In Part II of this two-part series, we will continue to discuss some of the basics about California divorce laws. Part I covered some initial points, such as residency requirements, “no-fault” divorce and common information to include in initial filings.
Continuing with the basics
Once the paperwork to begin the legal case is filed with an appropriate court, that paperwork must then be “served” on the other spouse. This means the paperwork is properly and verifiably delivered to the other spouse. Then, that spouse has 30 days to respond in writing.
From there, a divorce case can go in any number of directions. For some people, most of the issues that must be addressed in the case – property and debt division, alimony, child custody and child support – might be resolved simply through negotiations between the parties. For others, differences of opinion may mean that a mediator could be helpful. In mediation, a neutral third party will typically go back and forth between the parties to try to work out differences and find solutions.
Of course, not all divorcing spouses are amiable enough to negotiate or work on issues with a mediator. In some cases – oftentimes in high-asset divorce cases – courtroom litigation becomes a must. If that happens in your case, the divorce case will proceed much the same as other civil cases – a discovery phase, depositions, evidentiary hearings, numerous court filings, even a trial – these could all be part of a divorce case that isn’t settled by other means. Anyone in California who needs more information about the divorce process can visit our law firm’s website.