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I was married 35 years ago. How would I proceed with

Customer Question
I was married 35...

I was married 35 years ago. How would I proceed with divorce?

Lawyer's Assistant: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?

No papers filed

Lawyer's Assistant: Family law varies by state. What state are you in?

Ca

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

That's it

Submitted: 8 months ago.Category: Family Law
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Answered in 15 minutes by:
11/16/2017
Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 8 months ago
RayAnswers
RayAnswers, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 48,170
Experience: 30 years as a family law lawyer .
Verified

Hi and welcome to JA. Ray here to help you today.Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question and respond.

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Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 8 months ago

You can file yourself or consider a local lawyer.

Here is self help to file

http://www.courts.ca.gov/selfhelp-divorce.htm

Lawyer referral

Contact the State Bar for Help

I appreciate the chance to help you today.Thanks and thanks for rating 5 stars.

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Family Lawyer: RayAnswers, Lawyer replied 8 months ago

ResidencyRequirement. Before you can file for divorce in California, at least onespouse must be a resident of the state for six months or 180 days. Once you’vefiled the divorce and delivered the paperwork to your spouse, you must wait atleast six months from the date your spouse received the papers before thedivorce can be finalized.

No Common Law Marriage. There’s no common law marriage inCalifornia—you aren’t married unless you obtained a marriage license andentered into a legal relationship, and you can’t get a legal divorce unless youwere legally married. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve lived together orwhether one of you took the other’s name.

Grounds for Divorce. California is a no-fault state, which meansthat you won’t argue for a divorce based on the other person’s wrongdoing. Mostoften, the basis for a divorce is “irreconcilable differences” that have causedthe marriage to break down. Fault isn’t entirely irrelevant, though—if yourspouse abandoned the family, committed adultery, or was violent, the court mayconsider those facts in dividing property or awarding alimony.

Property Division. California is one of only a handful of statesthat use a community property system, meaning that all of the property anddebts that you acquired during your marriage are shared equally between the twoof you at divorce. That includes income of all kinds, savings from income,property, and anything else that you own. However, it doesn’t include eitherspouse’s separate property, which includes inheritances, gifts, and propertythat the spouse owned before the marriage, as long as the separate propertywasn’t mixed up with the marital property.

Child Custody. Californiacourts begin with a presumption that it’s best for a child to have frequent andcontinuing contact with both parents after a divorce. If possible, judges wantto support joint custody arrangements. However, the details of the parentingplan will be determined by the children’s best interests. If parents can agreeon a parenting plan, the court will usually approve it. If you’re not able toagree, you’ll be ordered to attend mediation sessions, and if that doesn’twork, the court will take over and the judge will decide how you’ll share timewith your children.

Child Support. Likeall states, California requires parents to support their children, even after adivorce. The amount of child support depends primarily on each parent’s incomeand other resources, and how much time each parent spends with the children.Sometimes the courts will “impute” income to a parent who has the capacity toearn more than he or she actually is earning.

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

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