Facts You Should Know About Legal Custody

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Best Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmThe term legal custody refers to a situation where in a parent is entrusted with certain obligations and rights to make important decisions on how they should bring up their kids and other important factors relevant to the welfare of their child. Some of these can be dental and health care, religious instructions, and proper education.

Joint legal custody 

Most states like California award legal custody of a child to both the parents in disputes related to such cases, which is known as joint legal custody. Joint custody signifies that both the parents will shoulder the responsibility of their child. However, a parent may not be awarded such responsibility if the court finds out that they are unsuitable to make decisions in the best interests of the kids. Legal custody and physical custody are completely different ball games altogether. The latter is more concerned with where and which parent a kid will stay after the divorce.

There are different forms of legal custody. Usually, only one parent functions as the key caregiver in the marriage. It is applicable irrespective of whether the marriage is intact or where the parents got divorced. Examples could be to authorize in case of any type of medical exigency or make a decision at the last moment for the welfare of the child. Although the other parent is allowed by the court to participate in the decision-making process, parents should put their heads together and try to arrive at an amicable arrangement for handling the affairs of their child in a practical manner.

Why does a court award sole legal custody? 

Several complications may pop up in the case of a joint custody. It may not be possible for both the parents to collaborate together and arrive at a consensus. After all, misunderstandings and arguments are not something completely unheard of. Decision-making may become next to impossible when there are vigorous arguments while settling even the simplest of issues.

The judges would like to see both the parents contributing and working together towards the best interests of the child. But when they feel that both the parents are at constant loggerheads when they have to manage the affairs of their offspring, they will make a decision that is in the best interests the kid.

The court may give sole custody to one of the parents when the other parent:

  • Resides at a far-off distance.
  • Is highly abusive or negligent.
  • Does not make any kind of effort to spend some quality time with their friends.

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.  

 

 

What To Do When You Lose Your Child Custody Case

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county child custody attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmWhen you lose your child’s custody, it can be a terrible experience for you as a parent. It will be quite tough to come to terms with the fact that your court thinks that your kids will be better off with the other parent. When such a thing happens to you, there are certain steps that you may take so that there could be a reversal of the decision and you can win back your children’s custody. You can try out some of the tips mentioned below.

Do some serious self-retrospection on what went wrong

Take an unbiased approach on what prompted the judge to arrive at such a decision of awarding the custody of your kids to somebody else. Were you incorrectly alleged of neglecting your kids or child abuse? Or did you violate any court order? When you have a fair idea of why such a decision was taken, you can take proper steps for correcting the situation.

Take legal help

If you are serious about winning back your child’s custody, you may have to work with a reputable divorce lawyer who is experienced in handling as well as running similar cases in the past, start asking your relatives and friends for some good referrals to seek an Orange County divorce lawyer dealing in child custody cases.

Request for an evaluation

After you have hired a lawyer and have started completing the steps required by the court, you can request your judge to conduct an in-home evaluation for child custody. Such a step will give an updated assessment of your home to the concerned court that could also help in winning back the custody

Abide by court’s orders and instructions

You should not ignore anything that the court asks you to do. Do not miss any court hearing and avoid rescheduling appointments with the guardian of the child or a mediator ordered by your court.

Try to be compliant and patient

When you wait for the re-evaluation of the agreement related to your child custody, you should ensure that you are exercising your parenting and visitation rights properly. Try to stay away for all those things that could aggravate the situation further. You should put on your best efforts to be courteous and civil while picking up your children for the visits.

Contemplate on the possibility of some other custody arrangement

You can also think about considering other options of custody. Initially, you might have wanted sole custody but after losing custody, you may agree to the idea of shared custody.

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

How Can The Legal Impacts Of Divorce Affect Families?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmThe final call to end your marriage can be a tough one. The transition is even more painful when kids are involved in the marriage. A good parent will always ensure that there is a solid decision-making process involved for the welfare of the children. Plus, it is crucial to understand the kind of repercussion a divorce can cause on your family prior to moving forward. Reputable Orange County divorce attorneys at our firm will be more than pleased to help you out so that the impact of divorce on your family is minimized.

