Nick Cannon took the twins he shares with estranged wife Mariah Carey out for breakfast in Los Angeles last Friday. Later, the doting dad, 34, posted an image of a Tic Tac Toe game to his Instagram, gushing: #Nothing like some breakfast and a morning game of Tic Tac Toe to get your day going in the right direction! XO’s #DemKids is nice with it! #Geniuses.
After living apart for several months, the host of America’s Got Talent filed for divorce on December 12. Around that time he took to Twitter to say: “I will never say anything negative about @MariahCarey We are forever a family rooted in love.
And indeed, it seems the two are making it work, at least in terms of co-parenting.
His breakfast outing was obviously a ‘farewell till the next time,’ as just a few hours he updated his Instagram with a photo of him on the way to the airport captioned: ‘Another Friday Another Flight.’ He’s currently in the middle of auditions for the upcoming season for AGT.
Co-parenting, and the act of co-parenting can be difficult for two parents to establish. The word implies that two parents are able to cooperate and communicate efficiently, but that’s not often the case. This becomes glaringly obvious when it’s realized that the main reason two people end a relationship is because of inability to communicate with each other.
But, unfortunately, when it comes to co-parenting, communicate is a must. If you cannot forge that relationship, the number one person, or people being hurt, are the children you share. Making this harder is the idea that even if your number one intention is to communicate effectively, you still have no control over the other person in the co-parenting relationship.
Being a Better Co-Parent
Regardless of how the other parent acts, there are some things that you can do to make the situation better. Realizing that you can improve the situation by improving yourself can help ease the stress. Here are some things that you can do:
Accept that you might not be able to control every situation.
It might be easy to be aggravated by everything your co-parent does, but why spend your time and energy? You can’t change what you can’t change. Instead, channel that energy into creating quality time and moments with your kids. Learn and accept that you are not able to control everything. This can be hard, but it’s important. And that acceptance will free up emotional energy that can and should be spent elsewhere.
Be PRESENT with your kids.
When you are upset about something your mind is there, dwelling on that anger. If something that your co-parent does upsets you, place it to the side and don’t let it get in the way of the time you have with your children. Studies show that being present is the most important thing we can give our kids. Pay attention to them! And practice being mindful of the time you spend with them.
Make your home a calm and secure environment.
You can’t control anything your co-parent does. You can’t change them. But you can change you, and you can control you. So ensure that your home is a calm, grounded, and secure environment for your children. This will provide them with a calm and stable environment during a time that not feel that way. They should feel safe during this time – especially if the co-parenting schedule is new. Being able to give your kids stability will ensure they grow up feeling stable.
Focus on what is GOOD.
It’s not uncommon for divorced co-parents to feel guilty about what the effects of the divorce will have on their kids. You can focus on all the wrong things, but isn’t it better to focus on what’s GOOD? Two parents that love them. The secure and stable home that you’ve created. All the good moments you share. That cannot be taken away by your ex. These good-feeling moments are a great influence on your kids. So remember all the good stuff!
Cannon – Carey Property Division
While it seems they have gotten a hold on co-parenting, one aspect of the Cannon-Carey divorce that still might need some ironing out is the marital property the two share.
Cannon is in the process of moving into a $3 million luxury six bedroom, eight bathroom estate on the east coast ‘to keep the twins out of the spotlight.’ Cannon’s net-worth is over $20 million. He is paying $11,000 a month for the house, with an option to purchase the secluded Saddle River estate in New Jersey.
Carey will be staying on the West Coast and kicks off her Las Vegas residency at Caesars Palace on May 6. She has been spending most of her time in Southern California in preparation for the Sin City run.
Despite having their separate living arrangements, the two seem to be locked in a legal dispute over the division of their assets. Cannon just filed a lawsuit that alleges Carey, along with the couple’s business manager, Michael Kane, sold the couple’s Bel Air Mansion for $4 million less than the asking price without involving him in the sale.
Marital Property Division
California is a community property state, as opposed to an equitable distribution state.
In community property states, all property the couple acquires during the marriage is divided equally. During a divorce settlement, issues such as financial need, ability to earn income, or which spouse is at fault for the divorce are not taken into account when dividing property.
In equitable distribution states, which are the majority of states, marital property division takes into account the financial situation of each spouse. This is different than the 50/50 breakdown of community property states. Though equitable distribution is more flexible, it can be harder to forecast the outcome. This is due to the fact that many factors are taken into account during the settlement negotiations.
When it comes to dividing marital property, there are four concerns that need to be addressed:
- Identification of marital assets that are owned by you and your spouse
- Assets need to then be categorized as marital or non-marital property.
- Value will be assigned to the assets
- A plan will be constructed over how to divide these assets. This plan will be made in accordance with state laws.
Not all property is considered “marital property.” It should also be noted that marital property does not only consist of dividing furniture and household items, but also all other financial assets such as bank accounts. And the definition of marital property can vary from state to state. You should work with a divorce attorney that can advise you on your state specific laws regarding property division. Typically though, marital property includes any property that is acquired by either spouse during the course of the marriage. And property acquired by either spouse before the marriage is usually not considered marital property.
Non – Marital Property
That being said, in some states, property acquired during the marriage can be excluded from marital property. Such types of property include:
- Gifts or inheritance granted to one spouse during the marriage.
- Property purchased with separate funds acquired by one spouse before the marriage.
- Property that was excluded in a prenuptial agreement.
- The asset is the result of increased value of separate property that was acquired before the marriage.
Preparing Your Finances for Divorce
If you know there will be issues regarding the division of marital assets prior to filing for divorce, there are some things you should do. Namely, you should consider separating any joint financial obligations that are under both of your names. Joint credit accounts should also be considered during the division process. Because of this, it’s advised that you separate any joint accounts. Here are some tips to consider when facing marital property division:
- Each spouse should have access to a complete set of all financial documents.
- Each spouse should establish their own line of credit, in their own name.
- Close all joint credit card accounts.
- Create a formal written agreement that outlines the activity on any joint credit accounts until all accounts can be separated.
- Open separate bank accounts.
- If you must maintain a joint bank account, make sure you have a written agreement outlining the purpose of the account and what the funds will be used for. You might consider that each spouse sign any checks written from that account.
- Freeze any investment assets to ensure that neither spouse may misuse funds.
- Change the title to your home to “tenants in common.”
Working with a Divorce Attorney
Divorce can be a difficult process, not just for emotional reasons. There are many aspects of a divorce that will need to be legally decided upon, including: child custody and visitation, spousal support, and marital property division. A family law attorney will also be able to provide you with advice on how to create a successful co-parenting situation. This can include the creation of a co-parenting schedule that outlines weekly visits, but also holiday schedules, and other major events. These things can be even harder to work out in a high net-worth divorce. State laws will also play a large factor in how things are divided and settled. Because of this, it’s advised that you work with a local divorce attorney that will be able to advise you specifically in accordance with your state law.
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