California man sentenced to 17 years in prison for fraud

In 2013, businessman Steven Zinnel, 50, was charged with 15 counts of bankruptcy, fraud, and money laundering for hiding assets during his 1999 divorce. He reportedly hid the assets to avoid paying alimony and child support.

On Tuesday, March 4 Zinnel was sentenced to more than 17 years in prison. Additionally, he was ordered to pay a fine of $500,000.

Zinnel’s fraudulent activity was first discovered when he asked the Federal Bureau of Investigation to investigate his ex-wife. After looking into records, federal agents discovered that Zinnel placed some of his properties under other people’s names before filing for bankruptcy in 2005. He then allegedly laundered money back to himself.

Divorce, custody agreements, asset division, and legal separations can all be complicated matters, logistically and emotionally. The attorneys at Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, assist San Diego couples. To learn about how our legal  team can help you, call today.

Federal marriage initiative proves ineffective in recent study

According to a new study released by the National Center for Family and Marriage Research, federal government funding for marriage stability doesn’t appear to influence the success of U.S. marriages. The National Center for Family and Marriage Research is based out of Bowling Green State University.

The government appropriated and consumed around $800 million on its Healthy Marriage Initiative by this fiscal year’s end without confirmation of the program’s efficacy.

States like Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Wyoming that participate in the Healthy Marriage Initiative have similar divorce rates to states that do not participate in the federal initiative, like Rhode Island, West Virginia, and Nevada.

If you are going through a divorce in San Diego, the Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, attorneys could help. Call to speak with a member of our legal team today.

70′s duo Captain and Tennille to separate after divorce petition

1970′s married pop duo Captain and Tennille, who legally go by the names Cathryn Antoinette Tennille, 73, and Daryl Dragon, 71, are ending their marriage after being married for more than 38 years.

The petition, which was filed by Tennille in Arizona recently, stated that the pair’s marriage is irretrievably broken, and asked that whatever community property, obligations, and debt that the two may possess at the time of the filing be equitably divided between the two of them. It also states that neither one of them is in need of or eligible to receive spousal support.

At Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, we understand how difficult it is for people in San Diego to go through divorce and, as such, do what we can to make it easier. Call us at (760) 722-7646 if you are going through divorce or need legal help with other related matters, including child custody, property division, or even domestic violence.

Hilary Duff and Mike Comrie separate

Hollywood actress Hilary Duff and professional hockey player Mike Comrie have recently separated, according to a report from People magazine onFriday, January 10.

Duff, alumnae of the Disney television show Lizzie McGuire, and Comrie, a 13-year National Hockey League player, were married in August 2010 and are parents to 21-month-old Luca Cruz.

According to an unnamed source, the ex-couple, who remain great friends, split without incident after undergoing couples therapy and trying to salvage their marriage.

If you are considering pursuing divorce in San Diego, contact the attorneys at the law office of Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, today by dialing 858-935-6211 and let us put our experience to work for you. 

Ex-NFL player Stewart’s marriage with reality star Williams formally ends

With Fulton County Superior Court Judge issuing a final decree in former Pittsburgh Steeler player Kordell Stewart’s divorce case from his reality show wife Porsha Williams on Thursday, December 5, the ex-couple’s marriage has now formally ended.

The 41-year-old National Football League retiree filed for divorce from Williams last March, saying that the marriage was “irretrievably broken.” Williams then filed a counterclaim to the petition a week later.

Stewart and Williams used to star on Bravo’s “The Real Housewives of Atlanta.” Williams has stayed a mainstay of the show for its latest season. They were able to amicably resolve the terms of the divorce.

The ex-couple were married on May 21, 2011 and did not have any children of their own, although Stewart has a son from a previous relationship.

If you are currently considering getting a divorce or dealing with other family law issues in San Diego, our attorneys at  Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, can provide the guidance you need. Find out what services we provide and how we can help you by calling 760-722-7646 today.

