Bitter Words from Berry's Ex

In light of the fact that last week Halle Berry and Oivier Martinez announced they were splitting after two years of marriage, Berry’s first husband David Justice took to Twitter to denounce the “Exant” star.

Bitter Words from Berry’s Ex

Though David Justice has not had contact with his ex-wife, Halle Berry, in years, he still felt it was important to take to the Twitterverse to denounce his ex in wake of her current romantic failing. Just after the announcement of Berry’s split from Olivier, Justice posted this to his Twitter:

“Me, (second husband) Eric (Benet), (boyfriend) Gabriel (Aubry) and Olivier were all her ‘Knight in Shining Armor’ until it ends. Then we all become the worst guys in history.”

Shortly after Berry’s second husband Eric Benet, whom she divorced in 2005, responded to Justice’s rant with:

“My man at @23davidjustice is tweeting some truth dis’ mornin’!”

Justice then went on to share some advice to Olivier:

“Just wait,Olivier..It’s coming! She insinuated that her daughter wasn’t safe around Gabriel..look it up and see the reason!” he wrote, point to Berry’s contentious custody battle with ex-boyfriend Gabriel Aubry over their 7-year-old daughter, Nahla.

Berry and Martinez Divorce

Just last week Berry and Martinez, both 49, issued a joint statement saying that it was “with a heavy heart” that they had decided to end their relationship. The two met on the set of Dark Tide in 2010 and were secretly engaged one year later. They wed in 2013. “We move forward with love and respect for one another and the shared focus for what is best for our son,” they said in the joint statement announcing their divorce. “We wish each other nothing but happiness in life, and we hope that you respect our, and most importantly, our children’s privacy, as we go through this difficult period.”

Divorce Issues and Social Media

This is obviously not the first time Berry is facing divorce. She was married to Justice from 1993 to 1997, to R&B singer Eric Benet from 2001 to 2005. And it seems the two have no problem when it comes to outing their ex on social media.

It’s not uncommon for couples to want to voice their issues on social media. But is it a good decision? Or one that has far lasting complications?

According to divorce attorney Tim Hoch, divorce makes you either a better person or a bitter person. The good thing is, you get to choose. Resist the urge to be irrational. Chances are, you’re hurt and angry and sad. There are a lot of emotions and they can be hard to keep under control during hearings, depositions, mediation,and trial. Try to be the bigger person and not get bogged down in venting and arguments. That means not posting a rant to your Facebook page. In fact, now might be the time to take a break from social media. Don’t use your kids as bargaining chips, they will end up feeling it and being hurt. Happiness really is the best revenge. So find ways of being happy despite the situation.

Additionally, ranting about your ex on social media can impact your divorce trial. You might feel compelled to peek at your former spouse’s e-mail or their Facebook. Some of this may be permissible, but others may have both federal and state criminal implications. It’s important to consult with an attorney about your right to information and your spouse’s right to privacy.

Privacy and Social Media

Federal wiretapping and eavesdropping laws have strong prohibitions against recording other people’s private telephone conversations or intercepting electronic communications. These laws do not contain clear provisions for social media technology, which can be a rich source of information for any family law cases (especially when the case involves custody and visitation disputes). Providing documentation of a spouse posting a racy photo or making disparaging comments to the court may be helpful.

False Facebook Pages

Many family law attorneys agree that just viewing your spouse’s social media site does not violate Federal or state laws. If you are still a “friend” of your spouse on Facebook, or if your spouse’s page is not protected for privacy purposes and is public, and thus have access to view his or her “page” you may be able to present print outs from public postings in court. But many divorce attorneys also agree that obtaining access to your spouse’s Facebook account by creating a false profile page is not permissible. You must have knowing consent from your spouse to use information discovered on his or her Facebook page during a divorce proceeding.

Exchanging Passwords

If you and your spouse have exchanged passwords to private social media websites, you might be allowed to introduce evidence discovered from that exchange. Installing software that allows you to obtain passwords to protected sites and obtain information this way may subject you to both criminal and civil penalties.

You should consult your attorney before engaging in any questionable conduct because there are not set rules for these potential violations.

