Encinitas Divorce Attorneys
Defending You Through Thick & Thin
Whether you’re filing for a contested or uncontested divorce process, dissolving a marriage is often a difficult affair for all parties involved. Having an attorney you can trust by your side will enable you to pursue whatever outcome you desire with confidence.
At Griffith, Young & Lass, our Encinitas divorce attorneys are here to empower you throughout your divorce, helping you toward the best outcome for your future.
To schedule a consultation with our team for your divorce, contact us online or via phone at 858-951-1526.
Different Divorce Processes in CA
To file for divorce in California, at least one spouse must have been a resident of the state for six months. Additionally, the spouse who files must have lived in the county where they file for divorce for at least three months.
As you navigate your divorce, you’ll need to resolve the following divorce-related processes:
- Property division. California is a community property state, meaning that any marital property (generally defined as any property acquired post-marriage not meant exclusively for one party, such as an inheritance) will be split equally between the spouses. This also includes marital debts. As a result, many Californians find themselves taking on more marital debts or needing to give up more marital assets than they first expect.
- Alimony. There are two types of alimony in California – temporary alimony, which lasts while the divorce is ongoing, and permanent alimony, which remains in place post-divorce. The details of alimony arrangements can change depending on the circumstances of the divorce. Factors include the employability and assets of each spouse, their roles during the marriage, mental and
physical health, how long it may take an alimony recipient to become financially independent, the standard of living established during the marriage, and more.
- Child custody. In California, courts typically default to the assumption that joint custody arrangements, in which a child sees and lives with both parents frequently, is ideal. To obtain a different kind of custody arrangement, one party may need to supply the court with evidence that their partner is an unfit caregiver, and therefore should not have equal legal and physical custody
of the child.
- Child support. Like alimony, the amount of child support a payor must supply depends heavily on the circumstances of the case. Factors include whether the payor has other child support obligations, how much custody of the child the payor has, the fiscal, physical, and mental health of both parents, and the standard of living established during the marriage for the child.
How you work resolve these disputes depends on the approach you take to your divorce.
If you want to file for an uncontested divorce – which is generally less cost and time-intensive than a contested divorce – you must resolve any differences with your spouse before or during the divorce process. This involves drafting a divorce agreement both parties sign, detailing the terms of the divorce that they’ve agreed on. If a judge deems the agreement equitable, the agreement will be used to establish the terms of the divorce when the marriage is officially dissolved.
Many couples use forms of alternative dispute resolution (ADR), such as mediation or collaborative law, to resolve their differences and engage in an uncontested divorce.
However, if you cannot reach an agreement with your spouse, you will need to file for a contested divorce instead. This involves dealing with the divorce process in court. The court may hold temporary order hearings to determine how the parties handle processes such as alimony or custody while the divorce is ongoing.
Eventually, the court will hold a trial. At trial, both parties have the opportunity to present evidence to the court. California is a no-fault divorce state, meaning most marital misconduct will not be considered by the court when deciding an outcome for a divorce. However, certain behaviors, such as engaging in domestic violence against a spouse or child, could impact the outcome of the case.
After the trial, the judge presiding over the case will determine what would constitute an equitable outcome for both parties, and draft a divorce decree finalizing the divorce with those terms.
Whether you want a contested or uncontested divorce, our Encinitas divorce attorneys are here to help. If you wish to modify the terms of an already-existing court order, we can help you navigate that process as well.