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California Family law is an area of the law that deals with family matters and domestic relations. The most often issue being filing for divorce. Other typical legals matters handled by the Sacramento Family Law Attorney, include child custody, guardianship, and estates.
In California, couples can enter into prenuptial and postnuptial agreements. The difference being that one is entered into before marriage while the other is entered into after marriage. Couples do this contemplating the possibility of divorce. Both agreements are contracts that characterize the parties’ assets, distribution of those assets, and/or other specific interests. Both documents require specific language and “disclaimers” to be enforceable. What is often at stake is community property or potential community interests which must be disclosed and any characterization to designate property as one person’s separate property agreed to. Sacramento Family Law Attorney can draft a pre-nuptial or post-nuptial agreement to address your specific needs.
In California, divorce is also known as dissolution and is the legal process to terminate a marriage. The process begins when either you or your spouse decides to terminate the marital union and the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage by filing a petition for dissolution. There are many issues that you may encounter by filing as a petitioner or as respondent – some client may want to initiated a divorce proceeding while other may find it advantageous to respond immediately to a divorce petition.
Divorce Residency Requirements
Filing for divorce in the State of California requires that at least one spouse have resided in the state for at least six months prior to the date of filing, and that the filing spouse have resided in the county where they are filing for at least three months prior to the date of filing. In short, you must have been a resident of the county in which you are filing for at least 3 months prior to the date of filing and a California resident for at least 6 months prior to the date of filing. If you do not meet residency requirements, you can still file for a legal separate which can later be converted to a divorce proceeding. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney for a free consultation on divorce.
In California, child custody is defined as the legal relationship that parents have with their child. This legal relationship can be established by a court during a divorce proceeding or agreed to by the parents.
The parents’ right to make decisions regarding the child’s care and development. Parents can reach an agreement regarding custody without court intervention. This agreement can then be entered as a court order. Otherwise, parents will attend mediation and receive recommendations about custody and parenting time.
The time each parent spends with a child. Parents can reach an agreement regarding custody without court intervention. This agreement can then be entered as a court order. Otherwise, parents will attend mediation and receive recommendations about custody and parenting time.
Joint Child Custody
Sometimes referred to as 50-50 custody. Joint legal and physical custody is the “favored” arrangements that courts would like for parents to have with their children. A court can address child custody should the parents be unable to do so. A judge, who has wide discretion in drafting a parenting plan, will order one that is in a the “best interests of the child.”
Sole Physical Custody
A parent who is awarded sole physical custody has the exclusive right to physically care for their child. The other parent, non-custodial parent, is awarded visitation. The court must consider the best interests of the child before it awards sole physical custody to one parent. Once the court awards sole physical custody to one parent, that parent has the right to control the physical care of the child without the need to consult the other parent.
Sole Legal Child Custody
A parent with sole legal custody holds exclusive rights to make critical decisions that affect the child’s safety, health and welfare. The court must consider the best interests of the child before it awards sole legal custody to one parent. Once sole legal custody is ordered to one parent, that parent has the right to make all other decisions over the child’s life, without the other parent’s approval.
Child Custody Modification
A request to modify child custody (the parenting plan) is undertaken after entry of a custody and visitation order. Parenting plans are often changed as children get older and their needs, interests, and activities change. Custody orders can be modified when a parents moves, advances in their career, or remarries. To request a modification, you must show that there has been a “change in circumstances” since the final custody order was made. This means that there has been a significant change that requires a new visitation arrangement for the best interests of the children. A significant change is required because it is best for children to have stable and consistent custody arrangements with their parents. Final custody orders should only be changed if it would be best for the children.
Child support is the amount of money that a court orders a parent to pay for the support of their child. Each parent is equally responsible for providing for the financial needs of their child. Child support can be requested by a parent or by the State of California. Child support is determined by each parent’s parenting time and each parent’s income. Child support can be requested by either parent at any time and child support cannot be “waived.” Support payments usually continue until the child turn 18. Support payments can continue until the age of 19 if the child is still in high school full time, living at home, and cannot support themselves. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney to discuss obtaining, modifying or terminating child support.
Child Support Modification
Child support can be modified should there be a change in parenting time or the income of either parent. Remember, should you have a change in income and not request a modification of child support you will be charged with arrears for missed payments which may not be credited.
