Overview About California Family Law

Rules Regarding California Divorces

At least one of you must have been a resident of California for six months to be able to file for divorce. You must reside in a given county before you can file for divorce in that county. Once you file for divorce, you’re required to attempt to serve and notify the other party. If they’re hiding or avoiding the summons, you can go forward with the divorce petition after two months. The courts will require you to wait at least six months before ending the marriage. You can file to stop the divorce if you reconcile, but the divorce will go forward if one or both parties are determined to end it. Divorce is final once it has been granted. However, you can work with a family law attorney to adjust child support levels, alter custody agreements, or push someone to complete the transfer of property ordered by the divorce decree.

Amounts To Pay In Maintenance

California doesn’t refer to maintenance. It refers to alimony and child support, and it often lumps the two under the term “family support”.

How much will you have to pay in support? It will depend on how much you earn, how much the other partner earns, the assets you can give to the other spouse, and the number of years of marriage. You may be forced to pay more if there are allegations of abuse, and this is why some people falsely accuse others of abuse. The amount you have to pay in child support will be based on your income and the number of children. It will also depend on the parenting agreement. One benefit of a 50-50 custody sharing agreement is the lower child support obligation that comes with it over seeing the child every other weekend.

What Is Determined During the Divorce Proceedings?

Divorce settlements include more than the custody of children and financial payments to be made to an ex-spouse. For example, you’re obligated to split the property acquired during the marriage. California is a community property state, so your spouse generally has a 50 percent stake in anything purchased or acquired during the marriage. Gifts and inheritances to one partner may be exempt from community property rules, but consult with a Corona, California family law expert to know how the law applies in your case.

Community property laws may mean that your spouse has a claim to assets that are theoretically yours. Take someone who opened a 401K or IRA before getting married. They’re contributing 15 percent a year to the retirement account. All money contributed before marriage and its growth belongs to that person. After marriage, theoretically half the money contributed to the retirement account during the marriage and its growth belong to your spouse though the retirement account is in that person’s name. Dividing the account could be done by cashing out that equity, but you should roll over that money to the other person’s tax-advantaged retirement account via a QDRO. Home equity is another complicated matter. If you own the home free and clear before marriage, it is yours. If you’re both working and paying toward the mortgage, though the property was purchased by one before the marriage, your ex may have a stake in your home.


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Understanding Common Issues when Separating Property During a Divorce

The traditional definition of marriage presents the couple as a new, joint unit where there had been two separate individuals before. In community property states like California, both the debts and the assets they accumulate at that point are considered jointly held. This makes separating your finances in a divorce much more difficult than elsewhere.

Understand the Rules Regarding Joint Accounts

Joint accounts are joint accounts until the person’s name is removed from the account. This means that either partner can legally withdraw the money from the account, though they in theory only own half of it. And they can do so regardless of any agreements between the parties. Furthermore, an account you set up before marriage and then make a joint account is accessible to the other person, though you put all of the money there before you were married.

One solution is using joint accounts to pay joint bills like the mortgage and childcare until you divide the property. And change the account holders as soon as possible, once the divorce is finalized.

Keep Assets and Debts Together

Know that lenders don’t care about a divorce agreement. Nor do they have to abide by a divorce agreement. For example, if you are both legally liable for a car note taken out during the marriage, the lender doesn’t care if the divorce agreement says your ex gets the car and must pay the loan payment. If they don’t pay the loan payment, they can come after you for the money. Keep the assets and debts together, so that the person living in the house is liable for the mortgage. This gives them an incentive to keep making the payments.

However, you cannot force someone to refinance a loan to get your name off of it. And they may not be able to do so. For example, a mortgage lender may not allow your ex-spouse to refinance the loan into just their own name. Or the single parent doesn’t qualify for the same low interest rate, so they can’t afford to refinance the home loan into their own name.

If you’re concerned about the other person honoring their financial commitments or think they may refuse to pay bills in order to stick it to you, demand that the property be sold and the equity divided as part of the divorce. The courts can force someone to sell a home or car to split the proceeds, whereas they can’t force someone to pay a car payment. And it isn’t cost effective to keep going to court due to someone’s malicious actions or failure to manage the money.

