation. Knowing that it is in men’s nature not to stay at home and not to honor/fulfill parental role themselves.”
Bethany was given until this Sunday to appeal the judge’s custody ruling, and for now, the child remains with her. But her parents tell CNN that there is a warrant out for her arrest after she missed a child visitation from her ex-husband– a visitation her parents say she didn’t know about.
They also say that Bethany has been banned from leaving Saudi Arabia for the next 10 years, though they were not able to provide further detail on the reason.
She wants to have the rights to go and come. She used to have that right says Bethany’s father. He says a judge also warned his daughter not to talk to the media.
Saudi Arabia has taken tentative steps towards the emancipation of women in recent years.
In 2012 Saudi women were allowed to compete at the Olympic Games for the first time. In 2015, women were allowed to vote in local elections for the first time. And recently, after a sustained campaign, women were allowed to drive.
At the end of this month, women will be allowed to hold a passport without needing permission of a male “guardian.” Nevertheless, the controversial guardianship system remains largely intact.
“A woman, from birth to death, must have a male guardian. The idea is that they are not capable and that men know better.”
Women still need a male guardian’s permission before having elective surgery, for example. And critically for Bethany, by Saudi law, a woman’s testimony is worth only half that of a man’s.
“Speaking generally, the U.S. Department of State and our embassies and consulates abroad have no greater responsibility than the protection of U.S. citizens overseas. US citizens abroad are subject to local laws,” the official added.
Bethany is now racing to collect all the necessary documents to appeal the custody ruling before the window closes this Sunday.
The CNN article is here.
August means school has started in Florida. There is also currently a measles outbreak going on in Florida, and many parents are not vaccinating their children.The recent death of Rotem Amitai, an airline flight attendant who contracted the killer disease on a flight, means the issue of measles, vaccines, and child custody is spreading again.
Getting to the Point
Measles starts like a common cold, with runny nose, cough, red eyes and fever. Often there is a characteristic rash. But measles is not always mild; it can cause pneumonia and encephalitis (a brain infection), both of which can be permanently disabling or even deadly.
From January 1 to August 8, 2019, 1,182 individual cases of measles have been confirmed in 30 U.S. states. This is the greatest number of cases reported in the U.S. since measles was declared eliminated in 2000.
The most at risk are children who have not yet been fully vaccinated. Two measles cases are in Florida already: one in Broward and the other in Pinellas County.
The reason children are most at risk is simple: Increasing numbers of parents are not vaccinating their children. It wasn’t always this way. Some state’s records show that during the 2004-05 school year, vaccination rates for kindergartners in one county were above 91%. During the 2017-18 school year, the same county had an immunization rate of 76.5%.That puts their children at risk, and the rest of us too.
Florida Child Custody
In Florida, the prevailing standard for determining “custody” is a concept call shared parental responsibility, or sole parental responsibility. Generally, shared parental responsibility is a relationship ordered by a court in which both parents retain their full parental rights and responsibilities.
Under shared parental responsibility, parents are required to confer with each other and jointly make major decisions affecting the welfare of their child. In Florida, shared parental responsibility is the preferred relationship between parents when a marriage or a relationship ends. In fact, courts are instructed to order parents to share parental responsibility of a child unless it would be detrimental to the child.
Issues relating to a child’s physical health and medical treatment, including the decision to vaccinate, are major decisions affecting the welfare of a child. When parents cannot agree, the dispute is resolved in court.
At the trial, the test applied is the best interests of the child. Determining the best interests of a child is no longer entirely subjective. Instead, the decision is based on an evaluation of certain factors affecting the welfare and interests of the child and the circumstances of the child’s family.
Florida Vaccinations and Child Custody
My article on the relationship between vaccinations and child custody in Florida has been cited before. In Florida, a court can carve out an exception to shared parental responsibility, giving one parent “ultimate authority” to make decisions, such as the responsibility for deciding on vaccinations.
There are at least two cases in Florida dealing with the decision to vaccinate and custody, and they conflict! In one case, a Florida court heard the conflicting positions on immunization and decided that it would be in the child’s best interest to allow the anti-vaccination Mother to make the ultimate decision regarding the child’s immunization.
Ten years later, a different Florida court heard conflicting testimony, and decided it was in the child’s best interest to award the pro-vaccination Father ultimate responsibility to make decisions regarding the minor child’s vaccinations.
The decision to vaccinate raises interesting family law issues. It is important to know what your rights and responsibilities are in Florida.
A Dose of Reality
We’ve gotten so used to being disease free. People forget measles was a killer disease which took the lives children. Since the risk of catching measles dropped after it was eliminated twenty years ago, we have begun to think we can’t catch it, or that the vaccines which have protected us are worse than the disease.
Parents’ decisions not to vaccinate their children, because of various reasons, harms society’s immunization against these diseases. It can potentially harm weaker populations.