Also known as alimony in other states, is a legal obligation for one spouse to provide financial support to the other spouse during separation and after divorce. Spousal support that is agreed to or awarded after the date of separation and until a divorce is finalized is called temporary spousal support. Spousal support that is agreed to or awarded after a divorce is finalized is call permanent spousal support. Spousal support is available to either a husband or wife and is awarded to help one spouse attain the marital standard of living. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney to discuss obtaining, modifying or terminating spousal support.
Spousal Support Modification
You can request to change a spousal support order if you can show that there has been a “change in circumstances” since the spousal support order was made. The supported party no longer needs support or the supporting party can no longer afford to paid support.
Spousal Support Termination
Spousal support is terminated by death, remarriage, or by a court order. A spouse is given support for a reasonable amount of time to become self-supporting. In marriages lasting less than 10 years, a reasonable amount of time is generally considered to be half the length of the marriage. In marriages that last longer than 10 years, a court will require the supported spouse to become self-supporting as soon as reasonably possible. California law does not require lifetime support and spousal support can be terminated at any time.
All property (whether it be an asset or debt) acquired during a marriage is characterized as community property. All property acquired before marriage or after to date of separation; by gift; or, from an inheritance is characterized as separate property. All community property is to be divided while all separate property is awarded to the acquiring spouse. The division of property requires that all property be first characterized after which reimbursements and credits must be considered. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney to discuss establishing and dividing your marital assets.
In the State of California, all assets and debts you acquire during a valid marriage is presumed to be community property. When you file for divorce, any property you may own is characterized as either community property or separate property. Any property that can be traced to a separate property source is characterized as separate property.
You can acquire separate property in a number of ways. It can be property you received before the marriage, property you were given, property you inherited, or any property you acquire after separation.
Domestic violence is an act of violence perpetrated by an abuser on a victim. The parties must share a close relationship. Domestic violence can happen to anyone; men and women alike. If you, or someone you know, has being a victim of domestic violence, you should contact law enforcement for help and seek medical attention for any injury. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney should you want to file a domestic violence action or need to be defended in a domestic violence case.
Civil Harassment Orders
If you do not qualify for a domestic violence restraining order, you can file for a civil harassment restraining order. This is often used by clients seeking to protect themselves from neighbors, roommates, coworkers, or more distant family members. Civil harassment are requests made by those who are not sharing a close relationship. Abuse is defined as: intentionally or recklessly caused or attempted to cause bodily injury or sexual assault; placing a person in reasonable apprehension of imminent serious bodily injury to that person or to another; or, engaging in any behavior involving, but not limited to, threatening, striking, harassing, destroying personal property, or disturbing the peace of another.
Individuals often hire family law attorneys to apply for guardianship. Guardianships are granted when a court finds the need for one individual to care for another individual’s well-being or property. Guardianship is a legal relationship created between two parties. Once done, the guardian will have the authority, and corresponding duty, to care for a person and their property interests. The individual cared for by the guardian is called a ward. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney about filing for and/or obtaining a guardianship.
The legal right that grandparents have to see and interact with their grandchildren will most likely require the assistance of a family law attorney. Should a grandparent be denied contact with their grandchild, they will have to obtain a court order granting them the right to visitation.
Attorneys practicing family law can be very helpful to those who wish to assume the parenting role of another, usually a child, from that person’s biological or legal parent(s). Adoption not only creates a new legal relationship but also severs a prior legal relationship. When a child is adopted, the parental rights of the child’s parents are terminated. The legal relationship between the adoptive party and the child is permanent and is treated exactly the same as if the child was born to that party. An adopted child inherits from his or her adoptive parents, just as a child would.
Estate planning is the process to anticipating and arranging for the management and disposal of a person’s estate during their lifetime and after death. It is undertaken to maximizing the value of the estate by reducing taxes and other expenses. Estate planning includes planning for incapacity as well as a process of reducing or eliminating uncertainties over the administration of a probate. Contact Sacramento Family Law Attorney about your estate planning issues.
Civil litigation are court actions that involve two or more parties who are embroiled in a legal dispute seeking money or another specific performance, rather than criminal sanctions. The attorney who handles civil litigation is known as a “litigator” or a “trial lawyer.” The attorney represents clients across a broad spectrum of associated proceedings, including pretrial hearings and depositions, as well as arbitration or mediation before administrative agencies or court personnel. Arbitration and mediation are processes that attempt to guide the parties toward settlement without the time and expense of going to court. Sacramento Family Law Attorney has extensive trial and medication experience.
You can conduct an Family Law Website Search for information relating to a family law matters by simply typing in the work or phrase you wish to search. A Family Law Website Search will produce not only information related to your search but forms to be used for filing with a California court.
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