Family Law

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    Martinez Family Court
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    Alameda Court House
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  • Pre-Marital Agreements aka Prenupts
  • Negotiating & Drafting
  • Uncontested/Summary Dissolution
  • Divorce aka Dissolution
  • Legal Separation
  • Child Custody/Visitation
  • Spousal and/or Child Support
  • Post-Divorce Modifications
  • Support, custody or visitation due to substantial change in circumstances
  • Marital Settlement Agreements
  • Property Division/Debt Division
  • Annulment
  • Guardianship

Mr. Tuann has handled hundreds of divorce cases since 1992. Mr. Tuann underwent his own divorce from 2003 to 2005. He handled the divorce of his own parents in 1998 in only six months. Family Law is the most sensitive area of the legal profession, the one area where nobody needs a “Rambo lawyer.” Mr. Tuann separates the issue of divorce from all other issues. In his experience, having a Superior Court judge sign the divorce decree six months into a divorce helps both parties resolve the long-term issues, such as ongoing support and visitation. Divorce is painful, but with an experienced and sensitive attorney, the divorce process can be survived with dignity and class, with minimum trauma to any children.

Mr. Tuann answers FAQs about California Divorce

Question #1 Why six months?

Answer: Because the California lawmakers decided that divorce is a bad thing and that in six months the parties might reconcile.  Therefore, even in a default case where the other party does not even respond to divorce papers, it will still take six months to get a divorce in California.  Even if husband and wife agree on every single issue, and there are no children involved, it will still take six months.  Now, due to budget cutbacks, it may take slightly longer.

Question #2 What is no-fault?

Answer: No fault means that anyone can get divorced without claiming that the other party is at fault.  Prior to no-fault, to obtain a divorce, one party had to claim that the other party was alcoholic, abusive, violent, cheating, etc.  This only encouraged people to lie in open court to come up with a reason for divorce.  Nowadays, the party seeking divorce will claim irreconcilable differences without stating anything specific.  Basically, anyone can seek and obtain a divorce, no questions asked.  The judge does not care and does not want to hear details or allegations of marital wrongdoing.

Question #3 What if my spouse won’t sign the divorce papers?

Answer: It does not matter.  You do not need your spouse’s permission to divorce. You file for divorce and have your spouse personally served with divorce papers.  Whether they agree or not, you will obtain your divorce in six months.

Question #4 What is community property?

Answer: California is a community property state, but other states are also applying community property principles in dividing property.  Community property means that all income and wealth generated during the marriage by the labor of either husband or wife is presumed to be jointly owned.  This means that in a long term marriage, most everything is jointly owned and will be divided evenly during divorce.  A gift or an inheritance is the separate property of the party receiving the gift.  Wages, salaries, stock options, investment profits are all created by the labor of the husband or wife and therefore community property.  Property owned by one person before marriage is separate property and it will remain separate property if only separate funds are used to maintain it, to pay property tax, upkeep, etc.  This is very hard to do as married couples invariably use money from their wages to pay the mortgage or the property tax, thereby giving the community an interest in the separate property.