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Divorce process in Brazil

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Matt View Drop Down
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    Posted: 13 March 2012 at 01:16
Sad to say but I have just left the house of my now-to-be ex-wife, with there being no chance of salvaging the marriage.

So far I have received mixed advise and don't know the first thing about the process of separation and divorce. One says you have to formally separate first then can only be legally divorced one year later. Another says that particular law no longer exists and the process is far quicker. So basically I'm looking for clarity and recommendations for lawyers, hopefully that won't break my bank balance as I'm not a big earner.

This is my situation:

I'm a foreign national. Married a Brazilian citizen in the UK 6 years ago. Moved to Brazil 5 years ago. I have PermanÍncia through our children, so I have no visa worries. The kids will obviously stay with the mother, and I have already moved out and am staying with a friend.

Now here's the bother: My ex is more financially successful than me, at least by 2-3 times. She has a business but it's registered in my name as she has a poor credit rating. Even her phone accounts with unpaid bils are registered in my name. She doesn't take a salary but just uses the business bank account as she pleases so I would need someone who is able to determine how much she rightfully earns. The business has caused some serious arguments between us as I never trusted her management of it in regards to taxes, paying employees correctly, etc. And she would never allow me to review the company finances, or at least hire someone to do it. But my main aim is to remove my name from the company and make sure my name is clean as I already know a few clients have sued her before. Wait till you see a judge order a few thousand Reais out of your bank account! So far my name and CNPJ are clean on Serasa Experian. As I stand I have no real intention of taking a share of the company, even though I took the legal risk and did invest money into starting it, and it does actually have a decent value. I want an ex with as little bitterness as possible. But I need legal advise on how to proceed as I don't know the first place to start, and what I should or should not be fighting for.

So anyone know of decent, albeit cheap, lawyers who deal with civil and business issues.

Any advise forum members can provide will be appreciated.

Thanks,

Matt
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sven View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sven Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2012 at 07:20
"She doesn't take a salary but just uses the business bank account as she pleases"

That you need to worry about. If the business fails, that would allow the creditors to come after your personal assets. Profit HAS to be moved to a persOnal account, for personal use.

Divorce has been direct in Brazil for over a year now. Best way is to both get the same lawyer, write up an agreement and have a judge sign off on it.
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Twirly View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Twirly Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2012 at 09:39
^^I divorced a few days after the new divorce law was approved.
It is very easy.
Just do as sven says.
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WENGER View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WENGER Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2012 at 13:15
Just do as Sven says
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Gringodude View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gringodude Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2012 at 13:21
ya, it sounds like you're pretty lose about all your finances and what you put your name on. I'd be careful and try and get your self out of any potential harm, as 7 has mentioned!

sounds exciting! ahha
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sven View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sven Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 March 2012 at 14:29
Originally posted by Gringodude Gringodude wrote:

I'd be careful and try and get your self out of any potential harm


Good advice -1
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Amsterdam View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Amsterdam Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2012 at 12:14
Sven your in box is full my friend
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Matt View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2012 at 12:34
Thanks for the responses guys. Quite glad this this process can be done quick and easy.

I was initailly hesitant, for obvious reasons, to open the company for my ex. But as a loving and kind husband I did it for her. For the last 2 years I've pestering her to resolve the company finances, even trying to get her father involved. Now I couldn't care, just want out, out of the marriage and my name unassociated to the business. She was a very hard-headed woman, never giving me respect, hence I reached my limit.

Still, any recommendatons for a lawyer please let me know. I'm still waiting for a callback from a lawyer recommended to me by my friend, but am open to suggestions.

By the way, what's the process after the divorce? Would I need to contact the Policia Federal, or any other government department, to update my change of marriage status.

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sven View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote sven Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 March 2012 at 12:44
No need to contact the PF.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 April 2012 at 03:20
UPDATE (sorry it took so long):

Divorce will be going through, possibly at the end of next week. I temporarily (verbally) agreed to 30% of my salary (she wanted 36%) in child support and having the kids over every second weekend and once a week night. Kids are aged 5 and 7. But now I'm thinking if what I'm agreeing to won't be too much of a financial burden, too much in favour of the ex. Yes, we're sharing a lawyer, but I feel he's somewhat biased towards her and not considering my situation.

Things that concern me:
1) I have no family here, so support rests on my shoulders when looking after the kids, whereas she has much family support.
2) I earn less than my ex wife, about half her salary, and her's is difficult to prove since she pulls money from company account.
3) I have no car, I use public transport, and can't afford taxis.
4) Still need to find a place to rent, will most likely share or get a kitnet near to the kids school (within in relative walking distance to the ex). I'm currently lodging at a friend with no means to look after the kids on the weekends and need to be out within 2 weeks.
5) We have no assets, so all I have are my clothes. She lives in her family's apartment and doesn't pay condominio or rent.

The ex has been relatively peaceful these past 4 weeks, expressing happiness and showing me that she wants peace between us and to be relatively flexible in regards to sharing the kids, which was my original suggestion. But now 2 days ago after our meeting with the lawyer she became somewhat bitter, hinting that she'll seriously enforce whatever the judge rules, even if unfair towards me but leaving her in relative comfort.

I just want to know what my options are:
1) Is 30% fair, or law? 30% equates to my kids schooling fees per month. I hear there are cases where fathers pay less.
2) Is it fair that my level of comfort will be taking a much harder hit than my ex's? She'll still be able to afford to go out (clubs, restaurants, entertaining the kids, etc) regularly, whereas I won't have the same privilege.

I'm glad that I will get the kids around so often, but from my budgeting I'm pretty sure I can't really afford it.

UPDATE (regarding business):

She lied to her father as well about it (she said she was doing everything right, salaries, impostos, etc. but really wasn't). So he's taking the moral obligation to sort her mess out, and remove my name from it. Plus he knows if she continues managing it the way she has been it will affect the family as a whole, so he's hired accountants and met with financial regulators to resolve her mess. It's carrying debt and has been badly managed, so I'm running and want no share, never wanted a share of it anyway. Her father is good guy, so I got no reason not to trust him.
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