Showing posts from December, 2011

After divorce don't allow children to become master manipulators

As a general rule, parents, after divorce, don't communicate well with each other. If they could communicate well, they probably wouldn't have gotten divorced. This lack of communication creates a vacuum. Just as nature abhors a vacuum, so do children. Unless the parents act to avoid problems, children will fill the vacuum with manipulations.

A typical manipulation could occur around bed time. While the couple was together, the child's bed time was 8:30 P.M. One night, at Dad's house the child may ask “Why do I have to go to bed at 8:30 when Mom lets me stay up until 9?” Of course, Mom doesn't but Dad doesn't know that. Dad feels that he has to compete with Mom for the child's affections and says that the child can now go to bed at 9:00. The child then tries the same thing with Mom with similar success.
Of course, the answer is parents should communicate with each other and avoid competing for affections. A simple response to a child could be…

Security Deposit Law—Landlords Beware!

     Recently, Judge Young of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, wrote an opinion interpreting the Massachusetts Security Deposit law, G.L. c. 186, § 15B. In the case of Hermida v. Archstone, (Civil Action No. 10-12083-WGY) the court addressed an issue under the portion of the law that states that a landlord cannot require a tenant to pay any money at the inception of a tenancy except (i) rent for the first full month of occupancy; (ii) rent for the last full month of occupancy calculated at the same rate as the first month; (iii) a security deposit equal to the first month's rent; and (iv) the purchase and installation cost for a key and lock. The landlord in this case collected an “amenity use fee.” An amenity use fee was for use of a pool, gym, and outdoor grill. The landlord claimed the fee was optional and the tenant claimed that they were never told that the fee was not required. The court found that the landlord violated the statute by imposin…