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Henry Gornbein Quoted in Michigan Lawyers Weekly

Henry Gornbein was quoted in Michigan Lawyers Weeky. To read the article "Agreement OK despite hardship on husband", click here


Henry Gornbein Featured in Huffington Post

How Do You Determine Child Support and Alimony?

In many of my divorce cases, the hardest issue is determining someone's real income. Income impacts upon child support as well as alimony. We live in an era where there is a huge underground economy. Think of some of the jobs and businesses where there is a lot of cash. Here are a few examples but the list is almost endless -- think of your landscaper, beautician, personal trainer, manicurist, anyone in the restaurant or bar business. Your local party store, grocery, construction, maintenance, home improvements, electrician, and plumber. Your babysitter, the person who cleans your house, your dog walker, commercial cleaner, people who have careers and moonlight with side jobs, personal companions and exotic dancers. I have represented people involved in gentlemen's clubs, bars, and restaurants. A double sets of books have been the rule and not the exception. Think of numerous professions in addition to those listed above. Some doctors, dentists, podiatrists, chiropractors will deal with cash. am sure that all of you can provide many more examples.

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Why January

The New Year is a time for making changes to improve our lives.

For many in unhappy marriages, one of those changes is divorce. January has long been a popular month for divorce filings.

Professional lives slow down during the holidays, and people focus on family, togetherness and traditions. But simmering below the holiday cheer is grave disappointment for some.

Spouses may not live up to expectations. Or one too many drinks at a Christmas party could lead to inappropriate gestures or remarks, which, for those who have been unhappy for a long time, could be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

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Domestic Violence and Divorce

I have seen a rise in domestic violence regarding divorce lately. Is it due to the economy? Is it due to the terrible stress caused by divorce? Is it due to the fact that many people suffer from various forms of mental illness that often go undetected until there is a trigger point such as a divorce? Perhaps it is all the above.

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Did Social Media Destroy Your Marriage?

In my practice, I see more and more marriages being impacted by social media. Email, texting, Facebook, LinkedIn, and other websites are impacting upon every aspect of our lives. People get divorced for many reasons. The list is almost endless. Some major reasons include infidelity, domestic violence, growing apart, abusive behavior, alcohol and other addiction issues, financial issues, pornography, failure to communicate, and just growing apart.

My question is what does the internet and social media have to do with this?

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Can I Force My Spouse to Undergo Counseling?

Question: Can I force my spouse to undergo counseling so our divorce goes more smoothly?

Response by Alisa A. Peskin-Shepherd: First and foremost, your goal to minimize conflict in your divorce is admirable and your goal is certainly in your and your spouse's and children's (if involved) best interests. In most cases, however, no, you cannot force your spouse to undergo counseling so that your divorce goes more smoothly. It is unlikely that a Judge would require a divorcing spouse to counseling for purposes of your divorce proceeding alone. On the other hand, if there are minor children involved and you and your spouse are having issues co-parenting then it is more likely that your Judge will consider your request for counseling for you and your spouse, the minor child(ren) and/or the appointment of a co-parenting coordinator to assist you and your spouse with issues involving the minor children and perhaps to learn how to co-parent.

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The Stealth Divorce - Katie Holmes vs. Tom Cruise

I have written blogs in the past about whether it means anything by filing for divorce first.  Usually it does not but clearly in the matter of Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise, it does.  Katie Holmes’ father is a divorce attorney and clearly has been planning for the divorce at least for several months on behalf of his daughter.  He has put together a team of prominent divorce attorneys in New York with the goal being to file first in New York.  The question is: Why?

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Divorce and Domestic Violence

Tragically I am seeing more and more incidents of domestic violence.  The economic downturn that we have gone through has created more tension, with people losing their jobs, incomes, homes, and facing a drastic reduction in lifestyle.  This creates a lot of stress which unfortunately can lead to domestic violence and tragedy.  In this blog, there are ten issues for you to consider regarding domestic violence:

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Why Do Fools Fall in Love & File For Divorce?

Over my many years specializing in family law, I have seen people marry and divorce for every possible logical and illogical reason. Over the past few years, since 2008 and 2009 when our economy imploded, and we have gone through the worst economic times since the Great Depression, many people have stayed together because they can't afford a divorce. I am now seeing an upturn in divorces as the economy starts to improve. Here are my observations on some key reasons why people file for divorce.