Work with a good Corona, California divorce attorney to settle debts while dividing property so that things are truly fair in the end.

Don’t Forget the Titles

When you’re dividing ownership of assets, don’t forget to re-title property like homes and cars. Joint ownership creates both privileges and responsibilities. For example, if their name remains on the title of the house, the house could theoretically become game if they land in bankruptcy court. And you can’t sell the car without their permission, if your ex is still on the title. On the other hand, you should never sign a quit claim deed giving up your rights to a house unless and until you have been paid your equity stake in the house and are no longer on the mortgage.

Consult with an Expert When Separating Retirement Accounts

Your divorce decree can demand half of the money in someone’s retirement account. However, it takes a QDRO or qualified domestic relations order to transfer money from their retirement account to your retirement account. You don’t want to receive a check directly unless you want to pay the hefty tax bill, too.



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Additional Factors That Contribute to the Child Custody Decision

The courts recognize that divorce is divisive, and it is disruptive to a child’s life. The courts tend to favor living arrangements that are as close to what the child had as before. This doesn’t mean you have to stay in the family home, especially if you can’t afford it. But you’ll be given greater weight if you stay in the same community, allowing children to attend the same schools and activities. But what other factors contribute to decisions regarding child custody?

The Child’s Wishes

The courts aren’t going to ask a two year old whether they want to live with Mom or Dad, though the courts will consider the child’s attachment and engagement with each parent at that age. For example, the courts aren’t going to give a father sole custody if the toddler has been with a stay at home mother, unless she’s truly an unfit mother. The courts will take the child’s wishes into account if they’re old enough to express it. By the teens, the child’s wishes are a major determinant unless there are major reasons not to. For example, the courts will consider it against the child’s best interests to stay with a parent who isn’t trying to supervise an out of control teenager.

Engagement with the Other Parent

If you’re able to demonstrate that you’re trying to work with the other parent, the courts may side with you in a 50-50 or primary physical custody decision. On the other hand, if the court finds out you filed false charges of domestic violence against the spouse, you could lose custody of the child. If you interfere with their visitation rights, the courts could make up for it by giving the child to the other parent.

The Ability to Provide for the Child’s Physical and Emotional Needs

Child support and spousal support reduce the impact that divorce has on the lower earning spouse, if they get child custody. Yet this results in some people seeking child custody simply to get more money. This is why the courts look at the person’s ability to provide for the child’s physical and emotional needs. The courts try to give preference to someone who can give the child their own room, but you’ll lose custody if you’re couch surfing or staying in a homeless shelter. The only exception would be a mother who had to flee to a domestic violence shelter for her literal safety.



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The Penalties for Falling Behind in Child Support

We can argue over whether or not it takes a village to raise a child, but children are primarily their parents’ responsibility. It is not fair to the rest of society to be forced to pay for their upkeep if it isn’t necessary. That’s why the penalties for failing to pay child support or simply falling behind in your child support payments can be so harsh. But what are the penalties for not paying your court-ordered child support?


California will consider suspending almost any license once you’re more than 30 days delinquent in your child support payments. This can include business licenses, occupational licenses, professional licenses, and recreational licenses. In layman’s terms, this means you may lose your ability to drive trucks for a living, say you’re a licensed plumber or allowed to practice law on top of lose the ability to hunt and fish. You can get the driver’s license reinstated on a temporary basis for 150 days.

Note that the feds can refuse to issue or renew your passport if you owe more than several thousand dollars in child support, too.

Financial Penalties

Your federal and state tax refunds can be taken by the government and sent to the custodial parent. A number of people found out how far this extended when their COVID rebate payments were redirected to the custodial parent. You should receive a letter from the government to notify you when this happens. If the parent behind on child support has remarried, the married spouse can file a form requesting that their portion of the seized tax refund be given to them. After all, it isn’t fair for the new spouse to be held liable for your child’s support.


