Lisa had been married to Ron for over 20 years and they had three children,ages 10, 13 & 16. Ron was diagnosed with bipolar disorder but stopped taking his medication when his psychiatrist retired. He verbally abused his wife and kids on a daily basis. What would set him off was anybody's guess. He was so disruptive at home that his wife was forced to give up her part-time sewing business. The final straw was when Ron dislocated Lisa's shoulder after wrestling a cell phone from her hand. In December 2012, Lisa took out a restraining order against him and appealed to MWLS for help with a divorce.

Lisa did not want to cut the children off from having a relationship with Ron, but she feared that his erratic behavior was causing them ongoing distress. MWLS filed a Complaint for Divorce, requesting custody, child support and reasonable visitation if Ron could get his behavior under control. Ron’s excessive spending on personal hobbies had led to significant marital debt, and there were financial issues to be resolved around the marital home, pension and retirement funds. 

Ron was not dealing well with the separation. He called and texted Lisa and the children, sometimes dozens of times a day and at inappropriate hours. His behavior required MWLS to ask the Court to enter an order limiting the number of calls and texts he was allowed on any given day, which the Court readily did. Ron vacillated between professing his love for Lisa and calling her the most profane names he could think of when she would not respond to his overtures.

The Court entered temporary orders awarding custody to Lisa, child support, and an order that Ron assist in paying the mortgage until the house was sold. After a series of depositions, pre-trial conferences and protracted negotiations, MWLS was able to negotiate a divorce settlement on Lisa’s behalf giving her custody, child support, and a sixty percent share of the pension and house proceeds and making Ron responsible for most of the marital debt. Lisa and her children would have a working car, the ability to move into a smaller, more affordable home, and money for her retirement. Lisa and her kids gained a fresh perspective on life, free of Ron’s emotional and financial abuse.