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Attorney Hugh Douglas Whittemore | Blog

The Protection of a Prenuptial Agreement

Although prenuptial agreements are not usually the first thing an engaged couple thinks about, these can be a valuable way of protecting the interests of each person. Thousands of divorces happen each year, with the risk increasing for second and third marriages. A prenuptial agreement can lessen the stress of a divorce if it should happen, and they can make the move back into single life easier.

If prepared properly by a qualified family law lawyer, a prenuptial agreement may help an individual retain financial stability after their divorce. Such agreements generally help people keep their assets. The prenuptial agreement will identify property acquired before the marriage and therefore protect it from any community property issues that could arise later. Likewise, the owner of debt can also be identified so that the other spouse would not become responsible for its repayment.

Another benefit of prenuptial agreements is seen when planning for the children of a prior marriage. By specifying the division of property, wealth can be preserved for specific family members. As an example, if one spouse passes away, their separate property could be inherited by their children instead of the new spouse. Prenuptial agreements can be the most appropriate option when unique situations call for careful planning.

Determining Child Custody

California’s family law courts issue orders that lay out the responsibilities of each parent after legal separation or divorce. The term “custody” refers to the rights each parent has, and the term “visitation” recognizes the actual amount of time a parent gets to spend with their child. The arrangements made for custody and visitation are required to support the best interests of the child. Each parent will need to also accommodate the needs of their new family situation or lifestyle.

Generally, parenting plans written by parents are approved by the judge. If parents are unable to agree on terms, mediation is used to iron out the differences. Since child custody agreements are legally binding and enforceable, it is vital that each party is prepared for meeting with the family court mediator. An experienced child custody attorney can help you understand what is needed, what your rights are, and help you handle the situation successfully.

Family court mediators evaluate various factors before they make final recommendations. Some things considered include each parent’s relationship with the children, family history, emotional stability, and more. At times, a recommendation for supervised visitation may be made to allow the child time to get reacquainted with one of their parents. If a situation exists where contact with a parent may prove physically or emotionally harmful to the child, the mediator may make the recommendation for no visitation. This would mean a parent is not allowed to have contact with their child.

Understanding the Divorce Process in California

Deciding to file for divorce could be the toughest challenge yet, or perhaps it is one of the easier decisions you’ve made. In either case, this decision will bring about big changes. Coming to understand the details of the divorce process can help alleviate some of the inevitable stress that occurs when a marriage is ending. Since many factors will be examined during the divorce, it is vital that you seek guidance from a knowledgeable divorce attorney in order to protect your rights.

Divorce ends a marriage, and it also divides the marital estate, creates child visitation and custody arrangements, and may establish spousal support or child support payments. Such legal and financial obligations are likely to affect life now and for years to come. Not only are individuals processing the end of their marriage and the prospect of building a new life, but they must often also deal with multiple related legal issues.

There are many options that could be considered when filing for a divorce, depending on the specific situation at hand. If the divorcing spouses are able to reach an amicable solution, their divorce could be handled by means of negotiation and/or mediation. When spouses are not able to agree on certain matters, or if the situation is too complex, it may become necessary to seek a solution in the courts through divorce litigation. Attorney Hugh Douglass Whittemore is able to protect your best interests and aid you in successfully planning for your long-term goals.

When filing for divorce, a timeline for each item is established. The spouses must complete these items before the deadline. It takes a minimum of six months for a divorce to be final. Once the divorce is finalized, modifications of some terms could still be necessary if circumstances change drastically for one of the ex-spouses.

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Phone: (714) 870-9197


The information contained herein is for information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. You should not act or fail to act based on the information on this website. The content contains general information only, and may not reflect recent changes to the law. All cases differ – please contact an attorney in your area to get legal advice as it pertains to your case. Attorney Whittemore is licensed to practice law in the State of California.

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