About Debra

Debra Opri is widely considered to be one of the most recognizable female litigation attorneys of the 21st Century, both in the courtroom and on television.

How To Use A Divorce

By: Debra Opri - Attorney and Legal Analyst The latest divorce news surrounds Ashton Kutcher/Demi Moore and her recent 'response' filing in the court system based upon 'reports' that she was 'unhappy' with 'confidential' settlement discussions. Can we all look at this a bit differently for a moment? I recommend the following perception: first, Ashton filed for divorce without, allegedly, sitting down with his wife and seeking a settlement in advance of the filing such that this response would never have been necessary perhaps. Second, Ashton only filed for divorce in December, roughly three months ago, which says that the parties have been working diligently to resolve their differences in an expeditious manner. Third, the average divorce [don't think Tom Cruise/Katie Holmes – that was unique] goes over a year+ prior to settlement discussions / resolution. That said, we can now address the Response and why it was/is going to be filed: a strategy call to remind Demi Moore's soon-to-be ex-husband-once the six-month period is reached here in California-that it would be counterproductive to air [...]

When your ‘Valentine’ Files for Divorce

by Debra Opri - Attorney and Legal Analyst It has been a banner year for divorce filings. Let's face it, with the Hollywood breakups and ongoing divorce courts overfilling with angry and disenfranchised ex loves, the first question any of us should ask is, "Why did they ever get married ?" Well, just the thought of asking Kim Kardashian this question, may invite yet another reality show. Asking Bethenny Frankel may incur the wrath of the 'Skinnygirl' magnate enough to invite one too many Skinnygirl cocktails just pondering one's inner need to be happy. And don't even go down the road to Tom Cruise's house. Whether it be his one time wives, Nicole Kidman and Katie Holmes, seems the only answer we will ever probably get is…. "Confidential settlement doesn't allow discussions on this topic. Sorry." But the questions do remain: what makes a marriage last; and what makes one fail? And why do so many end in divorce. We may argue that we have a divorce epidemic, but before divorce one must also have [...]

When Credibility is an Issue, It’s a Killer on the Witness Stand

by Debra Opri - Attorney and Legal Analyst And Casey Anthony has credibility problems. No, she must not take the stand. Now that the prosecution has presented its case, any juror who may have the slightest question of reasonable doubt as to the evidence presented as being 'enough' to prove her guilty of murder, would undoubtedly take that final 'leap' if Anthony were to take the stand. The risk of Casey being proven a liar on the stand is a near certainty. While Casey Anthony may believe she is a 'good' liar, there have been too many witnesses to show otherwise. For example, a statement by a girlfriend that who told Casey she was “good at lying,” would be enough for anyone to question her truthfulness as to any statement she made on the stand. The false tears won't convince, but the ability to cry on cue will. As for the hard evidence, one only needs to remember that Ms. Anthony got herself a tattoo: ‘Bella Vita” [beautiful life] on THE day her daughter allegedly [...]