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Chris Rock files for divorce after nearly 2 decades of marriage

Fans of comedian Chris Rock love him because he doesn't hold back on his opinions on just about every subject, including marriage. His biting comments on the subject have permeated his stand-up act and movies.

Now, sadly, the 49-year-old comedian's own marriage of nearly two decades appears to be over. He filed for divorce from his wife Malaak Compton-Rock on Dec. 23, citing "irreconcilable differences." Already, the split appears to be less than amicable, and as in too many divorces, the children appear to be in the middle.

Rock asserts in his divorce filing, which was obtained by the media, that his wife has kept him from seeing the couple's 10-year-old and 12-year-old daughters. He also says that she "has acted in a manner detrimental to the children's best interests." According to the documents, the couple actually separated for at least six months.

The comedian has not spoken in the media about the divorce. His attorney issued a statement that "Chris requests privacy as he and Malaak work through this process and focus on their family." His 45-year-old wife, however, responded to the assertions in the divorce filing in a statement issued on her behalf to "People" magazine. It says that she is "saddened and disappointed that Chris has accused her of keeping their children from him, which he knows is untrue and can be so easily disproved," She refers to her husband's "very busy public life," which is contrasted with that of her children and her.

As with many wealthy divorcing couples, issues of money, division of assets and spousal support may be a battleground as well. In Rock's divorce filing, he asks that their property, except for exempt property, be divided equally. He asserts that his wife "has the ability to work and contribute to her own support, as well as the support and other financial needs of the children." The couple, who married in November 1996, had a prenuptial agreement. However, because it had a sunset provision, it is no longer in force.

North Dakotans who have been married for a long time often assume that they will remain together forever. However, couples divorce after decades of marriage for many reasons. When your lives and assets have been combined for many years, dividing them can be a complicated matter. It's essential to have an experienced family law attorney on your side to help protect your rights.

Source: ABC News, "Chris Rock Divorce May Be Getting Nasty" Luchina Fisher, Dec. 31, 2014

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Commandments of Family Law

  1. The only truth your children need to know is that you both love them unconditionally, and that this isn't their fault.
  2. Take the high road — everyone wins when you do what's best for your kids.
  3. Negotiate but don't capitulate — if you are being pushed toward something detrimental for your children, stand your ground.
  4. You can only control yourself and how you respond. Don't engage.
  5. Do set up rules and responsibilities. Kids feel better when routine is continued.
  6. You are still their parent — don't be afraid to be one.
  7. Disneyland is in California, not in your home. Don't set up unreasonable expectations.
  8. It is not their job to take care of you. Repeat that to them. Often.
  9. Yelling is for sports — not court. Good lawyers strongly advocate without being disrespectful to opposing parties.
  10. Fair is a place you go to get cheese curds. Aside from that, nothing in life is fair.

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