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Friday, August 17, 2012

CUSTODY

Custody refers to who has legal decision-making authority in the life of a child. The decision-making authority is usually in regard to major life issues such as religion, education, health and activities.
Typically in two-parent, intact families, parents share decision-making authority. The decision making process between co-habiting parents may reflect mutual input and a consensus model or a distribution of responsibilities where one parent takes a primary role with respect to making decisions and the other parent, generally in agreement and trusting with the decisions, takes a secondary role.


For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/ --

DIVORCE CONSIDERATIONS ON RETIREMENT AND SOCIAL SECURITY

  • Pensions are joint assets, and can be divided in a divorce settlement. Your lawyer will need to prepare a Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QDRO) before your divorce is finalized.

  • If your marriage lasted for at least 10 years, you are eligible to collect on your ex's spousal portion of their social security pension, provided that you don't qualify to collect based on your own earning. If you qualify, you can collect once your ex-husband turns 62 (whether or not he retires), and the divorce has been finalized for over two years.

  • Unmarried children under 18 are entitled to survivor benefits if your ex-husband dies.

  • If you were married for at least 10 years, you qualify for the same survivor benefits as a widow

  • For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/ --

    DIVORCE CONSIDERATIONS AND MONEY

    Prior for filing for divorce consult with a certified financial planner that is skilled in divorce proceedings. They can help prepare you financially before your start your divorce, and point out areas of your settlement that will have repercussions in the future. Keep the following suggestions in mind as you think about divorce:
    • Do not make large purchases that will add to community debt. Try to keep all assets liquid.
    • Put a freeze on joint credit card accounts.
    • Keep working to secure your newly single future.
    • If you have your paycheck automatically deposited into a joint account, set up an individual account, and have the deposits made to it.
    • Keep all individual assets separate. These include inheritances, workers compensation, personal injury awards, items that you brought into the marriage, and gifts given to you individually.
    • Have any necessary mechanical repairs done to your automobile to insure that you have reliable transportation after the divorce.

    For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/ --

    INITIATING THE DIVORCE

    In California, the person filing for divorce or a legal separation does so by filing and serving a Summons and Petition for Divorce or Legal Separation. The Petition has two parts. The first section of the Petition sets out basic details such as the identities and residential addresses of each party, the date and place of marriage, the names and dates of birth of any children of the marriage, the matrimonial assets and so on. The second section of the Petition sets out the orders or relief being sought by the person filing the document (eg. sole custody).
    In some instances, a party may also need to seek urgent orders (eg. where you are very concerned that the other spouse is or will dispose of matrimonial assets). Be sure to get legal advice if there are immediate matters that need to be urgently addressed whether they involve domestic violence, property or child custody. 


    For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/ --

    UNDERSTANDING LEGAL SEPARATION

    Couples often choose a legal separation for one or more of the following reasons:

  • Being able to retain your marital status for religious reasons.
  • Allowing a couple some time to live apart and see if divorce is actually what they want. As compared to an informal trial separation, a legal separation establishes how everything will be handled while the couple is apart.
  • Being able to continue insurance benefits on your spouse's coverage. If you are considering getting a separation to retain coverage, be sure to check the policy to see if it addresses what happens if a couple legally separates.
  • Retaining certain military benefits.
  • Continuing to remain married in order to meet the ten year requirement to qualify for certain social security benefits of a spouse.
  • Protecting your financial interests while apart, as assets and debts acquired during a legal separation may be considered separate property. This can be important in states that require a period of separation before a divorce is granted.
  • Possible tax benefits by continuing to file taxes jointly.
  • If the couple does decide that getting a divorce is the best decision, the separation agreement can be converted to a divorce agreement.


  • For more information, contact the Family Law Offices of Renee M. Marcelle at (415) 456-4444, or online at http://www.familylawmarin.com/ --