11. Economic problems are a tremendous cause of stress. People losing jobs, their homes, businesses failing. A drastic reduction in income, equity in your home, and not having enough money creates tremendous tension and often leads to divorce.

10. Alcohol problems. Alcoholism and abuse of alcohol are a major issue leading to divorce. People in dysfunctional marriages where alcohol plays a role may stay together for many years until one or the other gets help, and then the dynamics change, leading to a divorce.

9. People growing apart. In long-term marriages, I have seen people who have raised their children and then wonder--what next? The question that is often asked once the children are out of the house – Do I want to spend the rest of your life with this man/woman? Do you share enough common interests? Will there be a bond to hold you together once you reach retirement? These questions, and different answers, often lead to divorce.

8. Gambling issues. I have seen many people lose their jobs, their marriages, their homes and professions, due to addiction to gambling. Casinos in the Detroit Metropolitan area where I practice have resulted in many marital breakups, as has gambling on line, just to name some examples.

7. Drugs. I have seen people addicted to heroine, marijuana, and cocaine, all of which have led to divorce. Addiction to antidepressants, Vicodin, and other prescription drugs, have led to the breakdown of many marriages.

6. Addiction to the internet. I have had marriages fail where people will spend many hours every day shopping online, e-mailing, playing games, or just being online to the exclusion of their families.

5. Addiction to pornography. I see this in many divorces. Before the internet, there were issues with regard to videos and DVDs. Now there are more and more people who spend hours watching pornography online, and contacting people online, which often leads to the next issue.

4. Infidelity. Have all of my clients been unfaithful? Far from it. But I have seen it in many cases. Many spouses will forgive an affair, especially if there is marriage counseling. A key issue is, can that affair be forgiven? Can you move on and rebuild? Can there be trust again? I believe that counseling is critical in the event of infidelity. The key question in these cases, especially if it is an isolated situation, is whether the marriage was bad and someone strayed, or someone strayed without any justification. As an attorney, I do not make moral judgments, but I see infidelity as a major cause of divorce.

3. Many people get married for the wrong reasons. They are lonely. They get married on impulse. I have had many cases where people will take a trip together, especially to Las Vegas, and come home married. The old saying that fools rush in where wise men fear to tread, is very true, especially with regard to marriage. Look before you leap. Don't jump into a marriage and find out that you have made a huge mistake. Go slow in any relationship.

2. Abuse. This can include physical abuse, emotional abuse, verbal abuse, but abusive behavior is a major reason for divorce.

1. A total inability to communicate. In marriage, people communicate on many levels. If you cannot communicate, seek a marriage counselor. Try to save a marriage, because divorce should be the last resort. When two people are not communicating, especially if there are problems at the beginning of a marriage, perhaps they should not have gotten married in the first place. I am sure that you can come up with many more reasons as to why marriages end, but these are some of the key reasons that I have seen over the years.

By: Michigan Family Law Attorney Henry Gornbein


Divorce and the Holidays: When Relationships Get Frosty

We are now in the holiday season. Think of that Norman Rockwell perfect Christmas, family and friends getting together. Chestnuts roasting on an open fire. That is the ideal. What is the reality? Actually, the holidays are very stressful times. I have found over the years that many people will come to me to file for divorce after the Christmas holidays. People have these unrealistic expectations that are rarely met by the holidays.

Office parties, with that one drink too many, and inappropriate behavior, often lead to divorces being filed in January. Disappointment over friends and relatives who are not so great will prompt people to file for divorce. It is a stressful time for in-tact marriages, and it is even more stressful for people who are already divorced. Fights are common over who has Christmas Eve, and who has Christmas Day. How is Thanksgiving handled? What about New Years? How is the Christmas vacation divided? These are issues that I deal with as part of my practice. I have the last minute phone calls where someone has failed to produce the children for the holiday. This year, my client was supposed to have the Thanksgiving holiday in Florida where she resides, and her former husband took off with the child to another state, violating the court order and destroying the holiday. As a Michigan family law attorney, I deal with the drama and emotion, seeking solutions, for people in crisis, and often on a last minute basis.

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