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Senate Strikes Down Divorce Bill for Getting a Get

The Senate voted against a bill that sought to remove religious barriers that prevent Orthodox Jewish women from remarrying after getting divorced.

The law would have forced Orthodox Jewish men who are involved in a divorce to grant their wives “gets,” which allow their former wives to remarry as Orthodox Jews.

The bill was the subject of much controversy, as some believed it was seeking to interfere in a purely religious matter, while some believed the matter to be one of women’s rights.

The Bill

Sen. Lisa A Gladden (D-Baltimore), the bill’s sponsor, said that the bill was not about religion, but “about fairness. It’s a women’s rights issue.”

Gladden said she sponsored the bill for the Orthodox Jewish women who claim they are unable to obtain divorces because their husbands won’t grant them gets.

Gladden said it was a matter of fairness and equity. “If you’re coming to the courts, you have to come with clean hands,” she said. “This is [a] women’s rights issue,” she added.

“The rule is a sexist rule” and the women “are in a bad situation,” said Sen. Jamie Raskin, D-Montgomery. “I feel for them … [but] … it is completely and wholly a religious rule.”

Get?


Under Orthodox Jewish law, a legal divorce does not end a marriage. To officially end it, the husband must give the wife a get. In some cases, a husband will refuse to grant the wife a get, which makes it impossible for her to get remarried as an Orthodox Jew.

The Bill’s Opposition

“We see this as state intrusion on a religious matter,” said Sen. Rhona Kramer, D-Montgomery, quoting from a Jewish newspaper. Kramer, who is Jewish herself, said the bill was well-intentioned, but that “we will be using a civil law to force someone to perform a religious act.”

 


Women Increasingly Paying Alimony

Women Increasingly Paying Alimony by Betsy Schiffman from Forbes Magazine.Article
The picture of equality looks awfully strange to Kim Shamsky. The 47-year-old business owner pays her ex, a 65-year-old retired Major League Baseball player, thousands per month in temporary spousal support. He's not seeking alimony to help pay for the kids' birthday parties, since they don't have children. Nor was he instrumental in building her business. They married seven years after she started a handful of staffing firms and amassed a small fortune on her own. The daughter of a New York City taxi driver, Shamsky started her first staffing agency at age 27 with the help of a 21% loan. Not only was she able to make her first business profitable, but she's also worked furiously to ensure the success of all five businesses she's started since. Small wonder she is outraged at having to pay thousands of dollars a month to her ex. "He used to scream and throw tantrums and demand more money," Shamsky says of her ex-husband. "It was like he thought, 'Hey, you have money, why shouldn't I?'" She adds flatly: "I will never marry again. And I'm getting T-shirts made with the word 'prenup' written across the chest." No doubt Shamsky would find more than a few buyers for the shirts. The idea that men can receive spousal support from their wives may feel like a freakish concept, but as women have become higher earners, it's increasingly common. And as men set their sights on women's earnings, women have become more protective of those dollars. In fact, according to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, 44% of attorneys included in a recent survey said they've seen an increase in women asking for prenuptial agreements over the last five years, where in previous decades, prenuptial agreements were almost always sought by men. A lot of women are indignant now that the shoe is increasingly on the other foot, says Carol Ann Wilson, a certified financial divorce practitioner in Boulder, Colo. "There's this sense of, 'What's yours is ours, but what's mine is mine,'" Wilson says. "My first response to that is, 'All these years we have been looking for equality; well, this is what it looks like.' I think women get angrier about having to pay than men do." The ordeal has been played up in gossip magazines and tabloids, which have closely followed countless examples of celebrity breakups in which men have sought, or have threatened to seek, spousal support. Teen idol and crooner Nick Lachey reportedly requested the right to seek spousal support from ex-wife pop singer Jessica Simpson last year. (Lachey is seven years older than Simpson and reportedly worth significantly less.) In another splashy case, Hardy Boy Parker Stevenson sought $18,000 per month from actress Kirstie Alley when they divorced, just to cover the rent on his Bel Air home. But Wilson emphasizes that it's not just actresses or the wealthiest women who are seeking prenuptial agreements or paying spousal support. "I've seen thousands of clients," she says, "and almost every time I've seen a stay-at-home dad seek alimony, the wife--she's usually a software executive--goes ballistic." Some women find it's not a battle worth fighting, according to Cheryl Lynn Hepfer, the Rockville, Md.-based president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. Hepfer says she's seen women who have happily chosen to pay off their husbands in an effort to maintain their sanity and keep the peace. "I once represented a wealthy woman who had the wherewithal to pay $6,000 a month to her husband--and this was probably 10 years ago--so she paid him," Hepfer says, adding that the client also gave her ex the boat and the house on the water. "She wasn't bitter about it at all. She was a business woman, and for her, this was a business decision." Hepfer says she did it to preserve the relationship with her former husband and their two children. "She knew it would be beneficial for the kids." Just as some women object to men's request for spousal support, some men are particularly uncomfortable seeking it. Either they find it emasculating to ask, or they find the idea of receiving an allowance from their ex-wives humiliating, according to divorce attorneys. "The fact is that you still don't see too many cases where men seek alimony," says William Beslow, a divorce attorney in New York City. "One reason is that although women may earn more than men, they often wind up with custody of the children, and when a woman takes up primary responsibility for the children, men don't request maintenance." Some men avoid the embarrassment by seeking a bigger bite of the marital assets instead of asking for alimony. Not only do lump-sum payments save them the humiliation of accepting monthly support, but they also reduce the ex-husband's taxes, since spousal support payments are taxed, while assets are not. On the flip side, in those situations when men receive assets, women lose their tax benefit, because spousal support is tax-deductible, Hepfer notes. The upshot: Even if it's easier to settle with one swift payment, consult an accountant first to learn the tax consequences. It may be better for you financially to pay alimony. Kim Shamsky admits she's angry about paying her ex-husband spousal support mostly because he's a man. After all, men are supposed to be breadwinners, not bread takers. "A real man just wouldn't do this sort of thing," she says. "Maybe it's my Italian upbringing, but I don't think it's right." Right or not, as women's earnings grow, so will their financial responsibility during divorce. That's equality for you.

