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Los Gatos divorce mediation attorney for financial issuesWhen a couple makes the difficult decision to pursue a divorce, unpacking the various complications and issues that must be addressed in order to dissolve the marriage can be incredibly challenging. From child custody to the division of marital assets, it should come as no surprise that many divorces result in heated disputes. However, it is possible to avoid lengthy and costly legal battles by using divorce mediation. Couples who choose this option are often able to reach a divorce settlement that meets their needs while avoiding the financial costs of litigation.

How Mediation Can Help You 

Pursuing mediation as a means of reaching a divorce settlement represents the most collaborative option possible. You and your former spouse will be able to work together to resolve the various issues surrounding the dissolution of your marriage. When it comes to finances, there are a number of reasons why mediation can be the best choice, primarily because mediation can expedite the divorce process, saving you a great deal of time and money. 

Mediation can also enable you and your ex-spouse to work together to address the financial aspects of your divorce. This process will allow you to maintain a greater level of organization, including determining a workable budget for your ongoing income and expenses and addressing the tax issues related to issues such as asset division and child custody. If necessary, the two of you can work with a tax accountant to determine the strategies that will minimize the total amount of taxes that you will each pay after the divorce is finalized. 

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Los Gatos, CA family law attorney for establishing paternityAccording to California law, paternity can be established through one of two legal avenues. In many cases, the parent will elect to sign a voluntary Declaration of Paternity. In other cases, a paternity test may be ordered by the court to determine the identity of a child’s biological father. Unfortunately, establishing paternity can be much more complicated than most would like to assume. In short, paternity means establishing that a person is the legal father of a child. 

In the state of California, paternity must be established through a legal process, and this must be completed before the courts can decide on issues such as child custody and child support. When addressing issues related to establishing paternity, it is important to hire a skilled attorney to assist you throughout the legal process. 

Complications in Paternity Cases 

While many people believe that establishing paternity is fairly straightforward, they are not entirely correct. Paternity cases can be incredibly complicated and difficult to resolve, depending on the circumstances of the birth and the relationship status of the parents. According to California state law, when a married couple (or a couple who have registered as domestic partners) has a baby, they are assumed to be the child’s parents, and they are automatically established as the legal parents at the time of the birth. However, if a couple is unmarried, the father has two options: to voluntarily sign a declaration of paternity or to request a paternity test. Generally speaking, it can be wise for an unwed father to request a DNA test, since signing a declaration of paternity has long-term implications regarding the responsibility to raise the child. 

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Los Gatos prenup lawyerWhen a couple is preparing to get married, the possibility of divorce is often the last thing on their minds. The reality, however, is that divorces are common throughout the United States, and it can be wise to prepare for the possibility that the marriage may come to an end. In some instances, a soon-to-be spouse may feel the need to establish a premarital agreement. In the state of California, a premarital agreement, which may also be called a prenuptial agreement or prenup, is an agreement that enables spouses to protect certain assets and ensure a financially healthy future in the case of a divorce

Why a Prenuptial Agreement?

A premarital agreement is not necessary in all situations, but for some, it can save significant time, money, and stress in the future by deciding how property will be divided in a potential divorce. If you have significantly more assets than your future spouse, it may be wise to consider a prenup. A prenuptial agreement may also be appropriate if you have a highly successful business, expect to receive a substantial inheritance, or have children from a previous marriage that you want to pass your assets down to. In other instances, if your future spouse has accumulated significant debt, it may be wise to develop an agreement that states that you are not responsible for the payment of said debt. 

As you look to establish a premarital agreement, it is important to understand the steps that must be followed in order to make the agreement official. Both parties must voluntarily agree to the deal, each party must have the opportunity to hire an independent attorney, and each spouse must have at least seven days to look over the agreement before signing it. If you fail to meet these requirements, the agreement may be void. Since there are a number of ways in which a premarital agreement can be deemed invalid in court, it is important to work with a qualified family law attorney to develop a prenup that meets the necessary legal requirements while addressing the needs and concerns of both parties. 

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Los Gatos post-divorce enforcement lawyerThere is no way around the fact that a divorce can be an emotionally challenging process. Separating from the person you once loved can be one of the hardest times in your life. It is extremely important to approach your divorce with some level of professionalism. Your divorce settlement can ultimately dictate the future of your family’s living situation, as well as your financial security. The first and most important step you can take as you prepare for divorce is hiring an attorney who will work cooperatively with you to represent your best interests. In addition, you should be aware of some common mistakes to avoid during the divorce process that could have an impact on your financial security. 

Lack of Preparation

As you prepare to negotiate a divorce settlement, it is crucial to have a comprehensive understanding of your financial situation and be as prepared as possible. If one spouse managed the collective finances, it can be hard to understand what to protect. This means that you and your attorney need to collect documents such as tax returns and mortgage papers to completely understand the nature and extent of the community property assets and debts. 

Another step in the preparation process is to update any financial documents, such as wills, investment beneficiaries, or life insurance accounts. You should also be sure to separate all joint financial accounts. 

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Los Gatos post-divorce enforcement lawyer

Separating from a spouse or partner can be emotionally challenging, but a separation or divorce can be even more difficult when it affects a parent’s relationship with their children. Because of this, issues related to child custody are often some of the most contentious matters involved in divorce cases. However, regardless of the decisions made about custody, one parent is often ordered to pay child support. These payments are meant to provide for a child’s needs, and if a parent is not meeting their court-ordered obligations, it is important to understand the legal options available to ensure that children receive the support they deserve. 

My Former Spouse Is Not Paying Child Support 

According to the Federal Government’s report on Custodial Mothers and Fathers and their Child Support, there are more than 13 million single custodial parents living throughout the United States. Just under half of those parents have an established child support agreement with their child’s other parent. Unfortunately, many custodial parents never actually receive the money their children are entitled to. According to the study, throughout 2016, less than 70% of all child support was actually received by the custodial parent. This means that many parents are failing to fully pay their child support obligations, or they are neglecting to pay them altogether. 

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