Frequently Asked Family Law Questions
Knowledgeable Ventura Family Lawyer
Law Offices of Janet L. Mertes, we understand that when you are forced to face
divorce and other highly emotional and complex
family law matters, that these can weigh heavily on you. It also understandable that you
may have numerous questions about your situation. Our Ventura divorce
lawyers are more than happy to find the answers you need.
Here, we give answers to some of the most common questions we have received
from our clients. Feel free to browse to see if these can help you with
your case. You are also more than welcome to contact our Ventura family
lawyers for legal guidance and advice your case.
This is tough to say, as every case will be different and come with its
own set of circumstances. Divorce, otherwise known as a “dissolution
of marriage” or also “dissolution of domestic partnership,”
means that one or both spouses have reached the decision to end the relationship.
Marriage and domestic partnerships are legally binding contracts; the laws
may also dictate how assets, properties, and matters involving children.
Depending on how many assets there are to divide and how quickly you and
your spouse can come to a compromise, the process could be finalized in
as few as six months. On the other hand, we have seen cases that go to
trial, which can also lengthen the process.
Your marriage may qualify for an annulment, if there is reason to believe
that the marriage was never valid to begin with. You may also find this
that your marriage can be declared invalid because your spouse has become
physically or mentally incapacitated, was already married at the time
of your marriage, or one or the other was not of legal age.
Another form of marriage dissolution that may be available to you is to
try mediation. Many mediation sessions last only for a few hours and up
to a day, whereas divorces can take months or even years to resolve. Your
divorce attorney can facilitate the conversation, which can allow you
and your spouse to discuss the terms of the dissolution. Another added
benefit is that this can save you money in the long run, because you can
avoid the court system altogether.
Unfortunately, legal separation does not actually end your marriage or
domestic partnership. You also will not have the ability to marry another
person in the future. Legal separation gives couples the chance to work
out their issues concerning finances, real estate, and matters involving
Legal separation allows you to ask the courts to order visitation, child
support, child custody, alimony, among many others. You can later file
to remove the legal separation status and motion for divorce.
In California, community property is any property shared and owned between
spouses. This is different from separate property, in which one spouse
exclusively owns that property, was given it as a gift, or inherited it.
Couples may choose to legally integrate separate properties into community
properties if they desire.
You and your spouse will need to discuss on what works best for your particular
situation, especially with regards to child custody. There are so many
factors that go into deciding child custody, and this will include how
much income each spouse makes or the location of where each spouse will
live. This may include deciding on who will have legal custody or who
will have physical custody, and how to work out visitation rights. Attorney
Janet L. Mertes can handle all of the complicated legal paperwork, which
can give allow you time to handle the ins and outs of your child custody matters.
Have you moved out of state since separating from your spouse? The residency
requirement states that you and your spouse must have been California
residents for at least 6 months prior to filing. You can opt for legal
separation until the residency requirement has been fulfilled, as well.
Have additional questions? Do not hesitate to
call the Law Offices of Janet L. Mertes to discuss your situation in further detail!