California spousal support


Should I move out of the house?

Source: "Should I Move Out?" by attorney Eric C. Nelson at www.divorcenet.com.   

Suitcase A question considered by most people contemplating divorce is whether they should move out of the marital home prior to or upon filing for divorce. Generally speaking, if child custody, parenting time, or possession of the home might be an issue in your divorce, I advise against moving out. Instead, try to stay put until the temporary order hearing, which is your first opportunity to legally compel your spouse to move out.

Although no legal precedent is created by your moving out of the marital residence, it will give your spouse's lawyer the opportunity to argue that:

1. Temporary custody of the child(ren)should be awarded to your spouse because he/she is already living in the house which has been the children's home.  Forcing the children to move would only bring more disruption to their lives.

2. Temporary possession of the home should be awarded to your spouse because he/she is already living there.  Since you made the decision to move out, it makes more sense to leave everyone where they now are instead of requiring both spouses to make another move.

These same arguments can be made not only for purposes of the temporary order, but also regarding your permanent divorce decree. And while the arguments may not prevail in the end, they very likely will have some influence on the judge since one of his/her primary motivations is to preserve the status quo.

If you must move out of the home due to an abusive or otherwise insufferable situation for yourself or the children, take the following precautions.

First, if custody is an issue, try to move the children with you if this can be accomplished without too much disruption in their lives.  If you can't move the children with you, try to spend as much time with them in your care as you are requesting in the divorce. Otherwise, the longer you acquiesce to a pattern of parenting time that is less than you desire, the more of an argument the other party will make of it against you. Often arguments like the following are heard:

"Your Honor, the Petitioner moved out four months ago, and since then he has only had the children every other weekend, by his own acquiescence. Now all of a sudden he wants custody (or more parenting time, as the case may be). This is clearly a disingenuous request which should be summarily denied. The schedule the parties have been following has worked well for the children, and for the sake of their sense of stability and continuity, it should continue."

After a period of time has passed, nobody will much care if the reason you only had every other weekend was because the other parent truly wouldn't "let" you have more time. Although that may very well be the case, and although you may have let your spouse control the situation in order to spare the children the trauma of parental conflict, in my experience the courts are more swayed by the pattern of contact rather than by these "excuses."