Although there is no express case law determining custody on the decision to vaccinate, with the school year underway in Florida, the outbreak of measles in two Florida counties now, the decision to get the recommended vaccines may impact your child custody case.
The Ynet news article is here.
Afreen Rehman, a woman living in India, was recovering from an accident when her husband sent her family a letter with the word “talaq” written three times. Their marriage was over under an Islamic practice which India just banned. Rehman’s case proves mixing religion and divorce has its detractors . . . and its fans.
Your Fast, Low-Cost Divorce
Rehman’s husband relied on an Islamic law that allows a husband to annul a marriage by uttering the word talaq—Arabic for “divorce”—three times. The practice is commonly known as “triple talaq,” or instant divorce.
India’s Parliament passed a bill to criminalize the triple talaq. A man who imposes an instant divorce on his wife faces up to three years in prison. Not surprisingly, women’s-rights activists, Islamic groups, and different political parties are divided on the issue.
Many Muslim women’s groups have demanded the change, saying that the tradition of instant divorce is detrimental to them. But conservative Islamic organizations say the government has no business getting involved in a religious practice. Others acknowledge the change is needed, but say that it comes at a time when Hindu nationalism is the dominant political movement in India.
Instant divorce is not mentioned in the Koran, which says that a couple chooses separation once they have made all possible efforts to resolve their differences. The custom is attributed to the hadith – the record of the traditions and sayings of Prophet Muhammad – which is held in high regard by Muslims.
After the bill’s passage, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: “Parliament abolishes Triple Talaq and corrects a historic wrong done to Muslim women.”
Florida Mixing Religion and Divorce
I’ve written about the intersection of religion and divorce before. Religion, religious beliefs, and religious practices are not specific statutory factors in determining parental responsibility.
Nor are religion and religious practices areas in which a parent may be granted ultimate responsibility. Instead, the weight religion plays in custody disputes incubated over time in various cases.
For purposes of establishing or modifying parental responsibility and creating, developing, approving, or modifying a parenting plan, including a time-sharing schedule, the best interest of the child shall be the primary consideration.
In Florida, a determination of the best interests of the child is made by evaluating all of the factors affecting the welfare and interests of the particular minor child and the circumstances of that family.
Clear as Tikka Masala
Rehmen’s case is not unique. There have been reported cases of Muslim men, such as Rehman’s husband, carrying out instant divorce through letters, text messages, emails, and WhatsApp messages — without providing alimony or financial support.
The government maintains that Muslim women are vulnerable both socially and financially because of an absence of reforms in the Muslim community. There is no official data on the prevalence of instant divorce in India.
But the passage of the Indian law also raises questions about whether the government should involve itself in what is essentially Muslim personal law. At issue is mixing religion and divorce. To account for a diverse population of different faiths, India’s constitution allows every religious group to formulate personal laws.
A Hindu would be allowed to follow Hindu rules for marriage; same for Christians, and a Muslim’s divorce comes under the purview of Muslim personal law.
The number of separated and abandoned women in India, at 2.3mm, is twice the number of divorced women. If the government were serious about women’s rights, some argue, it would introduce reforms across communities, rather than focusing on one religious practice pertaining to Muslims.
Opposition parties, as well as human-rights advocates, have condemned the practice of instant divorce, but say the ban feeds into the perceived marginalization of Muslims who feel threatened by recent attacks by Hindu vigilantes.
Some believe the legislation is a step toward replacing personal laws with a uniform civil code that would encompass all Indian citizens, irrespective of faith and also claim:
The bill takes away a chance at any reconciliation. Any man jailed because of the wife’s complaint will never opt for reconciliation. The bill leaves women penniless, children practically orphaned. If the man [is] imprisoned, how will he provide maintenance to his wife? The bill amounts to a state coercion.
The Atlantic article is here.
Hypothetically, if Vladimir Putin opened fake social media accounts in your name to ruin your family law custody case, what would happen? An unfortunate Florida woman, who was recently sentenced to five months in jail for a few posts on her Facebook page, found out the hard way.
The Father, Timothy Weiner, had been warned. The judge in his custody case ordered him to stop harassing his ex-wife on Facebook. The family court judge issued two orders to keep any information about the case off social media and prevent family members from publishing information about the custody action on social media.
“Neither parent,” Pasco Circuit judge Lauralee Westine wrote in her order after the September hearing, “shall disparage or threaten the other parent on social media.”
But a week later, a photo of his ex-wife surfaced on a father’s rights Facebook page called “Mothers who abuse kids.” Weiner hit the “like” button. Fast forward to this summer. The Father’s new wife, Jessie Weiner, who is not a party to his custody case, was not served with the order.
