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Divorce FAQ

Answers from an Orange County Divorce Lawyer


Why do I need to file for divorce or legal separation?

In the State of California, marriage can be terminated only upon filing for divorce in order to dissolve the marriage. It is important that your interests are represented in a fair and reasonable manner by your attorney. Divorce can be a challenging process which make its important to have the best lawyers represent your complex legal issues which helps you manage the emotional aspects of things.

Can you still file for divorce even if yours spouse does not agree?

Yes. California is a “no fault” divorce state. This means that the party seeking divorce needs to only prove that there are “irreconcilable differences” which make it difficult for you to continue staying married.

How is legal separation different from divorce?

Your marital status is still considered married when you are legally separated. In the event you meet someone special and need to remarry, then you will need to file for divorce. There are numerous factors that need to be taken into account by your attorney who can advise you in helping you make the most effective decision that serves your best interests.

How will property be divided between spouses?

California is a community property State. In other words, the property division laws for a divorce are controlled by community property principals. Under the community property system, any income earned by either spouse through his or her labor is considered community property and it belongs to both spouses in equal shares. However, any property received before marriage or property received during marriage by means of gift, will or inheritance is not considered community property and it belongs to the spouse who received the gift or inherited the property.

What do you do in a case where child(ren) are involved?

Divorce is tough in itself, where you need to ensure that the children do not suffer and their best interests should be your top most priority. Parents might seek counsel to ensure they understand how to handle things in a sensitive manner with the kids. It’s important that both parties show understanding and act in a reasonably acceptable manner as to the legal and physical custody of the kids.

Can you ask for child support?

It depends if you are the spouse who is doing well financially or if the other party is. The main goal is to ensure that enough money is set aside to ensure that the children are taken care of financially and all their basic needs are met. A judge must decide on how much child support is to be paid by one parent to the other. Parents cannot settle their child support disputes on their own, as any child custody or child support matters must be approved by court. Child support can be ordered by the court for one kid or multiple kids. These child support payments are made till the child reaches a certain age depending on certain conditions. These payments can be extended beyond such period based on the agreement between parents.

Can you modify child support payments?

Yes depending on the circumstances. There might be times when modifications might need to be made to the existing child support agreement post-divorce based on change in circumstances. Also, in the event the existing child support amount does not meet the existing guidelines, the affected parent can request modification as well.

Should your spouse pay you alimony?

If your spouse earns a significant percentage of your household income, the divorce laws in California offer protection to the spouse who earns less money. Equally, the laws place limits on collection of spousal support by a spouse who does not meaningfully contribute to the marriage. Alimony or spousal support can be awarded by a judge to either wife or husband depending on the circumstances that exist.

Get to Know Our Team

  • Raja S. Gill
    Raja S. Gill Founding Attorney
  • Stephanie Reyes
    Stephanie Reyes Attorney
  • Edgar C. Johnson, Jr.
    Edgar C. Johnson, Jr. Of Counsel
  • Raja S. Gill Founding Attorney
    Raja S. Gill

    Attorney Hetinder “Raja” Gill has been awarded membership in the National Trial Lawyers: Top 40 Under 40, and he maintains a Superb Avvo Rating. View Profile

  • Stephanie Reyes Attorney
    Stephanie Reyes

    Mrs. Reyes is an aggressive advocate in divorce and family law matters and has extensive experience in custody and financial disputes. View Profile

  • Edgar C. Johnson, Jr. Of Counsel
    Edgar C. Johnson, Jr.

    Attorney Johnson graduated Western State University School of Law and has over 25 years of litigation experience. View Profile

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