Someone who has fallen behind on child support can be held in contempt of court. To eliminate a contempt of court charge, you must typically pay all past-due child support payments in full. Fail to do this, and you could be jailed for contempt of court. The courts recognize that this makes it nearly impossible to pay child support. They generally use the contempt of court charge to order garnishment of someone’s wages, seizure of their bank account and applying a lien to their property instead. Garnishment orders take more time to implement when you’ve moved across state lines, but the federal government can enforce interstate child support orders. Furthermore, failure to pay child support is a federal felony, so you can be jailed in Nevada for failing to pay California child support orders.

Know that failure to pay child support for six months is considered a misdemeanor, while failure to pay anything at all for a year can result in a felony charge. That can give you a criminal record and make it hard to find work, even if you aren’t sent to prison. Any related fines will be tacked onto the child support debt. This is why you need to file a request to adjust child support orders as soon as your income drops.

Seizure of Property

Wage garnishment will take a portion of every pay check and send the money to the custodial parent. Those who don’t have an income but do have assets can have a lien filed against their property for the child support debt. The collection agency can then force the sale of the property in order to get paid. These liens could be attached to assets like your car or your home.

Note that bankruptcy does not eliminate child support debts. Filing for bankruptcy will only give you the opportunity to renegotiate the repayment of the child support debt. Yet government seizure of assets due to unpaid child support can cause significant problems, such as when the car is sold for less than is owed to the auto lender.


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  • What kind of income is considered when calculating maintenance for children? A group of factors wil be considered when accounting and reviewing financial worthiness of parents such as: overtime pay, bonuses and commisions, income from rental or business partnerships, tips, interest, dividents, capital gains, market value of certain perks, veteran and disability, unemployment, social security & workers compensation benefits. We can offer assistance and experience for your specific issue, prepare you for what might be required, fact checking, detailed analysis of your past union, and costs of daycare, payroll deductions, and supply any other aid that might be needed.

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Preparing For Child Custody Mediation in California

Mediation is a critical process when parents are seeking child custody after a divorce. The process is triggered in recommending counties when divorcing parents request the family court for a parenting plan. Recommending counties are counties where court-appointed mediators write recommendations for family court judges.

Parents must approach custody mediation with care. You must be prepared to get the most out of the process. Here are some critical tips to consider for visitation and child custody mediation in California.

1. Dress the part

You should dress like you would when going to court. Business casual clothing is highly recommendable to give the process the seriousness it deserves.

2. Have a plan

You should also attend your sessions with a plan in place. For instance, you should have an ideal recommendation. Even though you don’t have the final say in the parenting plan, it helps to have a specific one in place that you would want to be implemented. The plan should also be supported by concrete reasons with the best interests of your child/children in mind.

It helps to get someone you can trust by your side as you prepare. Discuss with such persons verbally on questions you expect to come up during mediation and the ideal answers.

3. Take your time before agreeing to anything

It’s also advisable to be cautious when agreeing to specific arrangements even when they sound good. Consult widely and “soul-search” to ensure the proposed plan is in the best interests of everyone, especially your child.

4. Understand the local county rules beforehand

Different counties in California may have different local rules. You may need to submit written documents to your mediator before your session. Reviewing local rules in advance ensures you know exactly what is expected of you in terms of documentation.

5. Speak up

When it’s time for your sessions, purpose to speak up. You must be heard if you want all/part of your wishes to be granted. Don’t allow the other parent to control the mediation process. You have equal rights to be there and to be heard.

6. Understand the basics of a parenting agreement

It also helps to understand parenting plans in general. Parents are at liberty to agree to any terms they deem good for their child. However, this is subject to court approval. Typically, parental agreements will be comprised of three main parts, namely: legal custody, parenting time, and holidays/vacations.

In regards to legal custody, parents usually share joint legal custody, which means they have equal rights to decide about their child’s education, safety, health, etc. Parenting agreements also state when (day and time) each parent will have physical custody of their child. Lastly, agreements also state time schedules during specific holidays/vacations. Court-appointed mediators assist in creating holiday schedules that meet the needs of everyone, especially the child.

Understanding what a general agreement looks like will save you precious time. It also helps to seek advice or hire a mediation lawyer in California. The Family Code is complex. While it’s not a must to hire a lawyer, it helps to seek advice from one to avoid getting into “bad” agreements.


