Articles Posted in Family Law

I am a divorce lawyer, and also a product of divorce. I was fortunate enough that it was low-drama, and my childhood was not shaped by the fact that my parents were no longer together. Their amicable divorce helped inspire me to pursue this career, because I want to be able to do my part to help my clients achieve the same result, when it is possible.

When I was 15 years old, my parents informed me that they were going to split up. My dad was moving out to a nearby apartment complex in Pleasant Hill, that was actually a few minutes closer to my high school. My mom was staying in the house. My parents’ marriage had been wrought with some turmoil, but I always felt like they had “gotten through it” and so it would be smooth sailing for the rest of their lives. After they announced their split, I was shocked at first, but quickly grew accustomed to it.

My parents never put pressure on me to spend equal time with both of them, because my dad would make efforts to come to the house and hang out with my mom and I. He would frequently come over for dinner, and would be at all of my swim meets, water polo games, and other school events. One of my dad’s favorite things to do was to come over and mow the lawn at our house, and I would see him out there every Sunday without fail. Some of our neighbors did not even know that my parents had split. I would usually spend one full week out of the month with him at his apartment, but it was never compulsory- it was always based around my needs and my schedule.

Family law cases typically involve an intersection of legal issues and emotional concerns. As such, it is not uncommon for family law disputes to become contentious. In some instances, parties in family law cases will go so far as to attempt to frustrate the resolution of their cases by refusing to comply with procedural rules. To address such behavior, the California legislature enacted a statute that permits the courts to impose sanctions on non-compliant parties in family law cases, as discussed in In Re Marriage of Feldman. If you intend to end your marriage, it is essential to understand your rights and obligations, and you should speak to a California divorce lawyer as soon as possible.

Factual Background of the Case

It is reported that the husband and the wife married in 1969. They separated after thirty-four years of marriage, and in 2003, the wife filed a petition for dissolution of marriage. Pursuant to California law, the parties were required to disclose their financial information. The husband, who created numerous highly valuable privately held companies during the marriage, responded to discovery requests regarding his finances and provided a schedule of assets and debts.

The wife alleged, however, that the husband failed to fully disclose his financial information. Specifically, he neglected to provide information regarding several entities, a retirement account, and the purchase of a bond and a private home. The wife filed an application for an order imposing sanctions against the husband and requiring him to pay her attorneys’ fees, pursuant to Family Code sections 1101 and 2107. The trial court granted the application and sanctioned the husband. The husband appealed. Continue Reading ›

While some people contending with family law issues are able to resolve matters amongst themselves, many will seek intervention and guidance from the courts. Typically, when a court makes a determination in a family law case, it will issue an order setting forth its ruling. The order then becomes the law of the case. In other words, the parties in the case are bound by the order and may experience negative outcomes if they do not comply with it. Family law orders can be overwhelming, though, and their meaning is not always clear. If you have questions regarding what your family law court order means and the potential consequences of not abiding by the order, you should consult a trusted California child custody lawyer as soon as possible.

Understanding Your Family Law Court Orders

When people receive family law orders, they should read the entire order thoroughly for several reasons. First, they should check to see if there is any pertinent information or a proclamation that the court made orally that is not in the order. They should also determine if there are any other errors that may need to be rectified. Secondly, they should make a note of any important dates, schedules, or calls to action. If an order creates any financial rights or obligations, they should note that as well.

There are often terms in family law orders that are not readily understood. For example, if an order incorporates or incorporates and merges an agreement or stipulation, it essentially means that it becomes part of the order, making it enforceable both as a contract and via a family court action. In custody actions, the terms visitation and parenting time are used to refer to physical custody, while the term custody refers to legal custody. In any family law case in which an order is issued, it is prudent for anyone subject to the order to speak with a knowledgeable attorney to make sure they fully grasp its the scope and meaning. Continue Reading ›

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