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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
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Under what circumstances in a divorce/legal separation action

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Under what circumstances in a divorce/legal separation action will the courts grant the cost of the dissolution to the person who filed for action? How does one ask for that financial consideration and what needs to be presented to prevail for that cost recovery on the part of the respondent?
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Is the divorce action in California, or Argentina?

This is not an answer, but an Information Request. I need this information to answer your question. Please reply, so I can answer your question. Thank you in advance.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


California

Thank you for your reply, F.

This is on a case by case basis at the discretion of the Court. The superior court has express subject matter jurisdiction to "inquire into and render any judgment and make orders that are appropriate concerning ... the award of attorney's fees and costs." [Ca Fam § 2010(f)]. So this tells you that it is subjective.

Normally, each pays his own. However, there are two ways that the Court will impose costs on either party (Petition or Respondent) if a party asks:

1) NEED. Pursuant to Ca Fam §§ 2030 and 2032, the Judge may make one party pay for the costs due to "relative circumstances" of the finances of the parties. In other words, if one party simply cannot pay, then the Judge may make the costs the burden of the party that can pay. This is very much at the Judge's discretion and is not normally considered unless asked.

2) PUNISHMENT. Per Ca Fam § 271, the Judge has the right to punish a party and burden them with costs of the proceedings if the party proved to act maliciously, waste time, or otherwise unprofessionally during the proceedings.

How does one ask for that financial consideration and what needs to be presented to prevail for that cost recovery on the part of the respondent?

If asking based on need, the party moving for such a request needs to show that they cannot pay the costs, and normal evidence of this may be an authenticated bank account statement showing no money along with the party's own testimony claiming indigence.

I hope this helps and clarifies.

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