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  • There are significant advantages in using arbitration vs going through courts and having a law firm battling on your behalf through a draw out process. First of all, it is much cheaper, as cost involived is significantly lower; second of all the process is much more peaceful, thirdly, couples get to make their own decisions and agreements; fourthly, time of completion and sessions required are much shorter as well. Since this is a private matter (out of court), couple has a direct way and higher outcome certainty with respect to theirs parenting plan arrangement, child custody and support, spousal support, property division and all other issues.

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Fathers Rights in California When Parents are Unmarried

Are a fathers rights the same in California if the parents are unmarried?

It is up to fathers to ensure their rights aren’t infringed, even in child custody arrangements or divorce. While separation can be challenging, it can result in more complications when establishing custody for unmarried couples.

Parentage in California

For unmarried parents, a father who wants to exercise their rights must first be established as the father before custody and visitation rights are given. Unwed fathers can’t automatically enjoy biological parental rights since there exists no proof that they are the biological father.

A father who is listed on a child’s birth certificate may still have no rights until the state of California recognizes them as the legal father. The process can establish a person as the legal father via a voluntary declaration.

Once parentage is established, a father can assume their full fathers rights. Full rights can be enjoyed through signing a declaration or through a court decision, after which the father and mother both enjoy full rights and responsibilities associated with raising a child.

If unmarried, the parents are supposed to go through custody arrangements. In the absence of mutual agreements, both parents can engage in legal battles or lawsuits.

Child Support & Custody

In California, mothers usually enjoy parental rights if parents are unmarried. However, mothers can have problems getting child support and having custody in the absence of a legal marriage. A father can voluntarily offer child support. If he stops providing support at some point, he can’t be forced to continue doing so until there is a court order. However, before court orders are given to compel fathers to take certain actions, the court must establish parentage or if the father assumed fathers rights legally in the relationship.

Court Enforced Fathers Rights

Unmarried parents usually rely heavily on courts to issues and enforce certain rights. If a father gets child custody, he enjoys those fathers rights because of the court. Besides ordering child support, courts can also order spousal support temporarily. However, there must be evidence of the other parent being the biological parent or legal parent. Since California has equal rights for mothers and fathers in custody matters, courts simply need to see evidence of parentage or acting as a parent to decide on custody, financial support, and visitation matters. A father’s rights can be enforced provided they satisfy the court’s guidelines.

California may have an equal rights policy that treats both genders equally on custody matters. However, a fathers rights can be an issue if the parents are unmarried. The importance of seeking assistance from an experienced fathers rights lawyer in California can’t, therefore, be overlooked. If the mother isn’t cooperating on custody issues or visitation, you can secure a court order compelling them to cooperate. A seasoned attorney can also pursue alternative custody dispute resolution methods like arbitration or mediation. They may also proceed to court to fight for your rights as a father.


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How To Get Your Child Support Order Modified In CA

Child support orders are not going to increase along with the cost of living, and they won’t automatically change because you got a new job or lost your current one. However, you can ask for a modification of the child support order when the circumstances warrant it. But how does a child support order get modified?

How Do You Petition for a Change in Child Support?

A form FL-300 is used for the request. An FL-150 is the income and expense declaration that has to be filed with it. Have an attorney review these forms for you rather than trying to do it yourself.

Make copies of all the forms. You’ll want to keep a copy. And you have to provide a copy to the former partner, while the original is given to the courts.

File the FL-300 and any other relevant documents with your county clerk. They’ll assign a court date. You’ll have to find someone to serve the former spouse with a copy of the forms and a blank copy of FL-150. You also need to give them a copy of FL-320. This is the Responsive Declaration to Request for Order. That form lets them challenge your modification request.

The proof of service must be filed with the courts. The file server should do this by filling out the FL-330 if the papers were served in person. A FL-335 is used if it was mailed to them.

The next step is going to the court hearing, taking your documentation and the proof of service. There will be a court hearing. You may be sent to mediation. If you can come to an agreement, the judge will sign off on it. Otherwise, they’ll render a judgement and sign the order.

