When Is The Divorce Agreement Binding | Santa Clarita Divorce

When Is The Divorce Agreement Binding

When does the divorce agreement you sign become binding and enforceable?

It is important to know because when parties enter into a written agreement like we do with our amicable clients they want to know say Tim if we agree to say pay out monies at a certain time when can or should I do that in the future?

You’ve signed the settlement agreement, we’ve submitted it to court and maybe it’s taking a couple weeks a couple months for the court to approve.

So what’s happening during that time frame? Let’s say that you have paid out those monies during that time frame before the court actually signed the paperwork –  do you have an enforceable court order yet?

First, let’s talk about what is not an official court order non-binding and unenforceable by the court.  Handshake deals, notarized agreements,  let’s say you guys sat down and on a piece of paper wrote up a contract or agreement regarding some terms of your divorce, went into a notary and had it signed.

That is not enforceable through the family courts.  Written agreements not sent in as a court order meaning you have an agreement even on paper like a handshake deal or even on actual court forms or a marital settlement agreement drafted up but not sent in and not signed by the judge, it’s not enforceable yet.

So essentially any agreements reached between the parties during the divorce has to be submitted to the court as a formal order and not until it’s signed by the judge is it enforceable.

So what we recommend is if you are going to have some monies changing hand and there’s some concern that there might be someone going back on the agreement after they received that agreement or received those monies or the effect of whatever the agreement was, what we recommend you do and what we do in many cases is we will state that whatever the agreement is the monies will be paid upon time signature of the judge and that way you do have an official court order that’s enforceable and binding at that time.

Santa Clarita Divorce | Co Ownership Of House After Divorce

Co Ownership Of House After Divorce

Are you going through a divorce but don’t want to sell your house right away what do you do?

Something that continues to come up recently because of what’s going on with interest rates going into the six and seven percent and people wanting to sell their house during a divorce which normally isn’t an issue.

If you’re going to re-buy then there’s issues with you know getting a new interest rate on a new home or with the prices of homes being reduced because of the interest rates.

So we’ve had several clients and we’re in what are we January here 2023 and over the last I’d say six or eight months it’s become almost a daily topic with clients who have a home want to sell but they can’t quite get the price they want to get on the home because they’ve come down significantly due to the interest rates rising.

And they want to know well what can we do? What are our options? So it is possible to co-own your home post divorce in the settlement agreement?

We simply would indicate what it is you guys are agreeing to do if you guys have a number that you you guys want to hit as far as selling and that is the the goal post for selling it and you say, hey we want to keep the house for six months a year two years or whenever we can sell it for a certain amount.

That could be something we could put in this settlement agreement. It can be very specific like that or you can simply say we’ll meet and confer on an annual basis or every six months to discuss the sale of the home to see you know talk to the realtor and see what we can get for the home and see if it’s the right time to sell.

There’s nothing wrong with doing that. The only thing you guys would want to discuss is are you guys going to rent it out or Airbnb it who is what are you going to continue to live in it during that time and how’s that going to work out financially and when you do sell it how will the proceeds be split at that time.

And just keep in mind that you know you guys are going to want to discuss when that point is and have some end goal in the settlement agreement to say when it hits this point or this happens or that happens this is when we’re going to sell foreign

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Serve Your Spouse Divorce Papers

How To Serve Your Spouse Divorce Papers

Serving someone when going through a divorce is one of the problems people have when trying to do their own divorce.

Who are you going to bug?  Your neighbor, your daughter who’s an adult your adult son, another family member to serve your paperwork?

Remember, when going through the divorce process, even if you’re going through an amicable divorce, documents still have to be served and they cannot be served by the party filing or the party responding.

You have to have a third party doing the filing I’m sorry the serving.  So what I want to talk about in this video is when you use our service we also act as that third party to do all this serving.

Now when you hear the word serving you think someone’s going to go serve you or your spouse in person at work or at home and that’s not the case. When you use our service we utilize a portal called MyCase and that’s where we handle the transaction of the divorce process where we communicate with you and your spouse so everyone’s on the same page.

What we do is we use a form called notice of acknowledgment that we upload to the portal that we have the respondent sign. Because we’ve filed the case, we’ve uploaded the paperwork the file petition to the portal it’s then been received by both parties through the portal then we simply have that document called the notice of acknowledgment signed by the respondent.

And that’s as simple as serving can be when it comes to the divorce process

Santa Clarita Divorce | Terminating Spousal Support | True Default Divorce Cases

Santa Clarita Divorce | Terminating Spousal Support | True Default Divorce Cases

How do we handle spousal support on a true default case. Okay what we’re talking about is divorce cases that are true defaults.

What that means is the other party is not participating they’re not cooperating they’re not filing a response they’re not doing anything.

And the question we’re answering today is when you are asking for spousal support to be waived and not have spouse support and even terminate the Court’s Jurisdiction over spouse support.  That can only be done through a request on the petition.

I often talk about in amicable divorce cases where both parties are participating if the parties agree to terminate spousal support that you include some additional language where the parties will both initial indicating that they agree to waive spouse support.

There’s two different versions one for short-term marriages and one with long-term marriages.  Now when it comes to terminating spousal support the issue with true default cases, where there’s no agreement, is it is possible to terminate spousal support if you requested it in the petition and you have a short-term marriage.

