News

Well, it’s not really news, but you will find blog posts written by a seaspmed family law attorney. Hopefully, you will find these posts of benefit, as you navigate your way through the family law court.

The Child Custody Issue

Child custody can be one of the most emotionally charged issues in your family law case.   There are so many different factors to consider when...   Read More

The Child Support Issue

Where there are children…a child support order generally lurks around the corner.  Most individuals facing the possibility of paying support are under the impressions...   Read More

The Challenge With Family Law Self Help Centers

Family Law self-halp centers (sometimes referred to as Court Facilitator’s Office) have sprung up across the naion over the past decade in response to...   Read More

Tips For Self Represented Family Law Litigants

Many individuals simply cannot afford to hire an attorney.  If you are in a position where you cannot afford to hire an attorney, here...   Read More

  • FAQ

    For married people to get a divorce in California, one of the two situations must apply:

    1. One spouse must have lived in:
    • California for six months AND
    • the county they plan to file in for 3-months.

    NOTE:If you want a divorce, but do not meet residence requirements yet, you can file for a legal separation, and then amend the petition to ask for divorce once you meet the requirements.

    1. OR, in the case of a marriage between two people of the same-sex, the spouses must:
    • have been married in California, but now live in a state or country that will not grant a divorce. The divorce must be filed in the county where the marriage took place.

    Divorce

    Most couples end their marriage or domestic partnership by getting it legally dissolved. This is called getting a divorce.

    • Once a divorce is final, each person is single. Each is again legally able to marry or register a domestic partnership.
    • Each person can ask the judge to order child support, spousal or partner support, child custody and visitation, division of property, domestic violence restraining orders, and other orders.
    • The couple must meet California's residency requirements to get a divorce.

    Legal Separation

    Sometimes, people don't want to get divorced, but they want to live apart and make their own decisions about money, property and parenting issues.

    • Legal separation does not end a marriage or domestic partnership. The people are not legally free to marry or register a domestic partnership with someone else.
    • Like a divorce, each person may ask the judge to order child support, spousal or partner support, child custody and visitation orders, division of property, domestic violence restraining orders and other orders.
    • The couple does not have to meet the same residence requirements to get a legal separation as they do for a divorce.

    Annulment

    Rarely, a court will rule that a marriage or domestic partnership is not legally valid. A marriage or domestic partnership that involves incest, for example, is never valid. Other marriages or domestic partnerships can be declared "void" because of force, fraud, mental incapacity, or because one of the spouses or partners was too young to legally marry or register a domestic partnership.

    • Like divorce, annulment ends a marriage or registered domestic partnership. Each person is legally free to marry or register a new domestic partnership.
    • Unlike a divorce, to complete an annulment, you must have a hearing before a judge.
    • Unlike divorce, the couple does not have to meet California's residency requirements to get an annulment.

    The only two grounds for divorce in California are:

    • irreconcilable differences, or
    • permanent legal incapacity to make decisions.

    Normally, people just give "irreconcilable differences" as their reason for wanting a divorce. They don't have to prove anything. There is no "guilty" or "non-guilty" person, from the court's point of view. Sometimes you will hear this referred to as a "no fault" divorce. This means that you can get a divorce without having to prove that someone did something wrong or is "at fault" for the divorce. The only thing the court is interested in is helping the separating spouses or partners reach a fair agreement about how their life will change after the divorce so they can move ahead to rebuild their lives.

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