You will definitely agree that knowledge can be true power. When you know the possible tough spots, you can be well-equipped to face them bravely. Thus, complete awareness is an important need while it is a question of making sound decisions. Knowledge also enables you to prepare adequately when you have made up your mind to go ahead with a divorce. Divorce can usually have an impact on family life in two critical legal areas. The court will pass an order, which clarifies matters related to child support and child custody as a part of your divorce. However, changes in scenarios, which may need to rethink these matters, can be handled at a later point in time for future modifications.

  1. Child custody

Ascertaining matters related to child custody is a vital component of any divorce. It is possible that both the spouses may work out in an amicable manner through one of the Orange County divorce mediators. Alternatively, the matter may be contested by one of the parties and eventually handled by the court. Custody can exist in two forms, which are legal and physical. When a parent is awarded the legal custody of his or her kid, they have the right to decide on various issues like the general welfare, schooling, and health of the said child. On the other hand, physical custody refers to the living condition of the child. The issue of visitation is dealt as a subject of the agreement on the child’s physical custody. The court can award sole or joint custody to the parents.

  1. Child support

Once a divorce is through, there is also the issue of child support that needs to be sorted out by both the parties. For instance, certain court systems lay down guidelines to ascertain the amount of money a parent should pay to the receiving parent for child support. Such guidelines also specify which party should be responsible for paying child support and who is entitled to get this kind of a familial support according to the court’s orders. There could be a change in the amount of money required or owed for child support over a period of time. Such changes can lead to a requirement for a revision of the initial agreement.

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.  

Why Do You Need To Have An Agreement For Legal Separation?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmMany legal experts feel that when a couple decides to separate, they should have a proper agreement on legal separation. After an agreement is signed by a judge, the couple will get a temporary order from the concerned courts it is an order that mentions the responsibilities of both the parties while they live separately and prior to the finalization of their divorce. However, if the legally separated couple does not want to proceed with the divorce, either party can as, their divorce lawyer to keep the divorce on hold.  But even while being legally separated, the spouses can enjoy similar legal protections, courtesy to that temporary court order in states that allow legal separation. Here are some of the reasons why it really makes sense to have an agreement while being legally separated.

For setting up a schedule for child visitation

When you have kids from your marriage, it is imperative to fix a schedule for the visitation of the other parent though you live separately. An agreement for legal separation can define such a schedule and also outline who will have access to the kids when they are in the custody of your spouse, where the kids will reside if they are not given to you Andorra they can travel or not even though you will not give consent to do so. Thus, such an agreement can help you to protect your parental rights.

When you need child support

In case there are children, you can only demand the child support with the help of a court order. When the state where you reside permits legal separation, the calculation for the child support can be done as per the child support guidelines of that state and becomes a part and parcel of the legal separation agreement between you and the other parent.

When there is big conflict between you and your spouse

When your spouse and you are having high conflicts and it is not possible for both of you to have a healthy dialogue with one another, such an agreement will highlight what should be expected from both of you while you are legally separated. When such clauses are mentioned in your legal separation agreement, further conflicts can be avoided and communication between the two of you will be better.

Low trust factor

When you are not sure to trust your spouse’s verbal commitments, a legal separation agreement can come to your rescue. Such agreements can be witnessed and signed by an unbiased third party or even a judge and can be produced in a court if your spouse violates any clause therein.

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.  

What To Know About Taxes In A Divorce Or Separation

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange county divorce lawyer; The Maggio Law FirmDivorce is not an easy time for most couples and their families. However, a question whose answer is easy to respond to is the tax implications of a legal separation or a divorce. It has been observed quite often that there are several people who end up paying an exorbitant amount as tax after their divorce. It happens as they are not familiar with the implications in the beginning. After all, a family goes through a crucial transition and hardly enjoys paying a big sum in taxes due to a breakdown in the relationship. Thus, it makes sense for the affected couples to spend some time to think carefully about tax. It will really be an excellent investment for them.