Second, when you move out, take with you all of the household goods, furnishings, and other items of personal property which you want to keep. And perform an inventory of the items you have taken. The old adage "possession is nine tenths of the law" is very applicable here. Litigating personal property issues is usually prohibitively expensive, because it normally costs more to litigate than the stuff is worth. So if you ever want to see it again, it is much simpler and easier to take it with you when you leave. However, don't get too greedy. If you empty the place out and leave your spouse and children to sleep and eat on a bare concrete floor, you will have become your own worst enemy.  Your reprehensible behavior will give ammunition to your spouse's attorney that will likely cause you to end up in the judge's doghouse, a blunder from which you may never recover.



Parental alienation: The latest weapon in nasty divorces

Source Lawyers USA

"Welcome to the swamp."

That's what a judge once told a client of Anchorage divorce attorney Steve Pradell when accusations of parental alienation were leveled against the client in a custody hearing.

Parental alienation syndrome - a controversial diagnosis to describe a child who compulsively denigrates one parent in response to consistent brainwashing by the other parent - has become a common weapon in custody cases.

"It happens all the time," said Michael R. Walsh, a divorce attorney in Orlando, Fla. "If Mom can't hurt Dad another way, what has she got left after she's tried to rake him over the coals on everything else?"

According to Richard Gardner, the psychologist who is considered the father of the syndrome, it typically manifests itself as a campaign of denigration by one parent against the other, which is accompanied by weak, frivolous and absurd rationalizations for the deprecation. As a result of this steady campaign of insult, the child reflexively supports the alienating parent and experiences no guilt over their own cruelty towards the targeted parent.

But the mental health profession is far from agreement about the existence of the syndrome. Noting the lack of supporting data, the American Psychological Association has "no official position on the purported syndrome," according to a statement in its website.

The legal community is divided as well.

While many family lawyers believe the syndrome is a legitimate psychological diagnosis, others view it as nonsense. They say it's used primarily by parents who want someone to blame for their poor relationship with their children.

"I think it's more of a code word that gets used in trial because one parent is not maintaining the relationship with the children and believes the other parent is interfering with the relationship," said Minneapolis divorce attorney Susan Gallagher.

Like it or not, parental alienation has become a common weapon in courts across the country. Even in jurisdictions that don't recognize it as a diagnosable syndrome in children, lawyers can still argue straight parental alienation - that one parent's attempts to turn the child against the other parent indicates that the first parent is not fit to have custody.

Sometimes the behavior that prompts charges of parental alienation is subtle - frequent disparaging remarks within earshot of the child or setting up appointments and activities for the child during times when the other parent is scheduled to have visitation. Other times it is openly aggressive, such as unfounded accusations of child abuse or neglect.

In some cases, a parent is deluded enough to believe their unfounded accusations - and other times when the accusations are true - so sorting out what is real and what is not can be a tall order for the courts.

"I can't tell you if the syndrome exists psychologically, but I can say it's very troubling and one of the hardest things for a judge to figure out if it's really happening," said Pradell.

It's also possible for the child to be alienated from one parent without any campaign of denigration by the other.

"Just for the sake of illustration, a 13-year-old girl finds out before Mom that Dad is cheating on Mom. That 13-year-old girl may become alienated from Dad, not because of Mom, but the alienation is there," said Patrick O'Reilly of Buffalo, head of the Family Law Section of the New York Bar Association.

As the Anchorage judge said: "Welcome to the swamp."

Making it stick

 

Although parental alienation has become a common weapon in custody cases around the country, proving it can be a tall order.

"It's like everything else in a custody case - it all comes down to what you can prove at trial. A lot of bad things happen, but they're very difficult to prove," said Ben Stevens of Stevens MacPhail in Spartanburg, S.C.

The best place to begin is with witnesses - anyone who was present when one of the alienating interactions occurred. In some states, clients can record telephone calls or other conversations to create audio evidence.

O'Reilly suggested that lawyers encourage their clients to communicate via e-mail and voice mail to create a tangible record. This will be far more effective in court than the typical he-said/she-said battles that dominate most custody battles.

But the heart of any parental alienation case is the expert testimony, according to Stevens.

"Take the child to a mental health professional and let him do testing," he suggested. "Then you've got an expert witness to come and say, 'In my expert opinion, this is what's going on.'"

It many cases the judge will require a court-appointed psychologist to work with both parents and the children in order to obtain a non-partisan expert opinion. In a similar vein, lawyers may want to ask the court to appoint a guardian ad litem who will advocate on behalf of the child to determine whether parental alienation has occurred.

