LAW OFFICE OF STEPHANIE  MENDEZcustody rights no fault divorce

07/2017- Move Away/Relocation

Now that summer is here, many parents decide that he/she would like to relocate to another county, or out of state.  If you are the noncustodial parent, what can you do to fight that?  There are plenty of ways to fight that request, through the court system.  It is not an easy request; in fact, this may be the toughest decision for a Judge (or Commissioner) to make.  It requires the balancing of a number of factors, and determining if the move is appropriate for the minor child.  Remember, any adult has the presumptive right to relocate.  The question for the Judge is NOT "can I be allowed to move?"  The question for the Judge is "Can our child be allowed to move with me?"  The sole determination is whether this minor child should be allowed to relocate with the parent whom is requesting the move.  Keep this in mind when researching lawyers to represent you.  You want an attorney who has litigated this area before, and achieved the result that you are seeking. 

03/10/17:  Date of Separation, what?

The date of separation is a crucial date in divorce and legal separation cases.  It is the date that "ends" the "community."  What does that mean?  It means that this is the date that assets and liabilities are valued at, and divided (with some exceptions, of course).

So, again, why is this important?  Well, it's important because this date is also the date where individuals are viewed as individuals again, rather than as a union.  Remember, marriage (and domestic partnership) create a partnership, and everything earned, acquired, leased and/or obtained is viewed as jointly owned.  Once the date of separation is determined, from that date going forward, anything that is acquired is considered the sole property of the one who acquired it. 

California signed into law Family Law Statute 70, which lists out how to determine the date of separation.  There are times when spouses and partners have a differing view as to when the partnership/marriage ended.  If there is a significant discrepancy between the separation dates, it can drastically affect the assets and debts.  Prior to this law being enacted, the California Supreme Court ruled that in order for spouses to be considered separate, they must first be living "separate and apart."  This meant that one person had to physically move out.  In today's day, it was difficult for couples to do that.  This new law eliminates that requirement.  It also adds in some other things, such as behavior and the intent of the parties, and any and all relevant evidence that shows this intent.