If your wages are being garnished to pay the alimony, you may need to file a new form FL-435 or Earnings Assignment Order for Spousal Support. If you get the support order terminated, this form will be filed with a value of zero to reflect the fact your wages should no longer be garnished.

How Often You Can Get Child Support Modified

Modification orders can be submitted there is a change of fifty dollars or twenty percent, whatever is less. You can arrange a change for lesser amounts, though this needs to be signed off by the other party. The judge will request the modification request and all the information, though they’ll generally sign it off if both parents agree. Then you have an officially changed child support order.

Child support orders are typically modified every few years, since the cost of living keeps going up and children’s needs change over time. File a modification request as soon as there is a major change in your financial situation such as losing your job, losing health insurance coverage or when you have a radical change in your cost of living. You should also modify the child support amount when there is a major change in the custody agreement. After all, it isn’t fair to pay child support when you have primary custody of the kids.


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The Dark Side of Alimony

Alimony is better called spousal support. California lumps child support and alimony support into the larger category of “family support”, though you can ask for the payments to be separate. There are a number of issues with alimony that cause problems for the paying partner. Let’s look at some of the major issues with alimony that can get people into trouble.

The Court Order Doesn’t Change Unless You Make It Change

The legal system seems to run on inertia. In the case of court ordered alimony and child support, it will not change unless you force it to change. For example, the court-ordered level of child support or alimony will not go down because you lost your job or had your hours cut. You must contact a Corona family law attorney to file a request to change the support level. Furthermore, you must work with a California family law expert as soon as the financial situation changes, because support orders only change when the order is revised. The orders are not retroactive. This means you can’t get money back after they realize that you can’t survive on what you’re making and paying. Don’t run the risk of being arrested for contempt of court and failure to pay family support on top of your financial troubles.

Another dark side of alimony and child support is that the orders don’t terminate, unless you have a clear end date written into the alimony agreement. For example, child support won’t stop because the child turned 18 or 21. And the alimony agreement generally won’t stop unless you file to stop it, because the courts don’t know when your ex got a new job or remarried.

Men Can But Rarely Request Alimony

Alimony is traditionally paid by men to women, but society and the law have evolved since the days when most women stayed at home and the man was the “bread winner”. For example, California law is gender-neutral. Alimony should be paid by the higher earning spouse to the lower earner. Alimony is greater when the recipient has been devoted to taking care of the children, especially if they’ve spent years out of the workforce. This means that stay-at-home fathers can claim the same level of alimony as stay-at-home mothers.

Yet less than ten percent of men request alimony. More men than this are eligible for alimony. Some refuse to request it because they think it is for women only. Others refuse to request it out of pride. There is also the systemic bias against men in the courts that tend to result in lower alimony awards to fathers than mothers, regardless of income.

You Will Pay for Your Mistakes

Alimony is based on the numbers you provide to the court that they plug into an alimony calculator. If you under-estimate your cost of living or forget to include certain debt payments in the documents submitted to the court, you’ll be driven into poverty because you’re legally obligated to pay the alimony level as set by the court. And if you underestimate your living expenses or the debts you have to pay, you probably don’t have the money to pay a Corona family law attorney to file a request to alter your alimony agreement.


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An Introduction to the Concept of Visitation

Definition Of Visitation In CA

Visitation refers to your ability to visit or see your children in order to facilitate the relationship. Visitation is a legal term, and it refers to the time frame in which parents can spend time with their children with little or no interference. These rights are spelled out in visitation orders.

There are three types of child visitation orders. Fixed visitation is visitation on a fixed schedule or plan. “Reasonable” visitation is more flexible, but non-custodial parents can demand a certain percentage of time regardless of when that time is. This percentage is used to calculate child support, so track the amount of time you spend with the kids. You don’t want to have the other parent interfere in visitation and then use that reduction in time to demand more money from you.

