Prenuptial Agreements Can Be A Great Act Of Prevention

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

prenuptial agreements Orange CountyA preventive approach is always better than being careless and then repent later on. This is especially true for agreements related to the spousal property. In litigations related to the division of divorce property endless hours are spent by the lawyers for disputing factors like amount of spousal support, property classification among others. However, such conflicts can be easily resolved through a premarital agreement through just a few paragraphs. Moreover, such contracts can help in other departments too like resolving contentious questions related to an inheritance that may result in expensive probate litigation. Moreover, premarital agreements can convert divorce-related succession issues into family-owned businesses more hassle free that it could be otherwise.

In case you are contemplating about going ahead with a prenuptial agreement, you must know the major benefits associated with it which surpasses the advantages any day.

Benefits of prenuptial agreements

When you go for a prenuptial arrangement, you can get the following advantages out of it.

  • Your individual property is protected.
  • You can support your estate plan
  • You can also give a definition to which is a community or marital property
  • Set up ground rules and procedures to decide future matters
  • Get special agreements clarified between you
  • Save money and minimize conflicts in the event of your divorce

Prenuptial agreements can make your relationship stronger

When you go for a prenup, you may come out stronger in your relationship. Though there is a misconception among some people that there may be a conflict while negotiation through a prenup takes place when you communicate freely about your financial matters, your relationship quality can improve to a great extent and also ensures free communication between you and your spouse.

Though, you may not have your signature on the written document at the end of the day, speaking freely about property and money can do away with misunderstandings, which might otherwise pop between the both of you. You need to note that eventually you and your spouse will end up discussing financial matters. Most legal experts and psychologists will advise you that it is better to start doing it early, in case you are equipped to handle it.

Moreover, spouses who have become parents from an earlier relationship should also contemplate of going ahead with a prenuptial agreement.

After all, kids from earlier marriages also deserve to get all possible protection while one walks down the aisle once more. Prenuptial arrangement can easily achieve this by ensuring that some assets like insurance policies, retirement accounts, and some other assets should be in the names of such kids instead of in the name of their new spouses. Otherwise, the latter may inherit them when their partner is deceased.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Top Financial Tips You Should Follow During A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

best divorce lawyers in Orange County; The Maggio LawIn case you have started your divorce proceedings, you need to cope with a lot of factors apart from the emotional problems. You need to think about the financial issues too.This is primarily due to the fact that there will be a shift from a double income household to a single income one.  So you have to know how to get used to it so that you are a likely to lead a comfortable life and not just survive on a month by month basis. Irrespective of how tough it is for you to handle the emotional turmoils, you need to get prepared for handling your finances for yourself as well as for any dependent kid you are responsible for.

Do not think that your colleagues, friends and relatives are always equipped to give you the most appropriate financial advice. While they may have the best interests in their minds for you,  they may not offer you your most needed advice. The exception is when they are experienced financial advisers.  Check out some of the following financial tips, which you should be aware of.

Consider stopping all joint accounts immediately

The very first step you should consider taking is to open your own individual accounts while discontinuing all joint accounts with your estranged spouse. Their names should be removed from all accounts, which you hold. This may include if you have allowed them to use your credit cards. After all you would hardly want your furious ex to utilize your credit cards and drain your bank accounts.  However, this decision should depend on whether you and your spouse can trust each other.

Proceed to open your own account

After closing the joint accounts, now it is high time that you open individual bank accounts. You need to also ensure that they are in sync to make your bill payments. This is to ensure that you fail to make payments for your bills. After all, you will hardly want that your utilities to get cut off since your bank accounts were closed.

Your status has to be changed

All your relevant information need to be changed on your driving license, records in the post office, income tax related documents, professional titles, health insurance. Utility bills and property titles. (These include your marital status, name and so on).

Your will should be also changed

For changing your will you need to spend some money since you have to involve your attorney in this process. However, it is sensible to alter your will in case something happens to you after getting a divorce. Remove their names from your will and also if they have been given the power of attorneys. After all, you would hardly want to make a financial decision on your behalf.  However, in California, it is important to know that you cannot modify your estate plan, including wills, once your divorce has started, until it is completed.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Tips For Dealing With Conflict During Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmDivorce is a hard time especially when couples are involved in a conflict with each other. There are many reasons as to what can give rise to a conflict. It could be about property, debt division, custody battle, alimony and a range of other issues which are commonly dealt with during a divorce. It is the job of a mediator to ensure that both parties have a mutual understanding before the divorce proceeding takes place. However, most of the times, it depends on the husband and wife to resolve the growing conflict between them.