In the end, though, lawyers should be prepared for a tough battle.

"It's very hard to prove, because if you have the client from whom the children are estranged, you don't have a child willing to cooperate with the process, and that's where most of the proof would be," O'Reilly said.

 

efending against a charge

 

These same strategies, and a few others, are useful if unfounded allegations of alienation are leveled against your client.

"Obviously they have the burden to prove the client's doing something," said O'Reilly. "It's not, 'The child doesn't talk to me, res ipsa it's your fault.' You have a little bit of advantage."

First, make sure your client always takes the high road. Although the natural instinct of clients is to become indignant and defend themselves vehemently, protesting too loudly could undermine their credibility in the eyes of the court, said Gallagher.

Instead, develop an action plan for how your client can build a stronger relationship with the children. Change any behavior that is suspect. Have clients tell the judge that while they don't feel there is evidence to support the allegation, they are seeking the help of a professional as a precaution, and are prepared to change any behavior that is deemed inappropriate.

"Who is not confident in a parent who is going to do and say that?" Gallagher asked.

But just as in the case of the accuser, the most powerful weapon for a client who is accused of alienation is the psychological expert.

"A good forensic expert has credibility because that person doesn't represent your guy and doesn't represent the other party - he's appointed by the court," said Tom Carnes of Carnes Ely in Houston.

Third-party witnesses can also be a powerful weapon in court.

"Try to line up witnesses that would have had the opportunity to see [the parent] interact with the child. Teachers, scout leaders, dance teachers, karate teachers - people who see them during times when parents let their guard down and can say, 'I've never seen Dad say anything bad about Mom or Mom say anything bad about Dad,'" Stevens suggested.

Finally, Carnes suggests that lawyers request more visits between the targeted parent and child in an effort to strengthen the relationship between them.

Of course, the best defense against an alienation charge is to make sure it's never made in the first place. Advise your client not to get in the middle of disputes between the child and the other parent, O'Reilly advised. If a child refuses to go with the non-custodial parent, the custodial parent should insist. He or she should tell the child that the judge has required the visit.

"I encourage my clients to act reasonably, assume anything they do or say could be shown to the judge - or better yet, that the judge is standing there watching," said Stevens. "I don't know if that's great advice or I've just had good clients, but I haven't had many alienation claims alleged against my clients."

 

Keep your sanity

 

Custody cases are among the most frustrating cases a lawyer takes on, O'Reilly said.

Although he said he doesn't duck under his desk when a potential client walks into his office with an alienation claim, "there's certainly a gastro-intestinal response that says, 'Oh jeez.'"

And there's more than your professional satisfaction at stake. Choosing the wrong clients could damage your firm's reputation.

"We represent the alleged perpetrator more often, but we make sure we think they're not a pervert or hitting their kids before we ever take them on," said Carnes. "If we take people who are in the gray area, the court is going to develop a different view of us over time."

Stevens is also careful to take cases he believes in strongly.

"It's not worth it to me to deal with clients who are acting deliberately," he said. "If they're going to do that to their child's parent, I'm going to have a problem with them at some point."

But that approach concerns Pradell, who worries it will make it difficult for the parent who really is guilty of alienation to find adequate counsel. He believes lawyers should take the assertions of prospective clients at face value, while maintaining a willingness to fire any client who wants them to do something unethical.

To maintain his sanity, Carnes periodically takes time off from custody cases and concentrates on his business litigation practice.

As gut-wrenching as custody cases can be, Pradell said there is something that keeps him coming back for more. He recalled a case he took on when he was starting to burn out after 15 years of family law.

His client was a father who was awarded custody of his child and an unborn sibling because the mother and her boyfriend physically abused the child. The woman disappeared before the birth. But many months later, Pradell received a call from the police in Washington, who had just raided the home of the mother and boyfriend. The officer found a copy of the signed order giving custody of the unborn child to Pradell's client. The baby girl had a broken arm, but doctors expected her to be okay. The state confiscated the child and delivered her to her father.

Six months ago, Pradell, who is also a magician, performed a show at the little girl's birthday party. "At the end of the show I sat with her and I said, 'I knew you before you were born,' and she goes, 'You must be magic.'"

"That case changed me - now I know I make a difference."