Visitation can be supervised or unsupervised. The default is unsupervised. Supervised visitation is visitation that is in some way supervised by a third party. The supervision may be by the other parent, a social worker or another neutral third party. In some cases, it is by another relative. Supervised visitation may be ordered when there has been abuse or neglect of the child by the other parent. It can also be ordered when the parent has an uncontrolled mental illness or substance abuse problem. Supervision may be ordered if there are concerns of the safety of the family environment, such as when the child is being sent to visit a parent living with a dangerous new partner. Supervision can be ordered because there is a risk of abduction, as well. And supervision may be benign. For example, supervision may be ordered so that the child has a familiar person present while meeting a parent who has been absent from their life. Then the child isn’t being left with someone who is a stranger to them. It is rare for the courts to order a “no visitation” order, because there must be a compelling reason to deny someone their visitation rights.

What Visitation Rights Are

Visitation rights are the default right for a non-custodial parent to visit their children. When one parent is given primary custody or sole custody of the child, the non-custodial parent is normally awarded visitation rights. These rights are an extension of the parent’s right to maintain their relationship with the child, though the parents have split up.

The courts only deny these rights in extenuating circumstances. Refusing to force a rape victim to take the child to visit the rapist in prison would be an extreme example. Visitation rights may be denied if the parent was severely abusive to the child. On the other hand, supervised visitation may be ordered if the abuse was only directed at the other parent. This is one reason why visitation centers exist in the first place.

Visitation rights may be determined by court order, or they may be determined by an agreement of the two parties and signed off by a judge when the custody agreement is approved. The custody agreement becomes something enforceable by the courts. The courts could hold someone in contempt and issue fines or send the child to live with the other parent if the custodial parent has been denying visitation. We would recommend coming to agreement during mediation or negotiation, since this makes it easier to have a flexible visitation schedule instead of leaving open the door to facing a legal fight because you were four hours late returning the child on “your” weekend.

The Relationship Between Visitation & Custody

California’s default custody agreement is shared custody. This is generally a 50-50 split. In this case, you have shared custody and need a schedule for when and where the child will be. Some families have the traditional every other weekend visitation schedule. In these cases, one parent has primary custody while the other has visitation. The non-custodial parent may not be physically present more than 20 percent of the time, but they have joint decision making regarding their children’s lives. This is why physical custody and parental rights are not proportional. For example, the parent with primary custody may have custody of them most weekends, but they are supposed to give the other parent equal input into what religion if any the child is raised with. You can decide what’s for dinner, but you don’t get to determine that the child will be vegan or follow kosher over the objections of the other parent. The parent with visitation rights has an equal say in where the child will go to school, especially if they’re being asked to pay for it.

There is one exception to this, and it is when the courts have terminated someone’s parental rights. If your parental rights have been terminated, you do not have visitation rights. Nor do you have any right regarding the educational, medical or lifestyle decisions regarding how the child is raised.

Obtaining Visitation Rights

Legal parents have the legal right to be involved in their children’s lives with minimal outside interference. This is why relatives rarely get visitation rights, and it is why strangers don’t get a legal say in how your child is raised much less visit your home. Legal parents by definition have visitation rights, if they are not living with the child.

When the parents are married, they automatically gain visitation rights as part of the divorce. The challenge is security visitation rights if a child is born out of wedlock. The man who signs the birth certificate is legally the father, and he’s obligation to pay child support. That is true whether or not the child is biologically his, so always get DNA testing before you sign off on the affidavit of paternity. If the mother doesn’t name the father and he doesn’t know, he isn’t a legal parent and doesn’t have visitation rights. If he finds out about the child, he can seek DNA testing and go through the courts to be named the father. He doesn’t have visitation rights until he’s declared the child’s legal parent. If the mother has a new partner, that person doesn’t have legal rights to the child unless they are able to adopt the child. If the couple later splits, the adoptive parent has parental rights like visitation. Same sex partners who adopt the other partner’s biological children gain parental rights the same way.


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The Laws Affecting Prenups

Premarital agreements are drafted and signed before you are married. While roughly ten percent of couples get one before they’re married, these are actually contracts. This means that contract law applies to prenups, though they are far from the only ones. But what laws apply to premarital agreements? And what laws may invalidate a prenup in some way?