If you’re heading for a divorce but finding it hard to resolve issues with your spouse, then the following tips might come in handy.

  1. Hire a good divorce mediator

The first thing that you need to do is hire a good and experienced divorce mediator who can help resolve the issues between you and your partner. However, unless you offer help from your side, it will hard for even the best mediator to reach a common ground.

  1. Focus on yourself

Before you start playing the blame game, make sure you’re not at fault. If you are, then try correcting them. If you’re not, then stay away from pointing fingers or blaming your partner for every minor mistake that lead to the divorce. Listen to your friends and family for advice and keep things to yourself.

  1. Try finding the common ground

One of the best things that you can do to ensure that unnecessary conflict is avoided is to find a common ground which you and your spouse can agree upon. Make it in the form of an agreement and include in it all the necessary things which you both need to deal with. Try to discuss the matter with your spouse and if he/she is not willing to talk to you, then try to do it through common friends or family.

  1. Don’t overreact

It is hard to complete a divorce proceeding with a straight face but overreacting to every small issue won’t take you anywhere either. If anything, it will mar your chances of getting a good divorce.


Divorces are hard and it gets harder when there are unresolved conflicts involved. First, make sure that you are not at fault and then everything else will work out. Hire a good divorce mediator to help you out in case nothing works out.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Protecting Children During A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

child custody attorneys Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmThe worst part about a divorce is that it affects more than just two people. Couples who have children understand how difficult a divorce proceeding becomes once their children become involved. The biggest dilemma is that you can’t tell them directly and you can’t ignore them either. Moreover, different kids react differently and then there is their age that needs to be considered. Handling and protecting children should be the number one priority for parents in a divorce. In California, a child’s preference is given importance when making decisions related to custody.

Keep things normal

It’s tough to act normal when you know you’re heading for a sure-shot divorce but do it for the sake of the kids. Or at least when your kids are around, make sure that you don’t break into arguments and fights. Children are highly prone to mental trauma and the worst part is sometimes you won’t even know that are suffering from mental stress.

Don’t divide the children

You might be heading for a separation but your children are not. It’s true that your children will stay with only one of you but that does not mean they should get the feeling that they have been separated too. Keep things amicable between you and your partner and create a good plan of action.

Protect them

Protecting your children both emotionally and financially should be your primary duty as a parent. Create a good child support plan and discuss visiting times with your partner. Make sure both of you agree to the same plan and stick to it. Try meeting as a family and go out together as much as you can.

Agree on the custody rights

Custody rights is an important issue and you must discuss it with your spouse before you go ahead with the divorce proceeding. It will be easier for the both of you if you know the result of the custody battle before the separation takes place.


Children are an important issue when it comes to divorce because a bad divorce causes stress and mental trauma on the young minds. As parents, it becomes your duty to protect your children from harm. Discuss issues like custody, visitation hours and child support with your partner before you decide to go ahead with the divorce. Work out a common plan which both of you are comfortable following. It will save your children from unnecessary damage.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Calculating Child Support And Alimony In A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmManaging finances during divorce is a skill every individual who is heading for a divorce needs. It’s better to be mentally prepared for a financial loss than be unprepared at all. First there is the question of property. If you’re someone who has accumulated a lot of wealth during your marriage, then brace yourself for some financial damage unless you claim most of them to be a separate property. Next, if you and your spouse have considerable difference in terms of earnings, you might end up paying a certain amount as alimony. And lastly, if you have children and you lose the custody battle, then you will have to pay for child support too.

Managing finances can be a tough job and that is why you need the help of an expert divorce lawyer. To try to limit financial hardship, calculate your expenses prior to the divorce proceeding.

Calculating child support

Child support is the money you pay for your child’s education and welfare till he/she turns 18. In few cases, the support can continue till the age of 21. The amount that you need to pay for child support depends on many factors. Your annual income plays a deciding factor and so does your ability to take debts. If you’re the non-custodial parent, then prepare yourself to pay more than your spouse. Other important factors which the court will look at is the age of your child and who is paying for the health insurance.

Calculating Alimony

Usually alimony is calculated after child support. The court will look at your financial capability to support your spouse after you have paid for child support. Unlike child support which is based on what is good for the child, alimony calculations are based on how much you can provide to your ex. Factors like income, property and child support is taken into consideration while calculating alimony.


