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How property division is handled in California during divorce

The division of property is usually a paramount issue during the divorce process. It is helpful for divorcing couples in California to know, understand and be familiar with the rules concerning this process in California so they can anticipate how their property division concerns will be handled and property divided.

California is considered a community property state, which means that marital property is owned jointly by the spouses. This can have a significant impact when property is being divided during a divorce. Marital property includes property and assets acquired during the marriage. This is important because marital property is subject to the division process but separate property is not. Examples of separate property can include worker's compensation benefits or personal injury awards, inheritances and gifts and property one spouse entered the marriage with.

What might a vocational counselor do in a divorce proceeding?

Complexities can arise in any California divorce. With spousal support, there are numerous factors that will be considered, such as: whether the support should be paid; how long it will last; and how much the payments will be. Both the paying spouse and the receiving spouse should be cognizant of the steps of the process. Part of that might be having a vocational training counselor provide an assessment.

If the court orders a counselor to assess a case, they will conduct an analysis of whether the party can obtain employment to support themselves. This could include gauging the person's skills, work history, age, education, health situation and the job market. The goal is to see if the person can support themselves before a decision is made on spousal support.

What is a stipulation with regard to child support?

There is a common perception that determining the amount of child support that must be paid by one parent to the other will be a contentious process. However, that is not always the case and many parents can come to an agreement on their own. Provided they adhere to the guidelines or agree to deviate from it, the court will generally allow the agreement if it is in the child's best interests.

Still, there are aspects that must be understood regarding an agreement. One aspect is filling out the Stipulation to Establish or Modify Child Support and Order. Knowing why this form must be filled out and what to do with it after it is completed is a fundamental part of a case. The form provides a roadmap of the issues that must be settled when agreeing to a child support amount.

When is a premarital agreement unenforceable in a divorce?

When many California couples get married, they sign a premarital agreement. This is designed to protect a person who might have more resources than the other or owns a business. It can also be used as a means for both sides to be shielded in case the marriage fails. Often, people think that a premarital agreement is limited to those who have significant assets, but that is not always true.

Regardless of the situation and reason for it, it is important to understand when the agreement might be held unenforceable. The premarital agreement will be unenforceable if it was not agreed to voluntarily. It will also be unenforceable if it is deemed unconscionable. For a premarital agreement to be deemed unconscionable, the person who signed it must not have been given a fair, full and reasonable disclosure of the other person's property and debts.

Timing is important when talking to your kids about divorce

In a perfect world, you'd dream of what you want your future to be like and then bring it to fruition. If marriage and family life in California were part of that dream, you'd find the love your life, tie the knot, have children and live happily ever after. In reality, life is often a lot messier than that. In fact, some issues are so complex or troublesome that it prompts life-changing events, such as divorce. Divorce doesn't mean you don't love your children.

It's always a good idea, however, to tread softly when broaching the topic with your kids. In fact, unless you and your spouse have made a final decision or have filed a petition in court, you may want to avoid telling your children anything for the time being. If you have made a final decision, there are several things to keep in mind that will help your children cope. Building a strong support network is definitely a top priority.

How does legal custody differ from physical custody?

In California, child custody is often the basis of the most longstanding disputes in a family law proceeding. Divorce is difficult in and of itself, but, when there are children involved, it becomes even more complex. Not only can battling over a child lead to acrimony between the parties, it can frequently have a negative impact on the child. The key to a child custody case from the court's perspective is to serve the child's best interests. Parents should consider their alternatives regarding child custody and have legal assistance from the start.

Parents can have two types of custody: legal and physical. Legal custody involves the ability to make key decisions in the upbringing of the child. This includes their welfare, medical care, education and more. Physical custody means where the child will live.

Legal advice can be critical in a high-asset divorce

For California couples who are divorcing, the level of wealth they had before the marriage or accrued while they were married can be a critical point in the process. Whether the accumulation of assets was due to a business that the couple built together or one spouse was better off financially than the other, having legal advice can be a key factor in navigating the difficult terrain of a high-asset divorce. This is true whether there was a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

When a person has wealth, a divorce can turn contentious as the sides battle over properties, bank accounts, a business, stocks, retirement accounts, valuable collections, motor vehicles and much more. In these cases, it is easy for the case to turn into a long-term dispute with back and forth over who has the right to what property.

How does my earning capacity influence child and spousal support?

Disagreements over a multitude of issues will inevitably arise in a California divorce. This is true whether it is a high-asset divorce or one of more moderate means. With support issues - including child and spousal support - people have a basic understanding that one spouse will likely pay support to the other, but they may be unsure of how certain factors are considered.

Children must be cared for with their best interests in mind, but with spousal support, there is greater nuance. Understanding how the spouses can handle the support order while maintaining a standard of living is a key part of the determination. When the case is moving forward, the parties should know what earning capacity and standard of living mean and how each can impact the support order.

Divorce pending for talk show host

With the number of people in California, it is inevitable that divorces will happen. Cases where people have significant assets can be contentious and have a lot at stake. When preparing to file for a high-asset divorce, both sides should have legal assistance from the start.

The talk show host, Larry King, has filed for divorce from his wife. Mr. King and his wife, Shawn, have been married for more than two decades. This is his eighth marriage. The couple married in 1997 and have two sons. There has been marital strife between the couple in the past, as they filed for divorce nearly a decade ago citing irreconcilable differences but got back together before moving forward with their case.

Protecting your children through a strong parenting plan

Divorce is complex, especially for two people who have children and who want to remain committed to their well-being. You and your spouse may resolve to work together to provide your kids with a stable and secure future, but this is not always as easy as it may sound. This requires both of you to have a willingness to work together and keep the needs of the kids as the main priority. 

One way that you can do this is by crafting a unique and thorough parenting plan. This is an agreement that will outline how you and the other California parent will work together, share parenting time and raise your kids to the best of your abilities. In order for this to work well long-term, you may have to set aside your own personal feelings and keep your focus on what is best for the kids.

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