San Diego Divorce Guide
Divorce is never easy, but if you understand the requirements and the options available to you, then the divorce process can often proceed smoothly and with little interruption. In order to file for divorce in San Diego, divorcing couples must meet certain residency requirements. One of the divorcing parties must have lived in the State of California for six months and in San Diego for at least three months before filing for divorce in San Diego County.
If you or your spouse meets the residency requirements for terminating your marriage in San Diego, then there are several options available to you, including:
- Legal Separation – available for couples who are not ready to terminate their marriage yet but want to be considered separate for legal and tax liability purposes
- Annulment – may be sought in certain situations where marriages are considered void under California’s Family Code
- Dissolution of Marriage – traditional divorce available to most married couples
- Summary Dissolution of Marriage – available to couples who have been married less than five years, have minimal assets, and no children
It is important to remember that the State of California is considered a “no fault” state. This means that no one spouse will be determined to be “at fault” for the dissolution of the marriage and all marriages will be dissolved due to irreconcilable differences. As far as California courts are concerned, it makes no difference why you want to get divorced, only that you both do agree to get divorced. While issues like adultery, abuse, or drugs will not be considered for divorce purposes, they can be very useful in child custody cases.
Assets and Debts
California is also considered a community property state which means that both the assets and the debts are divided equally between the two parties—regardless of who earned the most income or acquired the bulk of the debt. There are situations, however, when California law does allow for a spouse to retain his or her own property—especially if that property was acquired before the marriage or as a gift during the marriage.
Spousal Support in San Diego
During a divorce in San Diego, there are many factors must be reviewed before determining how much spousal support will be granted. Spousal support is often granted on a limited basis and usually for the means of allowing one spouse to become self-supporting or obtain an education they were unable to obtain when they were married.
Children and Divorce in San Diego
If you and your spouse have children together, then your divorce may become a bit more complicated. Issues, such as child custody and child support, will undoubtedly be raised and need to be determined in accordance with California law. The courts will need to determine how to split up both physical and legal custody of the children in a way that is both fair to the parents and in the best interest of the children. Joint custody may be granted if both parents are able and willing to take an equal interest in raising their children.
If sole physical and legal custody are granted to just one parent, however, then the other parent will be required by law to pay child support. There are minimum child support guidelines in the State of California, and these will need to be determined before finalizing the divorce.
After Your San Diego Divorce
After your divorce is granted, if you or your spouse have any disputes, then you will need to go to the Superior Court in the San Diego County or the county where your divorce was granted. This is where any property issues, child support issues, spousal support issues, or child custody issues can be addressed years after your San Diego divorce is finalized.
San Diego Divorce Lawyers on Your Side
There are many decisions that must be made when you decide to get a divorce. Where will your children live? How will you pay for their care? How will you divide your assets and property? As such, you need an experienced San Diego divorce attorney on your side from the moment you decide to file for a divorce.
San Diego divorce lawyer Shana Black understands the complications that can arise during a San Diego divorce. As such, she works diligently to protect your rights and your family’s future during the divorce process. She has successfully represented numerous San Diego divorcing couples and their families through this difficult time. Call 1-619-557-0122 to learn more about all of your San Diego family law options.