Family law-related cases often deal with very sensitive issues that may seem overwhelming and daunting for the persons involved in the process. To each of our clients, our goals are always to reduce the anxiousness and stress involved in the family process by explaining any legal requirements and walking our clients through the procedural steps required to get to the conclusion of the case. Our practice is not limited to divorce, annulment, child custody, adoption, temporary restraining order, name change, family trust, and other types of family law related matters.
Throughout our relationship, we strive to be compassionate and reasonable advocates so that we can make sound decisions that will minimize the emotional and financial burden that is often attached to family law cases.
California as a “No Fault Divorce” state. In California, divorce is no fault, which means that if either spouse does not want to remain married, he or she may end the marriage without the consent of the other or specific allegation of wrongdoing.
The processing time to receive a final decree of divorce takes approximately six (6) to eight (8) months after filing the petition; however, it may take longer if complex property or custodial issues are involved.
NOTE: The Korean government does not recognize final decrees of divorce in the United States, unless both parties mutually agree to dissolve the marriage or they receive a final decree of divorce from the Family Court in Korea. The U.S. government, on the other hand, recognizes either the final decree of divorce from Korea or United States.
Petitioning for a judgment of nullity (rather than marriage dissolution) should be considered only where the validity of the marriage is in doubt. A nullity proceeding is maintained on the theory that no valid marriage ever occurred for reasons existing at the time of the marriage.
A marriage may be invalid from its inception either because of irregularities in statutory marriage procedures, such as license, solemnization, authentication and etc., or because of other legal impediments that, notwithstanding proper formalization, render the marriage void or voidable for such reasons as alleged incest, bigamy, minority of a party, insanity, physical incapacity, marriage induced by fraud or duress, and etc.
Child Custody and Visitation are comprised of Legal Custody and Physical Custody.
a) Legal Custody: This involves the right to determine the children’s schools, medical care, religious upbringing, access to school records, access to medical records, etc.
b) Physical Custody: The court will typically award primary physical custody to one parent. The child will live most of his/her time with the parent who is awarded the physical custody and the other parent, referred to as the “non-custodial parent,” will be granted a visitation.
Child Support : Both parents are mutually responsible for the support of their minor children according to the parent’s circumstances and station in life and in the manner suitable to the child’s circumstances. Determination of child support is based on various factors, including but not limited to, income of both parents and percentage of time each parent has physical custody of the children. Generally, child support is terminated either when the child reaches the age of eighteen (18), or when the child graduates from high school, but in any event no later than the age of nineteen (19).
Spousal Support : A court may consider one’s financial status or any premarital written agreement in granting temporary spousal support. The support will terminate upon either the death or the remarriage of the receiving party. One rule of thumb is that spousal support will continue for approximately one half the term of the marriage except if the parties have had a long term marriage (over 10 years of marriage), then spousal support will continue indefinitely until the spouse receiving the support remarries or dies.
TRO (Temporary Restraining Orders): The court has the power to issue temporary restraining orders at a separate “Order to Show Cause” hearing requiring one party not to contact, harass, assault or come near the other party or that person’s home or place of employment.
VAWA (Violence against Women Act) and Immigration Law: Immigration law generally requires an alien spouse to be petitioned by US citizen or lawful permanent alien spouse. VAWA, however, waives that requirement by allowing victims of domestic violence to self petition (Form I-360) for his/her own immigration benefits.