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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The Mediation Process

Any time that a Dissolution of Marriage or Paternity matter is filed with the Court and there are pending child custody and/or child visitation orders, a Family Court Services Mediation appointment is mandatory.  A mediation appointment is an appointment between both parents together and a Family Court Services Mediator only.  Attorneys for either party, or any other […]

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Can the Court Order Custody of Family Pets in Divorce?

Many pet owners would considers their pets more like their children than property.  However,  pets animals are considered personal property. Penal Code section 491 provides: “Dogs are personal property, and their value is to be ascertained in the same manner as the value of other property.” Newly enacted Family Code section 2605 provides that the court may […]

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Financial Records

Keep Your Financial Records

When parties get married, they rarely think of their relationship ending in a divorce. Unfortunately, some couples eventually do get divorced, which may then require proof of the character and value of their property and debts. California is a community property state, which means that all property and debts acquired during marriage will be divided […]

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Dividing Support Order Divorce

Dividing a Support Order in Divorce

Filing a Paternity matter serves the best interests of both parents and the minor child(ren). Court-ordered child custody and visitation orders can be entered, as well as child support orders. Without formal custody, visitation and support orders entered through the court, each parent has the absolute right to insist that the minor child(ren) remain in […]

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California Supreme Court Rules on Date of Separation

In a marital dissolution proceeding, a court determines the division of property between the spouses by first characterizing the parties’ property as community or separate. Family Code Section 760 provides that all property acquired by the spouses during the marriage is community property “except as otherwise provided by statute.” One such statute is Family Code […]

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Gathering Documents for Divorce

It’s inevitable. You and your spouse are separating and you need a family law attorney, and you need one now. Your friends gave you referrals. You researched attorneys in the area, and you interviewed prospective attorneys. Finally, you selected an attorney (preferably one that specializes in family law), and you are ready to retain his […]

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