What is the most crucial thing one needs to be familiar with tax on separation or divorce?

As long as a couple lives together and are married, they can transfer assets to each other without altering the CGT or capital gains tax.

However, there are many people who do not realize:

The tax benefit associated with a marriage ceases to exist when the tax year ends just after a permanent legal separation and even before a divorce is effective. Hence, when a couple separates say on January 1st but decides that they want to split after 6 months, they can no longer enjoy the benefit of transferring assets with one another free of tax.

What is the remedial action(s)?

From the tax perspective, it is better to legally separate by the first week of April. Such a decision will give a period of an entire year to the said couple for planning issues related to asset transfer between one another.

Though it may not be a practical action to take for many couples, they may invest some time thinking about it. The harsh reality is by the time most people start thinking about issues related to tax planning when they are getting divorced; they may not enjoy the exemption on Capital Gains Tax.

Family Home

It will be eligible for being exempted from capital gains tax while transferring. However, it has to be the primary residence of the couple throughout the ownership period. The couple can enjoy a relief from capital gains tax when such houses are sold, which have been their main home. Sometimes, there may be some relief even if the said family house is not the main residence during the time a couple was married. In such scenarios, there could be an extension of relief period.

Certain businesses may be granted exemption from CGT:

  1. Some shares in trading companies that are unquoted
  2. Interests in trading partnership
  3. Sole proprietorship

However, the tax implications of a divorce or a legal separation may vary from state to state. Consult a good Orange County divorce attorney to get help and expert guidance when you are about to separate or divorce from your spouse.

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.  

What Are The Grounds To Annul A Marriage In California?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmThere are widespread misperceptions about a marriage annulment in the state of California. The reason for this is many popular cultural beliefs and religion has managed to throw inaccurate and differing views on annulments, especially with respect to the family law. There is a similarity between a divorce and an annulment in a way since both of them determine a couple’s marital status. However, there is a big difference between these two. While a divorce ends a valid and an existing marriage, an annulment declares that though everybody thought there was a marriage, it never existed in the first place. As far as the courts are concerned, a marriage that is annulled never existed at all.

Grounds under which a spouse can request to annul the marriage

In the State of California, there are a number of reasons or grounds on which the court could grant a request for a marriage annulment. Read on to know more about them.

  1. One of the spouses was married prior to entering into a second marriage. It is referred to as bigamy in legal terms.
  2. The couple has a blood relationship.
  3. The spouse who has filed for the annulment was below 18 years of age when the marriage took place.
  4. One of the spouses has committed a fraud for procuring the consent of the other party to the marriage. The fraud should have a strong correlation with the marriage. An example of this is when one party convinces the other to get married as the former had a secret desire of staying back in America.
  5. One of the spouses compelled the other party to get married.
  6. One party suffers from an incurable physical capacity. Ideally, the term is associated with male impotence, which does not allow the couple to have a physical relationship.
  7. When both the spouses and either of them is of an unsound mind. It refers to a condition, which stops the couple in question to appreciate and understand the marriage duties and nature like under the influence of severe intoxication.

The spouse requesting an annulment needs to provide evidence before the court that any of the reasons mentioned above was present when the marriage took place. However, if the burden is dissatisfied, the court may not grant the marriage annulment.

How to get an order from the court on marriage annulment?

The process for getting an annulment is not much different from obtaining a divorce. The court system of California has laid down a comprehensive set of instructions for requesting and opposing a marriage annulment. The California court system has specified a deadline called statute of limitations. It establishes the time limit within which an annulment may be filed. The reason for which an annulment is filed determines this deadline. It is always recommended to hire a good Orange County divorce attorney to help you out in such a case.