Any prenuptial agreement must comply with the Uniform Prenuptial Agreement or UPAA. That became law in 1986. This law affects ever prenup written in the 28 signatory states after that date. And California is one of the 28 participating states. UPAA was intended to provide a consistent framework of laws so that prenups created in one state are recognized and enacted in another state. However, your divorce itself and anything not covered by the prenup will be handled according to the laws of the state in which the divorce petition is first filed.

In practical terms, this means that a prenup written in Connecticut will probably be accepted by California courts if you file for divorce there unless the prenup is patently unfair or fails some other tenet of contract law. (Example: too many unenforceable provisions.) The child custody, child support and division of other property will be handled by California law. And you’ll have to meet California state residency requirements and use California specific family court forms to file for divorce.

Another way the UPAA affects prenups is that it allows people to choose which state’s marriage laws apply, if you’re married in one state and get divorced in another. This means you could choose to apply California’s community property laws if you’re divorced in a state that doesn’t have community property.

California State Law

California requires a prenup to be written and signed. Each party must have their own attorney. There are complex procedures for someone waiving their right to an attorney, but we recommend against this. If one of the parties doesn’t speak English, the agreement must be translated into their language so that they understand it.

California state law determines child custody and child support. These things are always left to the court’s authority based on the child’s best interests. In the case of child support, the child support level is set based on formulas spelled out in California state law. Your prenup can promise to pay more than the court-determined amount. And you are free to agree to pay for expenses not covered by child support such as college tuition.


The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 or ERISA law governs a large number of retirement plans. How does this affect premarital agreements? ERISA trumps any state laws and contract law regarding prenups. ERISA states that only married spouses can waive their rights to an interest in someone’s ERISA qualified retirement plan. This means that you cannot waive your right to a share of someone’s pension or retirement plan in a prenup.

Furthermore, a divorce decree may order someone to split their retirement account but it does not actually do so. Instead, you need a QDRO or qualified domestic relations order to roll over the funds into the other person’s retirement account. You can take them back to court and have them charged with contempt of court if they don’t do this in a reasonable period of time.

Contract Law

There are many laws that affect premarital agreements, but many tenets of contract law apply. For example, a prenup must be in writing and witnessed to be legal just like a will. It must be signed and dated. Unlike a will, each side must have independent legal representation unless some very high bars are met. You just have full disclosure of your financial situation, if you want the prenup to stand up in court. The document will be thrown out if you hide your debts, assets or any other pertinent information.

Like other types of contracts, contractual provisions in violation of the law are null and void. Contractual provisions that mandate things that the courts can’t enforce are null and void, too. You can’t use a prenup to order your spouse to dress a certain way, act a given way or abide by a ton of personal rules. If too many provisions in the prenup are in violation of the law or otherwise nullified, the prenup is thrown out. Then California’s divorce laws apply to the divorce, regardless of where the prenup was drafted.

California laws regarding child custody and child support take precedence over anything in a prenup regarding these issues. However, your future partner can sign away their right to your personal property or alimony if the contract otherwise arranges for an equitable division of property. However, the provisions for giving up one’s right to alimony can be waived if they’d otherwise be destitute. If they’d be on welfare, you’re going to have to pay alimony. If you’re going to be left with hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars while they get nothing, then the agreement will be thrown out. Yet you can use a prenup to make things fairer. For example, your premarital agreement could include a formula that includes the incomes of both parties when you divorce and the duration of the marriage to set the alimony level. The courts almost always approve an alimony agreement if it is for more money and/or lasts longer than what California state law mandates. You can also be generous such as agreeing to pay their legal fees, though you cannot order them to use an attorney of your choosing while you’re going through a divorce.

You can’t use the prenup to violate the other person’s property rights. If you give them a gift before the marriage, it is their property. You can use the prenup to force them to give it back as part of the divorce, though they can choose to do so. You can’t order them to give up their rights to personal property they had before the divorce.

You can create mechanisms for mediating disputes during marriage or during divorce. Just know that things will revert to the courts if you can’t agree in mediation or arbitration.



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  • Visit www.MooreFamilyLawGroup.com and find more information about us and our business!

