• Finding Your Best Legal Solution

    When going through a divorce, it's vital that you understand your rights. That's where we come in!

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    As a family law firm, we strive to protect your family's best interests no matter what.

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    It is critical that you are able to select an attorney that understands the individual needs of your case.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the grounds for a dissolution of marriage in California?

  • Although there are several grounds upon which a court can grant a divorce, the most common ground for a divorce is "irreconcilable differences". In actuality, a specific reason need not be listed such that if either party seeks a divorce, the court will usually grant the request.

Q: Is fault considered?

  • California is considered a “no fault” state. What this means is that the law will not consider the specific reason for the divorce request. However fault can be considered in cases where one spouse breaches his or her fiduciary duty to the other spouse. Under California law, spouses owe each other a duty of the highest good faith and fair dealing in disclosing all material facts and information relative to the existence and valuation of all assets, debts, income and expenses. The judicial goal in a divorce proceeding is to ensure transparency and achieve fairness.

Q: What is decided in a divorce case?

  • Several issues are decided in a typical divorce case. These issues include the marital status, child custody, child visitation, child support, spousal support, property division, assignment of debt and attorney fees. Any of these issues can be bifurcated and decided singly by the court. Moreover the court can make temporary orders on most of these issues pending resolution of the entire divorce case.

Q: How long does a divorce take to complete?

  • The time it takes to complete a divorce is based on many factors but is primarily based on the parties themselves. It canl take a minimum of six (6) months for the parties to become legally divorced. However, if either party contests any issue, it could take much longer.

Q: What if we agree to the divorce and have reached an agreement?

  • If you and your spouse are able to agree regarding the various issues at hand, we can prepare a comprehensive judgment that will be accepotable to the court. An agreement will help speed up the process and ease the stress that usually accompanies a contested divorce.

Q How does a court decide child custody?

  • The public policy in California is to ensure children frequent and continuing contact with both parents after their separation or dissolution. The court is required to consider what type of child custody orders would be in the “best interests" of the children. Determining "best interests" hinges upon consideration of the health, safety and welfare of the children. Courts will sometimes seek assistance in making this often delicate decison by ordering a child custody evaluation.

Q: Does a child have any say in determining who gets custody?

  • California law provides that a court shall consider and give due weight to the wishes of a child in making a custody order. However, the child must be of sufficient age and capacity to reason so as to form an intelligent preference. Recent changes in the law, provide for children to have more of a voice in court. This can either be done by direct child testimony or through trained professionals guided by what is in the child's best interests.

Q: How is child support determined in California?

  • Child support is determined by application of a mathematical formula. The formula is essentially comprised of analyzing the income of the parties as well as the custodial timeshare. There are however other factors involved. Disputes often arise as to what data is input into the calculation. Computer software has been developed to assist courts and attorneys in this calculation.

Q: How is spousal support (alimony) determined in California?

  • The determination of spousal support is a bit more complicated as there are two types of spousal support. Temporary spousal support which is ordered during the pendency of the divorce proceeding is established through the use of computer software. Permanent spousal support which is ordered at the end of the divorce is calculated based on the many factors found in Family Code section 4320. Some of these factors include the marital standard of living, the duration of the marriage, the age and health of the parties and the ability of one spouse to pay support.

Q What is community and separate property?

  • Generally, all property acquired during marriage is community property. Conversely, property acquired before marriage, after separation or by gift or inheritance is separate property. Most problems arise when property is co-mingled, when property is part community and separate or when changes in title or ownership are made during the marriage. Other issues involve reimbursement rights, such as when separate property is used to acquire community property or when community payments are made to pay down a spouse's separate proerty.
  • Most importantly, once property is divided, the decision is final. If the division occurred less than a year ago, certain exceptions may give you relief in the event of disagreements. Other areas may require special expertise such as:
    • Student loans paid or incurred during the marriage
    • Child support paid during the marriage
    • Money or property traceable to personal injury settlements
    • Changes in title during marriage – joint to separate, separate to joint
    • Retirement plan division
    • Gifts during the marriage

Q: How Will Our Property Be Divided?

  • The court’s goal is to divide community property equally between spouses. This applies to real property, retirement plans, business interests, bank accounts, stock accounts and other property that either spouse acquired during the marriage. On the other hand, separate property, is usually confirmed to the owner spouse. Division of property can be in-kind, cash-out or by sale and division of the net proceeds.

Q: Where do I start?

  • You start by preparing yourself and becoming informed. Many resources exist for obtaining information. However there is no substitute for obtaing expert legal representation. Take advantage of our free consultation and learn how we can help you through the divorce process. We will analyze your specific situation and inform you of what steps you need to take NOW to protect your rights. Choosing the right attorney is a critical first step.

Q: What if I cannot afford an attorney?

  • You may think that you cannot afford an attorney. However many people are surprised at the affordability of choosing our office to represent them. We offer competitive rates and affordable payment plans. We accept all major credit cards. In some cases, your spouse can even be orderd to pay your attorney fees and costs.

Available 24 hours / 7 days a week. Contact Your Pasadena Family Law and Divorce Attorney Today!

  • Finding Your Best Legal Solution

    When going through a divorce, it's vital that you understand your rights. That's where we come in!

    Divorce
  • Don't Jeopardize Your Family

    As a family law firm, we strive to protect your family's best interests no matter what.

    Child Custody
  • How to Find the Right Lawyer

    It is critical that you are able to select an attorney that understands the individual needs of your case.

    Helpful Tips

Contact Us

Law Offices of Randy W. Medina, APLC
Pasadena Family Law Attorney
Located at: 301 East Colorado Blvd.,
Suite 514,

Pasadena, CA 91101
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Phone: (626) 433-8128
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Disclaimer

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.