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Pro-athlete’s contentious divorce stalled in settlement talks

Perhaps it's no surprise many Baton Rouge spouses have a difficult time settling issues at the end of a marriage. Sometimes, spouses resist divorce by delaying decisions when a dissolution of marriage isn't something they want. Some spouses feel the urge to "win" rather than compromise on conflicts over child custody, support or a property settlement.

Ariane Felton, the wife of pro-basketball player Raymond Felton, filed for divorce in February. The couple had been married 19 months when Ariane chose to terminate the relationship. Her reason was Raymond Felton's allegedly infidelity.

A week after the papers were filed, Ariane made a police complaint. She told authorities her husband had been handling a gun while arguing with her. Raymond Felton was arrested and charged with felony weapons possession, now a pending criminal case.

The allegation of cheating may play heavily into the outcome of the divorce. The couple had signed a prenuptial agreement that barred Ariane from receiving alimony, but an exception was written into the document. The spousal support terms apparently were effective only if the 29-year-old athlete remained faithful to his wife.

Raymond Felton argued the divorce was filed in the wrong court, outside his home state where the matter could be arbitrated. That hasn't stopped the New York Knicks' point guard from attending settlement meetings and hearings in Manhattan Supreme Court. The latest four-hour attempt to get the spouses to come to a financial settlement appeared to end without an agreement; another court date is set for July.

Choices made during the divorce process should be made carefully, based on sound legal guidance, to avoid unintended consequences like financial surprises. There is no need to rush to legal action, but spouses who can't cooperate eventually will have the terms of the divorce dictated to them by a court. Family mediation may be preferable and less costly than having a stranger make these decisions.

Source: New York Daily News, "Knicks guard Raymond Felton and wife fail to reach deal in divorce case" Dareh Gregorian, May. 23, 2014

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