Orange County Family Law Blog | The Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers, APC
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Think about all aspects of your divorce before making decisions

Ending your marriage isn't something that is easy to do. You have to take the time to plan your steps so that you don't make mistakes that could cost you in the long run. We understand that this isn't something that you are taking lightly. We are here to help you plan what you will do and consider all of the options that you have.

One thing that we need to help you think about is how your divorce will impact your children. This major consideration is always a priority if there are children that are part of the relationship. The children must have time to spend with both parents unless there are extenuating circumstances that make spending time with one parent, or even both parents, a safety hazard for the children.

Protect your credit in divorce to protect your future

Divorce is often a difficult season to walk through, especially when you are a working professional. Still, with careful planning and a willingness to keep matters amicable, you can land on your feet on the other side.

One of the most common ways that a divorce can cause trouble for a working professional in Southern California is the transition from two incomes to a single income, and the strain it can place on your credit.

Millennials set a trend with prenups for intellectual property

Millennials, those folks aged 18-35, are definitely different than previous generations.

Perhaps it's because they've grown up in a world where the things that permeate their physical lives -- electronics -- are highly replaceable (or even disposable), but the intangible things that those objects hold are often considered invaluable, whether it's someone's complete music collection or the scans of every drawing their 2-year-old has made.

What do I do if I fear the other parent may kidnap my child?

Sharing custody with a child's is always difficult, but for some parents, it feels downright dangerous, because they fear that their former spouse may kidnap the child. If you feel this way, you are not alone — thousands of parents live with this fear every day. Although most parents who fear parental kidnapping never see that come to fruition, it is always wise to take precautions just in case. The more prepared you are for this possibility, the more you do to prevent it or respond quickly if the child's other parent ever does resort to kidnapping.

Make sure that you keep up-to-date information on both your child and the child's other parent. For the child, this means taking a full-face picture of him or her every six months, and maintaining records with a detailed description. Include the child's height, weight, hair color, eye color, fingerprints and any other aspect of the child that may help the public or law enforcement identify them. This could mean a birthmark or a scar, or noting if the child is handicapped in some visible way. It is also wise to have your child memorize your phone number and practice calling you from different phones, so that they know how reach if something out of the ordinary occurs.

Know how to handle divorce issues that might come up

The end of your marriage is something that might come as a shock. Even if you are the one who filed for divorce, the deterioration that led to the filing might have been unforeseen. If you are facing a surprise divorce, you need to make sure that you know what options you have.

There are several things that you have to think about. Each point must be considered individually so that you can ensure your rights are being respected in each case. We can help you as you work out the terms of your divorce.

Can my spouse challenge our prenuptial agreement?

If you're a person of considerable means, then you should always use a prenuptial agreement when getting married. Of course, as some heavy hitters in Silicon Valley can attest, if your assets are significant enough, your spouse may choose to challenge the agreement in a divorce. While this is very unlikely to succeed, it is technically possible. California tends to side with a prenuptial agreement when it is challenged, but there are some exceptions.

If your spouse signed a prenuptial agreement without proper legal counsel from an independent attorney, then he or she may be able to argue that the agreement is invalid. Of course, he or she must prove the absence of legal counsel, which can be tricky.

Should you appeal or seek to modify your divorce decree?

If your divorce negotiation is heading south, or if you already received a frustrating decree that you believe is unfair, the law provides ways for you to challenge those results. However, things do not operate in exactly the same way after a court hands down a decree.

The appeals process is fairly limited, and requires a very specific, experienced approach. If you are considering appealing a divorce decree or petitioning the court for a modification to a decision, you must choose your legal team very carefully.

Establishing paternity in California

In California, if a couple is married and has a child, the two people are presumed to be the parents of that child. However, if a child is born to an unmarried woman, the legal system must establish who the father is.

Registered domestic partners are presumed to be the parents of a child born after January 1, 2005. If the couple is not registered as domestic partners, then a Declaration of Paternity should be signed or a court would need to determine who the father is. Legally there is no father of the child if the couple wasn't married when the child was conceived or when the child was born. Even if the father can prove that he is the biological father, but was never married to the child's mother, he has no legal rights or responsibilities for the child.

Can a prenuptial agreement help me?

For many years, prenuptial agreements have endured a fairly negative reputation at the hands of public opinion. Many people view them as a planned back door to marriage or the kind of thing that only wealthy people do. Fortunately, the tide of public opinion is beginning to shift for the prenup, as many younger couples choose to use one, recognizing the many ways that such an agreement can actually a marriage.

Prenuptial agreements are not merely the same as pre-ordering your divorce. Instead, a well-made agreement can help define the terms of a marriage and remove many areas of stress. One of the most common ways that couples might use a prenuptial agreement is to protect one spouse from the other's personal debt. When two people marry, the law sees this as a legally binding business relationship. Without proper protection, a divorce could mean that one party must take on a portion of debt from the other party.

Child custody tip: Make your summer travel plans now

Going on vacation during the summer is something that many families look forward to. When the parents are divorced, this can be a trying experience because of the child custody order. The best thing that parents can do when a child custody order is in the picture is to start planning now for the trips you want to take.

One important step for you to take is to look at the child custody order to verify that your child will be with you on the dates that you want to travel. You might have to adjust your travel dates if you see anything is amiss with the dates.