December 23, 2009
golfer in the world - fact. Athlete of the decade - fact. Number of
sexual trysts over the past several years: 12 and counting. So, you
think a billionaire and arguably the world's most popular athlete can
win every contest? Think again and welcome to the world of Florida's
Divorce Courts, Tiger Woods. According to recent
reports, Woods' wife, Elin Nordegren has retained counsel or will
be doing so shortly and will be suing Tiger soon in divorce court. The
jurisdiction of the divorce and parenting time case should be Windermere,
Orange County, Florida, which is near Orlando.
Relative to Woods' infamous car "accident" on November 27, 2009 when he stated "My wife, Elin, acted courageously when she saw I was hurt and in trouble. She was the first person to help me. Any other assertion is absolutely false," if hindsight is 20/20 he may have preferred criminal charges against her for domestic violence and/or secured an ex parte Domestic Violence Injunction (DVI) against her pursuant to Florida Statute 741.30. By not doing so, Woods bogeyed and if this was a tennis match, advantage Nordegren.
Florida law will require Woods and Nordegren to go to mediation. Does
that mean it will be successful? Hell, No! Nordegren may retain Gloria
Allred to assist her "pro hac vice" if the case proceeds
to protracted litigation. Under the rules of civil procedure, their
divorce could get real interesting and juicy about 30 - 45 days after
the petition for dissolution is served and filed with the court because
that is when depositions and requests for admissions can
be filed. Remember, Woods has already admitted to marital infidelity.
That Woods did not implicate Elin for the alleged car "accident" and pursue domestic violence charges against her for same was disingenuous on his part. Perhaps, the next door neighbors (Adams) saw more than they've revealed? Perhaps, the physicians who treated Woods' injuries wouldn't opine to a reasonable degree of medical certainty the same were caused by domestic violence, but knew in their heart of hearts what transpired. Pouring gasoline onto an already incendiary situation is the fact that Woods has acknowledged to cheating on his wife. Perhaps, all of Woods' mistresses are clamoring to be subpoenaed by Elin's attorneys so they can testify in open court against him.
Woods' extramarital affairs and his open recognition of the same can be used against him as "marital waste" in court. Ostensibly, he spent resources during the marriage to be with other women. The court can award Elin an "unequal distribution of marital assets" based on, in part, Woods' waste of money during their union. But, more important than the money are young Sam and Charlie, the couples' kids. Here's where it becomes problematic for Tiger and his future as a father in the lives of those children.
The kids are not even near the age of reason which is 7 or 8. They are very young children, 6 months and 2. All things considered equal under Florida's shared parental responsibility statute and Tiger shoots well above par and loses this contest big time. The Florida Courts tend to side with mother when kids are very young (what used to be known as the tender years doctrine) consistent with John Bowlby's "mother love theory." That Woods was intimate with a dozen women not or so during his marriage not named Elin Nordegren can also be factored in by the court as being emotionally unhealthy and "not in the children's best interests" especially given the fact that their father's name is as popular or more so than Barack Obama.
Bottom Line - IF mediation fails, Tiger Woods will be become a high rise condominium, a time sharer, a Disney World Dad (every other weekend and maybe a Wednesday night) with and to his kids. It's as written on the wall as Elin's half-billion dollars or so that she will receive as a result of the divorce.
Disclaimer: Dean Tong is not an attorney. He is not licensed to give legal advice and nothing herein should be construed to be legal advice. If you need legal assistance please consult with an attorney in your area.