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Vista California Family Law Blog

Men see being a father as a major part of their identity

There are some old stereotypes about child custody that make people think children should live with their mother and not their father. The implication is that fathers cannot raise their children or don't care to try.

This has been changing over the years, but a quick look back shows just how entrenched this belief was, as some experts said there was a legal presumption that mothers should get custody. While they were presenting arguments against it even then, the stereotype itself is not a myth and still impacts some cases to this day.

6 things your ex may do during a contentious divorce

It's safe to say that your ex is not happy to be your ex. They're not happy about the divorce. Maybe they're angry that you asked for the divorce or perhaps they're still angry about the reasons your relationship broke down. Either way, it's safe to say that it's going to be a contentious divorce. You know that your ex is feeling emotional and may try to take it out on you during the case.

Knowing what to expect is very important. It can help you prepare for some challenges that lie ahead of you. Here are six things that your spouse -- soon-to-be your ex -- may do:

  1. Try to take custody of the children just so that you cannot see them.
  2. Attempt to cut you off financially or take marital assets out of your control; for instance, your spouse may cancel a joint checking account and move the money into a personal account.
  3. Attempt to get information from your email accounts, social media accounts or phone conversations.
  4. Make verbal agreements and then back off of them in the future.
  5. Try to delay the divorce process and drag the whole thing out as much as possible.
  6. Make false allegations saying that you mistreated them or that you mistreated the children. These could be very serious allegations, such as claiming that you physically or emotionally abused them.

After divorce, grandparents worry about access to grandchildren

Divorce does not just affect the two people who have decided to end their marriage. It impacts the whole family. This includes both the children and those children's grandparents.

Experts call losing access to the grandkids one of the major fears that grandparents have at this time. They love those children. They have seen them regularly and babysat for them. Maybe they've even helped raise them. Now they worry that they won't be able to see them anymore, or at least not as often as they want to.

Can you relocate with your children after divorce?

Moving after you get divorced can get tricky. If you have custody of your children after the divorce, but your co-parent has visitation rights and sees the children twice a week. One visit is just for dinner during the week, but they also spend Saturday afternoons together.

If you want to move, that relocation could make it impossible for the visitation schedule to continue. Perhaps you're not from California. You moved here years ago. You want to move back to the East Coast. There's no way your ex can visit the kids twice a week when you're so far away.

Tips to help you get custody in a divorce

As you proceed with your divorce, getting custody of your children is your main priority. You're not seeking sole custody, but you want to at least share parenting time with your ex because you want to stay involved in your children's lives.

Fortunately, the courts tend to favor joint custody as well. Even so, there are some important steps you can take to help your case. Here's what you should do:

  • Create a strong relationship with your children in advance. If the court learns that you never spend time with them or contribute anything to their lives, it may appear that you're just trying to win custody to keep them away from your ex, not because you actually want to be with them.
  • Go to their events. Prove that you are an involved parent by going to school events, meeting with teachers, watching sporting events and things of this nature.
  • Make a custody plan. Show that you have thought it through. Demonstrate that you have room in your schedule for your children and that being with them is realistic and important.
  • Create a physical space where they will live. Make sure they have rooms in your home or apartment. Show that you can support them and give them a healthy living space.

How long will a divorce take in California?

If you're looking at divorcing in California, one of the things you may want to know is how long the divorce will take. California has a few requirements in place that you have to meet before the divorce can be finalized.

There are a few things to consider before you can know how long it will take. For example, if you want a summary dissolution, then you may be able to get a divorce faster than if you want a typical divorce. To qualify for a summary dissolution, you must not have children, own land or buildings or want spousal support. There are other requirements that must be met beyond these three basics.

Understand the 50-50 property division rule in California

It is not always easy to decide how to divide your assets during a divorce, especially in a state where it's expected that you'll divide your assets equally. You and your spouse may disagree on how to divide your assets.

One of you may wish to stick to the 50-50 terms the law provides as a way to get more out of the marriage than they put into it. You might argue that you were the breadwinner and that you deserve more. In any case, it complicates things to have an equal split in many situations.

3 tips for reconnecting with your child after divorce

Your relationship with your child is likely the most important one in your life. You want them to feel comfortable with you and to be a supportive parent.

When you go through a divorce, that relationship is sometimes strained. You may not see your child as often as you once did or feel that your connection has been severed by the changes that took place.

Is a divorce a sign of failure?

For military members and their families, the strain of being apart sometimes leads to divorce. That doesn't always have to mean that the marriage was a failure, though. In fact, therapists have agreed that separating and divorcing isn't always a sign of failure at all. It can sometimes mean that the marriage was actually a success.

For people going through a divorce, considering it a success may be difficult. However, there is a good thought process behind this. Marriages are a helpful way to lead people to grow; they learn and explore options. They compromise and learn more about themselves and their needs as well as the needs of others.

High-conflict divorces and parents: Think of your child first

When you and your child's other parent have a high-conflict relationship, it can be difficult to separate your anger toward one another from your parenting responsibilities. Sometimes, the conflict boils over into your parenting, which can create a negative world for your child to live in.

Divorcing parents aren't always able to come to agreements when it comes to taking care of their children, and high-conflict cases can draw out for years. In fact, when parents are in a high level of conflict, therapists and judges may even agree that it's better for them not to work together in a shared-parenting scenario.