Mission Viejo Divorce Lawyer2023-12-13T12:21:39+00:00

When you walk down the aisle, all you’re thinking about is what the rest of your life with your partner is going to look like. You imagine the future and how bright and beautiful it will be. Fast-forward to the day that you’re considering divorce. You don’t have to go through this traumatic event without support, and a Mission Viejo divorce lawyer can help you navigate this complex situation.

Contact the Dorie A. Rogers

Dorie A. Rogers, has more than 30 years of experience and is certified as a family law specialist by The State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization. Only a small percentage of California family law lawyers who have demonstrated high ethical standards and a unique level of experience, education, knowledge and skill in family law achieve this recognition.

Contact our Mission Viejo divorce lawyers today to schedule a consultation with an experienced Fountain Valley divorce lawyer. We offer a variety of representation options, including the cost-effective opportunity of working with our associate attorney, Lisa R. McCall, under the supervision of Ms. Rogers.

No-Fault Divorce

While there are many states that require proving fault on the part of one of the parties, California isn’t one of them. Instead, California has no-fault divorce as an option. No-fault divorce allows an order for divorce to be made that doesn’t require one party to prove that the other party committed some kind of wrongdoing that led to the divorce.

Instead of proving fault, one party simply has to declare the breakdown of the marriage and that it cannot be saved by any means. This allows a divorce to be decreed without the consent of the other party.

Divorce or Dissolution

There are two options that can end a marriage in California: divorce or dissolution. There are some differences between the two. A dissolution can happen much quicker, and it doesn’t require discussing the matter with a judge. While it’s much easier to end a marriage this way, employing an attorney versed in family law can give you added support.

There are certain requirements that must be met to qualify for a dissolution of marriage. These requirements include:

  • You don’t share any children.
  • Your marriage has lasted for less than 5 years.
  • You own no buildings or land, whether in part or in whole.
  • You’re not under any rental leases except your living arrangement.
  • You owe less than $6000 since the marriage.
  • Your shared property is less than $45,000.
  • An agreement for the division of property has been signed.
  • Both parties have denied spousal support.
  • One party has been a resident of California for a minimum of 6 months and the filing county for a minimum of 3 months.

This can be an excellent solution for those who didn’t share a great deal of time together and have few shared assets. Without debts, and not needing spousal support, you may decide that this is the right option for you. An experienced divorce lawyer can assist you with making this decision.

Divorce vs. Dissolution vs. Legal Separation

Each of these are distinct terms for separating the two parties in the eyes of the courts. Divorce fully separates you from your spouse. Agreements about spousal support may be made, along with child support, depending on your circumstances.

A dissolution of marriage also fully separates the two parties, but there are specific requirements that have to be met to secure a dissolution. A legal separation has the courts recognize that the parties are separated from each other, but they remain married.

There are many reasons why spouses may choose a legal separation over a divorce. Divorce can be expensive and difficult for the two parties to agree to the terms involved. They may also wish to continue taking advantage of certain benefits, which include:

  • Social security benefits
  • Medical benefits
  • Pension
  • Retirement benefits

Where to File for Divorce

California has specific requirements as to where you can file for divorce. Your divorce is required to be filed in the county where you’ve been living for at least the last 3 months. Additionally, you need to have lived in California for at least the previous 6 months.

These residency requirements are strict, and if you don’t meet them, you do have other options. It’s possible that you can file for a legal separation while you await the time that you meet the residency requirements. The petition can be amended after the 6 months or 3 months are met. Additionally, once the couple has filed for divorce, a period of 6 months and one day is the minimum amount of time that the parties must wait to be considered legally divorced.

Division of Property

Division of property is often an important consideration when deciding upon a divorce. While some states may separate debts and property, California is different. The state considers any debts or property that are acquired during the marriage as community property, which are assets that are shared by both parties. Anything acquired outside of the marriage, whether before, after, or as an inheritance or gift, is separate property and isn’t part of the community property.

Separate property isn’t considered in a divorce, and that property belongs only to the one party who retains it. It can be difficult to sort this out between the two parties, and this is often what leads to divorce being so contentious.

