The shocking incident about Tarek and Christina El Moussa separation and pending divorce made headlines in my house. My wife is a fan of the Flip or Flop TV show that you can watch on HGTV.
People Magazine and a host of other news outlets outlined events that were disturbing. It appears that in May 2016, Tarek left the house with a high powered rifle into the hills next to their home and then Christina called the police in tears.
Nothing was revealed until about 30-45 days ago when the news mentioned that Tarek and Christina were separated and going to get divorced.
I’ve reviewed the news reports about Tarek and Christina Divorce and other information and I thought I should give a Utah law perspective on this situation.
Now, keep in mind that because Tarek and Christina reside in the State of California, Utah law will not apply to them. California is a community property state and their family law and divorce code is different than Utah’s in some fundamental ways. Utah is a marital property state.
I made this youtube video about it – go ahead and watch it now:
Christina and Tarek Child Custody
The first question that comes to mind is child custody. Who will get custody of their 2 kids? They have a young daughter who is 6 years old and then son is 15 months old. At this point, it they’ve been separated since May 2016 and it goes to court, the judge or court commission is going to want to know what Tarek and Christina have been doing for custody in the interim. What has been the status quo? In Utah, court commissioners and judges love to keep the status quo. At the same time, the judges and court commissioners are obligated to do what is in the child’s best interest. You’ve probably heard of the best interests of the child test before. This is the standard to which the judge must look.
In order to determine what is in Tarek and Christina’s children’s best interests they will look at a number of factors, including
(1) Which parent, Tarek or Christina, has been the primary caretaker of the children. Who makes their meals, washes their clothes, teaches the child to do chores?
(2) Which parent, Tarek or Christina, has spent and given personal care to the children?
(3) What is the current situation between Christina and Tarek as far as physical custody goes? Who has had move overnights with the kids for the last 6 months or since the date of separation?
(4) Which parent, Tarek or Christina, has the more stable environment for the children to be safe and protected. In this situation, from what happened in May 2016, with Tarek leaving the house with a gun, would leave a judge or commissioner thinking that Tarek might not be the best choice. If there is a danger to the children or the possibility of danger, this is something the court must take into consideration when it comes to child custody.
(5) Which parent, Tarek or Christina, is teaching basic moral values to the children?
Well, we could go on through all of the steps, but you get the idea. Based on my assessment of the situation (and from what I’ve heard on the news), Christina would likely be awarded custody over Tarek in this case largely due to the May 2016 incident.
With that said, it appears that they are working things out between themselves and it may not even go through a big court battle.
As far as their business interests, investments, wealth, assets, etc. In Utah, a judge would very likely split it down the middle, meaning each party would get 50%.
I hope that has been helpful to you if you’ve been following the Tarek and Christina Divorce situation. We wish the best to them, their children and their loved ones.
If you need help with a divorce matter, child custody case, or other legal matter, please give us a call.
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West Jordan, Utah
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