Mariana S. was 35 years old and facing a divorce from her husband. It was a mid-term marriage but they dated since she was 14 years old. Mariana dropped out of high school and started a family with her husband. He worked as a self-employed contractor his entire life. Mariana never knew exactly how much money her husband earned. She never asked because they always had money for what they needed. CASH money. Cash purchased cars. Cash purchased food. Cash paid for vacations and entertainment. Mariana never used a checking account in her life when she hired Attorney Silva to represent her in her divorce.
Attorney Silva issued subpoenas to banks, mortgage companies, utility companies, insurance providers, the registry of motor vehicles and even the family veterinarian. A clear picture emerged of a family living an upper class lifestyle meeting all of their needs with essentially no debt. Hard to imagine on her husband’s $40,000 salary.
At mediation, Attorney Silva focused her case on the parties expenses, asset acquisition and lack of debt rather than tracking the source of cash. Attorney Silva made a potentially convoluted case simple: These things did not pay for themselves.
Attorney Silva negotiated a settlement in which Mariana received $650.00/wk in child support; a future alimony component; 55% of all martial assets; and the right to reside in the marital home until their youngest child graduates from high school.