Family Law Attorneys In Redding, CA

Family Law FAQ in Redding CA
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Frequently Ask Questions for
Family Law

I am a U.S. citizen and I am engaged to a foreigner. How can I bring him/her to the U.S.?

If you are a U.S. citizen you can file a K-1 fiancée petition to the INS. In the petition, you, as a U.S. citizen, must document that you in fact are a U.S. citizen; that the couple have met in person within the prior two years; that both are free to marry; and that the couple will marry within ninety days of the foreign fiancée's entry into the U.S.

Upon approval of the INS petition, the foreign fiancée will go to the U.S. embassy/consulate in his/her home country and apply for a K-1 visa. Upon issuance, the fiancée will enter the U.S. and will be given automatic employment authorization for a period of 90 days. After the couple gets married, the alien should file the I-485 application for permanent residence.

What is the difference between domestic violence and civil harassment?

Domestic violence cases are a special category of civil harassment. Civil harassment occurs when one person annoys, harasses, injures, or threatens another person. However, a civil harassment case does not have to meet the relationship test established for domestic violence. Domestic violence cases can often be more volatile than civil harassment cases. Because of the special relationship between the parties, a domestic violence case often results in greater harm caused by one person against the other.

Many states have different procedures for domestic violence and civil harassment. In addition, the available remedies for a domestic violence case may differ from the remedies available in a civil harassment case.

What is marital status?

Marital status refers to the lawful recognition of the agreement between a man and a woman to be husband and wife. Along with the legal marital status of being married, the husband and wife acquire rights and obligations to their respective spouses. The rights and obligations begin when the couple is married and may continue, to a certain extent, even after the termination of the marriage.

Marital status is one of the basic issues involved in a lawsuit for divorce (marital dissolution) or an annulment (nullity). At the end of a marital dissolution or nullity proceeding, the legal status of husband and wife is terminated and the spouses are returned to the legal status of being unmarried or single persons.

Marital status is automatically terminated upon the death of one spouse; the survivor becomes an unmarried person once again.


What about paying for college or private school expenses?

Whether parties in a divorce must pay the expenses of their child(ren)’s college education depends on the law in the state where the parents live and any agreement between the couple. Parents are not required to pay for higher education in some states while in others they are. Whatever the law may be, though, the spouses can agree work out educational costs as part of their divorce settlement.


In the event of domestic violence, what should a person do?

First and foremost, it is important for the person to get away from the aggressor. S/he should seek the assistance of a friend or a neighbor. In the event of domestic violence, immediate police assistance should be requested. Often, local police officers and sheriffs have received special training with respect to domestic violence and can be extremely helpful to a victim. In addition to local law enforcement personnel, city and district attorneys may be very helpful not only in prosecuting the crime, but also in providing referrals to other local assistance - emergency shelters such as "safe houses," counseling, and legal assistance.

A victim of domestic violence should never try to "go it alone." The usual profile of an abusive person is an aggressive, dominant personality that is both manipulative and controlling. The victim of domestic violence is often very vulnerable and can be persuaded from attempting to obtain assistance. Outside assistance is often essential in protecting a victim of domestic violence.

As a final word on this subject, a victim of domestic violence should never shy away from requesting assistance because of a perceived stigma attached to being a victim of domestic violence. Domestic violence pervades all socioeconomic classes. A "rich" person is just as likely to be a victim of domestic violence as a "poor" one. Whatever your background, if you been abused, get assistance with a domestic violence situation immediately for your own health and safety, as well as the health and safety of those close to you.


What is the parent locator service?

The Federal Parent Locator Service (FPLS) obtains and transmits information about the location of any absent parent when that information is to be used for the purpose of enforcing child support. The service is an arm of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. The FPLS also can be used in connection with the enforcement or determination of child custody, visitation, and parental kidnapping. There are also state parent locator services in some states.

Recent federal legislation (Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996) also expanded the FPLS’s services to include a National Directory of New Hires and a Federal Case Registry of Support Orders. FPLS will match data between the New Hire and Case Registry every two days and report matches to states within two days.


I have taped some very abusive and harassing telephone conversations with my husband’s ex-girlfriend, but am told that we cannot use these tapes in the court. Why?

Surreptitious tape recordings by telephone are illegal in most States, under their respective Penal (or Criminal) Codes. You must have permission, in most States, from the party being recorded or, at the very least, give the other person notice that the call is being recorded. California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Maryland (where Ms. Tripp allegedly pressed her "record" button), Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Washington - require, under most circumstances, the consent of all parties to the conversation before taping is allowed.


What is a ‘common law marriage?’

Traditionally, when a man and a woman lived together and held themselves out to the world as husband and wife for a certain period of time (such as 7 or 14 years), the law of the state in which they resided recognized them as husband and wife despite the lack of the formal legalities of marriage.

Most states no longer recognize common law marriages. However, if a couple meets the requirements for a common law marriage in a state that does recognize common law marriages, and the couple then moves to a state that does not have common law marriages, the new state will usually recognize the "common law" marriage. For example, if a couple lived in Texas, a state recognizing common law marriage, and met the requirements for a common law marriage, and then moved to California, which does not recognize common law marriage, California will recognize the couple as being married.


Can an ex-fiancé go to court to get the ring back?

Whether you have to return a wedding ring if the wedding is called off depends on where you live and under what circumstances the ring came into your possession. It may also depend on who broke the engagement.

In the convoluted world of domestic relations, perhaps nothing is more confusing than the so-called "heart balm" statutes that were made the law in each of the various states, and then abolished more than a half century ago to be replaced with a hodgepodge of custom and modernity.

For the past 30 years, at least in New York, persons not under any impediment to marry have had the right to recover property given in contemplation of a marriage that didn't occur.

