Seasoned Divorce Attorneys Serving Napa, CA
Divorce causes a lot of difficulty and uncertainty in the lives of spouses and their children. If you are contemplating a divorce or in the midst of a divorce, you may be questioning your financial future and parental rights. The experienced Napa divorce lawyer at the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. can help answer these questions for you and ease your mind.
At Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C., our attorneys understand that divorce impacts your family for years to come. We want to find practical and workable solutions to your concerns. At our law office, we focus on:
- Clients as individuals, not cases;
- Honest and open communication;
- Creative problem solving that benefits our clients.
Contact our office in Napa now to schedule a confidential consultation with a divorce professional. We will listen closely to you, explain your legal options, and start pursuing your divorce goals right away
How Our Napa Divorce Attorneys Can Help You
At the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C., we are committed to providing you with comprehensive legal services as you face the many complexities of divorce. It is essential that you make positive decisions and create a secure post-divorce future.
During your divorce, our attorneys serve as your legal ally and advocate doing the following on your behalf:
- Analyzing your situation carefully;
- Identifying and clarifying your legal issues;
- Creating customized solutions;
- Negotiating with your spouse or their attorney to achieve an appropriate agreement; or
- Moving forward with trial preparations, including evidence collection;
- Presenting your case comprehensively and favorably before the court.
Let the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. advise and represent you in your divorce. Arrange a consultation in our Napa office today.
Grounds for a Divorce in Napa
California is a no-fault divorce state. In California, a divorce, or dissolution of marriage, may be granted by the court for “irreconcilable differences” or an irrevocable breakdown of the marriage. This allows a divorce to be granted without blaming either spouse for the failure of the marriage.
Only one person must desire to end the marriage for a divorce to take place. If the spouse who files for the divorce (the petitioner) serves the other spouse (the respondent) with divorce documents, but the respondent refuses to file a written response, the divorce may still proceed.
To divorce in California, at least one of the spouses must be a state resident for six months before filing the divorce petition. The divorce petition must be filed in the same county where the filing spouse has lived for at least three months.
It takes a minimum of six months for a California divorce to be finalized, even if the spouses agree upon the divorce. For spouses with more complex issues who need court intervention, the process can take up to a year or more.
There are many issues that must be decided before any divorce. These include:
- Property division;
- Child custody and visitation;
- Child support; and
- Spousal support
- Business interests
Dispute Resolution in Napa
While the court will step in to make rulings on behalf of spouses, it prefers for spouses to work out issues independently when possible. Spouses typically find their own agreements preferable to court orders as well.
When negotiations between spouses and their attorneys fail, other tools are available for dispute resolution.
Property Division in Napa
California is a community property state. In the absence of a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, any assets and debts of the marriage are split equally upon divorce.
Separate property is not divided between spouses upon divorce. Separate property includes:
- Anything owned by a spouse before marriage;
- Rents, profits, or other money earned from the separate property;
- Property bought with the separate property; and
- Anything acquired after the date of separation, including income earned.
Over time marital and separate assets may commingle or mix, making them difficult to divide. It may be necessary to use the assistance of experienced attorneys and financial experts to separate and value such property.
Spousal Support in Napa
Before any spousal support award, the court must first determine if one spouse needs financial support and the other spouse can pay that support. Without both a need for spousal support and an ability to pay support, there will not be a spousal support award.
There are two types of spousal support available in California: temporary and permanent spousal support. Temporary support is only awarded for the pendency of a divorce. Permanent spousal support is awarded in the final divorce orders.
Temporary spousal support is calculated using California’s child support guideline. There is no set formula for calculating permanent spousal support. Instead, the court looks to several statutory factors, which include, but are not limited to:
- Spousal age and health;
- Spousal income;
- Spousal contributions to the education or training of the other spouse;
- Spousal contributions to the household; and
- The length of the marriage.
Child Custody and Visitation in Napa
Whenever possible, the California family court prefers parents create their child custody and visitation agreements. This is because parents know their schedules and their children better than anyone.
Since this is not always a possibility, the court will step in and order custody and visitation on behalf of parents and their children. The court does so based on the best interests of the children.
- The child’s health, safety, and welfare;
- Whether either parent has a history of abuse against the child or the other parent;
- The nature and amount of contact with both parents;
- Whether either parent has a history of illegal use of controlled substances, alcohol, or prescribed medications; and
- Any other factor the court deems relevant.
California has two types of child custody: legal and physical. Legal custody is the right to decide:
- The child’s education;
- Religious upbringing;
- Health decisions; and other essential matters.
Physical custody is where the children reside. Parents may have any combination of legal and physical custody, or one parent may have sole custody of the children.
Child Support in Napa
The purpose of child support is to ensure the children maintain the approximate standard of living to which they grew accustomed during the marriage in both households after a divorce. California has a guideline and mathematical calculation to determine how much each parent is to pay in child support per month.
The child support formula uses several factors to calculate the child support amount, including parental income, obligations, and time spent with the children. Deviations are permitted from the guideline in the interests of fairness.
Contact An Experienced Napa Divorce Attorney Today
When you need a Napa divorce attorney who will provide you with honest guidance and professional support, contact the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. We care about you and will stand beside you during this challenging time.
To learn more about how the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C. can help, schedule a meeting with one of our attorneys in Napa today.