  • Increase your chances of obtaining successful results by hiring a reliable practitioner to take charge of your case.

  • Set up the strategies to follow during each consultation with a decorated specialist to become the guardian of your dependants (kid, minor or teenager) after the dissolution of your marriage.

  • Get a no obligation free evaluation of your issue during your first consult with us.

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  • Call us to (951) 463-5594 (telephone/phone number) to speak to an established office for assistance.

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  • You can read here what specific areas we currently serve, including their surroundings like: Los Angeles, San Diego, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange Counties, 92877, 92883, 92878, 92882, 92879, 92881, 92880 zip codes; and Dos Lagos, Eagle Glen, Sycamore Creek, Horsethief Canyon, Home Gardens, Coronita, Trilogy, El Cerrito, Weisel, Brentridge, Green River, Wildrose, Downtown, Sierra Del Oro, North, South & Central neighborhoods.

  • Featuring the points of interests in the city that are located close to us like Tom’s Farm, SC Village Paintball & Airsoft Park, TAPS Fishing House & Brewery, Pole Position Railway, Mike Raahauge Shooting Enterprise & many more.


The City Of Yorba Linda CA

Yorba Linda is a wonderful city located only 37 miles from downtown Los Angeles. It is located in the iconic Orange county, the scene of many Hollywood dramas and glitzy celeb scandals over the years. Yorba Linda is famous for maintaining a certain rustic charm and folksy serenity in the midst of all the glamour and bustle of Southern California.

In fact, the most famous resident of Yorba Linda is not a Hollywood star at all, but a US president. President Richard Nixon was born and raised in this suburb, and the town is now home to a presidential library and museum in honour of this controversial figure. You don’t need to worry though, not all the residents of Yorba Linda are like �Tricky Dicky’. Most of the community are friendly and approachable, always willing to help a stranger.

Yorba Linda has very humble beginnings as a small agricultural community with just a few families and some very basic amenities. It experienced steady population growth all throughout the twentieth century, takes to the ever-increasing mobility into the area. By 1960 it was home to more than 1000 people, and since then the population has practically exploded. It is now home to well over 65,000 residents, and many more commute into the town to work.

Thankfully, the services and general standard of living in the town have kept pace with the rapid population growth. This has led to it being ranked one of the nicest places to live in America, by CNN. It has a relatively diverse local population, and is served by good schools and local colleges, as well as public libraries, parks and other open spaces. It avoided being incorporated into neighbouring cities throughout the latter 20th century, and as a result it has a strong local government and municipal authorities to work on behalf of the local people.



Get on CA-91 E in Anaheim from CA-90 E
7 min (3.3 mi)
Head southeast toward Yorba Linda Blvd
59 ft
Turn right toward Yorba Linda Blvd
131 ft
Turn right toward Yorba Linda Blvd
52 ft
Turn left toward Yorba Linda Blvd
59 ft
Turn right toward Yorba Linda Blvd
135 ft
Turn left toward Yorba Linda Blvd
75 ft
Turn right onto Yorba Linda Blvd
213 ft
Turn right after Chili’s Grill & Bar (on the right)
Continue to follow CA-90 E
2.7 mi
Use the 2nd from the right lane to stay on CA-90 E
0.2 mi
Use the right lane to merge onto CA-91 E via the ramp to Riverside
0.3 mi
Follow CA-91 E and I-15 S to Cajalco Rd in Corona. Take exit 91 from I-15 S
18 min (19.2 mi)
Merge onto CA-91 E
13.7 mi
Use the right 3 lanes to take exit 51 to merge onto I-15 S toward San Diego
4.3 mi
Keep left to stay on I-15 S
0.9 mi
Take exit 91 toward Cajalco Rd
0.3 mi
Follow Cajalco Rd and Temescal Canyon Rd to your destination
3 min (1.1 mi)
Turn left onto Cajalco Rd
0.7 mi
Turn right onto Temescal Canyon Rd
0.3 mi
Turn right
138 ft
Turn left
69 ft
Turn right
69 ft
Turn left
Destination will be on the right
285 ft


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