Divorce can be a stressful and complicated process. To ensure that your rights are protected and the divorce is completed in accordance with the law, you should seek out legal representation from an experienced El Monte divorce lawyer. A divorce attorney will provide legal advice and act as your advocate throughout the proceedings.
What happens in a divorce?
The divorce process is initiated by one of the spouses filing a petition with the court. The petition sets forth that party’s wishes related to the grounds for divorce, division of property and debts, spousal support, child custody and child support. This petition is then served on the other party.
After the other party is served, they must file a response in order to avoid entry of a judgment by default. The response will set forth the areas of disagreement and may include that party’s counterclaim.
After the response is filed, the parties exchange information through the discovery process. The discovery process allows the parties to receive complete information and know what to expect.
While the case is pending, the parties may participate in dispute resolution processes, such as mediation. If the parties are able to compromise and reach an agreement, then the agreement is memorialized in writing and submitted to the court.
If the case cannot be settled, then there will be a trial held. At trial, each party will have the opportunity to call witnesses to testify. The parties may also present evidence for the court to consider. Each party will have the opportunity to set forth their case and present argument. At the conclusion of trial, a judge will issue a decision to resolve all remaining issues in the case.
How are property and debts divided?
In a divorce case, the property and debts of the parties are divided. California is a community property state, which means that each party keeps any separate property that was owned prior to the marriage, inherited or received as a gift. Property, income and assets accumulated during the marriage are to be divided in an equitable manner.
The community property laws also apply to debts. This means that debts that a party had prior to the marriage will remain that party’s sole responsibility. Other debts that were accrued during the marriage will be divided through the divorce.
How is child custody determined?
If the parties have children, then the divorce will also address how child custody and visitation is to be handled. When a court determines a child custody schedule, it is supposed to consider the best interest of the children. This includes consideration of several factors, such as:
- Each parent’s wishes
- The wishes of the children
- The need to promote continuity and stability in the children’s lives
- The interrelationship of the children with the parents and siblings
- The characters of the parties and others involved
- Issues such as domestic violence and substance abuse
- Any other relevant information
Child support will also be ordered in cases involving children. The amount of child support will depend on each parent’s incomes and assets and the custody schedule ordered by the court.
Why should you hire a divorce lawyer?
Divorces can be complex and important interests are at stake. To ensure that your rights are protected and that you understand how the law applies to your case, you should seek out legal representation from an experienced divorce lawyer.
A lawyer will provide legal advice that is specific to your situation and the facts of your case. They will help you know what to expect during the process. An attorney will prepare the necessary documents to pursue the process and any action that would be beneficial to your case.
When choosing an attorney, it is important to look for someone who is experienced and has a proven track record in court. Our El Monte divorce lawyers have represented clients in a variety of different situations. We know what to expect and what strategies will be most successful.
If you are going through a divorce or anticipate your relationship headed in that direction, then contact us to schedule a consultation. We will help answer your questions and provide advice about what you should do.
The Meaning Of Uncontested Divorce
In every divorce, the pertinent issues touch on four crucial issues. These issues are the division of property, child custody, child support and alimony. Uncontested divorce means that the divorcing couples have agreed on the major issues surrounding the divorce. The best part about uncontested divorce is that if the divorcing spouses reach an agreement, they will file their paperwork without the necessity of court appearances. Once the required period set by the state law elapses, the divorce will be considered final. However, uncontested divorces are dissimilar. Additionally, some uncontested divorces do not run smoothly. Normally, when you and your spouse do not have minor children, no tangible properties and have few assets, uncontested divorce becomes simple. Uncontested divorce may be effective for self-supporting spouses.
Divorcing couples having minor disagreements in a given area or two may be able to avoid the costly contested divorce in courts. However, they will be required to negotiate with each other until such a time when they will reach a complete agreement. If they can communicate effectively, the couples can negotiate directly. If you and your spouse are not feasible, you may choose to enlist the services of a mediator to help in ferreting out the disagreements. It is also possible to seek the services of attorneys. However, this option will only increase the cost of divorce.
If couples are having complex situations, they may carry on without attorneys. Nevertheless, they will need to trade cautiously as one or both parties may give up substantial legal rights. It is important that one understands what the laws in his or her jurisdiction states about divorce. In some states, divorcing couples are allowed to file their paperwork jointly. In different states, it is usual for divorcing couples to acknowledge the terms of divorce and have one spouse enlist attorney’s services to lead in the preparation of the paperwork. In this situation, the attorney can represent only one party and leave the other party that is not represented at a great legal disadvantage. Before the divorce is finalized, it is always advisable that the divorcing couples hire an attorney to go through the paperwork.
One of the benefits of uncontested divorce is savings in terms of divorce cost. One can complete an uncontested divorce by paying the court filing fees, which is usually a few hundred dollars. Even when the divorce couple has used the services of an attorney to prepare and review the paperwork or aid in negotiations, the fees remain low. The fees will be low provided the couples reach an agreement without undertaking court proceedings. Through uncontested divorce, you and your spouse will stay out of courts. In addition, minimizing conflicts can aid in speeding up the recovery time. Couples having complex situations and regular disagreements may not find uncontested divorce to be of much help.
Even though uncontested divorce may not be a solution to different divorcing couples, it is always imperative that before opting for contested divorce that a couple considers out of court arbitration. Protracted litigation is expensive and adversarial. It is for this reason that limiting litigation is always important in conserving assets and reducing conflicts.
Uncontested divorce lowers the conflicts between the divorcing spouses by having fewer opportunities that can cause conflicts to arise. Information made in a divorce proceeding is open to the public unless it was filed under seal, which is rare.
Through uncontested divorce, less information is filed with the court. This way, less information will go to public records. As such, divorcing spouses may opt for uncontested divorce given that they will minimize the private information to be made public. The issues involved in any divorce are many. They range from who will support the child to how the property shall be divided. To this end, an experienced divorce attorney can be of much help to you. The attorney will find a cost-effective path to complete the divorce besides guarantying you better results.