But in California, the courts have long called the gift of an engagement ring "implied conditional," and require its return on the breaking of the engagement by the recipient of the gift. However, if the man breaks the engagement, he cannot obtain the ring.

Engagement rings differ from other rings or jewelry in a number of states, which clearly are gifts that have no relationship to a marriage. And, if the relationship breaks up and the man wants it back, he must be prepared to lose the argument and to have no legal redress.

Other typical engagement gifts that are given by the intended to the beloved are treated the same way as state law treats the engagement ring.

When a marriage breaks up, there is a divorce, and the laws of all 50 states are geared to deal with it. An engagement breakup is less typical, and causes more headaches precisely because the parties frequently have no agreement that defines their rights.

There are a number of cases in which a married man, awaiting dissolution of a prior marriage, has become involved with a prospect for the position soon to be opening up, and gives an "engagement" ring to seal the transaction. If the relationship sours, the man cannot obtain the ring back since he lacked the legal right to enter the contract in the first place--because he was still married.

It's not the "right" emotional way to begin a marriage or an engagement, but if there is a valuable heirloom that you are planning to give your beloved, you may want to obtain a prenuptial agreement in which the disposition of this or other property is made clear should the marriage or the engagement sour, or if there is a problem in the short term following the marriage.

A prenuptial agreement is something that every contemporary couple planning to marry ought to carefully consider. It outlines certain rights, creates certain liabilities, but most important, sets forth what each party entering into matrimony expects of the other. It may sound callous, and may not be for everyone, but if the assets of the parties are sufficient, it is in the interest of both to do so while their heads are clear, and before the parties plan a life together.

If the assets aren't substantial, but the issues are the same, the parties can draw up a letter of agreement on their own: "We agree that in the event that the marriage does not take place that the following is the disposition of gifts received, including the engagement ring."

Caution should always be exercised with antenuptial agreements, which are similar to prenuptial agreements but created after the marriage. The reason: courts are reluctant to enforce them in the first place, and will construe them strictly against the draftsperson.


What rights and obligations arise due to marriage?

Unless altered by an agreement between the respective spouses, state law typically provides that each spouse is responsible to the other for:

"mutual respect and fidelity"

spousal support - providing the necessities of life including food, shelter, clothing and other basic necessities debts incurred during the marriage (automatic joint responsibility in community property states but separate obligations possible in common law states) distribution of the marital property - the property that was acquired during the marriage plus any separate property of the respective spouses which has been commingled is owned by both spouses confidential relationship - there is good faith and fair dealing in all transactions between the spouses.


How can I obtain a tax deduction for a support payment?

In order for a support payment (other than any child support payment) to be eligible for an income tax deduction by the payer spouse, the following requirements must be met:

(1) The payment must be made in cash (including checks and money orders payable on demand, but excluding transfers of services or property)

(2) The payment must be made under either

(a) a divorce or separation instrument (a court order or decree of divorce or separation or a written instrument incident to such a decree or a decree which requires a spouse to make payments for the support or maintenance of the other spouse), or

(b) a written separation agreement between a husband and wife who are living apart requiring periodic payments because of the marital or family relationship (whether or not the agreement is a legally enforceable instrument)

(3) The spouses do not file a joint income tax return

(4) The written instrument or agreement does not provide for other tax treatment, and

(5) The payer has no liability to continue to make payment after the death of the other spouse.

Any child support included as part of an alimony, family support, separate maintenance or spousal support payment is not eligible for a deduction by the payer and is not taxable income to the supported spouse according to Federal income tax rules.


What is ‘legal separation?’

Legal separation is a formal judgment issued by a court of law that all the issues concerning a marriage have been resolved (child custody, child visitation, child support, spousal support, distribution of property, attorney fees, and personal conduct) with the exception of marital status. A judgment of a legal separation lawsuit leaves the couple with the legal status of married persons while settling the respective rights and obligations that each spouse has to the other. Spouses who are legally separated are not free to marry since neither has been returned to the legal status of an unmarried (single) person.

Legal separation is usually pursued when the parties want to stay married for religious reasons, want the advantage of deductibility of spousal support payments for income tax reasons, or are do not want to wait the state statutory waiting period for termination of marital status. For some people, a legal separation is desired to set the parameters for dealing with one another while living separate and apart (especially with respect to continuing support obligations and child sharing issues) while maintaining the status of being married, and leaving the door open for a reunion/resumption of marriage.

Legal separation is not a prerequisite to divorce (dissolution of marriage).


Family Law Attorneys in Redding


Bonnie Baker
1650 Oregon Street
Suite 209
Redding, CA 96001

Patrick R. Beasley
2701 Old Eureka Way
Redding, CA  96001

Michael C. Borges
1135 Pine St
Redding, CA  96001

Rubert Corkill
2138 Court St., Suite B
Redding, CA 96001

Dennis Daniel
1304 East St. Suite 111
Redding, CA  96001

Michael Darlington
1745 Yuba
Redding, CA 96001

James E Kramer
1650 Oregon St
Redding, CA 96001

Kirk M. Manuel
1308 Placer
Redding, CA 96001

McGlynn, McGlynn and Bottke
2040 Shasta St
Redding, CA 96001

William L. Meek
499 Hemsted
Redding, CA 96002

Christie Mulligan

Jeffrey S Olgilvie
1330 West St
Redding, CA 96001

Law Offices of Popkes
1574 West
Redding, CA 96001

Linda Seinturier

Katherine Townley
1539 Chestnut
Redding, CA

Tamera Trindade
1640 Tehama
Redding, CA 96001

David Wilson
1610 West St
Redding, CA 96001
833 Mistletoe Lane, Suite 103
Redding, CA 96002

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