What to Know When Filing for Divorce in Orange County, CA

filing-for-divorce-in-orange-countyAre you filing for an Orange County divorce, but confused about how the process will proceed? For the most part, divorcing spouses are concerned about how long finalization will take, proper mediation, the division of property, and whether to settle before filing. 

Read on for these answers plus some valuable suggestions and be sure to contact The Law Offices of Jennifer Owens to ensure your divorce proceeds seamlessly. 


How Long Does the Divorce Process Last?

The length of time it takes to finalize divorce varies from couple to couple, though it primarily depends on how any conflicts affect the ability to reach a proper agreement. Spouses may take issue with the proposed parenting plan, custody agreement, or division of assets, which can add weeks or months to the timetable. 

When filing for divorce in Orange County, California divorce law calls for a six-month waiting period between the filing date and finalization of divorce. After those six months, settlement depends on whether relational hurdles or complexities will extend the necessary time. In Orange County, such conflicts often result in divorces that don’t finalize for over a year or more. By striving for a peaceful divorce, ex-spouses can shorten this timeline – as discussed in one of our recent blogs


How Is Property Split In California?

Since California is a community law state, all assets acquired during a marriage are considered joint property – with a few exceptions. Such exceptions include inheritance, or appreciated value of earnings or assets obtained before the marriage. It’s important to note that no matter which spouse is the higher earner, all earnings are split equally under California divorce law.

When dividing property, there are some assets that are more difficult to negotiate since it’s harder to assign an accurate value. Stock options, collectibles and memorabilia, fine art, and antiques are some examples. Entities such as family businesses and practices are also difficult to divide evenly. Additional complications tend to arise when filing for divorce in Orange County if a spouse believes the other has been irresponsible with finances, such as acquiring outstanding debt that shouldn’t be included in the divorce records. Since these assets pose more difficulty to settle on, it’s suggested that couples collaborate to reach an agreement outside of the courtroom rather than leaving tough decisions up to a judge. 


Protect Yourself When Filing for Divorce In Orange County

At The Law Offices of Jennifer Owens, we’re firm believers in the power of mediation. If we can reach a compromise prior to stepping into the courtroom, it’s a win for us. However even if you plan to mediate towards a settlement, it could still benefit you to file for divorce, since it establishes automatic temporary restraining orders. These orders will protect you if the other spouse attempts to empty joint bank accounts, sell any property, or handle assets in a similarly malicious manner. Furthermore, restraining orders will ensure your spouse doesn’t move away with your child without court-ordered permission. 

With your new awareness of how long the typical divorce takes, how property is split, and the protections of filing for divorce in Orange County, you can form a baseline expectation for how your divorce should proceed. For assistance navigating the divorce process or to speak with an expert in divorce mediation, contact The Law Offices of Jennifer Owens for a free consultation on your case. 


Reach an Agreement with a Settlement-Minded Family Law Attorney

Divorce is an emotional journey to endure. On top of the bitterness and anger which often result from a formal separation, the subsequent legal battles tend to make the whole process even more painful. At the Law Offices of Jennifer Owens, we revel in the power of choice. When spouses face divorce, they’re presented with a slew of decisions with a handful of potential outcomes. Our attorneys are believers in the best possible outcome, where a former couple chooses peace over destruction, so that they can finally move onto their next chapter. We can help with that. No matter your desired path – mediation, a negotiated settlement, or even litigation – The Law Offices of Jennifer Owens will achieve the best possible outcome by reaching a settlement in your Orange County divorce that keeps all involved parties in mind. Visit our website to review our family law services or contact us online for a free consultation

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