Three Types of Divorce in the State of California

Posted by: Gerald Maggio

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm

The petitioner and the petitioner’s divorce lawyer start a divorce case by filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. They would file it in the California Superior Court, initiating the petitioner’s divorce case. The petitioner requests the court dissolve the marriage as well as child custody, child support, property, debt and lawyer fee issues.

How the case is handled depends on the respondent, or the other party, and whether the respondent fails to file a Response to the Petition, settle the case by agreeing or files a response contesting the issues.

Therefore, depending on what the respondent does, there are three ways a divorce case gets resolved in California:

1) The default divorce is when the respondent fails to respond to the divorce petition or legal separation. If this happens, the matter still proceeds without the respondent and as “default” by the court clerk.

2) An uncontested divorce is when both the respondent and petitioner work together without much ado in order to settle the case by written agreement. This can also happen when the respondent defaults at first but later decides to settle.

3) The contested divorce is when the respondent files a response to the petition that an agreement cannot be made on certain issues and therefore the court takes the case to trial.

There is a list of procedures on how to proceed for a default or an uncontested divorce with your lawyer:

1) Choose the proper county that has jurisdiction

2) Prepare documents that need to be filed

3) File the documents with the court

4) Serve the documents

5) If no response is filed, enter a default

6) Prepare financial disclosures and have the respondents financial disclosures reviewed

7) Notarize a marital settlement resolving all the issues in your case, such as child custody, child support, child visitation, division of community property, etc.

8) Prepare an order for child support withhold of income

9) File a judgment package with the court that resolves issues between both parties

10) Serve the judgment

11) File family support or child support orders with the state of California entitled “Child Support Case Registry Form” (FL-191)

12) Serve wage garnishment or order to withhold on spouse’s employer

For a contested divorce, there are additional steps that may include filing a Request for Order (RFO) to get temporary orders to stay in place until the final judgment is entered by the court. Also a discovery needs to be done to gather evidence from both parties to present at trial if your case does not settle and goes before the court.

For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting www.maggiolawfirm.com.

How Spousal Addiction Affects Marriages and Leads to Divorce

Posted by: Gerald Maggio

Top Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law Firm

There are many ways that addiction can affect a marriage.

Drug, alcohol, pornography or gambling addiction can sabotage trust. Trust is the foundation of any good relationship. Addiction, in general, could lead to making poor choices, risky behaviors, diminished communication, lack of attention to personal and business affairs, and sometimes even extra-marital affairs. Once trust is damaged, it is often harder to get it back. Damages done by drug-related, alcohol-related or deviant behaviors that usually override the addicted spouse’s family obligations.

The addicted person becomes more self-serving in order to feed his or her addiction by any means necessary, therefore maintaining balance and reciprocation in the marriage is not present or often much skewed. The non-addicted spouse is left to pick up the pieces of his or her partner’s bad behaviors and bad choices and will feel neglected and abandoned over time. The burden of taking the entire family often falls on the non-addicted spouse’s shoulder, bearing the weight of their addicted spouse’s self-serving behavior.

Drug or alcohol addiction also can affect the addicted spouse’s mood and can and often makes the addict violent toward others and lash out at their family. The drug or alcohol induced spouse can exhibit aggression, usually when intoxication levels and frequency increase. There is a strong link between drug and alcohol addiction and domestic violence. When children are present in the home, the risk of harm to them is very prevalent. Also, many times there can be an underlying mental illness or condition that may be at the root of the addicted spouse’s addiction.

“The first step that an at-risk family with addiction problems should take is to seek professional help,” said Gerald A. Maggio from The Maggio Law Firm, a family law practice based in Irvine, CA. “All marriages that have addiction problems cannot realistically be saved; therefore, protecting families from emotional and physical harm is a priority and becomes a societal concern.”

Rehabilitation centers provide support such as therapy and support groups for the whole family dealing with addiction, even when marriages end; it is suggested to seek or continue rehab, especially when children are involved. This can help both parties can cope better and the whole family can heal and move forward, even after a divorce.

