More money than brains

Several years ago, I did an “expose” on DIVORCE in America and as well as the process of DIVORCE in a few other countries. When it was in the early stages, I thought, as did Judge Schneider, that it was a good project, legitimate issues, and thoughts on an arduous process in America. Well, at some point Divorce Corp took on a life of its own and became a controversial project with several inaccuracies. I had been paid handsomely and accepted that it was a “project,” and like most would take on a life of its own. One odd aspect was that little troll, Gloria Allred, got a few minutes of face time. Such a media whore she is. She is the kind of animal that whatever expert you need, she will be it. Even odder, I thought at the time that this was a project on DIVORCE, not ambulance chasing. For myself personally, I still love my part in the project, from the introduction and through the entire project telling it like it is. I was truthful, and I was sarcastic, just being myself!

Maybe one day I’ll be that respected.

A huge focal point of Divorce Corp was the incredible costs and fees that those who are going through a DIVORCE are having to pay to get through the process. Some folks, if they have the money, get hosed. An example is people sitting for “decoration,” and being billed to you by the hour! And for some, it is a severe “clipping.” The “Decoration” packs and unpacks the boxes. Fees to the point that in some cases, bankruptcy and or shattered lives is the only real result. The issue I objected to was the issue of “corruption of the process.” That being the DIVORCE lawyers, as well as the judges who sit and make the decisions for those who choose not to be reasonable and cannot make those decisions for themselves.

Remember the “whopper,” the famous burger sandwich? Well, there is a “whopper” of a DIVORCE going on in Santa Monica, California. Dept. F is the “long cause” court of the Honorable Hank M. Goldberg, Judge of the Superior Court. One of the great men who sit and judges, this judge is no-nonsense and speaks in plain English. Personally, Judge Goldberg has always been one of my favorites, along with several others; a man who was destined to be a judge. Note: Judge Goldberg will be retiring soon, and I can tell you what a loss this will be for the Family Law unit of the Superior Court. However, Judge Goldberg can now take time and do as he and his family see fit after a long job well done. It is being reported that The Honorable Judge Lawrence Riff will be taking over the duties as the Asst. Presiding Judge. Another great man of the Judiciary.

On February 2, 2016, a filing for “Legal Separation w/minor children (general jurisdiction)” was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court. Mark Strome vs. Tammy Estrada Strome. (I met both on April 23, 2018, at the courthouse, and I have to say, both Mr. Strome and Mrs. Strome could not have been more pleasant. I even mentioned to Mrs. Strome she had a very pleasant smile) Being able to smile or being pleasant for either of these litigants cannot be easy. It is being reported that the legal costs have exceeded $40,000,000.00 and climbing! One concern in the legal/DIVORCE community is the extraordinary costs that support the premise, points, and issues of “Divorce Corp.”

‘Nuff said.

Note: Keep in mind that this is all about a child custody case! Mom hoped to try and keep a child away from the father. Basically, taking all parental rights away from the “Dad.” It appeared that the little girl did not want to be with her father. No other issues of law were being handled here, folks. Whoever told “Mom” that this was a possibility in Southern California courts, and how “Mom” could think that this court was going to take all of “Dads” rights away is laughable, roll around on the floor laughable. Now it can happen, to lose all custody. A case not too long ago a mother lost all contact with her son. A few years earlier she had lost all contact with her daughter. And after one year the fees were likely around million plus dollars, give or take, for all lawyers involved.

Mr. Strome is represented by one of the premier law firms in Southern California, Wasser, Cooperman & Mandles. Laura Allison Wasser, Esquire, the daughter of Dennis Wasser, the founder of the firm, is the tip of the spear. Laura A. Wasser was present and as always looked great and was on top of her game. For what it’s worth, every time I see Ms. Wasser she looks like a lawyer who is full throttle and focused on the game of law! Mrs. Strome is represented by Stephen Kolodny. On this day, April 23, 2018, there was a couple of associates from Kolodny’s office present. Kolodny himself was not present.