Custody Issues and Determining Paternity

Berry has also had to deal with a very public custody case with ex-boyfriend Gabriel Aubry over their daughter, 6-year-old Nahla.

Because parents are often unmarried at the time of conception or birth of a child, such as was the case with Gabriel Aubry and Berry, a paternity case might need to be opened in order to establish paternal rights. These types of cases can be complex, so it might be in your best interest to consult an experienced family law attorney.

California Family Code section 7570

California Family Code section 7570 states “there is a compelling state interest in establishing paternity for all children.” This is because “establishing paternity is the first step toward a child support award.” Paternity is used as basis for child custody and visitation orders. Conclusive determination of the father and mother of a child are needed for: medical diagnosis, health insurance, social security, military benefits, and inheritance rights. The code states, “knowing one’s father is important to a child’s development.” Family court judges always have a child’s best interest in mind when determining rulings on child support and child custody and visitationcases.

California’s Procedure For Voluntary Paternity

California has an established procedure for establishing voluntary paternity. This procedure has helped ease the process of establishing paternity. Increased paternity establishment means more children have access to child support as well as other benefits that legally belong to them. This process also saves both parties, as well as the court, time and money when it comes to determining paternity and the legal aspects required of fathers.

California Family Code section 7571

Under California Family Code section 7571, the man the mother identifies as the father at the time of the birth has the opportunity to complete a voluntary declaration of paternity.

Once the declaration is signed by both parties (and witnessed), hospital staff forward the signed document to the Department of Child Support Service within twenty days of the date the declaration was signed. Generally, this completed and properly filed voluntary declaration of paternity establishes the paternity of a child. Should there be any legal issue, this signed document should have the same weight and effect as a legal paternity judgment.

In Brown’s case, because Riesling was declared as the father at the time of the child’s birth, there will need to be legal amendments made for Brown to be able to claim Royalty as his own. It is important that Brown be declared as a father to the child should Brown seek legal custody of the child.

This is why paternity is important to establish. Paternity must be established if you are seeking full custody.

Determining Custody

Full child custody, also known as sole custody, means all legal parental rights are assigned to just one of the parents. There are two kinds of “sole” custody:

  • sole physical custody – the child lives with the parent, and
  • sole legal custody – the parent has a legal right to make decisions for the child.

Most family law courts award joint custody, because it has been found to be in the best interest of a child to be raised by both parents. Usually when a parent files for sole custody it is because they see the other parent as unfit to take care of the child. This can be for various reasons, including: inability to provide for child, abuse, or a history of abuse or addiction.

Filing for Full Custody

Seeking full custody can be difficult if you are unable to prove that the other parent is unfit. There are some steps you’ll want to take:

  • Talk to afamily law attorney. A family law attorney will be familiar with the laws regarding custody and how to advise you based on your specific case.
  • Learn about what petition to file. A family law attorney can help with this, but if you are planning on working without one you can go to a local court or online to determine the paperwork you need to file. Each state has its own laws regarding child custody cases (which is why it’s advised to work with a family law attorney). Here are a few petitions that may apply:
      • Petition to establish custody
      • Petition to revise or update a petition that’s already in place
      • Petition to establish paternity (if the paternity of the child is questioned you will also need to file a petition that mandates a paternity test be completed before the custody request is considered) and install custody
  • Fill out all of the required paperwork and file the paperwork in court. If you are working with an attorney he or she will review everything before you file it in court. You will want to make sure you make copies for your files and for the other parent’s files. The court will keep the original. Once a petition has been filed you will receive a court or mediation date. Both parents are required to be in attendance. If an agreement cannot be made at that date, the case will need to go in front of a court.

Working with a Divorce Attorney

If you are facing a divorce, you should work with a divorce attorney that will take a vested interest in your specific situation and advise you on what you might face in a divorce regarding property division, child support and custody, and alimony. They will be able to advise you on your options. A divorce attorney will provide support and guidance as you work towards ending your marriage.

For advice on divorce, you need the expert law firm of Law Offices of Korol and Velen, Certified Family Law Specialists.

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