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I have frequently been retained by parties to help them navigate their own divorce, in Mediation. This is really the best approach for everyone involved. I listen to the clients tell me the facts of the case, then I explain the law on each issue. Then I help the parties work toward an amicable resolution without ever stepping foot in the court room. Mediation can work for divorce and for custody situations which require Court orders. Don't trust your Mediation case to a non-attorney. You get what you pay for!
If Mediation is not a viable option, Clients have often retained me to represent them in their litigated matter. If feasible, I first attempt to settle the case, instead of taking it to trial, to save the client time and money. Of course, we can take your case to the Judge, litigate so that you have "your day in court." Litigation is the most expensive option, but sometimes that is the only option available. I have over 25 years experience in litigation and enjoy the pursuit of victory at trial.
At the beginning of a Paternity (Custody) or Divorce Action, parties may need temporary orders for Child Custody, to include a parenting plan, and orders for legal and physical custody. If you have children and custody is an issue, both Child Custody and Child Support Orders will be needed. Spousal Support is another issue to be determined. Temporary Spousal Support differs from Permanent (long term) Spousal Support. Some cases require temporary orders for Property, such as exclusive use and possession of the family residence. Every case is unique, and needs attention to detail.
Since the Covid 19 pandemic, some hearings at the Orange County Superior Court family law matters are being held remotely. You can appear for a remote hearing with me in my office, or appear from home, for your court hearing. Typically, all evidentiary hearings are scheduled for an in-person hearing at the Court house. The Judges for Family Law in Orange County are frequently changing. We have many new Judges who have literally no background in Family Law. As of January 2023, most family law hearings are 3 months in the future from the date you file a Request for Order (RFO) Hearing.
Family Law issues can be very complicated. I have knowledge of property law, can analyze complex information regarding taxes, business operations, issues pertaining to psychology, custody, finances as it pertains to child and spousal support, inheritance and retirement issues, to name a few. As a Certified Family Law Specialist (CFLS), I am required to maintain twice the Continuing Legal Education credits every year to maintain my standing as a CFLS. In addition, since most of our Orange County Superior Court judges are new, they will rely upon your attorney to educate them regarding the finer points of family law matters.
The average time it takes to get a divorce in Orange County is 12-24 months. However, it can be legally granted, just 6 months from the date the other party is served. A "quick divorce" is rare, but it can happen, if both parties are willing to get their paperwork done and to collectively work out an amicable resolution. If parties cannot mediate or settle, the case can drag on for months.