March 2019 Archives | Orange County Family Law Blog
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March 2019 Archives

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Financial obligations for your children are important

Raising a child is expensive. The cost might not seem as great when both parents are in a relationship and contributing to the costs of the home and the child. When the parents divorce, there is a chance that one parent might struggle to cover the costs of raising the child. This is where child support comes in. It puts the weight of the financial responsibility on both parents.

What makes for an airtight cohabitation agreement?

Those who are familiar with the existence of cohabitation agreements often think of them as an unmarried couples' alternative to a prenuptial agreement. Both function similarly. They both emphasize each partner's or spouse's rights and protect their assets.

What you should know about supervised visitation

If you're divorcing a co-parent with a substance abuse issue, you're likely concerned about how to balance your children's safety with the need for them to maintain a relationship with that parent. Even if you'd prefer that your kids not be around your co-parent, the court likely will mandate some type of visitation plan.

Practical decisions benefit you in asset and debt division

One of the most difficult things to do during a divorce is determine who is going to get what. Both sides likely want the assets, but neither wants to have to take on the debt. While you might be tempted to try to get as much as you can during the property division process, you have to remember that many assets come at a cost.

Struggling to meet child support doesn't make you a bad parent

During your marriage, whether it lasted less than five years or more than 10, you and your spouse no doubt encountered financial challenges at some point, as most couples do. Your household expenses likely increased substantially when you had children. Many parents struggle to make ends meet. That doesn't necessarily mean they aren't doing everything in their power to provide for their children's needs.

Divorce can cause toxic stress in children

If you're like many Californians, you probably didn't know that as of last month the state has its first surgeon general. We're one of just four states with someone in this position. Our new surgeon general is a San Francisco-based pediatrician named Nadine Burke Harris. The mother of four sons has already announced that her top priority is diagnosing and treating toxic stress in children.

Know the ins and outs of a prenuptial agreement

A prenuptial agreement can protect you and your soon-to-be spouse by laying out the financial terms of the marriage. While many people think that this is only necessary for wealthy individuals, there are many cases that might require you to have one of these agreements in place. We know that you might not feel excited about having to ask for one, but once you find out how they can protect both parties, you might be more willing to bring it up.

Considering divorce? One or more of these issues may apply to you

There's no way to know which marriages will last a lifetime and which will end in divorce. When you got married, you likely believed (and hoped) that you and your spouse would always be together and that your relationship would overcome any challenges you might encounter along your journey. In reality, life doesn't always pan out the way we'd hoped.

What's the best way to tell kids about divorce?

Like most parents who decide to divorce, you and your spouse likely made your decision without first informing your children of your plans. That's understandable since your marriage is a personal, adult matter between the two of you. Perhaps, like many parents, you're worried about how your children will take the news and how the situation is going to affect their lives.

Don't forget to make summer plans for your children early

With the summer months not too far ahead, you need to start thinking about vacations and school breaks. If you have children with your ex, making plans for these warmer months might be a challenge. Parents who don't have a child custody agreement will have to try to work out the terms for the summer. This might prove to be a challenge, but we are here to help you.

As you prepare for divorce, keep these things in mind

Making the decision to divorce might have been one of the most stressful things you've ever done; then again, perhaps you found it an easy decision to make, but you're worried about what your and your children's future will be like. If you know someone who has gone through a similar experience, you can talk to that person to seek recommendations, depending on what worked or didn't work when he or she was trying to come to terms with divorce and move on in life.

What is 'quasi-community property?'

If you're reading this, you likely already know that California is a community property state. "Community property" refers to the assets that a couple earned or acquired, either separately or together, during the marriage. There are some exceptions, such as inheritances and gifts that remain separate as long as they don't get commingled with the couple's community property.

Parenting plan terms must be set based on the child's needs

Even though you and your ex are the ones who are divorcing, that decision has a big impact on your children. Everything that they've known is changing and they might not be sure how to handle that. When you decide to divorce, you and your ex should sit down with the kids and explain the situation. You don't have to get into why you are divorcing but you should reassure them that they aren't the cause. We know this might be an ongoing struggle, but the kids should be able to continue to enjoy life.