It is important to manage your finances during divorce. It should be done through an experienced divorce lawyer because it not unusual to lose a lot of money during divorce and only a lawyer can help you take the best decision. Calculating your alimony and child support expenses will help you make good decisions regarding finances. Bankruptcy is one of the major pitfalls of divorce and good financial management is only way to survive it.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Tax Issues That You Need To Know In A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top divorce lawyers Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmGetting divorced? Be prepared to do your own taxes from now on. One of the many headaches of individuals who have recently gone through a divorce is coping with tax issues. Until now you must have filed your taxes as a couple but now the rules will change. You will realize that there are certain issues which you need to understand before you can file your taxes. Here are some of them which you need to look at the next time you file your taxes.

  1. Your filing status

Before you file your tax return, determine your marital status at the end of the current financial year or the year of your divorce. The three types of filing status are married filing jointly, married filing separately and Head of Household. Take the opinion and advice of a lawyer to understand what the different status means and what it holds for you financially.

  1. Child tax exemption

Child support is taxable in California and you can file for a child tax exemption. However, whether you will get the exemption or not will depend on how many children you have. Usually it is one exemption for one child. Also, only one of you can avail the exemption.

  1. Taxes and refunds due

While making your settlement agreement, be sure to include how you are going to handle the tax and refunds. It has often happened that one spouse who ignored the agreement, ended up paying most of the dues. Make sure that it is clearly mentioned how much percentage you have to pay.


Tax issues are tricky and if you are not aware of what you’re dealing with, the loses can be huge. Hire a good lawyer and understand the different tax issues which you need to deal with after your divorce. Make a settlement agreement with your spouse and clearly determine how much you need to pay as part of the tax. It should include child support and alimony as well. Having a clear understanding of the California tax issues during divorce, you will be able to make a better decision.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How To Be A Good Single Father

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

fathers rights attorneys Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmIf being a single mother is tough, being a single father is never an easy thing either. Many people think that fathers who get divorced can easily go back to their routine before they were married. But it’s not true. After becoming a father, the lifestyle and mentality of a man changes. Especially, if he’s handling kids. Most fathers who have kids need to balance time between his job and family. It becomes tough and so, here are few tips that will help fathers become better parents in the long run.

  1. Create a good schedule

For working fathers, scheduling is the most important thing. They should discuss the issue with their boss and work out a routine which includes sufficient time for both the job and kids. They can work during the time when the kids are with their mother. It should be mentioned in the parental plan and the mother must agree to the arrangement. It will help fathers create a good work-life balance.

  1. Get help

Some men like doing everything on their own but they should keep in mind that becoming an efficient father is the goal, not becoming an efficient worker. It’s alright to seek the help of near and dear ones when needed. They need someone to take care of the kids when he or his ex. is not around to help.

  1. Get organized

For fathers who are not taking care of their kids, things might look easy but be assured that it’s not. More than often, such fathers will be tempted to go back to their old ways but they should refrain from doing so. Moreover, they should keep their life organized so that they don’t suffer from emotional problems. There must be specific timings and specific order for doing everything.

  1. Teach kids

A child’s development depends on what he/she learns from the parents. Single fathers should utilize the time they spend with their kids to teach them about different things. It is one of the best ways in which a single father can make use of the time he has.


It’s not easy being a single father especially when someone is juggling between work and family. However, there are ways in which an individual can become an efficient father. Creating a good parental plan and spending quality time with the kids works best and helps fathers make the best of it.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

Child Support Payments After Loss Of Employment

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce attorneys in Orange County; The Maggio Law Firm, Inc.A divorce is in itself a complicated process and becomes more complicated when children get involved. The first issue that arises is child custody. Since, only one of the two parents can become the primary caretaker of the children, it becomes a dilemma. The next issue that arises after the custody of children has been established is that of child support. Usually, the other parent pays more for child support than the one who is taking care of the children. In maximum cases, the two parents consult a lawyer and establish a parenting plan that also includes the amount of child support the supporting parent must pay. However, life can take unexpected turns and sometimes it’s for the worst. There are supporting parents who have lost their job after their divorce. If you are one such individual, then keep reading to find out the best way you can tackle your situation.

Modification of child support

The best course of action in such situations is to talk to your ex about a modification in the child support payments. The modification can be temporary or permanent depending on your situation. You can request your ex to take some load of your shoulders till the time you become financially stable again. However, if your ex. is also someone who has a hard time managing his/her finances, then some other alternative must be thought of.

Temporary arrangements for the child

If both you and your ex are tight on finances, then an arrangement can be made to have your children taken care by someone else like your grandparents. Such arrangements can be made only on a temporary basis and must be approved from the court.

Pool in from other sources

If you’ve lost your job but are financially secure, then pool in some money from other sources. You may have other assets like stocks, bonds and even property which you can sell for a certain amount of money. Use that money to pay for child support until you get a new job.