By Amy Johnson Conner Contributing writer


Jewish women look to courts to obtain traditional divorce decree

SOURCE: Lisa J. Huriash South Florida  SUN SENTINEL

Freedom will come soon, in the form of a handwritten paper with 12 lines of Hebrew and Aramaic.

Since Karen Gruber-Colp's marriage came apart a year ago with a divorce filing, her ex-husband has failed to give her a "get," a Jewish divorce document that permits her to remarry.
On Valentine's Day, she appealed to Broward Circuit Judge Jack Tuter to force her ex-husband to give her the document. Tuter's order requires him to comply by Thursday."Thank God," Colp said after the hearing. "This was huge. This could have gone on for the rest of my life."

The 35-year-old Colp, of Dania Beach, is one of a growing number of observant Jewish women throughout the country turning to the secular civil courts to fix what religious leaders are calling a crisis in the community. For the last year, Colp has been an "agunah," a Hebrew word meaning "a woman chained to a dead marriage."

Observant women need their husbands to grant them a divorce. But some Jewish leaders say angry men are keeping their wives in limbo to get a greater share of money or property or just for spite.

To help women like Colp, the South Florida chapter of the Women's International Zionist Organization, or WIZO, is proposing legislation that would impact the distribution of assets in a divorce if one spouse imposes "barriers to remarriage" that are either religious or secular.

The legislation has one sponsor so far: state Sen. Dave Aronberg, D-Greenacres. If WIZO finds a House sponsor, the issue could be debated in Tallahassee in March.

"This to me is not a religious issue as much as it is a fairness issue," Aronberg said.

New York has had what is known as a "Get Law" since the early 1980s. It provides that a civil divorce will not be granted unless all impediments to remarriage have been removed. Legislators in Maryland are considering a similar bill.

Others with get laws include Scotland, Canada, England and South Africa. In Israel, where the religious courts have enforcement powers, men who refuse to give a get can lose a driver's license, the ability to hold public office, their credit cards, bank accounts and civil service jobs. They can even be sent to prison.

In Israel's most notorious case, a Yemenite Jew spent 35 years in prison until he died, saying he would never give his wife a get. His wife was 65 when he died and she married a month later, said Sharon Shenhav, a Jerusalem-based women's rights lawyer.

"The problem exists in every Jewish community in the world," she said. "When you're getting divorced, people aren't usually too happy with each other and there's a lot of anger." She said a man holding out on the get "is sheer blackmail."

To help the women, more rabbis are encouraging couples to sign a pre-nuptial agreement containing sanctions for not signing a get, said Rabbi David Lehrfield, of the Young Israel synagogue in North Miami Beach, and some are even refusing to marry couples unless both sign.

In addition, some Jewish newspapers publish the names of men who refuse to give their wives a get in an effort to embarrass them into compliance. For example, on Feb. 9 The Jewish Press, a national newspaper, published the names of nine men who had been ordered to give their wives a get dating back to 2002.

Also, the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance in New York began a telephone support program this past fall, said Batya Levin, the co-chairwoman of the Agunah Task Force. "It's hand holding," said Levin. "Women in this situation get to feel so lonely."

And Yehoshua Zev, the executive director of ORA (The Organization for the Resolution of Agunot) in New York, said he organizes "social pressure" to the men "to convince them to fulfill their moral, ethic and religious obligation to free their wives."

First ORA appeals to their common sense, Zev said. If that doesn't work, ORA offers to pay the estimated $500 to have a scribe write the get. The next step is supplying names to Jewish newspapers. In a last resort, the group will have men demonstrate in front of his home and work place.

A rally this week is being contemplated for the front of one man's house in south Palm Beach County, although ORA declined to release details about the man. "He hasn't given his wife a `get' for 10 years," Zev said. "We worked it out with the police. The goal isn't to harm the person. It's to educate him he has to do the right thing."

Colp said her life has been on hold until now. Without a get, "no rabbi will marry you," she said. "And in most religious communities, most observant Jews will not even date you if you don't have a get -- you are considered to be married and you are considered to be committing adultery. So I can't even date."

2007 Tax Tips

SOURCE: The State This year, the deadline is April 17 for federal and state returns.

If you were recently divorced and are paying or receiving alimony under a divorce decree or agreement, you need to consider the tax implication for your 2006 federal income tax return.

Alimony payments received from your spouse or former spouse are taxable to you in the year you receive them. Because no taxes are withheld from alimony payments, you may need to make estimated tax payments or increase the amount withheld from your paycheck.