Minors counsel, Elise C. Greenberg, Partner of Brot & Gross LLP, was present representing the children. Elise was also on top of her game and looked fabulous. Remember, I am always looking at the style, the shoes, and handbags. It’s a little weakness of mine. Greenberg was also active in the morning’s activities, representing the children of the Stromes.

“Contrariwise,’ continued Tweedledee, ‘ if it was so, it might be; and if it were so, it would be; but as it isn’t, it ain’t. That’s logic.”

Note: Maybe it is just my paranoia, but I felt that the associates from Kolodny’s office were not happy seeing me present on this gloomy Monday morning, sitting in Dept. F. And sure enough, the larger of the two associates (there was a really short one and one a tad taller) upon the arrival of Judge Goldberg wanted the court closed. Imagine that. I was the only person in court who was not a part of this money-making machine. Judge Goldberg questioned the associate as to why. Why was “they” did not want to discuss Kolodny’s medical issue and or condition with myself or two others present. Judge Goldberg agreed, so Patrick Decarolis, Esq., as well as Dr. Annie Forisha-Thiel and myself sat outside Dept. F. This was all so that Kolodny’s associates could discuss Kolodny’s medical condition, and I am guessing, when he might be returning to the “game.” Keep in mind, Kolodny’s medical condition and related issues were of no concern to this writer. Seriously, I had no idea until the issue to have me removed from Dept. F and “this” was discussed while I stood there! I thought I even heard the issue of the “children” being discussed, which is another trick to get a courtroom cleared of those who will shine a light on the issues. has become a conduit for my thoughts on issues, and for me to give my very humble opinion on the fun and games known as DIVORCE. And unfortunately for me in doing so, that upon my mere appearance it causes some peoples bowels to loosen. But all was good, and all three of us were allowed back into Dept. F. Hearing that Kolodny was having medical issues was no surprise. I hope Kolodny is doing well, tough getting old, and so many have already been “culled” from the herd, so to speak. Seriously, a few lawyers and one judge have died over the last few years…. need to lighten up on them cheeseburgers lol.

We got our payday.

Note: It has been reported to us that Mr. Kolodny’s office was replaced by another local lawyer who eventually settled the entire case. I guess you could say “Mom” loses this one, and I guess “Dad” wins if you can even come close to justifying the financial costs it took to “win.” One thing for damn sure is that the lawyers all had phenomenal paydays.

Note: One associate that was present from Kolodny’s office is a lawyer I met years ago when she was with Lisa Helfend Meyer’s firm Meyer, Olson, Lowy & Meyers LLP. Well, I was a little shocked when I saw Julie. Her hair is white, and I swear, if she gained a bit more weight (200 lbs.) she would look like a ‘mini‘ version of Mr. Kolodny. Cute!

When you look at the astronomical wealth of the Stromes and the education of these folks, one must wonder will they at some point realize that there had to have been a simpler way to get through this DIVORCE/custody in lieu of spending over $40,000,000.00? Several words come to my mind when the working class sees costs like this. It includes hoses, sheep, shearing, bagged, sacked, shanghaied, snatched, hoodwinked, beguiled. $40,000,000.00? To be fair, not all this money went to DIVORCE lawyers. There were other lawyers, experts, and “costs” that I am sure that, at this point, likely seem insignificant. $40,000,000.00 and counting!

Remember this: Family Law is not a result orientated business, and most of the times the “Litigants” lose. Lawyers who work in this specialty are NOT PAID BASED ON RESULTS. And when you look at this case as to cost and results? You tell me what you think!

I recall my first Rolls Royce, and how, at times, during the ownership experience I wished I had perhaps purchased a Cadillac or an Oldsmobile, but I wanted what I thought was the best. I still smile at times, reflecting on that purchase and the sometimes-bitter experience of owning a “Rolls Royce.”


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By John Nazarian
©Straight Talk with John J. Nazarian, Private Investigator
May 24, 2018
All Rights Reserved, do not reproduce in whole or in part without the express written consent of the author

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