For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting http://www.maggiolawfirm.com/.

Maggio Law Firm Weighs In To Say Dating During a Divorce May Be A Bad Idea

Posted by: Gerald Maggio

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm

Should You Date in the Midst of a Divorce?

One would think pursuing a relationship would not be a big deal during divorce proceedings since the marriage is being terminated anyway. People are tempted to seek or pursue relationships at this time because it fills a void and can offer some emotional support during the trying times of a divorce, but legally it is bad practice.

The action of involving and introducing a new relationship can have lasting effects on decisions and outcomes of divorce proceedings. The legal standpoint of dating during divorce procedures still implies that one is still technically married well up until the day the divorce is finalized. Believe it or not, the new relationship can weigh heavily on court decisions when it comes to dividing assets, spousal support and child custody. The reason for this is the implication of one’s character, and begs to question morals.

The emotional standpoint; however, is that both parties are engulfed in emotional turmoil during the divorce. Introducing or pursuing a relationship might enrage or offend a spouse. This can prove detrimental and negatively affect court decisions, especially when the enraged spouse might to decide to take every measure to make divorce proceedings difficult and add more stress to the situation as the divorce moves forward.

“There can be repercussions when dating while you are in the midst of a divorce,” said Gerald A. Maggio from The Maggio Law Firm, a family law practice based in Irvine, CA. “The decision to date while divorcing should not be taken lightly. Don’t date while divorcing, point blank. Wait until the divorce is final.”

Platonic relationships with the opposite sex, however innocent they may be, are still a social contact and could raise suspicions of a sexual or romantic one in the eyes of the bereft or jilted spouse. The presence of someone new parading in front of the spouse and children and can start a suspicion of an affair, and the new partner can be deposed and subjected to questioning by the other lawyer – subpoenaed and forced to testify under oath.

Dating during a divorce will draw further scrutiny and make it even more complicated, increasing both stress and cost of the divorce trial and proceedings.

For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting http://www.maggiolawfirm.com/.

How to Maintain a Unified Front with Your Former Spouse for Your Children

Posted by: Gerald Maggio

Top Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law Firm

Staying amicable with an ex-spouse who probably put you through veritable hell is something that is probably inconceivable. In some instances, such as when domestic violence or other egregious circumstances are involved, it is understandable or even advisable to stay your distances.

However, when children are involved, partners who were once bonded by marriage will, in some form or fashion, still have to deal with each other when it comes to joint parenting or issues concerning the children, no matter who is paying child support or who thinks they got the shorter end of the stick.

Divorced couples whose goal is to raise well-adjusted kids in light of the divorce and separation have some work ahead of them that requires balance, commitment and a keen focus from both sides. They both must come together as a unified front for the betterment of the children.

Of course, there are the classic emotional stages of divorce that most couples find themselves going through. There is the guilt and shame that usually occurs when there is the feeling of failure – all normal reactions to the drastic changes of divorce. No doubt that there may be an emotional roller coaster of grief. Subconsciously, or at many levels, there may be denial, bargaining, resentment, anger and acceptance –all are on the vast spectrum of emotions people feel after a divorce.

There can be much to be gained by remaining allies, even though communication or mutual respect has diminished in your marital relationship. Being civil and maintaining family ties on both sides can ensure balance and equilibrium for children who need stability and extended emotional support more than ever. It is always good to remember to put your children first. Do not be petty by rehashing old arguments and opening up old wounds. Try to also be inclusive. Involve each other in your children’s milestones, shortcomings and achievements.

To let go of resentment and the emotional baggage of a failed marriage and the many disconnects that might have occurred, the idea of maintaining some sort of harmony in front of and around the children will always speak volumes and can also help your children adjust to the divorce and become well-adjusted adults in the long run.

Gerald A. Maggio is an Orange County divorce attorney, in Irvine, California.  For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting www.maggiolawfirm.com.

 
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