Court hearing, results and observations

What a great day yesterday was. Not without it’s worries, but it ended up awesome!

I found out on Thursday that my court hearing for the temporary relief had been moved from 20 January to 13 January, which was the original date for the court hearing.  I received from my lawyer the tentative finding of the court on Thursday and found that all was right with the world, according to that paperwork, except that he wouldn’t have to pay for my cell phone bill.  I asked my lawyer a few questions about the finding, did the numbers and asked him to see if I could get the cell phone covered.  He said he would do so and told me to meet him at the courthouse at 9 am sharp the next morning.  I asked if I could bring a friend (not a guy!) and he said that would be fine.  So, my “sister” (I’ve known her since we were 6!) said she would meet me there.

I got up yesterday morning, go the kids off to school and then got ready to go to court.  Showered, put on makeup (not a daily occurence for me), and dressed in black slacks, a cami, nice jacket, hose, low black heels and jewelry.  I was ready to present myself to a judge in a county superior court.

My sister showed up in a business suit, looking very smart.  Black slacks, black jacket and a beautiful royal purple shirt, with hair looking great and makeup just so.  She was also sporting some beautiful jewelry.

My lawyer came in in a suit.  Almost everyone else waiting to be heard before the judge came in business attire. There was a variety of nicely dressed folks that were heard, with my sis and I admiring handbags and neck scarves.

And then, there was my husband.

He showed up for court in baggy, too big washed out jeans, a short sleeve polo shirt and tennis shoes.  In concession to the fact that it was just below freezing yesterday, he wore his Philadelphia Eagles jacket that he got in Korea.  His hair looked unkempt and I’m not sure that he shaved.

He looked like a bum.

If I had been his lawyer, I would have chewed his butt out for not showing up in his uniform.  In fact, I figured (as did everyone else I spoke with) that he would come to court in his dress blues.  But he didn’t and he looked horrible.

Then, as we were waiting for our case to be called, he fell asleep in the courtroom.  Then, when our case was finally called, he slumped in the chair at the Defendant’s table, like he was hanging out and drinking a beer.

It was shocking.

If I still thought that his actions reflected upon me, I would have been embarassed.  If I had been his lawyer, I would have fired him as a client.  It was just that bad.

It took awhile for us to be called, but not as long as I thought it would.  There were a lot of people there, but come to find out, 8 of them were there for the same case.  So, we moved along fairly quickly.  We had to wait for the lawyers, not the judge.  Both of our lawyers had other hearings that day in the courthouse, so they were trying to be two places at once.  We were sitting before the judge by around 1030.

We had originally asked for about $4000 in monthly support and that he take all of the bills with him until the next hearing, moving expenses, and legal fees, and that I would receive half of the tax rebate (which he wanted fully so that he could pay his credit card bill, which is what he charged his lawyer to).

The tentative ruling found that he would have to take all of the bills, except cell phone, and pay me around $2700 a month in alimony and child support, cover my moving expenses (which will be about $3200) and my legal fees (to be determined at a later date when my lawyer has filed an invoice) and that the tax return would be held in trust until a later date. The ruling also said that we would have to go to mediation to discuss visitation schedules and that he would have the three day weekends and that I would have to drive about 45 minutes to meet him to exchange the kids (he has to drive over 4 hours).

The only thing I wanted changed was the cell phone bill.  Everything else sounded just fine to me, even if I was a little disappointed with the money.

His lawyer made a long, convoluted and disjointed argument about why the asshole couldn’t afford to pay all that money, yadda, yadda, yadda.  The judge slapped him down saying that the asshole couldn’t just leave us without housing and that he was going to be able, even with the judgement against him, to find adequate housing for himself when he moved.  The judge refused to take into consideration the fact that the housing allowance would be lower in VA than it is in NJ and even told him that it was, basically, his own stupid fault for asking to move to VA and that there was no way that I had had anything to do with asking to move (the asshole had tried to make a case that we had agreed to move to VA, as a joint decision).

Basically he got spanked like a baby.

I enjoyed every minute of it.

Now, here’s where it gets weird.

We had to go out into the lobby to wait for the final ruling paperwork.  My sis and I sat on the far side of the lobby from the asshole.  I mean, he had just gotten spanked and I figured (as did she) that he would be in a bad mood.  After about 20 minutes of waiting, he walks over and starts making casual conversation.  He sits down and we start talking like nothing had happened.  Like he had not just gone over $5000 in debt and that he wouldn’t be paying me almost $3000 a month in alimony and child support (the alimony is higher than the child support and I find that hilarious!).  I asked him, politely, to help me fill out the paperwork that I had to fill out to get the money directly withdrawn from his paycheck and he actually helped me with some of the information.

I felt like I had fallen down the rabbit hole and I kept expecting the Queen of Hearts to come around the corner.  It was freaking surreal.  It was so weird that, when he came out from his other hearing, my lawyer even commented on it.

Oh well, made it easier on me, that’s for sure.

So the relief is in place.  I’ll be making it just fine with the subbing jobs I’ll be picking up.

Oh, and as an added bonus, I heard back from another job I had had my eye on.  They told me that the departure date of the lady whose position I’m supposed to be taking has been changed and they don’t know when it will be now, although they think it will be before March.  They still want me to work for them and she told me what paperwork I need to get ready for them to start their paperwork.

It’s all starting to come together!


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