Glendale divorce lawyers
You may have tried desperately to make your marriage work. All attempts at reconciliation have failed, and you have decided that divorce is the best option. The dissolution of your marriage is bound to cause a great deal of emotional turmoil. Although the thought of going through such a separation can be exhausting and frightening, you cannot let such emotions prevent you from protecting your interests.
If divorce is inevitable, you should hire a divorce lawyer. The legal issues involved in divorce can be complicated. And you want someone who knows the divorce laws of California fighting your corner and competently representing your interests.
The Basics of Divorce
Although your lawyer will handle the more complex issues in the divorce, you should have some idea of what to expect.
There is a residency requirement for a divorce in the state of California. You or your spouse must be a resident of the state for at least six months. Once you have filed for divorce and delivered the documents to your spouse, you must wait six months from the date they receive the paperwork before the divorce can be finalized.
You should also know that there is no common law marriage in California. The only way to prove that you are married is to have a marriage license. You cannot get a legal divorce without such a license, no matter how long you and your partner have lived together.
You really don’t need grounds for a divorce. However, the reasons why you have filed for divorce may influence the judgments of the court. If, for example, you are seeking divorce because of a violent spouse, the court will consider this when dividing the property or awarding spousal support. If your spouse wasted family funds on drugs, alcohol, or gambling, then the judge may order them to reimburse you.
California is a community property state. All assets and debt acquired during the marriage will be shared equally between you and your spouse at the time of the divorce. The property you entered the marriage with will not count in this division. However, if, say, your spouse entered the marriage with certain assets, and you contributed in some way to their increase in value, then you will be entitled to an equal share of the money it now fetches. Inheritances, personal gifts, and property that either one of you owned long before the marriage and was never mixed with the marital property is not affected by this law.
Spousal Support and Child Custody
Much of the negotiation with your spouse will be over spousal support and child custody.
California courts grant temporary spousal support in most cases. Permanent spousal support is granted only in the rare instances in which there has been ten or more years of marriage and one of the parties is unable to work because of advanced age or ill health. The following are some of the factors that the court will use to determine spousal support:
-The earning capacity of you and your spouse
-The extent to which you supported your spouse while they pursued an education or professional license
-Your joint assets and debts
-The respective value of your separate property
-The length of the marriage
-Your respective ages
If you elected not to work and instead spent your time and energy raising your children and caring for your home, it will be difficult for you to find your way back into the job market. The judge will take this into consideration before rending judgment.
Another big issue will be child custody. California courts begin with the assumption that frequent and continual contact with both parents is in the best interest of the child. In furtherance of this aim, the court will lean toward granting shared custody. You should therefore make a good faith effort to negotiate visitation schedule that works for all concerned with your ex. If the two of you can agree on a parenting plan, the court will usually approve it. If there is strong disagreement between you, the judge will take the matter into their own hands and decide how the two of you will spend time with your children.
The judge will also determine child support. If you are designated as the primary carer, then your ex will need to pay the amount set by the judge.
Glendale divorce lawyers have the experience and expertise to help you through these troublesome times. Your attorney will ensure that your financial interests and parental rights are protected.
Although shared custody is the goal desired by the state, you can fight for sole custody of your children if you believe that your ex is not a fit parent. You will need strong evidence to back up such a claim. Your attorney can help you get what you need to protect your future and that of your children.