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 To Have Healthy Communication with Your Former Spouse

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmDo you have children from your marriage to your former spouse!  If the answer is yes, then it is extremely important to maintain a civil and courthouse relationship with your former husband/wife. It is quite necessary that the parents hide their differences and work for their children’s welfare.  In case there is resentment within you or proper communication does not exist with your ex-spouse, you will not lose anything. Rather your kids can be impacted negatively.

There are several such studies that prove divorce does not damage the kids. Rather parents who are irrational after they part ways may damage their mental states. So, try not to be a parent like that. When you put efforts to creating a productive and dress relationship with the other parent, the healing process will be after getting both the involved parties and it will be easier for you and your children to move ahead in life. The following tips are useful to keep your negative emotions toward your former spouse at bay.

Define clear-cut boundaries and try to stick to them

You should communicate with one another properly and establish proper boundaries and scopes for the responsibilities you need to carry out in the lives of your kids.  Both of you need to understand that you should value your relationship with each other for your children’s sake and hold that relationship in high regard. When you define proper boundaries about your co-parenting relationships after the divorce to move forward, it will help in creating a positive atmosphere, which will help to alleviate the stress and tension of coping up with issues related to child custody and visitation

Consult a good therapist

Are you having a tough time while discussing crucial issues related to your kids? It is better to take guidance from a third and unbiased party in such scenarios. So do not hesitate to approach a therapist, a friend or a clergy who is close to both you and your spouse.  When your former spouse is not willing to be a part of it a therapy after the divorce, you should go ahead alone for it. The conflict between both of you can reduce when you learn new and important skills and know ways of responding to situations, which may trigger a conflict. You can learn how important it is when you do not engage in a conflict with your ex-spouse and how to control your emotions of you want to retaliate when provoked. It is important to forget your past so that things go smooth in the future.

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

What Happens To The Company You Run With Your Spouse After Divorce?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County Divorce Attorneys; The Maggio Law FirmMany married people did not even think in their wildest dreams that would get divorced one day. This is especially true when the spouses work with one another. Irrespective of what decision you arrive at, these are some of the important things you need to sort out in your business while your divorce is underway.

You need to be clear about creating divisions between emotional, financial and legal issues

Any divorce is not just a legal split between married couples. When both of you are working together, you should be serious about sorting out ways of dealing with your business, any kids you may have from your marriage and finances in the best possible manner. More importantly, you should make it a point, to begin with segregating these issues, desirable outcomes and needs.

When you are on the verge of coming out of your romantic relationship, there is a tendency seen to let personal concerns complicate the business relationships. So take some time to establish what your specific requirements and desirable outcomes are in different areas with distinct and concrete plans and goals.

Do not be on the journey all alone

Though you may be somewhat prepared now to receive financial and legal aid, remember that it will be a great morale booster when you have some people by your side to support you emotionally. Some experts even recommend counseling. In case you and your former spouse continue to work together but raking up emotional issues from the past in your work, it can be quite tough to manage a business effectively. It is recommended that you form a team comprising of professionals, family, and friends who can help you to get over your emotional and psychological dilemmas.

Take a break from your work

Irrespective of how amicably you parted from your spouse after the divorce. There is bound to be a transition period. So, take some time off from whatever you had been doing previously and try to introspect what you actually want, rather than acting on an impulse and trying to stick together stubbornly or breaking up your business. After all, time does heal everything.

Your roles need to be defined

Not only does your relationship need refining after the divorce, but you should also embark upon drawing clear boundaries around your various responsibilities and roles at work. Proper identification of the task each person will be doing needs to be properly defined. This will facilitate in ensuring that you do not give to micromanage one another.

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

Handling Divorce Grief in Your Own Way

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce attorney; The Maggio Law FirmA divorce or a separation can indeed be an emotional and highly stressful experience in one’s life. Your entire universe may go upside down irrespective of the reason for your separation and whether you were willing for it or not. A breakup can create a host of unsettling and painful emotions. You could be not only grieving at this stage but also feeling apprehensive about your future, isolated, and baffled. However, there are several things that you can do at your end to handle your divorce grief; let this tough time pass and move on in life with a fresh vigor, optimism, and hope.

