Much like Kleenex, Band-Aids, or Xerox (products that have become synonymous with the brands that popularized them), Uber has become synonyms with ride-share applications. Even if you take a Lyft, most people will still say “taking an Uber.” Having an on demand driver 24/7 at your fingertips makes it hard to imagine how we survived before Uber was created. Uber has solved many problems people did not realize they even had. There is one problem it has not solved…transporting your children in a co-parenting relationship. Continue reading
If you are a frequent reader of this blog, you know that child custody and visitation are fluid orders as that often change with the needs of the child. This makes a lot of sense because a 3 year-old is very different from a 16 year-old and will therefore have a very different child sharing schedule. Also as a frequent reader, you know that a change in the time sharing percentage of the children often justifies a change in the child support orders. Small changes in the time share percentage are unlikely to make a big impact. Big changes in guideline child support require major shifts in the child sharing percentage. Continue reading
My favorite holiday song is Andy Williams’ version of “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” Something about that song encapsulates everything that is special about the winter holiday season. There are the lights, the food, the family, and the nostalgia of being a kid at Christmas. Now that I have a family of my own, seeing this special season through the eyes of my own children makes it all feel that much more real and special. However, for many divorced or divorcing parents the winter break is a difficult time. In this blog I want to address a couple common issues that divorcing parents face and with them provide some advice for enjoying the holidays in spite of the difficulties of a divorce. Continue reading
Change is a big part of any divorce. When you have children, dealing with change can be one of the most difficult parts of the divorce. No matter how many times people tell you that “kids are resilient and everything will be okay” it doesn’t make it any easier. The truth is, most kids handle divorce well especially when their parents are able to successfully co-parent. Nonetheless, there is one change that no amount of co-parenting can make easier. That is changing schools. Most families only have one residence which means that at least one parent will need to find a new home. If that new home happens to be in the same neighborhood as the former family residence, then changing schools should not be an issue. More often than not however, one parent moves to a residence that is zoned for a different school than the children currently attend.
So what do you do? Continue reading
If you have children and are currently going through the divorce process or have been recently divorced, you have probably already realized that the holidays as you’ve come to know them will be different from now on. The Thanksgiving holiday, as family-centered as it is, is one of the most difficult holidays to get through if you are just getting used to this idea. What follows is a brief overview of custody issues during the holidays and some tips on getting through the Thanksgiving holiday this year. Continue reading
Child support in California can be very complicated and the changed circumstances rule is one of the reasons why. The changed circumstances rule requires a court to deny a request to modify child support if the court determines that there was no material change in circumstances since the time the last child support order was made.
First, let’s go over some basics. California, like every other state, is required to have a Guideline formula to determine what the proper amount of support should be. The Court is required to follow the Guideline, absent a few very narrowly construed exceptions (See Family Code section 4059). If a child support order is determined to be “above Guideline,” i.e. more than what the formula would provide, that child support order cannot be subsequently changed unless there has been a material change of circumstances. However, if a child support order is determined to be “below guideline,” no change of circumstances is required to increase that order to a Guideline order. Continue reading
In family law we spend a good deal of time talking about court orders. There are orders for child support, orders for spousal support, custody orders, and orders for the payment of attorney fees. Getting more specific, all of the aforementioned orders can either be interim orders (also called temporary orders) or they can be final orders. The point of this blog is to discuss court orders in a family law context and to provide some basic understanding of how, why, and when they are made. This is only a basic discussion of orders, a topic that can be very complex. For this reason, you should speak with a qualified family law attorney about your specific case so you can be certain you fully understand your rights. Continue reading
For years, Christina Estrada’s life read like a fairytale; former international supermodel fell in love with a billionaire Saudi Arabian sheikh, raising a daughter and sharing a mansion in the British countryside with an unlimited monthly budget to spend on whatever their hearts desired. She is quoted describing her married life as “magical.” Unfortunately, just as with most fairytales, the magic came to an end and reality set in when the sheikh obtained a divorce in 2014 in Saudi Arabia, under Islamic law, without Christina’s knowledge. And that was AFTER he had already married a 25-year-old Lebanese model, without Christina’s knowledge…and obviously while he was still married to her.
In two previous posts, we discussed the very important Moore/Marsden formula, which is the formula that determines the community interest in real property when the community pays down mortgage principal on the separate property of another spouse. In the first post, we discussed the basic formula, while noting that in the age of the low interest rate, the basic formula is almost never used due to frequent refinancing. In the second post, we discussed how the formula applies to improvements. In this post, we will address one of the most common adjustments that need to be made to the formula (that usually occurs after a refinance): How do you calculate the community interest in one spouse’s separate property after the other spouse is added on title?
Last week, we wrote a post with some tips about child custody and international travel. This week, we will look a little more closely at the provisions in the Family Code that help the Court prevent international child abductions. Although the relevant provisions apply to domestic as well as international child abductions, we will be focusing on the international aspects in this post. While domestic child abduction is still a concern worth writing about, it is much more difficult to undo the harmful effects of an international abduction.
Before a Court can make orders intended to prevent the risk of abduction, the Court first must find that there is such a risk.