Getting a divorce where children are involved is a complicated issue and depends on many factors. After custody gets established, child support must be determined for each parent. However, it becomes a serious issue when the supporting parent loses his/her job. Luckily, there are ways to keep the cash flowing for child support. Out of all the options available, modifying the child support plan works best.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

When Should You Take An Initiative To File For Divorce First?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmFor some, seeking a divorce can seem like admitting failure. Divorce is looked upon as a negative thing as it changes the lives of people who are involved in it. This is particularly true for the spouses in question and their kids. Perhaps, that is one of the major reasons why either of the spouses hesitates to approach for a divorce first. Moreover, it is possible that both the concerned parties would like to see their marriage work out. They are unable to accept the truth that their marriage has failed. However, if you are convinced that the only solution to get out of the mess is to seek a divorce, then you should take an initiative to apply for a divorce first. 

Why is it important in certain situations to seek for divorce first?

It is always recommended to consult a good divorce attorney firm and they will definitely point out that when you take the first step towards filing for a divorce, you get the privilege of who you can have to support you. In fact, you may need a divorce team to help you out of your current predicament. A financial analyst may be also required since a divorce also means a distribution of assets and properties. 

Benefits of filing divorce first

 As you filed for the divorce first, you will have an edge over your spouse to get everything ready before even the proceedings start. You will have the chance to collate all the required papers and important documents for the case. Do not forget to check your insurance policies, testaments, will, bank statements and other relevant records.

In case your spouse and you have troubles to communicate, it is better that you file for the divorce first so that your spouse cannot hide the conjugal assets. You will also get protection from the frozen bank accounts or the moveable assets bring shifted elsewhere.

Moreover, you also get a chance to ensure that your case is presented to the court first so that it becomes easier to make the first impression. Your arguments can be explained better and it is easier to submit valid arguments on why you want the divorce. There are scenarios where a petitioner can get the required evidence such as videos and photos ready with ease as supporting documents for divorce.

Finally, your divorce team and you are in great control. You can dictate rules since you have planned things well.

Getting divorced from your partner is not easy. However there is no point trying to work out a sad marriage. So, bring a new meaning to your life and go for proper counseling by consulting a reliable divorce attorney. Additionally, when the process if your marriage dissolution is going on, you should stay composed and do not get unnecessarily agitated. Several studies have shown that people, who are calm in such a situation, can easily manage the troubles associated with a divorce process.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

How A Lawyer Can Help Resolve Divorces Smoothly

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce Lawyer in Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmWhen the divorce proceedings continue, it can be tough for the family members who are a party to it. This is particularly true when the outcome is uncertain. It is not possible to know all the intricacies of the process, so consulting a reliable divorce lawyer definitely comes handy. A good divorce attorney assists the spouses to reach a favorable conclusion as well as explore various effective options. When you do not have an experienced divorce lawyer by your side, it is difficult to go through a chain of distressing and conflicting emotions as well as high stress. A divorce proceeding can be complicated for people who do not consult lawyers to perform the below-mentioned roles.

  • Demonstrate to the lawyer of your spouse that you are ready for a negotiation
  • When your attorney gets in touch with the lawyer of your spouse to intimate your willingness to negotiate, your divorce proceeding becomes simpler. But, it also signifies that you will not regard a proposal for a reasonable settlement with contempt. There are many divorce cases that get settled out of the court chambers.
  • Your lawyer can review if any other expert is needed in the case
  • Has your spouse established a fresh business while you were married to him or her? Your attorney can find out a skilled business appraiser to arrive at an estimated valuation of the said venture. Your lawyer may also have to contact an experienced forensic accountant for testifying when your divorce proceedings continue.
  • Helps you to get ready for the trial
  • When the case goes up for trial, your lawyer will guide you on what you can expect. They will also let you know the questions that can be asked to you and what should be your responses to them. A lawyer also gets the witnesses ready and conducts interviews in advance.

The above roles must prove that you need the guidance of a competent divorce lawyer to continue with your divorce case. When you try to handle the case on your own, you will find that the procedure is costly and complicated.

It is important to note that the process of a divorce proceeding can vary from state to state.  It becomes difficult to know what you should do next, where you should go, which firms should be filled ump, what data should be provided and so on. When your ex-partner and you have properties of substantial nature or have minor kids, it is likely that the divorce can get complicated, and a good divorce lawyer can help streamline issues and move the case to a resolution.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

No Legal Advice Intended: This website includes information about legal issues and legal developments. Such materials are for informational purposes only and may not reflect the most current legal developments. These informational materials are not intended, and should not be taken, as legal advice on any particular set of facts or circumstances. You should contact an attorney for advice on specific legal problems. Full disclaimer.