Friday, December 30, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Relocation in Tennessee

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice discusses the importance of Relocation. Does the moving primary parent have a good reason to go? Mr. Rice recommends that you want to do what is in the best interest of the children.

To view the entire video, please follow the link below:

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Clerking at Rice Law: by Jessica Farmer

I recently finished another round of final exams (Insert sigh of relief here). Fortunately for me, Larry and Nick Rice, having once been law students themselves, are very understanding and cooperative when it comes to my school schedule. They allowed me to take a couple of weeks off work to prepare for and take my final exams.

While preparing for final exams, I tried to wrap up all of my assignments and make sure that there were not too many outstanding tasks while I was out of the office. While doing this, I learned something very interesting: that is NOT possible! There is no “stopping point” in an ongoing case. There is no good time to take a couple of weeks away from the office because cases, much like people, do not stop.

Attorneys have to walk a fine line. They have to balance being available for their clients, whose cases have continued movement and are often unpredictable with taking a mental vacation to recharge their batteries. Attorneys need time to recharge if they are going to be available for their clients who need them.

How do you strike that balance? Well, that is something I am still learning. However, I have really good teachers who seem to have mastered the art of balancing, and I look forward to my years of learning from them.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Property Division in Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee Divorce Attorney Larry Rice gives an overview of how to divide property in divorce cases. He explains the two different types of property: separate property and marital property. Larry Rice defines separate property as any property acquired prior to the marriage or received as a gift or inheritance during the marriage. He also discusses marital property and states that judges tend to consider other factors such as income and separate property when determining how to divide the spouse's marital property.

To view the entire video, please follow the link below:

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Clerking at Rice Law: by Chelsea Conn

When people ask me how my finals went, I usually just tell them they were “OK.” I leave out the part where my neck and back ached from being hunched over a desk for 12 hours a day, my knees hurt because I hadn’t moved in weeks, my head ached from cramming so hard, and my jaw was sore from grinding my teeth due to stress. I even got a blister yesterday from wearing normal shoes because I had been wearing house slippers to school for weeks.

Everyone knows that law school is difficult. I find that law school itself is not as difficult as studying for finals. The hours poured into studying for just one test can be kind of ridiculous. Nothing feels better, however, than opening up an exam and being able to spot all the issues. For a law student, the most refreshing feeling in the world is leaving an exam thinking you have over-studied, and that the exam was really not all that bad.

I see this process repeated in the lives of attorneys. For example, yesterday was a hectic day at the office when both Larry and Nick had to go to court. Everyone in the office was making sure they had everything they needed. The clerks and legal assistants loaded boxes of documents into the courthouse. The amount of preparation that goes into trial or any appearance before a judge is astronomical, much like studying for a final exam.

Trial is every attorney’s final exam, and the judge is the professor- you will either pass or fail.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Pendente Lite Hearings in Tennessee

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice discusses the purpose of Pendente Lite Support hearings in Tennessee. Pendente Lite, Latin for "pending litigation," is a good way to establish temporary child support until the final divorce hearing. Attorney Larry Rice explains that the Divorce Referee only considers income, expenses and the Child Support guidelines when deciding temporary support at the Pendente Lite hearings. Other factors that would contribute to granting a fault divorce in Tennessee do not hold much weight at a Pendente Lite hearing.

To view this entire video, follow the link below:

Friday, December 16, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Parenting Issues in Tennessee

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice discusses the importance of not involving children in the divorce process. He recommends still parenting together by emphasizing each parents' love for their children and by not criticizing the other spouse in front of the children. Larry Rice also addresses the main components and faults of the Child Support Worksheet in Tennessee. He concludes by reiterating his point to parent together and to not talk badly about the other spouse.

To view the entire video, follow the link below:

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Associate Special: by Erin O'Dea

Although I wrote the blog entry last week, a lot has happened to me this week, so I thought I’d share.

1) I’m the owner of a new dog, named Quincy, adopted from the Collierville Animal Shelter last Friday.

2) While at court this week, someone looked at me and assumed I was a lawyer for the first time. For those of you who have never met me or seen me, I’m 29, but I look closer to 16, so this was a big accomplishment for me to appear to be a grown-up. An example: I went to the movies with my Father not too long ago, and the guy selling us tickets looks at my Dad and says, “One adult and one child.” So of course my Father replies, “Uh, yes. Thank you,” and then looks at me like he just won the lottery and got away with murder at the same time. Dad is a coupon cutting, penny saving, “jeans never cost that much in my day” kind of guy, and I love him for it, but seriously Dad, it was just a couple bucks off of a movie ticket. So, like I said, it is a big deal to me when people think I’m an adult.

3) I also went to court for the first time BY MYSELF this week… I was just entering orders, but still, I had to talk to the Judge, and those court rooms are built to be intimidating! I was so afraid I was going to mess something so simple up, and no one would be able to fix it… (Please insert sound of impending doom here.) Fortunately, everything went smoothly. I did not fall as I walked up to the podium. My voice did not crack as I addressed the Judge. I did not forget that I could not hand my orders directly to the Judge, and get tackled or shot by the Bailiff. So, all together, I’d say I had a pretty successful first run. Murphy’s Law did not take over this time, though I’m sure Murphy is just waiting for me to be overly confident and under prepared…

4) I have also been told that I will be the lead during an actual upcoming mediation… That’s right, I’m slowly moving away from baby attorney status, and getting closer to playing the role of an adult attorney. Unfortunately, that role also comes with more liability, and nightmares about accidental ethical violations, so I guess there’s a trade-off. All I know is I’m going to be really prepared for this mediation, and ask all of the attorneys above me A LOT of questions over the next month. It might be annoying, but I’m trying to keep Murphy’s Law at bay. I have my work cut out for me.

