Solving Complex Family Law Issues with Creative Strategies

Newport Beach Divorce Lawyer

No one expects their walk down the aisle to end in divorce court, but life sometimes takes people on new paths. When divorce becomes the inevitable end of your marriage journey, you need a Newport Beach divorce lawyer with years of experience navigating California divorce law.

Whether you’re the petitioner or respondent in your divorce case, you shouldn’t face the complex legal process without skilled representation. At Moradi Saslaw Family Law Attorneys, we work closely with each client with a resolution-based approach but aren’t afraid to litigate aggressively when needed to achieve each client’s desired outcomes.

If you’re ready to file the petition or you’ve been served with divorce papers in Newport Beach, a seasoned divorce attorney from Moradi Saslaw Family Law Attorneys is ready to guide you through the legal system, offer experienced counsel, and advocate for your rights in every step of the process.

Understanding The California Divorce Process

California is a marital property divorce state with complicated laws for dividing separate and marital property during a divorce. Family courts in California make all family law decisions in the divorce process with the children’s best interests as their highest priority. Before you step into the divorce process, it’s important to understand how the legal system works for your Newport Beach divorce. After the initial petition and response, the court requires both parties to fill out full financial disclosures. Attorneys for both parties have access to these documents during the discovery phase before the divorce hearing.

Spouses can handle their California divorce (dissolution of marriage) in one of two ways:

A Divorce Settlement Agreement:

The best-case scenario for divorcing spouses is to draft a settlement and agree to the terms of their divorce between themselves and their attorneys without an impartial judge deciding for them. This is an uncontested divorce and requires negotiating terms such as:

  • The retention of their separate assets and equal distribution of marital assets
  • Child custody and parenting time schedule
  • Child support
  • Spousal support (alimony)

Individual divorces may also have unique requirements to settle, such as which spouse retains the family home, or who keeps the pets. When couples can negotiate their own agreement with the help of their lawyers and mediation, it streamlines and personalizes the process. It also keeps costs at a minimum, saves contentious litigation in court, and keeps personal information out of the public record. Once the spouses draft a mutually acceptable agreement, your divorce lawyer from Moradi Saslaw will diligently ensure the paperwork is correct and precise and file it in the correct jurisdiction. Typically, a judge will sign off on a divorce settlement that follows the law and isn’t egregiously unfair to one spouse.

Contested Divorce in California Court

While an out-of-court agreement drafted and signed by both spouses is the best-case scenario in a Newport Beach divorce, a divorce contested on one or more issues is more common. A contested divorce requires litigation in court with each side presenting testimony and evidence before a judge makes a decision on each issue in a final judgment.

The court requires families with children to attend mediation through family court services before the judge issues orders for child custody and child support. Spouses can also choose mediation and a settlement agreement at any time in the divorce process.

Your Newport Beach divorce lawyer from Moradi Saslaw will strategize resolutions whenever possible, but will also determinedly advocate for your rights and desired outcomes in court if necessary.

Division of Marital Assets in California Divorces

When two people marry, they not only forge an emotional bond but also a legal contract forming a “community” of two. Like all contracts, breaking the terms of the marital agreement has consequences for both parties. In California, the state’s community property divorce law requires spouses to equally distribute all property acquired during the marriage. Property that belonged to each spouse before the marriage remains their separate property.

Examples of separate property during a California divorce include:

  • Real estate property owned by one spouse before the marriage
  • Assets belonging to one spouse before the marriage
  • Debts in one spouse’s name before the marriage
  • Assets or property inherited by one spouse during the marriage
  • Gifts to one spouse given solely to that spouse during the marriage

Examples of marital property commonly include:

  • The marital home
  • Any vacation or rental properties acquired during the marriage
  • Bank accounts (both joint and individual)
  • Investment accounts
  • Retirement accounts
  • Jointly owned/operated businesses
  • Vehicles
  • Household appliances, electronics, furnishings, antiques, and art

Deciding on the division of assets can become complicated, especially for spouses with many assets. In some circumstances, a spouse could have a valid claim on property the other spouse considers separate property. For example, a real estate property owned or inherited by one spouse may become commingled with marital property if the other spouse invests significant time or money into making improvements on the property. Bank and investment accounts also sometimes co-mingle if one spouse grants the other spouse access to the account.

A diligent divorce lawyer in Newport Beach understands how to untangle separate and community property. For high-asset divorces, your attorney from Moradi Saslaw may consult with financial experts to advocate for your best interests.

The Divorce Hearing

A divorce hearing or trial takes place when spouses cannot agree on their own settlement and parenting time schedule even with mediation. Child custody is often a hotly contentious issue in divorce cases, as is the division of marital assets and spousal support. If your case goes to trial, your divorce attorney from Moradi Saslaw will walk you through the following process:

  • Setting the trial date
  • The disclosure/discovery process
  • The settlement conference
  • Evidence gathering
  • Subpoena witnesses
  • Prepping for trial
  • Planning your testimony

On your hearing date, your skilled divorce lawyer from Moradi Saslaw Family Court Attorneys will vigorously defend your interests and advocate for your goals on every contested issue.

Why Choose Us for Your Newport Beach Divorce Lawyers?

The premier California divorce lawyers from Moradi Saslaw have a strong record of success in mediating and litigating for our divorce clients in Newport Beach and the surrounding area. With our extensive experience with the high-asset world of California divorce, we support our clients from the sophisticated world of entrepreneurs, real estate developers, and professionals with efficiency and competence even in the most complicated divorce cases. Our range of experience includes navigating divorces for clients from a wide range of lifestyles and across all demographics. We’ll work toward the smoothest, most streamlined process possible for your divorce while fighting for your goals on all contested issues.

Call our Newport Beach family law office today to arrange a confidential consultation on your divorce case.