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    Changing a Spousal Support Order in California

    Last updated 4 years ago

    In order to change a spousal support order, you need to show that there has been a significant change in circumstances. For instance, spousal support orders can be changed if your spouse or partner no longer needs the support, he or she has remarried, or he or she isn’t making a good faith effort toward becoming self-sufficient. Even if you have a verbal agreement from your spouse to change the order, you still need to follow certain steps to ensure that the judge signs a new court order.

    Fill out appropriate forms
    The first step in asking for a change in your spousal support order is filling out four different court forms—the Request for Order, Income and Expense Declaration, Spousal or Partner Support Declaration, and Attached Declaration. You can find all of these forms online by visiting the California Courts official website. Together, all of the information in this paperwork helps the judge make decisions about the need for long-term spousal or partner support.

    Have your forms reviewed
    The paperwork required in your case can be complicated, so it’s important to have someone review it before you decide to submit everything to the court. You can ask your family law attorney to help you fill everything out correctly. In addition, you can ask your court’s family law facilitator to go over everything before you move ahead in your case.

    File forms with court
    Once you give the forms to your court clerk, he or she will keep the original and return the copies. In addition, he or she will assign you a court date. In the meantime, you need to serve your former spouse or partner with a copy of your papers and a blank Responsive Declaration to Request for Order and blank Income and Expense Declaration form.

    If you have any questions about seeking a change to your spousal support, the San Jose divorce lawyers at Moreno Family Law can help. Led by Certified Family Law Specialist Marilyn E. Moreno, our team encourages compromise and settlement out of court. For more information, please call (408) 266-9011.

    Knowing When It's Time to File for Divorce

    Last updated 4 years ago

    The fundamentals of a healthy marriage are love, trust, friendship, and communication. If a couple finds themselves fighting over small, seemingly unimportant issues, it’s likely a sign of a much deeper problem with the relationship. Before any couple decides to file for divorce, they should identify the strengths and weaknesses in their relationship and work to restoring the fundamentals of a healthy marriage. 

    Professional counseling can help a couple decide whether or not divorce is the appropriate option, especially if children are involved. As this video explains, trial separation is also a good way for couples to consider the strengths and weaknesses of their relationship. Marriage is an investment, so it’s important to be certain when it comes to ending the marriage and pursuing separate lives. 

    If you’ve decided to file for divorce, contact Moreno Family Law at (408) 266-9011. Our San Jose divorce lawyers encourage settlement outside of court. We can also help with all other matters of your divorce, including alimony and child custody. 

    What Is a Contested Divorce?

    Last updated 4 years ago

    If you disagree with a divorce petition filed by your spouse or partner, you can contest the petition by filing an official response. Whether you don’t agree with anything your partner has requested or you only object to a few issues, you should address the issues in your agreement. Sometimes, it can be useful to seek mediation to resolve your case; otherwise you will be leaving the decision up to a judge.

    If there are issues that you and your spouse can’t work out on your own, one of you needs to file and serve a form in order to set a trial date. Before trial, most courts will ask you and your spouse or partner to attend a settlement conference. It’s also important to speak to the court clerk about any local forms you need to fill out for your local California court. If you do have a contested case, it’s a good idea to discuss your options with a family lawyer.

    For more than 20 years, Moreno Family Law has been helping San Jose residents with their family law cases. To schedule a consultation with one of our compassionate divorce attorneys, please call (408) 266-9011.

    The Dos and Don'ts for Negotiating Child Custody

    Last updated 4 years ago

    Ideally, parents would be able to settle child custody disputes and visitation rights amicably—with each person considering what is in the best interests of the child. Unfortunately, children often witness bitter battles between their parents, as each person fights to win custody. Child custody isn’t guaranteed for either parent, so it’s important for anyone going through a divorce to learn how to effectively negotiate a child custody agreement.

    Do have a steady income
    One key characteristic the court will look at is the financial stability of each parent. If you are trying to gain primary custody of your children, you need to show the court that you won’t have difficulty providing for your kids. If you are currently supporting yourself through welfare benefits, you should take steps toward becoming self-sufficient. It’s also important to have a permanent place to live before you file for custody, as this shows the court you can provide a stable home.

    Do make children your focus
    In order to show the court that you can provide a loving, stable home, you need to take an active role in your children’s lives. For instance, you should attend your children’s sporting events and school functions. If you aren’t the custodial parent, you should make sure that you don’t miss any scheduled visitations, as this can improve your chances of securing joint custody in the future.

    Don’t hire a lawyer unfamiliar with family law
    When searching for a divorce attorney, you need to find someone who is an expert in family law. The future of your family and children likely rests in this person’s professional ability, so you need to ensure you are working with someone who has experience handling similar cases and who you can trust with your family’s wellbeing.

    Seeking attorney representation early in your case can dramatically impact how your child custody negotiations progress. Call (408) 266-9011 to schedule an appointment with Moreno Family Law of San Jose. Our firm has been practicing family law for more than 20 years. 

    Tips for Telling Your Friends and Family about Your Divorce

    Last updated 4 years ago

    During your divorce, you’ll likely need the support of your loved ones more than ever. Unfortunately, telling your friends and family about the news of your marriage ending can create additional stress. Even though there are no set rules for telling a loved one that your marriage is over, there are some guidelines that can help you feel more comfortable breaking the news.  

    Consider involving your spouse
    If you and your spouse are ending on good terms, it can be helpful to sit down together and discuss the breakup with each of your families. However, this should be avoided if the split is adversarial, as the discussion could trigger another fight or argument between you and your ex-spouse. Whether you are going to have this important conversation alone or as a team, make sure to practice what you are going to say first.

    Speak to supportive people first
    You may not be exactly sure how your family will react to the news, but you will likely know which friends and family members you can count on for support. It can be helpful to first talk to the person that you are closest to, as he or she will be the most equipped to get you through this difficult time. Though your closest friends might be shocked at first, they will usually be able to offer support and love once they get over the initial surprise.

    Be direct in your answers
    Your friends and family will likely have some questions about your divorce. If you don’t feel comfortable asking a particular question, be direct and tell your loved ones when you don’t want to answer a question. You can also politely ask your family and friends to refrain from making any negative comments about your spouse.

    Led by Certified Family Law Specialist Marilyn E. Moreno, Moreno Family Law of San Jose encourages compromise in divorce and child custody cases. However, if your case does need to go to trial, we are able to litigate on your behalf. Call (408) 266-9011 to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced family lawyers. 

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