A joinder is when a third party is joined to a case such as a grandparent or a retirement account.

You can ask the court to grant your attorney fees and costs to be payable by the other party. However, they are not guaranteed. In most cases, fees are directly related to the “need” the party has for them, and such fees must be “reasonable.”

A motion to compel is filed when one party is not complying with some sort of request such as discovery requests. When a motion such as this is filed, the court will decide on whether to compel the responding side to respond to such requests. Sanctions can also be ordered.

The process for this is called discovery. This process includes many things such as subpoenaing records and serving requests to the other side to comply and produce documents or records. Again, each spouse owes a fiduciary duty to the other in a dissolution action.

Unfortunately, the California court systems are backed up and short-handed. The standard waiting period to obtain the filed judgment back from the court is at least four months. There are however other ways to get the judgment entered at the end of each year. Contact our office to discuss the entry of judgment options.

If you are represented by an attorney, depending on the situation and circumstances, you may not be required to personally appear. With child custody cases, it is recommended that you appear to show the court that your interest in the case is genuine. Again, it does depend on your case and the subject of the issues before the court.

An “ex parte” hearing is a hearing requested on short notice and is designed to address “emergency” issues that will lead to “irreparable harm.” Having said that, not every ex parte hearing is an emergency, as some deal with scheduling issues, and some hearings that are set do not meet that standard.

In family court, motions are known as “requests for order.” They are noticed, meaning they are set for a hearing at least 30 days in advance and will affect a party’s rights as to property division, custody, support or a combination thereof. A party may or may not need to appear depending on the hearing, whether they have counsel and what the hearing is about.

If you are represented by an attorney, generally your attorney can appear on your behalf as such hearings are for the court to check the status of a case.

This is what is called a move-away case. If you would like to move to another state, you must first obtain the consent of the other party. If they do not provide that, then you must file a request for an order with the court asking for the move away. This can be a long process.

Generally, your spouse is entitled to half of any amount that you put into your retirement account during the marriage.

Although having attorney representation is not required under California, it is recommended to be sure that all your interests are covered. We offer different types of representation that fit each case. Contact our office for a free consultation to see what options are available to you.

legal separation allows you to litigate property support, visitation and custody but does not affect marital status. A dissolution addresses the same factors but also terminates the marital status of the parties.

Anyone over the age of 18 years and not a party to the action can personally serve the documents on the respondent. Process servers are also available for hire should you need someone other than a family member or friend to serve.

A marital settlement agreement is an agreement that details the settlement of a dissolution of marriage. This agreement is signed by all parties and their attorneys of record, is generally attached to a judgment and submitted to the court for the judge to approve and sign.