Every solo parent will encounter legal issues on her civil status and her child’s welfare. Armed with The Family Code and The Solo Parent Act plus years of experience, litigation lawyer Gian Navarro, who has handled family cases at Reyes Cabrera Rojas & Associates, and Nikki Jimeno, associate lawyer at Jimeno Cope and David Law Offices, give expert advice on some legal concerns.
1. "My husband and I are separated and we have a private arrangement for joint custody of our kids. How can I solidify this arrangement so he doesn’t escape from his obligations?"
Having an off-court settlement on custody and support of the children is perfectly okay, says Atty. Navarro. "It’s best to have that approved and recognized by the court so you can invoke the power of the court in enforcing rights and obligations found under the agreement."
Atty. Jimeno says, "When you file for joint custody, the court can refer you to a mediator to help you come to an agreement. It will then be submitted to the court for approval."
2. "I’m filing for an annulment and want a ‘fair’ division of assets — not necessarily 50/50 but proportional to our needs. I would like to keep the house for my kids. Can I demand more than ‘half’ of my share?"
"Courts consider factors such as who has custody of the child and what amount of support is to be given before actually arriving at the proper distribution of the assets," explains Atty. Navarro. But if your husband asserts his right to half of your conjugal properties, the court will consent, unless you have a prenuptial agreement.
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
But Atty. Jimeno says there is a way: "You will have to give your husband an amount equal to his half of the house from other conjugal properties you can sell. Or you can waive your share of your other non-liquidated properties in exchange for his share of the house." You and your husband should discuss and agree on who gets what of your combined assets and also set aside a percentage for your children’s future inheritance, she notes.