All husbands should know

As any regular reader of Family Lore may have noticed, I take great interest in divorce-related ideas form America, where there seems to be an entire industry around the subject, quite separate from the legal process itself. My latest find is an idea that some may find a little controversial, especially this side of the pond.

Divorce PREP provides "secret divorce planning for men", the idea being that: "By arranging certain things early and understanding the reality of the divorce process, men may avoid a brutal divorce settlement that can financially cripple them for their entire life". For $179 Divorce PREP provides five CDs of advice upon preparing for a divorce, including how to hide the fact that you are preparing from your spouse. The advice is not just meant for those getting divorced either: "Even if you don’t get divorced or don’t want the divorce, you are better off knowing what to do if you are forced into it".

One of the things I liked most about Divorce PREP's web site is the image it uses in its logo, which shows a wife doing the washing up and the husband, tea-towel in hand, scratching his head as he looks at the drying up - the suggestion being that whilst it's OK for a wife to do the washing up, it certainly isn't OK for a husband to do the drying up. The image is named "dead zone guy".

I am often asked by clients, usually husbands, what they can do to protect themselves financially in the event of their spouse commencing divorce proceedings. The answer in most cases is "not a lot". You cannot, for example, transfer assets to a third party in order to defeat your spouse's claim against them, as the court has power to overturn the transfer (and the judge will also most likely take an extremely dim view of your actions). There are some practical steps that can be taken, but they are unlikely to have any great bearing upon the financial/property settlement, which in any event in most cases will be based upon equality, or the genuine needs of the parties and their children.

Last, but definitely not least, Divorce PREP offers an additional product: CheckMate, the "5 Minute Infidelity Test Kit", which you can use to find out if your wife is cheating, by testing her undergarments for semen stains. Nice. Something tells me that if it's reached this point, then the marriage is over, even if the tests are clear.