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Campbell Divorce Lawyers Providing Legal Guidance on Important Family Law Matters

If you no longer feel happy and fulfilled in your marriage, it may be time to end it. You deserve a fresh start where you can focus on finding happiness again. But before that happens, you need to get your divorce finalized with the help of a caring, experienced divorce lawyer.

When you come to our Campbell law firm, you will get the legal advice you need as you handle complex family law matters, such as property division, spousal support, and child custody. At Hepner & Pagan, LLP, our divorce lawyers have spent years helping clients through the California divorce process, so we encourage you to contact us for an initial consultation.

What Should You Know Before Seeking a Divorce in California?

Our San Jose divorce lawyers want all clients to know what to expect from the divorce process in Santa Clara County. The first detail to know is that California is a no-fault divorce state. This means you do not need to prove fault or say why you want to leave your spouse. When you fill out the petition for divorce, you can state that there are irreconcilable differences.

Once you file this form with the court and request that your spouse be served with the paperwork, you’ve started the first step toward divorce. Note that you can be granted a divorce even if your spouse does not want one. However, you or your spouse must have been a resident of California for at least six months before filing. Additionally, to file in Santa Clara County, one of you must have been a resident of this county for at least three months.

Your divorce petition will ask how you want to handle family law matters, including:

  • Child custody
  • Child support
  • Spousal support
  • Property division

When your spouse receives the divorce papers, they must specify the outcome they want regarding these issues. If both parties agree on how to handle community property, marital property, child custody, child support, and spousal support, they have an uncontested divorce. This means they can avoid going to court and should be done with the divorce process rather quickly.

Of course, many couples do not agree on how to handle these matters. They might have differing views on how to divide marital property or what the best child custody arrangement might be. They might also find it hard to agree on how much spousal support or child support they should pay or receive. If this is the case for you, contacting a California divorce attorney to arrange for mediation is important. This will entail sitting down with your spouse and a mediator, a neutral third party, to come to a compromise on family law issues.

In most cases, mediation can turn contested divorces into uncontested divorces, as a judge can sign off on the separation agreement without the need for time in court. If you cannot agree with your spouse, the divorce process will take longer. If you want to try mediation or have questions about ending your marriage in Santa Clara County, call our office to talk to a caring family law attorney.

Are You Eligible for Summary Dissolution?

If you and your spouse are ending your marriage on amicable terms and can agree on how to handle property division, you may be eligible for summary dissolution. This is the fastest, most straightforward way to get divorced, but not all uncontested divorces qualify. To be eligible for the summary dissolution legal process, these conditions must be true:

  • Your marriage lasted less than five years
  • You do not own any real estate
  • You have no children together
  • You have very little debt together
  • You share very few assets
  • You agree on how to handle your marital property
  • Neither of you will request spousal support

If you meet these conditions, ask San Jose divorce lawyers, about summary dissolution. Since you won’t have to handle complicated family law issues like child custody or child support, the divorce process should be seamless and fast. You will still need to talk to local attorneys to ensure the divorce terms are fair to you, so call our law firm for legal assistance as you work toward ending your marriage.

What Is the Difference Between Divorce and Legal Separation?

As you look into the process for legally ending your marriage in San Jose, you might notice that divorce is not the only option. Legal separation is another way to leave your spouse, but it’s not quite the same as divorce. With this option, you remain legally married but live apart and begin separating major aspects of your life from your spouse.

This means that much like a divorce, you need to fill out a separation agreement that specifies how you will split marital and separate property, who will get custody of the children, and who will pay child support or spousal support. Some of the reasons you might choose legal separation over divorce include the following:

  • You want a break from your spouse to think about your marriage before officially ending it
  • You can’t afford to get divorced
  • You need to stay married to keep using your spouse’s insurance or other benefits
  • Your religion or immigration status makes divorce difficult
  • You don’t meet the California residency requirement for divorce

As such, some couples legally separate at first and eventually file for divorce. This is an especially attractive option for a couple that has recently moved to California, as they can only get divorced once they’ve lived here for six months or more. As a result, they might legally separate for now and then progress to a divorce in six months.

If you’re considering this legal option, note that you cannot marry someone else or enter a domestic partnership until you’re divorced. If you want to know if this legal process is right for you, contact a San Jose lawyer experienced with family law issues. Whether you’re trying to escape domestic violence or want to end your marriage due to irreconcilable differences, the caring attorneys at Hepner & Pagan, LLP are here to help.

How Can Divorce Lawyers in Campbell Assist You?

When you come to our family law firm, you will meet with compassionate lawyers with years of experience handling cases in various practice areas. We understand that you have likely been thinking about ending your marriage for a while now and are hoping for a fast, simple way to leave your spouse without spending too much time in court. That’s why we do everything we can to streamline the divorce process for our San Jose clients.

If you end up hiring our family law firm to represent you, we will ensure you know all your options for ending your marriage in Santa Clara County. Our lawyers are here to answer any questions, help you fill out forms to file with the court, and provide support as you work toward a new start in life. To learn more, call our family law firm today at 408-688-9153.