One of the issues that always comes up is if you have a long-term marriage over 10 years and you mark on your petition to terminate jurisdiction over spousal support and then when you go to submit your judgment you’re going to have to match your petition and say terminate on the spousal support order.

The issue is the court cannot approve that because California law indicates that spousal support should be reserved unless it has been waived by both parties.  So what’s going to happen if that’s the case is you would have to amend your petition to reserve jurisdiction over the issue of spouse support, re-serve it,  re-file your request enter default then enter then enter your default judgment with Reserve jurisdiction.

This is only an issue on long-term marriages it is non-issue on short-term marriages less than 10 years

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Notarize Your Divorce Judgment – Marital Settlement Agreement

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Notarize Your Divorce Judgment – Marital Settlement Agreement

Tim Blankenship here with divorce661.com and what we’re talking about in this video is issues we’re having with notaries when our clients go get a notary the notary is writing the wrong description of document on the notice of acknowledgment.

So when you finish your case and you’re having your judgment notarized the signature page – the marital settlement agreement page where your signatures are, you have to have that notarized. And they need to attach this certificate of acknowledgment.

It’s called all-purpose certificate of acknowledgment for your signatures and what the notaries are doing –  there’s a box on this form that says description of the attached document and they’re writing in names of other forms that do not need to be notarized.

So the Assumption by the court is that you had the wrong document notarized. What they need to write in that box is marital settlement agreement or  judgment attachment or stipulated judgment –  something that’s related to the document you’re actually signing not some other random form that does not need to be notarized which is causing will cause your judgment to be rejected

Santa Clarita Divorce | Legal Separation Vs Divorce

Santa Clarita Divorce | Legal Separation Vs Divorce

Legal separation process is not faster than the divorce process.

We get calls where people are asking about legal separation and I’ll usually ask them are you doing this because you’re never going to get married again or for religious reasons.

And usually the answer is because they think it’s faster to go through the legal separation process than the divorce process. Now you would think it would be because there is no six-month waiting period,  I understand why you’re thinking this.

However on in practical terms when going through the process it follows the same timelines as the divorce process does. Meaning we have to file a petition for legal separation, it has to be served, a period of time has to go by before we can submit the judgment, and once the judgment is submitted, depending on what county in California you are in, it’s going to take two to three to four months to process that judgment.

And until the court signs off on that judgment your legal separation case has not been finalized and this is the same process that’s going to go through with the divorce case.

It’s not going to be done any faster so if you’re thinking of legal separation versus divorce because you think it’s going to get you there faster it’s not.

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Start The Divorce Process

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Start The Divorce Process

To start the divorce process all you have to do is file a few forms.

So the forms that you would file for divorce are the summons and petition and that’s really all there is to file for divorce. Now, if you have children there’s an additional form fl-105 known as the UCCJEA and then depending on your county you may have a local form.

So let’s assume that you have these forms completed – what’s the next step well the next step would be to file these forms and get a case number issued by the court.

You have to file them before you serve them, so once you file them you’ll get a case number issued by the court now they’re ready to be filed the step after that is they need to be served.

Now there’s several steps there are different ways that you can have these documents served if you are amicable like our clients are.  What you’d want to use is a notice of acknowledgment of receipt there’s no reason to personally serve someone that you’re friendly with especially your spouse if you’re trying to go through an amicable divorce and then irritate them because you had them served by someone.

Now you may want to use a friend or a family member or even a neighbor but honestly all you have to do is have someone mail it to your spouse and have them sign a notice of acknowledgment and then you would file that with the proof of service after you filed for divorce and had it served now it’s ready to do your disclosures.

The parties will do their financial disclosures share them with each other so you guys are aware of what all the assets and debts are that are on the table subject to division. And following that you will draft Your settlement agreement.

Now that was a broad Strokes overview of the divorce process more than just how to file if you’re looking for help with getting an amical divorce anywhere in California give us a call be happy to help

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Avoid Paying Child Support

Santa Clarita Divorce | How To Avoid Paying Child Support

It’s actually quite easy we get a lot of flack on this on social media on YouTube people upset about us telling folks how to avoid paying child support.

But we’re not telling people how to get out of paying child support we’re simply saying for our amicable divorce clients that if you do not want to have an official child custody order as part of your divorce we can make that happen.

We’re not breaking any rules we’re not cheating the system.  There’s a process with the court where we can ask for what’s called a non-guideline order.

So in every settlement agreement that we draft for our clients we have to include a child support order, we can’t just say it’s waived, a lot of people say they want to wave it you can’t do that.

So what we do is a non-guideline order.  We still have to attach the child support order, we still have to do a child support dissomaster calculation,  we still have to give the incomes of the parties to the court.

And here’s what’s happened so we do the calculation and on the child support order we write down, yes, child support  calculated shows x amount of dollars however we’re asking for a non-guideline order per the agreement of the parties that they wish the child support to be set at zero as opposed to the amount calculated and in doing so essentially will not harm the child

That’s how we do it if you’re looking to get a divorce and not have child support.  And doing your own divorce it’s going to be very difficult because you’re not going to know the legalese that has to be included in the divorce to make this happen.

We’ve been doing this for 10 years aside from making the divorce process easier on you by us handling it as a full service for you anywhere in California we can also get you a zero child support order as well