By David Steinberg / For The Journal
Sunday, November 8th, 2015 at 12:02am
Some might remember Tammy Wynette singing the song “D-I-V-O-R-C-E.” It speaks of heartbreak: “Our d-i-v-o-r-c-e becomes final today/Me and Little J-o-e will be going away/I love you both and this will be pure H-E-double-L for me/Oh, I wish that we could stop this d-i-v-o-r-c-e …”
Divorce is as emotional a legal process now as it was when the song came out in 1968. The process can be anguishing for the litigants, painful for the extended families and upsetting for friends.
“Divorce is a very scary process for anyone going through it. It’s unclear, unfamiliar to the litigant,” said Sandra Morgan Little, one of the four authors of the new book “Divorce in New Mexico.”
It’s a resource book for people considering a divorce or going through one in the state, Little said.
And it can be valuable for families and support systems as well, added Roberta S. Batley, another of the authors.
Seventeen chapters cover a multiplicity of issues relevant to the process. The information in each chapter is presented in clear, easy-to-understand questions and answers. In all, there are 360 legal questions answered.
Here are a handful of chapter titles with a sample question from each of those chapters:
• “Working with Your Attorney” (Q. Should I hire a ‘bulldog” – a very aggressive attorney?)
• “Child Custody” (Q. I am seeing a therapist. Will that hurt my chances of getting custody?)
• “Division of Debts” (Q. How is credit card debt divided?)
• “Emergency: When You Fear Your Spouse.” (Q. I’m afraid my spouse is going to take all the money out of the bank accounts and leave me with nothing. What can I do?)
Litigants or potential litigants can use the questions and answers to shine a light on their own situation and to help them in raising and expanding on matters with an attorney.
“We did the book because there was no book with current information on the subject for the general public,” Morgan Little said.”Each of us worked on different parts of the book. We all edited each other’s work for accuracy and truthfulness and style. We needed it to be … in a style for the general public to understand.”
Not only does the book offer readers information, but it is neutrally presented.
All four Albuquerque-based authors – Morgan Little, Batley, Jan Gilman-Tepper and Tiffany Oliver Leigh are veteran practitioners in family law in New Mexico.
“The book touches all four corners of our state. We felt it was valuable to the New Mexico community at large,” Batley said.
The book is available on the LGT Family Law.com website for $14.00.