Tustin Family Law Attorney2023-12-13T11:54:02+00:00

Almost any area of law can bring about uncertainty and concern for your future and the future of your loved ones. However, few areas will create as much discontent as family law. This area of law covers the most sensitive of cases: those relating to disputes and legal issues arising between family members. The emotional ties in these cases make them notoriously difficult to approach objectively.

A skilled attorney can make all the difference in family law cases. The Dorie A. Rogers, APC, can critically evaluate your case and find effective solutions for your family law issues. We can be a valuable and compassionate resource throughout your family law case. Our firm can support you as you maneuver through the numerous and challenging variables that may arise. Our adept staff can find results-oriented solutions that keep your interests, and the interests of any involved children, at the forefront of any legal strategies.

Contact the Dorie A. Rogers

When you first step into our offices, we will walk you through the entire process, so you will know what to expect. Taking the time to understand your family dynamics and goals, we will help you develop a strategy at our first meeting. From that point forward, we will continue to pursue your rights in accordance with our strategy whether it is with hearings or negotiations until the time of trial or conclusion by settlement.

With our strategic planning we will be prepared from the onset to accomplish our goals regardless of the challenges we encounter. Gathering all of your financial information we will collect a complete picture as we determine if outside experts should be brought in to strengthen your case. We work with a network of forensic accountants, psychologists, and investigators in order to best assist our clients in furthering their goals. We can also refer you to counselors as needed.

What Is Family Law?

Family law encompasses the many different areas of law that are heard within family law courts. Situations under the purview of family law include:

  • Ending a Marriage
    There are three ways for a marriage to end in California: a divorce, a legal separation, or an annulment. As a no-fault state, spouses can divorce or separate without showing any evidence of wrongdoing by either party. One or both spouses can claim irreparable breakdown or irreconcilable differences when filing to end the marriage. Other areas related to ending a marriage, like spousal support, are also under the family law umbrella.
  • Property Division
    There are many different types of property to separate in a divorce or separation. The property that must be divided in the event of a divorce includes:

    • Tangible Property: This includes real estate, bank accounts, and retirement accounts.
    • Intangible Property: This encompasses intellectual property or investments.

    Any property that is determined to be community property is subject to division. It must be divided equitably, which may or may not mean equally.

  • Child Custody and Visitation Rights
    A custody agreement can arise because of a divorce or because two people who are not in a relationship have a child together. There are two types of child custody: physical and legal custody. Physical custody determines how much time the child will spend with each parent. Legal custody determines the ability to decide major issues like healthcare, safety, and the welfare of the child. Visitation is typically given to the non-custodial parent and determined by a test that determines what is most beneficial for the child. Termination of parental rights may also occur if that is determined to be in the ideal interests of the child.
  • Child Support
    After child custody and visitation are determined, a child support order may be implemented. The state legislature has passed laws that created a guideline to make these calculations more uniform and fair. These guidelines consider factors like both parents’ incomes, the needs of the child, and tax status.
  • Paternity
    Parents who are in a domestic partnership or are married are automatically considered the child’s legal parents. Unmarried parents may face challenges that require paternity to be established with a Declaration of Paternity or a DNA test. Establishing the paternity of a child is directly tied to child custody, visitation, and child support.
  • Domestic Violence and Restraining Orders
    Domestic violence occurs when a person with whom you have a close relationship disturbs your peace in a way that is abusive or threatens abuse. Examples of a close relationship include:

    • A current or previous spouse or domestic partner
    • A person you are dating or were dating
    • The parents of a child together
    • Being closely related

    If the conditions for domestic violence are met, you can file a restraining order against your abuser. Domestic violence actions can be filed in any California courthouse.

  • Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements
    Couples getting ready to enter into marriage may choose to protect their assets with a prenuptial agreement. Couples that are already married can enter into a postnuptial agreement to protect individual assets or possessions. Open communication can help reduce any negative connotations with these agreements and make the process much easier.

Methods for Resolving Family Law Cases

The resolution of family law cases can be decided during litigation. Through this process, a judge examines the evidence presented and then issues a ruling based on your unique circumstances. Although there are guidelines for the judge to follow, they will have significant discretion in how your case gets resolved, potentially to the displeasure of all involved parties. Fortunately, there are methods that can be used by the disputing parties to find a resolution without litigation.

  • Mediation
    During mediation, an unbiased mediator will help the parties reach a solution. They will provide impartial guidance on the basis and merits of all sides of the dispute. Although a mediator cannot provide legal advice, they can help make the discussion productive. They will employ tactics that create a calm and productive atmosphere. The mediator’s purpose is to help guide the conversation so that the parties can reach their own mutually beneficial solution. The agreement will not be legally binding without an order from the court.
  • Arbitration
    An arbitrator is a person who is legally qualified to make a binding decision in your disagreement. They are appointed to adjudicate and may also provide legal advice. Each party will present their side of the argument. Then, the arbitrator will decide on the case. Different from mediation, this decision will be legally binding and final.
  • Collaborative Law
    This resolution method involves the parties to the dispute and their respective attorneys being present during the sessions. The representatives work together to find a mutually beneficial agreement for the parties they represent. These sessions are typically prefaced by each party signing an agreement to attempt to reach a solution.

