Family law is a legal practice area that focuses on family relationships and domestic matters, such as divorce, child custody, and child support. Issues involving family members tend to be particularly stressfulfor all parties, and many people find it extremely difficult to make decisions with such significant consequences. Furthermore, every family features its own unique dynamics that require consideration, and reaching a solution that works for everyone can be challenging even under the most amicable circumstances.
If you are planning to file for divorce, or you have other family conflicts to resolve,hiring a family law attorney is crucial for protecting your rights and successfully navigating the family law system to reach the best outcome in your case.Review the information below to learn how a Corona family law attorney can help you, then contact the Law Office of Michelanne Hrubic for expert legal representation.
What Does a Family Law Attorney Do?
A family law attorney is a legal professional who represents clients in family-related cases. Some attorneys specialize in a particular field, while others cultivate expertise in multiple areas. Due to their education and training, these attorneys understand how to effectively handle sensitive affairs and can facilitate negotiations between the involved parties to reach a mutually beneficial solution. While keeping the best interests of the family in mind, family law attorneys advocate for the rights and interests of their clients, help them determine the best strategy for achieving their goals, and guide them through every stage of their case.
Corona family law attorney Michelanne Hrubic can handle all family law matters, including the following.
- Divorce or Dissolution of Marriage
Deciding to dissolve a marriage is never easy, and with this decision comes a variety of complex legal issues that must be resolved before a judge will grant the divorce. This process often begins with one spouse (the Petitioner) filing for divorce and serving the other spouse (the Respondent) with the divorce papers. California law does not require either spouse to give a specific reason for the divorce, and many couples cite “irreconcilable differences” that caused the marriage to fail. However, if one spouse becomes mentally incapacitated or commits marital misconduct, such as infidelity, domestic violence, or financial fraud, the other spouse can file for divorce on these grounds.In the best-case scenario, both spouses agree to a marital divorce settlement with terms outlining property division, child custody, child support, and other key issues, then a judge reviews this agreement and approves it. After the required six-month waiting period, the divorce is finalized.Most couples, however, disagree on at least one aspect of their divorce agreement. Contested divorces last longer, cost more money, and usually require court proceedings during which a judge makes the final determination about the terms of the divorce. We can help you protect your interests, support your claims, and ensure these proceedings go according to plan.
- Child Custody and Visitation
Child custody and visitation are typically the most contentious element of a divorce, and family law judges always prioritize the best interests of the child when reviewing any prospective agreement. Child custody consists of physical and legal custody. Physical custody establishes which parent the child will reside with, while legal custody grants the parent the authority to make decisions about how the child is raised, such as medical care, education, and religious upbringing. A judge may award joint physical and legal custody to both parents, sole physical and legal custody to one parent, or sole physical custody to one parent and sole legal custody to the other.The most important factors a judge will consider when making these determinations are the health, safety, and well-being of the child, the relationship each parent has with the child, the parenting time each parent can commit to the child, and the ability and willingness of each parent to provide a stable home environment with proper care and guidance. Any history of domestic violence, alcoholism, abuse of controlled substances, or other criminal behavior perpetrated by either parent also influences custody decisions. We can help you build a strong case for custody of your child by presenting compelling evidence that you can provide a nurturing life for your child and showing that you will cooperate in allowing your child to retain a meaningful relationship with the other parent.
- Child Support
Federal and state law requires both parents to provide financial support to their children until they reach adulthood. If one parent receives sole custody while the other has limited visitation, child support will likely be awarded to the custodial parent to contribute to the expenses involved in raising the child. Child support may also be awarded to the lower-earning parent if parents share custody, and one parent earns significantly more income than the other. Because the judge’s duty is to protect the child’s best interests, they seek to minimize the disruption to the child’s life, and this involves ensuring the child can enjoy the same standard of living they experienced during the marriage.When parents cannot reach a child support agreement on their own, judges follow the state’s income share model to set child support payments. This amount is calculated based on the income and earning potential of each parent, how much time each parent spends with the child, income tax deductions they claim, mandatory payroll deductions, and childcare costs. The basic guideline amount is presumed to be correct unless it would not be fair or reasonable.Judges may choose to order a higher or lower amount if the paying parent is not contributing to the child’s needs with respect to their parenting time if both parents provide the same parenting time but one pays substantially more on housing costs, or if the child’s needs require greater support.
The law presumes that married spouses who share a child are both the child’s legal parents, but it becomes more complicated for unmarried parents. The child’s father must establish legal paternity to acquire the rights and responsibilities of raising the child, including custody, visitation, and child support. If the father refuses to acknowledge the child’s parentage, the mother must file a paternity suit to prove that he is, in fact, the legal father and to pursue child support.Paternity is also crucial for the child, as this helps them understand their identity and gives them numerous rights, including the right to receive health insurance coverage and the right to inherit from their father. Whether you are a mother or a father, we can help you understand your obligations and protect your rights.
- Property Division
As a community property state, California law considers all assets, properties, and debts acquired during the marriage as belonging equally to both spouses and will divide them equally in a divorce. In contrast, separate property consists of assets, properties, and debts acquired by one spouse before the marriage, as well as gifts or inheritances they receive.In some cases, separate property can transmute into community property, such as one spouse contributing toward renovations to a home that is titled in the other spouse’s name. Laws regarding property division can be confusing, particularly for high-net-worth individuals and complex estates. We can help you understand how the law applies to your case and properly value all property to achieve a fair division.
- Domestic Violence
One in three women and one in four men have experienced physical violence at the hands of a partner, but domestic abuse encompasses verbal, psychological, and financial abuse, as well. In many cases, abuse takes on multiple forms and involves a variety of tactics designed to isolate, control, threaten, and subdue victims.If you or your children are suffering from domestic abuse, we can help you obtain a protective order to keep your abuser away from your family. We can advocate on your behalf to extend this temporary order to a “permanent” order lasting up to five years. We can also pursue criminal charges to hold them accountable for their actions. If you are wrongfully accused of domestic abuse, we can help you fight these charges in civil and criminal court.
How Much Does a Family Law Attorney Cost in California?
The cost of legal representation depends on the attorney’s fees, the complexity of your case, and the time and resources it will take to reach a solution. Most Corona family lawyers charge hourly fees, and they set the cost of their services based on their location, experienced, and specialized area of expertise.
In general, experienced family law attorneys in California charge $300 to $600 per hour. The more complex or contested the case, the more you can expect to pay. A simple, uncontested divorce costs approximately $6,000, but the average divorce costs $17,500. In some cases, judges can assign one spouse’s legal fees to the other spouse.
Get Support From a Corona, CA Family Law Attorney
If you face any of the issues described above, or you need assistance with another domestic matter, the Law Offices of Michelanne Hrubic can provide the dedicated legal representation you need to obtain the best results for your family. Attorney Hrubic represents clients throughout a wide range of family law issues and provides expert, compassionate legal counsel to guide them through even the most contentious disputes. She can leverage her years of experience as a winning Corona family law attorney to understand your unique situation, determine your goals, explore your options, and develop a strategy for resolving your case as efficiently as possible. Contact us today to learn more about our services and to schedule an initial consultation.