Alimony payments you make under a divorce or separation instrument are deductible if certain requirements are met. Any payments not required by such a decree or agreement do not qualify as deductible alimony payments.

Child support is never deductible. If your divorce decree or other written instrument or agreement calls for alimony and child support, and you pay less than the total required, the payments apply first to child support. Any remaining amount is then considered alimony.


The Secret to Divorce-Proof Finances

From the Motley FoolMotley fool
By Dayana Yochim

March 1, 2007

Do you trust your significant other with the family checkbook?

Half of those in a committed relationship answered "yes" to that loaded question -- posed in a Harris Interactive survey sponsored by Redbook and Lawyers.com -- and back up their conviction by commingling all of their bank accounts with their better halves.

So, how does your financial union stack up?

Secret shoppers
Even in the best of times, money can be a conversational third rail in a relationship. Most couples, whether married, engaged, or cohabitating, cop to having an occasional tiff about the family finances.

Lots of couples butt heads over their spending priorities. I've been the on-call referee for my coupled pals in many such spats -- I hear things like "You will never guess what he bought!" and "Can you believe what she paid for that?!"

Want to keep the peace about spending? Simply stay mum. At least that's how three out of 10 adults say they deal with this point of contention. (One in 10 admits that a secret retail-therapy excursion exceeded $1,000.)

Oh, but you want your union (financial and otherwise) to last, right? Then it's time to come clean. Your money lies may actually be the most dangerous ones you tell: One-quarter of respondents to the Harris survey said that financial fidelity is more important to them than romantic fidelity. (Me? I insist on "all of the above.")

If your money tete-a-tetes typically result in one of you sleeping on the couch, rest easy. A few simple strategies can strengthen your financial union, starting today.

The most powerful relationship rule of thumb
Want the best result ever for your next money fight? Skip straight to the make-up part -- you know, when tempers have softened and you're committed to coming to a resolution -- before the bad vibes even start brewing.

This pre-emptive "just-in-case" conversation is one of the best ways to divorce-proof your finances. You're calm, cool, rational, and looking really cute to your Sig. O. Scheduling your discussion about a sensitive money issue before it's fodder for a fight allows you to plan a nice meal (and line up a babysitter and a dog-walker). Even better, it sets up you two lovebirds to be partners, not adversaries -- and, another bonus, it will save you many sleepless nights on the couch.

You don't have to take my word for it. This relationship rule of thumb is supported by one of the foremost negotiation experts -- Daniel Shapiro, co-author of Beyond Reason -- with whom I recently talked about handling conflict in ways that will actually improve your relationship.

He and Roger Fisher, of Getting to Yes fame, have found that emotions can be a powerful negotiation tool. Pre-empting conflicts while addressing key emotional triggers is one of the most effective ways to come to more fruitful resolutions. This tactic works not just with politicians, CEOs, and hostage negotiators, but also with everyday folks hashing out money conflicts over dinner. (Check out my interview and a real-life couples negotiation in the February issue of Motley Fool Green Light with this free 30-day trial.)

Pre-fight prep
Not every money issue needs to turn into a formal financial summit. Instead, focus your next money powwow on a few of your biggest and most sensitive financial concerns.

After that, establish some "rules" to prevent everyday money matters from turning into nonstop opportunities for bickering. For example, pick a dollar amount you can both blow each week without having to run your purchases by one another. Set up decision-making buckets in which you agree to consult with each other and come to a spending or saving decision before making a move.

When in doubt, Shapiro advises using "ACBD" as your automatic default. It stands for "Always Consult Before Deciding." (It's not to be confused with the "Act now; apologize later" decision-making approach that may fly a few times but is statistically unlikely to lead to make-up nookie.) And it may be the single rule of thumb that helps keep the peace in your household.

For richer ... or even richer
Managing money as a twosome doesn't have to be a hand-wringing affair. For a host of other relationship rules of thumb and other tips on negotiation tactics you can use with your boss, a store clerk, or your spouse, check out Motley Fool Green Light (here's that one-month free-trial link again). Also in the February issue, my co-advisor and investing counterpart, Shannon Zimmerman, serves up some strategies that will help couples harmoniously merge opposite investing styles within a single nest egg and offers his-and-hers investment ideas in "Venus & Mars Go (Stock) Shopping."