Questions to Ask a Prospective Attorney

Family law cases are wrapped in emotion and must be handled carefully. The right attorney can significantly change how your case is resolved. They can help both in terms of the actual outcome and your feelings about it. The following questions can help you critically evaluate potential attorneys to find the one right for your case.

  • Will you be the attorney handling my case?
    Your comfort level with the attorney handling your case is important. The attorney who completes your consultation should be the one who helps you navigate your case. A positive relationship with your attorney should begin to develop during the consultation and last through the case’s conclusion.
  • Do you have knowledge of family law?
    There are many nuanced areas of family law that can be overlooked by an attorney without prior exposure. An effective attorney will have notable experience with family law. They will likely have family law as their primary practice area.
  • How will we communicate about my case?
    One issue that can arise between clients and attorneys is communication. Attorneys often have busy caseloads, making it difficult for clients to easily reach them. Although clients should not expect constant communication, it is important to consult about big issues or updates. Establishing a satisfactory protocol early can reduce frustrations throughout the case.
  • How will payment be handled?
    It is important to be clear on the complete payment process: what payments are due, when they are due, and how they should be paid. Specific issues to address include:

    • Retainer fees
    • Hourly rates
    • Copying and paperwork fees
    • Charges to speak to clerical staff
    • Any other potential fees associated with the case
  • What is your assessment of my case?
    The family law attorney should have ideas about how to succeed with your case and reach your desired outcome. Your feelings about their response should help you choose which family law attorney to hire.

The Importance of Family Law Attorneys

Hurt feelings and bitter emotions can easily create an adversarial environment. The conflicting parties will attempt to win at any cost, potentially harming those they are trying to protect. It can be extraordinarily difficult to step back and look at the situation objectively, then create a plan that meets the needs of every involved party. A family law attorney can wade through these negative emotions. They can help solve conflicts outside of litigation, saving money and time in the case.

Family law legal practices can be confusing and complex to handle without skilled assistance. Incorrectly completing a form or missing a deadline can have disastrous effects on your case, lowering your potential for a favorable outcome. Although a family lawyer is likely to be a valuable resource in your case, they become even more important if the other party is working with a lawyer.

Although many areas of family law can legally be handled without an attorney, it can place you at a serious disadvantage. It is very challenging to navigate these emotionally taxing situations without the support of an experienced attorney.


Q: What Are the Resolution Methods for Cases in Family Law?

A: There are multiple ways for a family law case to reach a resolution. Mediation, arbitration, and collaborative law are methods that can be used to save time and money. However, the parties must be able to work together to create a mutually satisfactory agreement. If this cannot be accomplished, the parties will need to resolve this issue during litigation. A judge will examine the case and give a ruling based on the evidence presented.

Q: Can I Modify My Current Child Custody, Visitation, or Child Support Order?

A: There are many circumstances that can necessitate a change in the current court orders regarding your children. These orders can be changed or modified by filing a Request for Order. One can also submit a request to the court to alter the current agreement. It is important to refrain from deviating from the current agreement without the court’s permission. Serious penalties can arise for the individual who breaks the agreement. These penalties can include fines or a jail sentence.

Q: How Will Property Be Divided in the Event of a Divorce?

A: California is a community property state, meaning the division of assets may become complicated. Assets and debts that were jointly acquired during the marriage are considered community property. These will be divided equitably between the spouses. Some property may be excluded from this division. This is known as separate property. These assets and debts belong to only one spouse. An example would be property that was owned before the marriage.

Q: Does the Noncustodial Parent Still Have Visitation Rights If They Are Not Paying Child Support?

A: Child support orders and child visitation orders are considered independent of each other. It is typically assumed that spending time with both parents is most beneficial for the child. Therefore, visitation and child support cannot affect each other. A parent may not withhold access to a child because of a refusal to pay child support. Likewise, a parent also cannot refuse to pay child support because the other parent is withholding access to the child.

Q: What Are the Factors That Can Affect Child Custody Agreements?

A: There are many potential factors that will be considered by a judge when creating the child custody order. The deciding consideration will be what custody agreement is most beneficial for the child. Factors that also affect the final consideration include determining which parent:

  • Can provide a more stable home
  • Has provided most of the child’s care
  • Creates a more nurturing environment

A Family Law Attorney You Can Trust

Any case that is subject to family law court will likely be traumatic and difficult to approach with a level head. The Dorie A. Rogers, APC, understands the toll that family law cases can take on our clients. Our strong background in mental health can help provide emotional support. Our extensive background in law can help you reach a beneficial outcome for your circumstances.

We have experience in multiple family law areas, including divorce, child custody, visitation, domestic violence situations, and paternity. Our skilled staff can help resolve every aspect of your case. To learn more about how the Dorie A. Rogers, APC, can help resolve your family law case, reach out to our office today.

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.


Go to Top