Stay at home orders have been in effect for what feels like forever and with the possibility of things opening up in the very near future, people are understandably anxious to get back to “normal” for their family law cases to be heard and move forward. However, all indications are that things will not immediately go back to the way they were and that the reopening of the state and the courts will be gradual.
So what does this mean for courthouses and your family law case?
No one is completely sure about when the courthouses plan to resume “normal” operations. It is important to manage your expectations about when and how your case will be heard. Chances are, if you already had a hearing scheduled prior to the courthouse closures, it has been continued. This may continue to happen and it is expected that the courts will have a lengthly backlog of cases that still need to be heard. Current estimates are that cases could see a delay of up to six months, but again, no one is completely sure since th information is constantly changing. The expectation is that the cases the court deems to be the most urgent will be heard first and then the remainder will be heard after.
The courts may also not look or function like they used to before coronavirus. Social distancing will most likely still be enforced, courthouses may be restricted to essential people only, and more cases and mediations may be heard or conducted by phone or virtually over platforms such as Zoom.
What if you want to file for Divorce right now?
Los Angeles Family Law Attorney Evan Braunstein is here to help you with all of your family law needs, including divorces during the coronavirus pandemic. If you have already made the decision to file for divorce, there is no reason to delay filing your petition. Deciding to file for divorce is a big step and we are here to assist you with everything that entails. This will help ensure that you are properly prepared and able to move forward once the courts reopen.
We are open and ready to assist you
The Law Offices of Evan Braunstein are open Monday through Friday from 9am to 5pm, even during the coronavirus pandemic. Our work here is essential and we remain open and committed to assisting our clients with their family law needs.
You may assume that divorces are always messy – that separating couples fight, and that issues in a divorce take the intervention of a judge in order to resolve. However, this is not always the case; in fact, many couples are able to pursue an uncontested divorce, which mitigates high divorce expenses, stress, and hurt feelings. At the Law Offices of Evan Braunstein, our Los Angeles divorce lawyer advocates for uncontested divorce whenever possible. Here’s what you should know.
Before you file for a divorce with the help of a Los Angeles divorce lawyer, it’s important to get as much information about the divorce process as possible. Here are five surprising facts about divorce you should know, and if you need more information about divorce that’s specific to your situation, reach out to a qualified divorce lawyer.
When parents in Los Angeles decide to get divorced, the process of dissolving the marriage can be especially difficult for children. A Los Angeles divorce lawyer will tell you that sometimes kids mistakenly believe that they played a role in causing the divorce, while other children and teens simply have trouble coping with the fact that their parents will not be living together any longer or that they will need to spend time at two different homes in order to maintain relationships with both parents. The way a child responds to the divorce process is dependent upon many different factors, such as the child’s age and his or her current relationship with parents and siblings.
When you get divorced in Los Angeles, California, laws regarding property division, the establishment of a child support, child custody order, and all other divorce processes are applied to your case. It is possible to divorce your spouse if he or she lives in another state, although it’s best to do so with the help of a Playa Vista divorce lawyer. In many cases where the spouses live in two different states, the couple can choose where they want to file for their divorce, provided both partners meet their state’s residency requirement. After your divorce is finalized, either spouse moving to another state can potentially require the couple to modify one or more of their original divorce orders. Read more of this post.
I provide a free initial consultation for family law matters. This gives me an opportunity to meet with a potential client, learn about their situation and decide how I can most effectively represent them. I then prepare a detailed representation agreement that describes the specific legal services that I will provide in that particular case along with a fixed fee for those services. In a prior post, I suggested five questions to help you choose a family law attorney. Below are five things to bring with you to an initial consultation to help you and the family law attorney evaluate your case. Read more of this post.
In a divorce proceeding, bifurcation is the division of the divorce into two or more parts. In California, bifurcation is governed by California Family Law Code Section 2337. There are two types of bifurcation. In the first, the parties bifurcate the divorce by severing the issue of marital status from all other issues to obtain a “status-only divorce.” In the second, the parties bifurcate a single key issue from the rest of the case, and have a mini-trial to resolve that key issue. Both types of bifurcation can be especially useful to people getting divorced in today’s economic downturn.
Certain parts of a divorce such as the division and valuation of property, child custody, child support and spousal support can take longer to resolve than we would like. This is equally true whether the parties are negotiating or are preparing for trial. They may bifurcate the issue of marital status and reserve the court’s jurisdiction over all other matters. This can give them the peace of mind knowing that they are divorced, can move on with their lives, and can even remarry, while knowing that they will have the time necessary to properly resolve the other divorce issues.
Filing for dissolution of marriage in California requires that one of the parties meets certain residency requirements. Specifically, he or she must have been a resident of the state of California for the last 6 months, and of the particular county where the case is filed for the last 3 months. I wrote about California’s residency requirements for a dissolution of marriage in a previous blog post.
After the petition for dissolution of marriage has been filed with the court and properly served with a summons on the other party, the parties must wait a minimum of 6 months to become divorced. This 6 month waiting period cannot be shortened no matter how simple the matter, how amicable the parties, or how much they want the divorce to be finalized. In many cases, the parties are able to resolve all marital issues including division of property, spousal support, child support, and child custody in less than 6 months and are left counting the days until they can be divorced. Read more of this post.
Here are three legal terms that you should think about if you are thinking about filing for divorce:
One part of a divorce is the division of property. California is a community property state. All property obtained by either party during a marriage is presumed to be community property and jointly owned 50/50 unless the acquisition of the property was the result of a gift or inheritance. Any property acquired during a marriage that can be traced to separate property is also separate property. All other property, including property that was acquired before marriage or after the date of separation, is separate property. Certain actions and/or agreements Read more of this post.
You can file for divorce in California if you have adequate grounds and meet the residency requirements.
California is a no-fault divorce state. Legally adequate grounds for divorce, under California Family Code Section 2310 are “incurable insanity” and “irreconcilable differences which have caused the irremediable dissolution of the marriage.” Residency for purposes of divorce requires that one party has lived in the state of California for the last 6 months, and in the particular county where the divorce will be filed for the last 3 months.