With more than 25 years of family law experience, including her knowledge of crisis counseling, Jessica Woll is expertly qualified to guide her clients through the tumultuous experience of divorce and custody disputes. Her finesse at combining knowledge of the many facets of the law, with equal parts compassion, creativity and tenacity, has made her a formidable champion for her clients. Jessica is also a fierce advocate for the well-being of children and her mantra for divorcing parents to “remain child-centric at all times” has helped her clients to remember to keep the best interests of their children in the forefront.
In addition to her law degree from Wayne State University, Jessica holds a degree from the University of Michigan in International Relations and Economic Development, and has lived abroad in England, Japan and Thailand. Her love of travel and experiencing the many cultures of the world has given her a unique perspective both professionally and as an active member of the diverse community that makes up Metro Detroit. These skills have propelled Jessica to the forefront of her field.
He or she was once your sweetheart, but that bond has been legally broken through divorce. Still, is it possible to stay friends with your ex? In my experience as a divorce and family law attorney for 20 years, I think it depends on the couple and whether children are involved. When there are no children from the marriage, former married couples sometimes remain friends, but usually go their separate ways, often not seeing each other again or letting years pass. However, it’s a different story with children involved. When ex-spouses are co-parents, they remain in contact with each other […]
Usually around the holidays I write about survival tips for divorced parents and how to ensure that your children enjoy the season with as little post-divorce drama as possible. But for this December posting, I was thinking about how many people wait until after January 1st to file for divorce. So, if divorce is on your mind during the holidays, let’s take a look at what a best case scenario looks like. Understand that I do not take the issue of divorce lightly under any circumstance. I know the pain that is involved in making the decision to end a […]
As a divorce attorney, many of my cases involve infidelity. Because of this fact, I see patterns of behavior displayed by cheating spouses. Here are nine (9) signs to look out for when you suspect your spouse is not being faithful: 1. Your spouse purchases new lingerie/under garments when the last time that occurred was on your honeymoon. 2. Your spouse carries his/her cellular phone with them always and freaks out when you casually pick up their telephone to make a quick call. 3. Your spouse adds a pass code to all of his/her electronic devises. 4. Your spouse seems […]
You hear an awful lot about people obtaining prenuptial agreements before their wedding to protect their money, but what about a prenup to protect you from your spouse’s debt? Ever since the economy went down hill, people have been more pragmatic about the accumulation of debt, especially debt created by another, even if that debt is created by the person they love. As I stated in a prior Blog, a couple engaged to be married can include in their marriage contract (a/k/a “the prenuptial agreement”), basically anything that is legal. An agreement to travel the world or even jump out […]
It’s June – the most popular month for a couple to get married. As a divorce attorney, the wedding season typically brings in clients in need of a prenuptial agreement. But I can tell you from experience, prenuptial agreements are not for everyone. Therefore, this blog posting will explore the pros and cons of prenuptial agreements based upon my personal knowledge of drafting them, enforcing them and having them set aside. However, before I begin my list, a basis understanding of what a prenuptial agreement actually is needs to be discussed. A prenuptial agreement (sometimes referred to as an antenuptial […]
At times, I receive calls from clients wherein they confide in me that they are afraid their spouse might lie and claim they are physically abusive in order to get them removed from the marital home during the pendency of a divorce. Typically, both parties have a right to continue to live in their residence during a divorce proceeding. The exception of this rule is when one spouse has physically assaulted their partner and the police remove the offending party from the residence. When I have a client that is living in constant fear of being falsely accused of domestic […]
Addictions, to such things as alcohol and drugs, are a contributing factor in a high number of divorce cases. (I reference alcohol in this Blog, however, all of the points also apply to a person with a drug addiction.) ALCOHOL: Proving someone is an alcoholic, when they say they are not, might be difficult. If you know your spouse has a drinking problem, but he or she is going to deny it, what can you do to prove it in order to protect your children? COURT ORDERS: Usually the burden is on the accusing parent to prove that the other […]
An affluent business man, we will call Larry, retained my services to represent him in his divorce action. Larry is the father of three young children. When the parties’ youngest child was only three (3) months old, Larry’s wife, who we will refer to as Lolita, left him for a man she met at yoga. Larry was devastated when Lolita filed for divorce and requested sole physical custody of their children. He felt cheated in many ways but was most saddened by the prospect of not beginning and ending the day with his children on a daily basis. After Larry […]
Back before the economy tanked, many of my divorce clients owned homes that had equity. Usually, the marital residence was an asset and not a liability. When homes were worth money, a divorcing couple had options. One party could buy out the other’s interest in the property, or the home could be sold and the wife and husband could divide the equity realized from the sale. Sadly, in this day and age the marital home is rarely a marital asset, but is now more often than not a marital debt. So what can you do?????? First, you need to decide […]
With the troubled Michigan economy, many parents are forced to consider employment opportunities outside of the state. If an out-of-state move is necessary, a divorced parent will need to request court permission to leave the state if they share legal custody of their minor child with the other parent. Before the economy went awry, a request to move out of state with a child was not easily granted in a case where both parents were active participants in a child’s life. However, nowadays with more and more people losing jobs, the necessity of an out-of-state move has become a reality […]
As we all know, the ability to access information is quick, cheap and everywhere. Naturally, this access can have a direct impact on your divorce. I cannot tell you how many people have learned about their spouse’s affair by stumbling upon an inappropriate e-mail on the home computer, reviewing a text message from the other man or woman after hearing the ding of their wife’s or husband’s Blackberry in the middle of the night, or by simply paying a little more attention to the cell phone charges on the monthly bill. I am sure that most of us have said […]
My name is Jessica Woll and I have been practicing divorce and family law for close to two decades. The job has taught me a great deal about human beings going through what is often one of the worst experiences in their lives. In my Blog I will share my client’s stories, while maintaining their right to privacy. I will offer advice, tips and insights based upon these stories. I hope that you find the information beneficial. In this months blog, I will briefly discuss the issue of whether you should file your divorce action first. Most people who call […]
In my experience, under normal circumstances, children are naturally devastated when they learn that their parents are getting a divorce. It does not matter how old or young a child is; the news is heartbreaking. Even children in their 20’s and older often feel that their “rock” or home base has been taken away from them. So, if divorce is eminent, how do you tell your child? In my practice I am often asked this question, so here are some thoughts: Older children may feel betrayed by their parents if they learn about the divorce after the filing. Telling your children […]
For my fifth post I will focus on why people stay in unhappy marriages and thoughts to consider when deciding whether to stay or go. Here is a list of some of the main reasons why people stay in unhappy marriages: CHILDREN: Unless you have children, it is difficult to understand why a person would stay married for the sake of his/her child. Having a child myself, I can see why a person would not want to give up living under the same roof as their child in exchange for remaining in a crummy marriage. However, when abuse of any […]