Spousal Support

Spousal support, also called alimony, is a sum of money that is paid by one party to another. Spousal support may be temporarily awarded, but the court may also make it a permanent judgment. These kinds of judgments can be amended to what is most suited for both parties at different times in their lives. When employment situations change, or specific needs change, spousal support can be adjusted.

When domestic violence is involved in the agreement, it’s a situation that is taken seriously. The courts will not favor an abusive partner, and they also wouldn’t be likely to award spousal support to them, no matter if it is a temporary or permanent agreement. Additionally, if the party has domestic violence charges on their record, the courts will look unfavorably upon this as well, and it would likely affect the final judgment.

Child Support and Custody Agreements

Sharing children greatly complicates how divorce works, and it is frequently a massive fight between parties. This makes divorce decrees harder, and it can also put a major burden upon the children if the parties continue to fight and cannot come to an agreement.

In many cases, California courts will grant shared custody for the two parties. However, joint custody may not be what’s in the interest of the child or children. When this is the case, one party will instead be granted full custody, and the other party may have visitation rights, depending on the situation.

For an agreement to be made regarding child support, the courts will take a look at the financials of both parties. They will also consider the custody arrangement to determine the appropriate amount for support. A parent who makes less money and spends more time with the child likely won’t be responsible for child support payments.

FAQs for Mission Viejo Divorce Attorneys

Q: How Much Does It Cost for a Divorce Attorney in California?

A: There are different fee levels for attorneys. Some attorneys have a per-hour fee that they charge, and this can vary greatly, depending on their experience and ability. Other lawyers may charge a flat fee or a retainer fee that’s required upfront for service. It’s important to remember that, although it may be more expensive, a skilled attorney is worth the money because they can help protect your rights to assets and achieve a more favorable outcome.

Q: How Much Does the Average Divorce Cost in California?

A: California’s average divorce cost is higher than the national average, which is about $15,000. Much of the cost of a divorce is dependent upon how quickly a settlement can be reached. Some people get lucky and only need to pay a court fee and basic attorney fees. However, when a divorce is incredibly complicated and antagonistic, thousands to tens of thousands may be paid. It’s dependent on how well the parties work together to finalize the decree.

Q: Why Is Divorce So Expensive?

A: Divorce doesn’t have to be expensive for either party. Things like spousal support and child support change the ultimate outcome and the future amount that gets paid. However, divorce can be incredibly complicated, and the court can be used as a weapon by one party to inflict pain upon the other party. When a divorce case gets dragged out for a long time, it quickly becomes more expensive. How expensive a divorce is depends on how quickly an agreement is finalized.

Q: Is It Always a 50/50 Split in a Divorce in California?

A: California is a community property state, which means that everything acquired during the marriage is shared equally between the parties. Child custody is typically shared, and custody arrangements can provide 50/50 custody of the children, but it does not always work this way. It depends on the interest of the child.

Your Mission Viejo Divorce Attorney

Divorce doesn’t have to be totally earth-shattering. If you go into it alone, it can be hard to manage and know exactly what you need to do to make sure that what happens is fair. That’s where an experienced divorce attorney can help.

When you hire the Dorie A. Rogers, APC, you can be confident that you’ll be represented carefully and with compassion. With over 30 years of experience, you can feel supported and know that your needs are being defended and protected. If it’s time to consider your future, contact us today to get your case underway.

Reviews Quotes
“Dorie is a very powerful attorney and a great asset to have on your side in any family legal matter. She is extremely bright and insightful, and I got everything I asked for in my lawsuit.”
Brit B.
“I would strongly recommend Ms. Dorie Rogers for any legal needs. During my Divorce proceedings, Dorie’s professionalism, expertise in Divorce Law and legal skill helped bring my case to a close in both a timely and mutually agreeable manner.

Additionally, Dorie took the time to understand me and my background to better represent me in my case. She showed a level of caring and concern that helped me through a very difficult time. She is an outstanding lawyer and wonderful person.”

Alan M. Greenberg
“Second to none – I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Dorie to anyone. She was my attorney for my divorce and custody case. She will do everything it takes to get the job done and all with a smile on her face. Her knowledge and expertise will assist anyone in a family law situation get the results they want.”
Todd M.


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