In one of Ms. Weiner’s Facebook posts, sensitive family court documents concerning her Husband’s child from his previous marriage were posted. Court records indicate that someone on Weiner’s Facebook even shared an old news article about when her husband was jailed over a Facebook post.
The uploaded Facebook documents had to do with the ongoing family law custody case between Weiner’s husband and his ex. The family judge was not amused, and took swift action. She entered an order directing Ms. Weiner to show cause why she should not be held in indirect criminal contempt for failing to obey her orders.
Ms. Weiner received the order to show up in court the day before the 4:30 p.m. hearing that had been scheduled. Her lawyer, whom she retained on the same day as the hearing, argued for dismissal, for the judge’s disqualification, and for a continuance.
“Next thing I know, I hear five months in the county jail. “No matter what I said, I was guilty.”
The family judge denied all of her motions, found Ms. Weiner guilty of indirect criminal contempt, and sentenced her to five months’ confinement in jail for contempt of court.
What if, as Ms. Weiner argued, the social media accounts were not authentic, i.e. she didn’t make the Facebook posts?
Florida Authenticity and Social Media
I’ve written about the widespread use of social media in society, and how that impacts family court cases. Especially when it comes to authenticating documents in family court.
Some exhibits are so trustworthy they don’t even require a witness to authenticate. Evidence Rule 201 lists matters which a court must judicially notice, meaning a judge does not have discretion but to admit indisputable evidence.
The list is short, and includes laws of the Congress and Florida Legislature; Florida statewide rules of court, rules of United States courts, and U.S. Supreme Court rules.
Rule 202 includes even more matters, but also provides judges leeway in deciding whether or not to take judicial notice. For example, the statute allows a court to take judicial notice of facts that are not subject to dispute because they are “generally known within the territorial jurisdiction of the court”, and facts that are not subject to dispute because they are “capable of accurate and ready determination by resort to sources whose accuracy cannot be questioned.”
But with the Russian election scandal, and the widespread use of fake social media accounts, you have to start to wonder whether the genuineness assumption of evidence in family court still stands.
Governments manipulate photographs. It is not unheard of for spouses to hack computers and borrow smartphones to impersonate their owners’ texts. Anyone can set up a Facebook page, email, Instagram, or twitter account.
The increasing use of electronic evidence at trial, and the ease with which it is impersonated and manipulated, pressures us to bolster foundational evidence more than ever. Unfortunately for Ms. Weiner, she was jailed before she could even challenge the evidence.
What’s on your mind?
The Second District Court of Appeals had no trouble quashing the contempt order and freeing Ms. Weiner . . . after she served a month in jail.
First, the order violated Ms. Weiner’s due process rights because she was not subject to or served with the court order that she was accused of disobeying.
Second, the order to show cause was never served on Ms. Weiner within a “reasonable time allowed for preparation of the defense,” as required by Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure. Ms. Weiner’s name did not appear in the order’s service list, and it is undisputed that she received the order the day before the hearing and did not engage counsel until the morning of the hearing.
Finally, the trial judge should have disqualified herself because the contempt conduct involved disrespect and criticism of the judge.
This rule assures that a person cited for a contempt of court which involved a criticism of a judge, would not be tried before the judge who was the subject of the criticism.
The opinion is here.
Separate bedrooms may not be the most romantic idea, but couples who sleep together in the same bed are more likely to suffer snoring, tossing, turning and other nocturnal disturbances. These sleep disruptions can lead to health problems, sexual dysfunction and even fights. The idea of separate beds to prevent divorce might be something to sleep on.
Did Lucy and Ricky Have it Right?
Should we return to the “I Love Lucy” days of separate beds? The idea is gaining fans. The more secure partners feel in their relationship, the more comfortable they tend to be with the idea of sleeping separately.
“Happy, long-term couples are more inclined to have well-developed communication skills and patterns, which are key to making separate sleeping arrangements work.”
A 2016 Paracelsus Private Medical University in Nuremberg, Germany, showed that sleep issues and relationship problems tend to occur simultaneously and that a partner’s sleepless night caused by snorting and other disturbances can result in conflicts in the relationship the next day.
In fact, a 2012 survey by the Better Sleep Council showed that one in four couples sleeps separately for a better night’s sleep. Yet 46 percent of Americans polled last year said they wished they could sleep apart from their partner.
Florida No-Fault Divorce
I’ve written about no fault divorce before. No-fault laws are the result of trying to change the way divorces played out in court. The official term for divorce in Florida is “dissolution of marriage”, and you don’t need fault as a ground for divorce.
Florida abolished fault as a ground for divorce. This means you no longer have to prove a reason for the divorce, like loud snoring. Instead, you just need to state under oath that your marriage is “irretrievably broken.”
In Florida no fault laws have reduced the number of sleep-deprived couples who felt the need to resort to exaggerations about loud snoring, lies about nocturnal kicking, and other false allegations about husbands in trial testimony.
