At the time a couple reaches the point at which the marriage has come to an end and divorce is imminent, it is important to seek counsel from a specialized divorce attorney to navigate the legal system.
What is the Difference Between a Divorce and Marital Dissolution?
Each state has their own laws that apply to the dissolution of marriage and or divorce. While courts will often use “marital dissolution” and “divorce” interchangeably, it is important to know the law and divorce process that applies to your specific location. For example, in California, you can file for a divorce if you claim “irreconcilable differences” with your spouse or domestic partner. Because there is no “guilty” party, California is known as a “no-fault” divorce state.
A divorce is a legal dissolution of a marriage by a court or other appointed entity. All cases have the potential to become extremely complex, costly, and time-consuming. Feeling weighed down with the emotional stress of having to sift through the relationship can typically involve the following situation:
- Divorce litigation
- The division of marital assets including financial interest, accounts, and real property
- Child custody and visitation terms
- Child support
- Alimony and spousal support
- Restraining orders
What is a Contested Divorce?
Divorce cases typically fall into two categories, contested and uncontested divorces. Contested divorces are when both parties cannot come to a mutual agreement on some aspects of the divorce. This can potentially complicate the divorce proceedings, extending the process significantly and involving greater hardships and increased legal fees.
Contested divorces in California can require spouses to go through numerous steps before the marriage can be ended. Some of these steps include:
- Preparation, filing and serving a divorce petition which is a legal document requesting stating the grounds for the marriage be dissolved
- An initial consultation and hiring a divorce lawyer
- The divorce discovery process which includes gathering information from the spouse and wintesses
- Pre-trial motions and hearings
- Settlements and negotiations between legal counsel on matters such as child custody and visitation rights, living standards and other relevant matters.
- Family court trial
Marital dissolution is sometimes referred to as a quicker and less costly process for terminating a marriage when neither party contests the decision, also known as an uncontested divorce. This is when both spouses agree on all divorce matter and work amicably towards a compromised resolution. Uncontested divorces can be less costly as well.
From the outset of legal separation, having a divorce attorney in your corner to assist in protecting your rights and, in the event there are children, to ensure that the children’s best interests are properly considered and weighed, is essential. Our experienced divorce attorneys will advocate for your interests while we ensure that your dissolution process is handled in the most amicable, expeditious, and cost-effective manner possible.
Our California Family Law firms are located in:
- Newport Beach
- Los Angeles
- San Diego
Nevada offices are located in:
- Las Vegas
We also provide legal representation for family law issues in:
- Denver, Colorado
- Johannesburg, South Africa