Murrieta Divorce Attorney
The final decision to officially end a once-loving marriage is one of life’s most difficult choices. It is a place in life where no one ever expects to end up, so it’s natural to feel overwhelmed and confused when it happens. People often feel a range of emotions, including sadness, anger, anxiety, and relief. The decisions you make during this time will have a lasting impact on your future, so seeking out the advice of experienced Murrieta divorce lawyers who can help you add clarity and legal protection to the next steps of your life is crucial.
At the Law Offices of Catherine A. Schwartz, our Murrieta divorce attorneys have years of experience handling all aspects of divorce and separation, including child custody, property division, spousal support, and more. Our family law firm understands how emotionally charged this time can be, and we will work closely with you, so you are fully protected under California law throughout the process. We will help you reach a fair and equitable resolution so that you can move on with your life and start the next chapter on your own terms.
What Is Up for Discussion in a Divorce?
Because a marriage deeply involves almost every area of life, there are many things that must be discussed in a divorce. This includes both financial and non-financial aspects of the relationship that both individuals have become accustomed to sharing life as a team. Moving forward, you will both have to set up your own separate households and figure out how to best support yourselves and any children you may have.
Some of the things that may need to be discussed in a divorce include:
- Child custody and visitation schedule
- Property division
- Spousal support
- Child support
- Debt division
With so much of what is important at stake, having an experienced Murrieta divorce lawyer on your side is highly recommended to protect your interests and help you reach a fair and equitable resolution.
California Is a No-Fault Divorce State
In California, all divorces are “no-fault.” This means that the court does not assign blame to either spouse for the breakdown of the marriage, and the individuals can file for divorce simply by stating that the marriage has “irreconcilable differences.” Of course, this blanket statement can cover a wide range of circumstances, from infidelity to financial problems, that can complicate the divorce process and how the assets are ultimately divided.
Murrieta Resides in a Community Property State
California is legally defined as a community property state, which means that all property and assets acquired throughout the tenure of the marriage are considered to be jointly owned by both spouses. This includes all income, savings, houses, cars, and any other property purchased during the marriage.
Community property is generally divided evenly between the spouses in a divorce, but there are some exceptions that exist. For example, if one spouse previously owned a house or other asset prior to the marriage, that property may be considered separate and not subject to division. If one spouse inherited property during the marriage, that property may also be considered separate.
In some cases, the court may order an unequal division of assets if it finds that an equal division would be unfair. This could happen if one spouse earned significantly more income than the other during the marriage or if one spouse contributed more to the acquisition of certain assets. The court may also consider other factors, such as each spouse’s age, health, and earning potential, when working to make a final decision on how to divide the assets.
Determining Child Custody in Murrieta
If you have children, child custody will be one of the most important issues to resolve in your divorce. The family law court will consider a number of factors when making a child custody determination, including the child’s age, health, paternity, and relationship with each parent. The court will also look into which parent is more likely to provide a stable and loving home environment for the child.
In some divorce cases, the court will order a joint custody agreement. This means that the child will spend time with both parents. The parents will need to work together to make decisions about the child’s education, health, and welfare. In other cases, the court may order sole custody, which means that the child will live with one parent while the other has visitation rights.
The court may also order joint legal custody, which means that both parents can legally make decisions on the child’s education, health, and welfare. However, one parent may get primary physical custody, which means the child will live with that parent most of the time. The other parent will have visitation rights.
Spousal Support in Murrieta
California spousal support, otherwise referred to as alimony, may be awarded to either spouse in a divorce. How much and how long the spousal support arrangement will be is based on the length of the marriage, each spouse’s income and earning potential, and each spouse’s age and health. The court can also investigate whether one spouse contributed to the education or career of the other spouse.
Spousal support is generally payable for a limited time until the recipient spouse is able to become self-supporting. However, in some cases, spousal support may be ordered for a longer period or even indefinitely.
Get Help From Our Murrieta Divorce Attorneys for Family Law Matters
Dividing property, determining child custody, and setting spousal support payments can be complex and emotionally charged issues. A Murrieta family law attorney can help you understand your rights and options under California law and advocate for your best interests. They can also help you negotiate a settlement with your spouse that is fair and equitable for both parties.
If you are considering divorce or have already been served with divorce papers, contact the Law Office of Catherine A. Schwartz to schedule a consultation. We are a team of educated and experienced divorce attorneys who are skilled negotiators, professional mediators, and tenacious trial lawyers. We will protect your legal rights and help you obtain the best possible outcome in your divorce.