Separate Beds & Counting Sheep
Some say that gender also plays a role. “It’s usually the wife or girlfriend who favors the idea of separate beds. Women are more sensitive to their bed mate’s bad habits and pregnancy and hormonal changes or problems can cause them to want to sleep alone.
The his-and-her bedroom backdrop from “I Love Lucy,” in the 1950’s, might have been one of the first times many saw a married couple in separate beds, but it is not an unusual concept for happy sleeping.
“We started sleeping separately when I was pregnant with our first child. I would toss and turn and not get enough sleep, so on occasion I would sleep in the spare room,” said one 41-year-old woman from Brisbane.
“Once I was pregnant with our second baby, one of us would sleep in the spare room to ensure we both got a good night’s sleep,” she said. “My husband’s snoring and blanket-hogging frustrated me when I was very tired and I would sometimes wake him up to tell him to stop, which of course he didn’t appreciate. It wasn’t until years later that it became more routine.”
Separate sleeping arrangements can include pairing side by side beds of similar size, having a smaller plus a larger bed in the room that the couple could share when they want to be intimate, or designating nights in a spare room. Separate bedrooms are another option.
Being open and honest with your partner about why you want to sleep separately is essential. “What’s equally as important to why you want to sleep apart is how you plan to ensure intimacy is retained in the relationship.”
Healthy couples who sleep separately can be as happy as healthy couples who sleep together. “They seem to have as good a sex life as couples who share the same bed. They feel very close to their partner. Maybe it’s because they respect each other’s personal space.”
For couples not ready for separate sleeping domains, a happy medium could be met with the right sleep solution. Investing in an adjustable mattress that accommodates both partners sleeping needs or pushing together two separate mattresses can help solve conflicts while still allowing a couple to remain close.
The New York Times article is here.
Kurt Rappaport, a successful realtor in Malibu California, claims his Guess-model wife, Sarah Mutch, has been trying to get him to tear up their prenuptial agreement and pay her millions in the latest example of extortion and divorce.
Marital Point Doom
Rappaport filed for divorce from Canadian fashion model, Sarah Mutch, in February. In the new civil lawsuit, Rappaport alleges that after their $3 million wedding, Mutch began bitterly complaining about the terms of the prenup and demanded that he change the terms or “the marriage is over.”
The civil lawsuit goes on to allege when he refused to tear up the prenup, she went wild with his credit card, charging hundreds of thousands of dollars for various things.
The lawsuit also claims Mutch threatened that if he didn’t pay her bills, she would “release false information about him and his friends to the press and social media outlets.”
Rappaport filed a police report in April, detailing some of the alleged threats. According to the police report, obtained by TMZ, Rappaport says Mutch “threatened to fabricate a ‘Me Too’ sexual harassment report at the hands of his wealthy friends.”
He says she threatened to go to the media with the allegations if he didn’t give her “millions and millions of dollars.” He told cops she said, “If I don’t get what I want, I’m going to drop a bomb and end your career in a week!”
Rappaport says when he refused to put the property in her name or tear up the prenup during the marriage, she began berating him, calling him “selfish, cheap, greedy and disgusting.”
Florida Extortion and Divorce
In divorce, as I have written before, it is easy to cross the line from harmless threats to the crime of extortion. The fact remains that in Florida, it is a second-degree felony to threaten to expose another for the commission of any crime or offense for one’s own pecuniary advantage.
There are several examples of how this happens in divorce. One which comes to mind, is taxes. It is not uncommon for spouses to threaten to report the other spouse to the IRS for underpayment of taxes unless money is paid to keep the silence.
Another very common extortion technique – which is especially true these days – is to issue a threat to report a spouse to immigration officials. One spouse will to use the threat of deportation unless money is paid in a settlement. This has become more common these days as the country cracks down on illegal immigration.
Extortion also happens when signing settlement agreements. For example, spouses sometimes threaten that if the other spouse does not sign the settlement agreement, the other spouse will tell the children about infidelity, or something else to ruin what reputation the spouse has.
Mutch Ado About Nothing?
Mutch filed legal documents, also purportedly obtained by TMZ, which claim she thought they would have children and realized he had no such intention. They got into a heated argument on the way home.
She also alleges when they got home, he began screaming at her, saying all she cared about was money and she was a “greedy monster.” She says she then told him she wanted a divorce.
The legal documents also have Mutch claiming there was a pattern of verbal abuse over a period of years, alleging Rappaport tried to slam through doors when she would lock herself away from his outbursts and that she never threatened him.
Mutch is seeking temporary attorneys’ fees to determine if she could challenge their prenuptial agreement – which reportedly gives her $45,000 a month for half the duration of the marriage. The marriage only lasted 16 months. She is also is seeking an award her temporary spousal support.
The TMZ article is here.