An already divorced husband called our firm about this post judgment Orange County spousal support case and he was desperate for help. He had paid spousal support for more than half the length of his marriage and his son had told him his ex-wife had recently remarried. Unfortunately, while representing himself, he was unsuccessful in getting his spousal support obligation terminated. Fortunately, he got smart and hired us.
He had filed his own motion and his ex-wife hired an attorney who dragged out his case and got more than one continuance. He felt like there was no end in sight. Meanwhile, our client was still paying spousal support he could no longer afford. Realizing he was in over his head, he committed to hiring an attorney. He found our family law firm and, after talking with us, decided we were a great fit for his needs.
Immediately after retaining our firm, Farzad Family Law’s senior associate Matt Sundly contacted the ex-wife (who had become self-represented) directly by phone and secured her verbal agreement to terminate client’s spousal support obligation. Years of experience told Mr. Sundly her verbal assurance was not enough so he sent a confirming letter to “lock” her in to the verbal agreement along with a written agreement for her to sign that would then be filed with the court as an official order.
Sure enough, our client’s ex-wife then balked at signing the written agreement and showed up to the court hearing with a new attorney. Due to court congestion, the matter was going to get continued for months but Mr. Sundly refused to let that be an option. Of course, our client’s ex-wife would have loved a continuance but we were not going to allow it to happen. Our client had paid spousal support long enough.
Mr. Sundly asked the court to find another judicial officer in the county who could hear their case in a shorter amount of time. The court obliged and found another judicial officer in another court who could hear the case within days instead of months. The matter was then specially set for hearing 4 days later. Mr. Sundly used the 4 days to strategically subpoena our client’s ex-wife to bring their son to court to testify as a witness to her remarriage. Her attorney claimed she had not remarried but our client’s son had stated that his mother had specifically done so. While we generally don’t like to get those under 18 involved, we felt in this case, it was too important.
The day of the hearing, our client’s ex-wife appeared with her son pursuant to the subpoena. Mr. Sundly got the impression she was nervous about being caught. While we did not know whether she was or was not re-married, Mr. Sundly believed she really didn’t want to go forward.
The attorneys spoke to the judge in his private chambers about the case. After hearing about it, the judge agreed that spousal support should be terminated. As a result, and without the need for a lengthy evidentiary hearing, our firm was able to secure a written agreement from our client’s ex-wife to terminate his spousal support obligation forever and a further agreement that she could never ask the court to ever award her spousal support at any point in the future.
Our client was thrilled.