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Los Gatos divorce attorney for hidden assetsIn the state of California, the divorce process is governed through the California Family Code. When it comes to the assets owned by divorcing spouses, Family Code Section 2100 states that both parties must present an accurate and honest statement of their assets and liabilities. This disclosure should be completed during the early stages of a divorce, and all assets owned by the spouses should be included, regardless of whether they are community property or separate property. Unfortunately, many divorcing spouses attempt to leave certain assets out of this disclosure in order to avoid including these assets in the property division process. If you are getting divorced, you should be aware of some of the most common types of hidden assets and the steps you can take if you believe your spouse is withholding assets during the divorce process. 

Common Methods of Hiding Assets 

In some cases, a spouse may make an oversight or error and accidentally fail to disclose property. However, there are many cases in which one party will attempt to conceal certain types of property to avoid having to divide or share these assets with their former partner. A divorcing spouse may hide assets by withdrawing money from marital accounts and depositing it in a secret account or transferring it to a friend or family member with the intent of reclaiming it after the divorce is complete. Spouses may also provide incorrect or fabricated information on income or asset disclosures, or they may purchase valuables, collectibles, real estate property, or other assets without informing the other spouse.

Addressing Hidden Assets

If you suspect that there are certain assets that your spouse has not disclosed during the divorce process, you have a number of options. In some cases, you may be able to resolve these issues by discussing them with your spouse. If your divorce has been amicable and respectful, your spouse may have simply made a mistake when they failed to disclose the asset in question. 

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Los Gatos, CA divorce attorney for disclosure of assets and liabilitiesThe divorce process can be complicated, especially as it pertains to the division of marital property. In a California divorce, couples are required to fully disclose their assets and liabilities. The state’s policies are based on preventing community property from dissipation prior to the divorce and ensuring that the shared estate is equitably divided between the two parties. Unfortunately, a spouse may look to hide or devalue assets during a divorce. If you are pursuing a divorce, you should speak to a qualified attorney regarding the disclosure of assets and liabilities.

Chapter 9 of the California Family Code defines the disclosure of assets and liabilities. 

Examining Disclosure of Assets and Liabilities 

In the state of California, community property is defined as assets or income earned or purchased during a marriage while the spouses are living together. It is important to note that anything acquired prior to the marriage, after the couple has separated, or given to one spouse specifically as a gift, is known as separate property. California state law only requires that community property be divided during divorce. 

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Los Gatos child custody attorney for divorced fathersChoosing to end a marriage or long-term relationship is never easy, and the divorce process can become much more complicated when parents need to determine how to handle custody of their children. Throughout the United States, there is a widely held misconception that single fathers are at a disadvantage in these cases and that they will only be able to secure custody rights if there is egregious behavior from the mother of the child. However, this is simply not true, especially here in the state of California. The state’s laws have recognized that fathers play an important role in children’s lives, and fathers and mothers should be treated equally in child custody cases. If you are a father who needs to address custody issues, you will want to work with an experienced attorney who can help protect your parental rights and your children’s best interests. 

Child Custody Laws in California

In the state of California, a father has the same rights as a mother when it comes to custody of children following a divorce or separation. In fact, a provision added in section 3020 of the California Family Code explicitly states that a parent’s sex, gender identity, or sexual orientation should not be considered when determining how to reach a decision about child custody that will meet children’s needs. 

Under California law, child custody comes in two forms: physical custody and legal custody. Physical custody will determine where the child will primarily reside, whereas legal custody will define parents’ rights to make significant decisions for the child involving topics ranging from academics to religious beliefs. According to section 3080 of the California Family Code, it is presumed that it is in children’s best interests for parents to have joint custody. In some cases, legal custody may be shared equally, while one parent may have primary physical custody, and in other cases, children may spend equal or near-equal amounts of time with each parent.

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Los Gatos, CA divorce lawyer grounds for dissolution of marriageChoosing to end your marriage is never an emotionally easy process. Unfortunately, if you are unaware of the divorce laws in your state, the logistical process of dissolving your marriage can be difficult as well. Here in the state of California, you will want to understand the requirements that must be met and the process you will need to follow. If you are considering filing for divorce, you will want to seek out the guidance of an experienced family law attorney. 

Filing For Divorce 

In order to file for divorce in California, you must first make sure that you are eligible to do so. One of the simplest issues that can arise in California divorces is the requirement that one of the parties must be a California resident for a minimum of six months, and one party must have lived in the county where the divorce will be filed for at least three months. Once those residency requirements have been met, either spouse can file a petition for divorce at their local court. 

In many states, a person who files for divorce must cite certain “grounds,” or reasons that they wish to dissolve their marriage. Depending on state laws, these may include infidelity, drug or alcohol abuse, a felony conviction, or one spouse infecting the other with a sexually transmitted disease. The state of California, however, recognizes what is called “no fault” divorce. This means that spouses may file for divorce on the grounds of “irreconcilable differences,” and they simply need to state that these differences have caused an irremediable breakdown of the marriage. The only other grounds for divorce recognized in California are a permanent legal incapacity by one spouse to make decisions. In these cases, a spouse must provide proof of permanent physical or mental impairment or disability, including testimony from a medical or psychiatric professional.

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Los Gatos divorce attorney financial issuesThousands of people get divorced each year, and couples choose to split for a wide variety of reasons. However, financial issues are one common cause of divorce. In some cases, a couple may disagree about how expenses will be shared, what sorts of purchases are appropriate, or what should be done about debt. If they cannot come to terms on these issues, ending the marriage is often the best choice. Unfortunately, even after divorce, financial issues related to the marriage can continue to have an effect. To ensure that you will be able to begin your new life on secure financial footing, you should take a few steps to protect yourself financially.

What You Can Do 

The choices made during the divorce process can have a major impact on your life going forward. Here are a few steps to take and missteps you should avoid in order to maintain financial security:

  • Understand the Tax Implications: Your divorce will change your financial situation in a number of ways, and one of the most notable alterations is how you are taxed. If you are ordered to pay spousal support or child support, you will not be able to deduct these payments from your taxable income. If you receive these types of payments, you will not be required to pay income taxes on them. You should also be sure your divorce decree specifies whether you or your ex-spouse will be able to claim tax deductions or credits for any children you share, who will be responsible for paying property tax on your marital home, and whether you will need to address any outstanding tax payments that are due.

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