John Griffith has practiced exclusively in the area of family law since 2009. John is a Certified Family Law Specialist certified as an expert in the area of family law by the California Board of Legal Specialization. Prior to opening Griffith, Young & Lass, he worked as the managing partner of one of the largest family law firms in North County San Diego. John’s local family law practice has expanded quickly as his reputation for competent and ethical practice grows. John graduated from Georgia State University in 2003 with a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and Religious Studies and attended law school in San Diego at Thomas Jefferson School of Law. John is a veteran of the United States Army and served an enlistment in South Korea. John has extensive trial experience in all areas of family law practice and specializes in complex jurisdictional child support and child custody cases as well as high asset litigious divorce cases. He also provides divorce mediation services and is often successful in settling high conflict divorces before they make it to the courtroom. San Diego Bar Association—Family Law.North County Bar Association—Family Law.Association of Certified Family Law Specialists.North County Family Law Specialists Group. Voted to Super Lawyers List, 2018Certified Family Law Specialist.2016 National Academy of Family Law Attorneys Top 10 Attorney Award.2014 Top Contributor AVVO.Pro Bono Honors Recipient—Thomas Jefferson School of Law.2-Year Member of the Alternate Dispute Resolution Competition Team.United States Army Veteran.Recipient: U.S Army Achievement Medal; U.S. Army Commendation Medal; Korean Service Medal.In his free time, John enjoys sports, skiing, and an occasional triathlon.Call now to speak with an experienced Encinitas Family Law attorney: 858-345-1720.
1525 Faraday Avenue, Suite 140, Carlsbad, CA 92008
The divorce process begins when you or your spouse files a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with the Superior Court in San Diego County (or wherever the appropriate jurisdiction is). You can do this yourself, or we can do this for you.
Once it is filed with the court, the spouse who is served with the divorce/dissolution petition is called the "respondent" or "defendant" in the divorce/dissolution process. He or she must respond to ("answer") the petition within 30 days.
Assuming your spouse responds, the two of you will exchange information about assets, debts, property and other relevant items. If you both can agree on how to divide up your assets and debts, along with child custody and support, you won’t need a trial. But if you two can’t agree, you will need to have a court hearing.
If your spouse doesn’t respond, the case will proceed anyway. The petitioner, or the one asking for the divorce, requests orders from the court regarding the division of property and attorney’s fees and, when appropriate, alimony, custody, visitation and child support. In this situation, the divorce will become final six months and one day after the respondent is served.)
Mediation is a less expensive and faster alternative to a litigated, contested divorce. If both parties are willing to work together to arrive at a settlement, mediation is the recommended route. Legal counsel (one attorney) will help both parties understand the often complicated legal jargon, and ensure the divorce process goes as quickly and painlessly as possible.
Temporary hearings are designed to resolve issues that may come up while the divorce is pending. These situations include:
Temporary custody arrangements
Temporary support/maintenance stipulations
Injunctions against financial assets and stipulations of asset usage
Protections against harassment and domestic violence
Similar to mediation, the Judicial Hosted Settlement Conference, is designed to help both parties come to a mutual agreement without needing to proceed to litigation (court). This is especially helpful for cases that have reached an impasse where both parties are unable to come to an agreement, and a judge can provide helpful guidance on the legal proceedings that would follow if an agreement cannot be made. If both parties are unable to come to an agreement, the case typically proceeds to a trial.
If your case goes to trial, your attorney and your soon-to-be ex’s attorney will present evidence and make arguments before the judge. Then, the judge will rule on any unresolved issues. If it's necessary to go to court, we will want to be as prepared as we can be, so we can get you the best result possible.