Overall, this has been a week full of firsts and changes. It’s strange and energizing to look at events while they are happening, and know that specific memory is likely to be burned in your brain forever. I have had a week full of those moments. So, until next time… if there is a next time… this could be my last blog entry since we’ll be hiring new clerks after the holidays (memory made). Thank you again for reading my ramblings.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Marital Dissolution Agreements in Tennessee

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice discusses how spouses should approach negotiating before signing the Marital Dissolution Agreement (MDA). He explains the complexity of the MDA and advises couples to seek counsel when it is time to draft the MDA. Larry Rice also suggests the appropriate setting for a successful negotiation between spouses before signing the Marital Dissolution Agreement.

To view the entire video, please follow the link below:

Friday, December 9, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Legal Separation and Annulment in Tennessee

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice defines legal separation and annulment. He explains that couples usually resort to legal separation because they are avoiding accepting the fact that the marriage is over and they need a divorce. However, under rare circumstances legal separation can be a good thing. Larry Rice also discusses annulments and describes them as alternatives to divorce when you find that the marriage was void from the beginning.

To view the entire video, follow the link below:

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

"Be Prepared.": by Erin O'Dea

“Be Prepared.”

You can thank the Scouts for that little gem. I was only a Girl Scout for a few days. (Yes, “be prepared” was also the Girl Scout motto.) I didn’t like the girly badges they tried to make us earn, like the “knitting” or “baking” badge. Although, those two badges would go on a short list of “cool hipster hobbies” these days. I’m no hipster; I’m not even hip. I wasn’t then either. I wanted to go camping or make fire; apparently those badges were only for the boys. I guess, as girls, we were supposed to “be prepared” for domestic bliss… Domestic bliss was not and is not my calling, but the Scout motto has re-emerged as my battle cry.
As a “baby attorney,” it is hard to always be prepared for everything, which makes it all the more important to work every day to make sure I am prepared. Mr. Rice teaches us to prepare for whatever might come our way. We walk into court or mediation with more equipment than the average U2 roadie. We have the paper file in boxes stacked on a dolly, three copies of all authority or documents we may have cited to in our pleadings, a laptop with the digital file, the digital file on a jump drive, a small printer, a small scanner, a bag of nuts (in case Mr. Rice’s blood sugar drops), pencils, pens, highlighters, sticky notes, tabs, extension cords, blank paper, notepads, the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure, the local rules, etc. I could keep listing, but you have to buy Mr. Rice’s 25th Anniversary Edition of The Complete Guide to Divorce, coming in 2012, if you want that kind of priceless knowledge!
Now, you may ask, “How does a bag of nuts or a printer benefit my client and me?” When you and your client have been at mediation all day, and the other side is suddenly ready to sign off on your Marital Dissolution Agreement and Proposed Parenting Plan, you’re ready! You can have a little protein to help focus your thoughts, pull up the previous proposed MDA and PPP from your digital file, make the changes the parties have agreed to, print off the updated MDA and PPP, and have the opposing party sign them right then and there. Boom! You’re done, and more importantly, your client is happy! The painful divorce process has come to a close for him or her. The other side didn’t have an opportunity to go home, change his or her mind, and decide he or she wanted to continue fighting over the hand-painted commemorative Elvis plate from QVC.
So, be prepared! Take everything you might need with you when you go to court or any place where you may settle an issue for your client. Your Dad isn’t going to yell at you for over-packing on this trip, but your client will thank you with referrals!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Grounds for Divorce in Tennessee

Attorney Larry Rice discusses the various legal grounds for divorce including, but not limited to, adultery, habitual abuse of alcohol or narcotics, living separately for more than two years, willful or malicious desertion, conviction of a felony, bigamy, and inappropriate marital conduct, which is the most common ground for divorce. He also defines fault and no-fault divorces, explaining the differences between the two types.

To view the entire video, please follow the link below:

Friday, December 2, 2011

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice: on Domestic Violence in Tennessee

Memphis Divorce Attorney Larry Rice discusses the twists and turns of abusive relationships and the vicious cycle that couples in violent relationships become caught in. He also discusses the effects of spousal abuse on children and how the parent can take initiative and get out of the situation before the effects on the children and family escalate.

To view the complete video, please follow the link below:

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Clerking at Rice Law: by Blair Beaty

My boss, Mr. Rice, grew up around his father’s general practice and saw cases ranging from insurance claims, to malpractice, and, of course, divorce. In today’s world of law, however, the general practice is on the decline. The most obvious reason for this is that a specialized firm is, simply put, just better.

Let’s take family law, for example. When it comes to divorce, there are several advantages in hiring an attorney who specializes in family law.

First, the level of expertise that a specialized family law attorney brings to the court room is most likely unmatchable to an attorney at a general practice. The family law attorney has probably taken specific courses in (and out of) school directed at the practice of family law. They see cases day in and day out regarding one topic: divorce. These attorneys eat, sleep, and breath family law. Would you hire

Secondly, as mentioned before, the family law attorney sees divorce cases everyday. This allows the attorney to build objectivity and maintain an emotional detachment from your case. Don’t get me wrong, the attorney will definitely care about and respect your situation. However, maintaining their cool and calm composure will allow them to “see the forest through the trees” and ultimately achieve the best outcome for you. No one wants their attorney sobbing louder than them in a courtroom.

Thirdly, a firm specialized in family law will be extremely efficient in that field. The attorney will know the exact steps that must be taken and will be able to anticipate any problems. The attorney will be able to streamline a process that is already difficult and get you through it as quick as possible.

Lastly, the family law attorney will be familiar with the judges, court clerks, and other local divorce attorneys. The familiarity will speed the process along and possibly give you insight into the workings of your soon-to-be ex-spouse’s attorney.