Orange County Family Law Blog | The Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers, APC
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Prenuptial agreements aid wives who earn more than their husbands

When the public thinks about income inequality between spouses, they often envision a scenario where a husband is the primary income earner while a wife brings significantly less to the table. However, the last half-century has changed a great deal about why people marry and when, leading to a surge in recent years of couples where the wife, and not the husband, is the primary breadwinner. This creates a kind of income inequality in a marriage that goes against many stereotypes that still exist in public opinion, and may create tensions in the relationship.

If you are a woman with significantly greater assets than your soon-to-be husband, it is wise to protect against the possibility of divorce with a prenuptial agreement. Thankfully, many of the old assumptions about prenuptial agreements are dying off as couples throughout the country recognize the value they can offer to any relationship. A well-crafted prenuptial agreement can help avoid many of the tensions that may arise in your marriage and give your relationship room to establish itself on you and your husband's own terms. By creating clear boundaries around who gets what in a potential divorce, you can diffuse many relationship tensions before they arise.

Stepparent adoptions can occur in specific circumstances

Some stepparents play such an active role in a child's life that they want to adopt the child as their own. This is usually a wonderful experience for the child, but there are very specific conditions that must be met in order for the adoption to take place.

One of the primary factors when a stepparent adopts a stepchild is the consent of the birth parents. Both of the child's birth parents, including the stepparent's spouse and the other birth parent, must consent to the adoption unless the other birth parent abandoned the child. When the other birth parent consents to the adoption, he or she gives up all rights and responsibilities to the child. This means that the parent no longer has to pay child support and that all child custody agreements are null and void.

Custody issues for unwed parents

In California, when a child is born to two individuals who are not married, custody issues may require some specific attention. Many circumstances involving unwed parents who do not remain together as a couple result in the birth mother receiving custody of the child, but there do remain some variables to address.

Unlike some other states, California prefers for both parents to assume responsibility for raising the child, and generally seeks to award joint custody to both parents. However, in many cases, this practically means that the mother receives custody.

Beware of a spouse hiding income from a business

If your spouse owns a business and you anticipate divorce, you need to be very careful and intentional about gathering as much factual information as you can about the true state of the business.

In many cases, a spouse who owns a business may attempt to hide income form the business or represent it as less valuable than it truly is. Usually, this occurs because the business-owning spouse does not want to divide up his or her income from a business, or wants to keep the business intact throughout the divorce negotiation.

Child custody cases shouldn't involve intimidation

Going through a child custody case involves thinking about a lot of factors. In some cases, one parent will try to alienate the other parent. This is something that shouldn't happen because it can have a negative impact on the child custody case.

We know that there are usually some very strong feelings involved in child custody cases. Even when this hold true, there isn't any reason for either parent to try to force the other parent to bend his or her way. Instead, both parents should act like adults and try to resolve matters in an amicable manner that sets the tone for future interactions.

How do I talk to my partner about a prenuptial agreement?

In the lead-up to a marriage, there are many important conversations that you and your partner need to have, but many of them are very difficult to bring up. This is especially true when it comes to a prenuptial agreement. For many soon-to-be spouses, now knowing how to get into this conversation keeps them from having it at all, which is often a big mistake.

Probably the easiest way to bring it up is to say that you had a conversation with you lawyer and that he or she strongly recommended you and your partner create a prenuptial agreement. Fortunately, this is not a trick — every lawyer you speak to will agree that a prenuptial agreement is absolutely essential to protecting a marriage.

Know how to handle child support matters

Going through a child custody case involves a lot more than just who spends time with the children and when. These cases also have to determine when child support is appropriate. There are a host of factors that the court considers when child support is being considered. We can help you find out how these factors will impact your case.

Child support is often a contentious issue within child custody matters. This is because parents sometimes fall into the habit of thinking that the child support is support for the parent and not the child. This isn't the case. Child support is meant to be exactly what the name implies -- support for the child.

Can grandparents seek visitation rights?

Grandparents throughout the country often find that family troubles or difficult circumstances separate them from grandchildren they love, which can be heartbreaking. Fortunately, under California law, there are provisions that allow grandparents to seek official visitation privileges from a court.

To qualify for court-ordered visitation privileges, several standards must be met. First, a court will look at the existing relationship between the grandchild and grandparent. The court wants to see some pre-existing bond between the two parties that may suggest that granting visitation privileges to the grandparents is actually in the best interests of the child.

Learn how to ask for a prenuptial agreement

Once you decide to get married, you'll have many decisions to make with regard to the wedding.

With so much going on around you, it can be difficult to focus enough time and attention on creating a prenuptial agreement. However, this isn't something that you want to put on the back burner.

Child custody matters are best handled away from your child

Child custody matters are sensitive issues that can have a big impact on the children involved. We recently discussed why it is important to keep the focus on your children and not the divorce when the kids have something special going on. This is actually good advice every single day of the year.

Your children didn't cause your divorce. While they have to deal with the effects of the divorce, they shouldn't have to deal with the strife that accompanies many divorces. You and your ex should handle all child custody matters privately.