Why can divorce be full of misery for many?

Although your relationship could have been rocky for quite some time, a breakup or a divorce can be quite painful as it not only symbolizes the loss of a partnership but also of the commitments and dreams both you and your partner had shared. Any love marriage begins with a lot of excitement and positive hopes for a bright future. But the moment a relationship crumbles, people go through profound disillusionment, grief, anxiety, and stress. A divorce or breakup throws you into unexplored territories. There are so many changes in your life with respect to your responsibilities and routine, relationship with friends and extended family, your identity and even your home. A divorce can also introduce a great sense of uncertainty about what lies ahead in life.

Handling divorce or breakup grief

  • Understand and appreciate that there is no harm in having different feelings. After all, it is not unusual to feel tired, angry, confused, frustrated and/or unhappy.
  • All these emotions can be pretty intense. There could be anxiousness within you feeling apprehensive about your future. You should start accepting that feelings like these are bound to change over a period of time. Although your relationship with your spouse was unhealthy, it can be scary to venture into an unknown arena.
  • You deserve a break now, so go for it. You should allow yourself the luxury of functioning or feeling somewhat less than your usual level for certain period. It is possible that your work productivity is lower than usual at this crucial phase of your life. Plus, you may not be affectionate towards others in the manner you used to be for a while. After all, you do not have any kind of superpower. So take time to go through the healing process, re-energize, and regroup.
  • Do hand holding at this critical phase of your life. You should share your emotions either with family and close friends who can help you to get over your grief during this period. Try to be a part of a support group so that you can speak to people who are going through a similar situation.

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.  

Misconceptions About California Spousal Support

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce attorneys in Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmMany couples facing divorce in California have certain false notions ingrained in their minds related to spousal support (alimony) payments under the laws of California. Check out some of the most common misconceptions about spousal support payments below.

# 1: Receiving alimony payments is a compulsory right

You need to realize that it may not be mandatory for your former spouse to pay you alimony while your marriage gets dissolved or during proceedings of legal separation. In fact, the reverse may be true. The final discretion lies with the courts on whether to direct for spousal support or deny it altogether. There should be a cautious consideration and evaluation of the legal factors to assess whether the earning capability of both the involved parties are sufficient to continue with the same standard of living as they had while their marriage was intact. It should be done before a court denies or orders spousal support. Some of the factors that are considered by the court for making a decision are as follows:

  1. How much contribution was made by the supported party for attaining an education, a career position, a license by the said supporting party or training.
  2. The degree to which the future or present earning capacity of the supported party is impaired due to the unemployment periods, which were incurred while the marriage was on so that the supported party could spend time to discharge domestic responsibilities.
  3. The supported party’s marketable skills and the job potential for those skills.

Other factors that the court must consider are as stated in California Family Code section 4320.

#2: A computer program can determine the “permanent” (long-term) spousal support amount to be made

You should know that a computer support program used to determine temporary spousal support and child support such as DissoMaster or Xspouse cannot determine how much alimony payment you should receive long-term, i.e. beyond your divorce.  After all, Family Code section 4320 must be considered by the court to ascertain the amount of spousal support. The misconception originates from the knowledge that computer programs, which enable a judge to calculate child support and temporary spousal support has a function for determining, long-term spousal support too.

#3: Spousal supported is assured for life after ten years

Just because you are married for 10 years or more does not guarantee that the other party has to pay you spousal support indefinitely or for life.  The spouse receiving support has to make efforts to become self-supporting.  A marriage of more than 10 years in California simply means that the court has continuing jurisdiction over the issue of spousal support but the circumstances of each case during the marriage and afterwards play a big role in determining how long spousal support payments may be.

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.  

 
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