Divorce is a significant life event. Whether you and your spouse have an amicable separation or a contentious situation, getting through the divorce is challenging. There is a good reason why divorce is considered one of the most stressful events that a person can endure.
Though the experience may be difficult, it can be made easier with the help of a good divorce attorney. The right legal support can help to make the divorce process much more approachable and help both parties to get what they need from the separation. As your family grows and changes, it is important to find an attorney who understands your story and your needs and who can advocate for your future.
For many years, our strong team of family attorneys has been supporting couples as they go through the California divorce process. We are very familiar with the common questions, issues, and challenges that arise during divorce proceedings, and we feel confident in our ability to help our clients regardless of their circumstances. Though you may feel overwhelmed by the divorce process, we offer expert advice to help you feel empowered and in control of your situation.
We understand that divorce can be a very emotional time. You can trust us during this difficult time, as we put our clients and their needs first. Though we will fight tirelessly for your rights in court, we will approach you individually with care, compassion, and understanding.
Our blend of experience and compassion makes us extremely good at our jobs and very well respected in the Camarillo legal community. We are the best choice for you as you navigate the divorce process.
Though you likely understand what divorce is, many people do not know how many considerations and negotiations need to happen during the divorce process. Understanding what is coming can help you to feel more confident about your decisions and make choices from a place of confidence. When you work with our team, we will discuss all of the following topics with you to ensure that we understand what you need and want from your divorce process.
The primary purpose of the divorce process is to divide marital assets between the two divorcing spouses. California is a community property state, meaning that any assets that a couple acquires during their marriage are assumed to be equal property of both spouses. When the couple divorces, these assets need to be divided between the two through asset division.
There are several ways to divide property equally. In some instances, the assets get sold, and the couple divides the profits equally between them. In other situations, one spouse may wish to keep certain assets like a home or cottage. In these circumstances, your attorneys must negotiate other assets of equal value to give to the other spouse. For example, let’s say that one spouse wishes to keep the family home. The other spouse may ask to take the retirement accounts that equal the value of the family home. This is a fair and permissible way to divide the property.
In some situations, property division is very easy. In other situations, couples get greedy, vindictive, or emotional, which can delay the process. Having an attorney to represent you helps the process to move along and helps to overcome any roadblocks that you may encounter.
Perhaps the most emotional aspect of divorce is deciding on a custody agreement for your child or children. Most parents do not want to sacrifice their relationship with their kids, and many feel passionate about how much time they want to spend with their children. This can create emotional arguments in the courtroom.
Usually, the court aims to offer shared custody as a baseline, as it is the best way to ensure that both parents are contributing equally. However, the court will ultimately choose whatever arrangement is best for the children involved. Their health, safety, and happiness are the law’s top priority.
During child custody negotiations, your attorney will have to advocate for why you deserve custody. In some instances, your spouse’s attorney may make accusations or try to make you look like a bad parent in order to get custody. These battles can get heated, and it is important to have an attorney who is comfortable with these negotiations.
The court requires that both of a child’s parents contribute equally to the child’s upbringing. This can be done through child custody, but it can also be done through child support. These are monthly payments that are often paid from a parent with less or no custody to a parent with more or all custody. However, child support may be required if one parent makes vastly more money than the other, even if the custody is equally shared.
Child support is a significant expense and can be incredibly helpful if you are a custodial parent. Having an attorney on your side to negotiate child support ensures that the agreement is fair and that you are not taken advantage of.
Spousal support, or alimony, is another consideration in many divorces. Spousal support is money paid from one ex-spouse to another on a monthly basis. This money is intended to compensate a spouse for the time they spent out of work caring for the home or raising children. It also helps to ensure that both spouses have the necessary finances to begin a new, single life.
Spousal support is not a requirement in all divorces. It likely will not be necessary to create a spousal support agreement if both spouses work and make similar incomes.
As you can see, there are many considerations that are important in divorce proceedings. You will need a divorce attorney who can properly navigate all of these issues, as well as one who can advocate for you during divorce negotiations. Having your own representation means you have a way to defend yourself properly and get what you are owed. If you are representing yourself, your spouse’s attorney will easily take advantage of you to get better divorce terms for their client.
Representing yourself puts you in an extremely painful and vulnerable position. Do not risk your family, your finances, and your future by attempting to go through a divorce without an attorney.
A: The average rate for a divorce attorney is $250 per hour. However, this amount varies depending on the attorney’s experience. Some attorneys charge a percentage of your settlement. Costs can vary, so it is important to discuss finances clearly with potential attorneys. This can help to ensure that you can afford their services throughout the entirety of your divorce case.
A: Divorce mediation offers the most economical route to divorce. However, mediation does not work in all scenarios. In order for mediation to work, the couple needs to be able to communicate with one another, as it will be their responsibility to negotiate the divorce terms while the mediator simply facilitates the conversation and ensures that the agreement is legal and fair. If you and your spouse are on bad terms or cannot negotiate without arguing, mediation is not for you.
A: Yes. A parent’s gender has nothing to do with their ability to get custody of their children. Rather, the court looks at things like:
If a father provides a healthy environment for his children, but their mother does not, the father can get full custody.
A: The length of divorce proceedings varies from situation to situation. If you have lots of considerations, such as children, property, stocks, savings, and other factors, the negotiations will naturally last longer. If you cannot cooperate or come to an agreement, this can also extend the length of time the divorce takes. You should also note that, in order to file for divorce in California, you and your spouse must have lived at separate addresses for at least six months.
For many years, our team has been helping couples in the Camarillo area to navigate the divorce process. We understand the challenges that you are going through and the emotional toll that the process can take. We are here to make the process as easy and painless as possible while working on getting you the best divorce terms for your new life. No law firm in the area provides the same combination of expertise and compassion that we do at Laurie Peters and Associates, APLC.
For more information about our firm or to schedule an initial consultation, contact Laurie Peters and Associates, APLC, online.