Murdoch divorce settlement reached

Eighty-two-year-old businessman Keith Rupert Murdoch and his third wife of 14 years, 44-year-old Wendi Deng Murdoch, amicably finalized their divorce in late November after making an appearance at the New York state court in Manhattan on Wednesday, November 20 to finalize the terms of the divorce.

The settlement won’t affect Murdoch’s ownership of mass media giant 21st Century Fox and publishing company News Corp.
It also won’t alter terms of the family trust, which will go to Murdoch’s children from different marriages, Prudence, Elisabeth, Lachlan, and James, all of whom are expected to have an equal interest in the 38% voting stock he has in the two companies.

Meanwhile, Murdoch’s school-age children with Wendi Deng, Grace and Chloe, will have 8.7 million non-voting shares of the two companies by the time they reach a legal age.

For proactive legal representation, and comprehensive and effective legal advice on matters concerning divorce, divorce proceedings, and divorce settlements, in addition to other family law matters, get in touch with our lawyers at Fisher & Van Thiel, LLP. Call our San Diego-based legal team at 858-935-6211 today.

Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore finalize divorce

Hollywood celebrity couple Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore have reportedly come to an agreement regarding their divorce settlement.

Kutcher, often-described as American television’s highest-paid actor, and Moore, the star of box-office successes like Ghost and A Few Good Men, separated in November 2011. They have just recently signed the paperwork needed to end their six-year marriage.

Kutcher and Moore’s marriage began to suffer after Kutcher allegedly cheated on Moore at San Diego hotel.

A source mentioned that the couple had been arguing for an extended period of time over the exact amount that Kutcher owed Moore from their marriage.

Divorce proceedings can be complicated and stressful. Many people find that legal assistance helpful when going through a divorce. If you are seeking the support of a family law attorney in the San Diego area, contact Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, at .

Women tend to cope with divorce better than men

A recent study published in the Journal of Men’s Health showed that divorced men are more likely to develop health problems than divorced women. The study suggested that these health problems were closely related to depression.

Women are more likely to be proactive in seeking out new friends and activities in the wake of a divorce. Finding new and different activities helps in building or rebuilding a positive self-image. Additionally, women tend to be better at seeking out professional attention in order to sort through negative feelings surrounding the divorce. Typically, men struggle to be as candid about emotional vulnerabilities with friends and family.

If you are currently going through a divorce in San Diego, consult the experienced and compassionate attorneys of Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP at to find out how we can help you at this difficult time.

Tom Welling’s wife files for divorce

Thirty-six-year-old Tom Welling, the actor who played Clark Kent/Superman in the 2001-2011 television series Smallville, is getting a divorce from his wife Jamie White Welling, who filed the necessary papers Wednesday, October 16, according to People magazine.

White Welling, who filed the petition at a Los Angeles court, attributed the divorce to irreconcilable differences. The divorce documents further stated that the couple has not been living together since December 2012. They have no children.

Welling and his wife, a model, reportedly saw each other for the first time in a Miami coffee shop and were married after four years in Martha’s Vineyard, an island located south of Cape Cod in Massachusetts.

Divorce can be complicated, especially when children and a child custody battle is involved. If you or a loved one are filing for divorce, you need a compassionate, capable attorney on your side. Please give our lawyers at Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP in San Diego a call at to confidentially discuss your case today.

Richard Gere and wife Carey Lowell plan to divorce after 11 years of marriage

Actor Richard Gere and former actress wife Carey Lowell are planning to file for divorce after an 11-year marriage due to lifestyle differences.

The couple, who have a 13-year old son together, have separated and have been reportedly “spending time apart for quite some time,” according to the New York Post. The two haven’t been seen together in public since their Golden Globes appearance in January.

64-year old Gere prefers a quiet life, while 52-year old Lowell likes “socialising with other bigwigs.”

Gere and Lowell got married in 2002 after a seven-year relationship that started in 1995, around the time Gere was divorced from Cindy Crawford. Lowell, however, had been married three times prior to her marriage to Gere.

If you too are seeking a divorce in San Diego, call 858.935.6211. Our lawyers at Fischer & Van Thiel, LLP, can help you address all necessary issues and move on with your life.