Newport Beach Divorce Lawyers
Face a Brighter Future with Skilled Legal Counsel
We may not say “I do” with the intention or idea that the union will end, but the truth is that about 40-50% of marriages in the United States end in divorce. This can give rise to a host of serious issues that must be resolved, specifically related to assets, child support, spousal support, and children. With more Californians getting married later in life or entering into second marriages, these issues have become exceedingly complex. You need to be certain that your rights are protected and your divorce approached correctly based on your unique situation, needs, and goals.
How Can We Help You?
Divorce can be messy and difficult, but the right attorney can actually save you time, money, and stress. We are experienced in handling:
Contact us at (949) 799-3357 today to discuss your options and how we can help.
What Are the Requirements for Divorce in California?
In California, you do not need to provide any grounds for divorce, otherwise known as a fault-based divorce. The courts recognize “irreconcilable differences” as the reason for the marriage dissolving. There is an understanding that the couple have no chance of reconciling. Fault can be a consideration in some cases, such as when couples need to settle a custody agreement or in determining the amount of alimony to be awarded.
Additionally, there is a minimum residency requirement. You or your spouse must be a resident of California for at least six months. You must also be a resident of the county where you are going to be filing your divorce.
Do You Need a Lawyer to Get Divorced?
For many uncontested divorces, couples are choosing to file solo because of its ease and cost-effectiveness. However, consulting with an attorney prior to doing so may open legal options that you did not know existed. These options are not intended to “hurt” your spouse, rather they keep your best interests in line with your short- and long-term goals.
Couples who choose to retain legal defense may reap the following benefits:
- Less paperwork and court documents to fill out
- Transparent and expert communication about legal processes and terms
- Guidance on which issues are worth pursuing in the divorce
Couples who are best suited to hiring a lawyer include:
- Couples with minor children
- Couples with large assets and property
- Couples who cannot agree on all terms of the divorce
How Long Does Divorce Take to Finalize?
Depending on your circumstances, your divorce can be settled in as few as six months. However, we have seen cases with many contentious matters to settle, such as battles over child custody and alimony. However, the minimum amount of time it would take from filing to the final divorce decree would be six months. The courts require spouses to wait after filing their divorce petition before issuing the decree.
How long does it take to finalize a contested divorce?
The sophistication and amount of outstanding problems between you and your spouse decide how long it takes to finish a contested divorce. The amount of time is often determined by the degree of cooperation between the two parties. Your case can be settled in a few months to a few years.
Contested vs. Uncontested Divorce
Divorce may be contested or uncontested. Most divorces are uncontested, which means that the spouses agree upon all key issues related to support, assets, and children. Their agreement will be subject to court approval. In a contested divorce, spouses cannot agree on one or more of these issues and a judge will need to hear the facts of the case and render a decision on these. It is important to note, however, that mediation or other collaborative approaches can be used to resolve disagreements, thus avoiding the need for a drawn out courtroom battle. It will be important to consider all the pros and cons of every potential approach to take the right steps toward your divorce.
Whether you are facing a contested or uncontested divorce, having a competent lawyer can make all the difference. You need to be certain that your interests and rights are protected and that divorce proceedings are properly followed to avoid serious delays or problems that could haunt you for years to come. When you work with Thomas Law Offices, you will find that will put your needs first as we seek the best possible result at every stage of your divorce.
Advantages of an Uncontested divorce
Uncontested divorce allows couples to dissolve their marriage peacefully and respectfully.
The most obvious benefit of an uncontested divorce is the lower cost. However, the low cost is not the only advantage. It is more private, cooperative, and likely to keep more of your assets in each of your pockets.
When You Should Not File For an Uncontested Divorce
When one spouse is abusing the other, an uncontested divorce is a poor decision. If the partnership has a history of family violence, sexual abuse, or some other power imbalance, one partner will almost certainly have an unfair advantage over the other. The disadvantaged partner would almost certainly need the services of a lawyer to represent them.
When the spouses are unable to communicate without arguing, an uncontested divorce is often a bad idea. Additionally, if either or both of you are interested in holding or receiving a greater share of the marital properties, this may lead to disputes that are difficult to settle in an uncontested divorce.
If you and your partner are unfamiliar with the law or do not think you can handle the documents on your own, you should not file for an uncontested divorce.
Contact Thomas Law Offices Today
Certified as a Family Law Specialist by The State Bar of California, Attorney Kendra Thomas is uniquely qualified to handle your divorce. She is also certified in Mediation, Arbitration, and Negotiation by the Straus Institute at Pepperdine University. She has well over a decade of legal experience and has undergone extensive training and other requirements to obtain these certifications, and she and our team will work diligently to help you face a brighter future.
To arrange a confidential consultation over the phone or at our Newport Beach or Woodland Hills offices, call (949) 799-3357.
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