Clare was a SHALVA client during her divorce, and thought she was done with Harry when the divorce was final. She was awarded sole decision making responsibility and the majority of parenting time, but her maintenance award could be reviewed after one year. She did not expect that she would be vulnerable to Harry’s post-divorce efforts to bully and abuse her.
Clare’s maintenance was about to end, so she came back to SHALVA for help. Clare had diligently looked for another job, but could not find a job that would give her financial independence. She knew she needed to go back to court, but could not afford to hire a lawyer and did not qualify for free legal services.
Clare was reluctant to spar with Harry’s attorney but had no choice. SHALVA’s Legal Liaison helped her to understand what she needed to show the judge. Clare wrote a pleading based off a template the Legal Liaison provided. When Clare went to court, she asked the judge for a temporary order to continue payments, but the Judge denied Clare’s first request. Clare was upset, but the Legal Liaison gave her hope and showed her another way. Clare was able to put the case on an expedited docket, which would allow the Clare to have another hearing before her maintenance ran out.
Clare and the Legal Liaison went back to work. The Legal Liaison spent many hours helping her to understand the legal process and what she needed to show in court. The Legal Liaison also taught Clare how to respond to Harry and his attorney. Clare was well prepared when she went before the Judge.
At the next hearing, Clare succeeded in getting maintenance continued. Clare felt proud and empowered. Clara was actually at ease in the courtroom, even against Harry’s formidable lawyer.
A few months ago, Clare called SHALVA to report that Harry had filed another vindictive motion against her, but she knew how to respond and how to conduct herself in court. Even more important, Clare is truly rebuilding her life.