Our Roseville Lawyer Answers Common Questions
At the Law Offices of Frank F. Ali, we receive many questions regarding divorce and we are intent on helping our clients understand the process. The information provided on this page is designed to answer some of the more commonly asked questions that you may have regarding California divorce.
For more information about divorce, call us at (916) 745-8444 for a consultation.
- How long does divorce take?
- Why do I need an attorney?
- Should I compromise to speed the process along?
- Do I need a lawyer for an uncontested divorce?
- Can my divorce order be modified?
- What is community property?
- Can I gain some of the advantages without a divorce?
- How is child support determined in California?
- Can I have my marriage annulled?
- How is child custody determined?
- What is the difference between legal and physical custody?
- What are my options if I don't receive custody rights?
Answers to Your Questions
How long does divorce take?
It is hard to say. The various circumstances of your case – such as asset division and custody – that must be resolved will contribute to the length of the process. Also, whether you and your spouse are in agreement regarding these issues or whether you will need to fight for your rights in court will make the process longer or shorter. You could expect the process to take anywhere from a few months to several years. Click here to find out more on how long divorce takes.
Why do I need an attorney?
Without representation on your side, you could incur various court orders and provisions that are highly undesirable and possibly even detrimental to your future. In trial, you will need to work to convince the judge of your need for certain provisions, and if you are unable to do this, your spouse may obtain the financial support they want and leave you with little for your own future.
Should I compromise to speed the process along?
Divorce mediation provides a fast and amicable alternative to courtroom litigation. Divorce is provided as a means of relief, but if you compromise in all aspects of the negotiations, then you may not be left with the provisions you need for your future. It is advisable that you compromise in some areas but consult with your attorney before proceeding in this way.
Do I need a lawyer for an uncontested divorce?
Yes. While mediation provides the opportunity for a faster divorce process, there are many cases in which one spouse will compromise and be in agreement in order to hide other assets or deter attention from an asset that they wish to keep. This can result in extremely unfair division of assets, and you need representation to help you pursue the division that you need in your case. Click here to find out if you need an attorney for your uncontested divorce.
Can my divorce order be modified?
A divorce can make terms that will remain with you for life. The outcomes of them can have a significant impact on you and your children. Since the court recognizes that the situation at the time of the divorce is not always going to be the same situation, they do allow for changes to be sought. For those that are seeking to have a modification made, the judge will want to see that there has been a certain level of change in the circumstances that warrants for an alteration to be made. This can be the loss of a job, a change in the needs of a child, a parent that has proven more capable of being in contact with their child and other situations that are deemed reason enough by the courts. Click here to find out more about divorce modification.
What is community property?
Each state has their own way that they can choose to divide property amongst a couple that is ending their marriage. California is a community property state which means that they will divide property into separate and community property based on certain factors such as when it was acquired. Separate property is often what was gained before marriage or as a gift or inheritance during the marriage.
Community property was gained during the marriage by either of the two spouses. That which is considered community property will be divided amongst the two, even if one of them was primarily responsible for the financial gain. It is important to have separate and community property established in a way that works for you.
Can I gain some of the advantages without a divorce?
A legal separation is the best choice for many couples. They may not want to end the marriage for religious purposes or are not yet ready to file. This can break some of the ties without officially ending the marriage before the court.
How is child support determined in California?
In the state of California, both parents have a responsibility of paying for their child, even if the parents were not married. To assess child support, the incomes of both parties, custody, and how much time the non-custodial parent has with the child will be reviewed.
Can I have my marriage annulled?
Not everyone has the option of pursuing an annulment and there will be certain situations that need to exist in order for you to be eligible. In California, the legal reasons for why an annulment may be allowed include the following:
- The relationship is incestuous which automatically makes the marriage not valid.
- A marriage is also automatically not valid when a spouse is already married.
- One of the individuals was of unsound mind and unable to understand the situation when getting married.
- There is a prior marriage or domestic partnership where the other party was absent for five or more years or was thought to be dead.
- The individual seeking the annulment was under 18 when they married.
- A spouse is physically incapacitated while entering into the marriage and appears as though they will not recover.
- Force was used to get the party to enter into the marriage
- The marriage resulted under fraud.
These terms exist for those who are married or in a domestic partnership. An annulment is not necessarily dependent on the amount of time that you have been married for. Even if you have been married for a short time, you may find difficulty in convincing the judge to grant the annulment. Working with an attorney may help to strengthen your case and provide for a stronger argument. For those who are unable to receive an annulment, a divorce or legal separation can still be pursued.
How is child custody determined?
Some couples are able to come to an agreement together on what is best for the child and how time will be spent with each parent. A plan will need to be developed that lays out how the couple intends to parent together, while not being in a relationship. The court may choose to approve this or can make adjustments.
If the couple is unable to make the decision together, then the case can be turned over to the court. Custody may be divided in a number of ways but the court often tries to have both parents involved if possible. Their main concern is what is in the best interest of the child and they will assess if having a relationship with both parents falls in line with that.
What is the difference between legal and physical custody?
There are two types of custody orders: legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody refers to the right to make important decisions when it comes to the education, healthcare, welfare and even physical custody of the child. Physical custody refers to who it is that the children live with. Legal and physical custody may not always be evenly divided amongst a couple
What are my options if I don't receive custody rights?
You may not have been granted any legal rights with your child in regards to custody but there may still be the option of seeking the right to visit with them. Through an agreement with the other parent or through a decision from the court, you may be able to have regular visitation with your child and a plan will need to be scheduled to better determine this. Visitation can be a valuable thing to gain and it can allow you to maintain a relationship with your child even if they are primarily living with the other parent. In the future it may also be possible to seek a modification of these terms so that you are able to gain more rights with your child.
Retain Our Family Law Services in Placer County Today
We understand the severity of the situation that you face, and you can be sure that we will work with you to pursue a favorable outcome if you choose to work with us. At the Law Offices of Frank F. Ali, we are dedicated to providing excellent representation and pursuing favorable outcomes for our clients. We take the time to inform and educate our clients so that they may make educated decisions. Seek the skillful and experienced legal assistance of our attorney today!