California Divorce – Basic Information
California Divorce can be very difficult, but we hope to provide information for you to make your decisions. The pages that are provided here are meant to give you enough information so you can have the California divorce you want and need.
There are 3 types of marital actions: dissolution, legal separation, and nullity.
A dissolution action is where your marriage is terminated. It is your typical divorce.
In almost every case, the grounds for a dissolution action or legal separation are “irreconcilable differences.” Courts are willing to find irreconcilable differences for virtually any type of marriage problem.
In effect, you don’t have to prove your spouse was somehow at fault for the failure of your marriage. If it appears to the court, however, that there is the possibility of reconciliation, the court must postpone the divorce for no more than 30 days.
California Divorce – residency requirements
To get your marriage dissolved, at least one of the parties must be a resident of California for six months and a resident of the county in which the petition was filed for three months.
There is no minimum residency period for a legal separation. A new arrival to California can file a petition for legal separation and then amend the petition when the residency period is met.
The filing date of the amended petition is deemed to be the date of commencement of the preceding for the dissolution of the marriage for purposes of the residency requirement. Therefore, a judgment of dissolution can be finalized within six months after the original petition for legal separation was served.
How long does it take to get California Divorce?
In a dissolution action, it takes at least six months after the court gets jurisdiction over the case, for you to get divorced. The court gets jurisdiction over the case after you file your petition and serve your spouse with the papers.
Your marriage will not automatically terminate after the six-month period. You must get a judgment of dissolution from the court. It is only at that point, the judgment, that you are free to remarry.
California Divorce vs. Nullity
You can get a nullity, rather than a dissolution when your marriage is found to be void or voidable. A marriage is void or voidable in the following situations:
1. Incest and bigamy;
2. The petitioner is under age 18;
3. A current spouse mistakenly believed to be deceased;
4. Unsound mind;
6. Force; and
7. Physical incapacity–unable to engage in oral copulation
One of these grounds must have existed at the time of the marriage.
The most common reason for a nullity is fraud. That means that a spouse’s consent to marriage was obtained by fraud, unless they freely cohabitated with the other spouse as husband and wife, with full knowledge of the facts constituting the fraud. The fraud most directly affect the purpose of the party deceived into entering the marriage.
California Divorce vs Legal Separation
Instead of dissolution, a legal separation may be the correct choice for spouses who want to separate their lives, but want to remain legally married. It could be for religious or personal reasons, such as the maintenance of medical insurance coverage.
A legal separation action will determine the same issues that a dissolution action does, but your marriage will not be terminated.
If you haven’t met the residency requirement for a dissolution, you can file for a legal separation until the requirement has been met.
Legal separation can only be granted if both spouses consent or the other spouse chooses not to appear in court.
California Divorce vs Summary Dissolution
If you qualify for a summary dissolution, you will have less paperwork to file and you will not have to appear in court. You may be eligible for such a process if you and your spouse have agreed in writing to a division of assets and debts and if the following conditions exist:
* You have been married five years or less.
* You have no children from the relationship.
* Neither of you own a home or other real estate.
* The value of all community property amounts to less than $25,000.
* Your combined debt does not exceed $5,000.
* The parties waive spousal support.
Both spouses must agree to all the terms of a summary dissolution, and either party can cancel it for any reason before the dissolution is final.
Call California Divorce Lawyer at 714-390-3766