When We Don’t Agree, Does the Court Have to Follow the Child Support Guideline?

As every parent with a California child support case knows, Court orders must adhere to the Statewide Uniform Guideline as set forth in Family Code ྷ4055; unless the Court finds that the Payor has a net (take home) pay of $1,500.00 or less per month (reduced to $1,000.00 per month in 2021) or one of […]

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Family Gifts and Loans, Who Cares?

The term “family assistance” may produce thoughts of government aid to the poor.  However, in Family Court it often means gifts or loans made by parents to their adult children who are now getting divorced. Family Code Section 770 (a)(2) tells us that all property that a married person acquires by “gift” is separate property.  […]

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Are Defamatory Statements Privileged in Divorce Actions?

Defamatory statements often occur  in the context of judicial proceedings.  If such statements could be the basis for an action for damages against parties and witnesses, this would deter parties and witnesses from participation in the judicial process.  In order to ensure access to the legal process and encourage effective litigation through free communication, the […]

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Spousal Support and Immigration

Family Law has been described as being similar to General Practice because it can interact with other specialties of law such as real estate, retirement, estate planning, income tax, criminal law and bankruptcy to name a few. Another interaction is with Immigration Law. One such case is In Re Marriage of Kumar (2017) 13 Ca […]

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Child Custody: What is Legal v. Physical Custody

Legal custody refers to your decision making authority regarding your children, such as choice of school, child care, medical care, religious instruction, extra curricular activities and other major decisions.  Unless one parent is unavailable to participate in these decisions, or has problems with anger or substance abuse, legal custody will usually be shared. This means that […]

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Which Parent Claims Their Child As An Exemption On Federal Tax Returns?

When parents divorce or were never married, the general rule is that the custodial parent (whichever parent has more overnights during a calendar year) claims the child as an exemption on his/her tax return.  The other parent is the noncustodial parent.  If the child was with each parent for an equal number of nights, the custodial parent […]

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Dividing Community Property and Debts

Depending upon the length of your marriage, you accumulate an abundance of items during marriage.  In the unfortunate event of a divorce, items and property you once never imagined dividing must now be divided.  If you share with family and/or friends that you and your spouse are at a point in your Dissolution of Marriage process of […]

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Nonviolent Conduct That Can Be Restrained Under the Domestic Violence Prevention Act (DVPA)

There is a common misconception that Restraining Orders can only be obtained after one party has inflicted physical abuse on the other party.  While all physical violence constitutes abuse under the Domestic Violence Prevention Act (DVPA,) not all abuse involves physical violence. Increasingly, courts are granting protective orders for nonviolent conduct that disturbs the peace of another. […]

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