What You Need To Know About Wills and Trusts

Many have experienced anxiety by reminding themselves of their own mortality with the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of this, people are reaching out to me for estate planning. They ask if they need a Will or a Trust? Would they be able to get by with just a Will? As an attorney, I willContinue reading “What You Need To Know About Wills and Trusts”

What Happens At A Mandatory Settlement Conference?

During the course of a family law matter, such as divorce, legal separation or dissolution of domestic partnership, many California courts offer the option of a scheduled “settlement conference.” In some counties, including San Diego, this is a mandatory proceeding, should the parties be unable to resolve their dispute among themselves. It is, in essence,Continue reading “What Happens At A Mandatory Settlement Conference?”

What Happens to Child and Spousal Support When an Ex-Spouse Remarries?

There’s a common misconception about how a person’s support obligation changes after an ex-spouse remarries. For purposes of this discussion, let’s say Joe is paying child support to his ex-wife, Traci, for their daughter Angela. After a year or so of being on her own, Traci meets, falls in love with and marries a plasticContinue reading “What Happens to Child and Spousal Support When an Ex-Spouse Remarries?”

What Happens When You Marry Someone with Support or Debt Obligations?

These days, it’s not uncommon for a person to marry someone who comes with some financial “baggage”— that is, with debts or support obligations of some kind. Here’s a fairly typical scenario: Jane comes to my office seeking information about getting a prenuptial agreement. Her fiancé, Frank, is saddled with several types of obligations. HerContinue reading “What Happens When You Marry Someone with Support or Debt Obligations?”

What to Do When a Family Member Dies

In recent weeks, it’s been my sad misfortune to lose two close relatives in my family. After the initial shock of the loss of each beloved family member, I have been swamped with questions from other family members and friends about what to do (in terms of legal obligations) when a loss like this occurs.Continue reading “What to Do When a Family Member Dies”

Representing Yourself in Court and Other Low Cost Options

For many people facing a legal issue, the first thought that generally comes to mind is how much will this cost in attorney’s fees? The good news is that there are numerous types of cases in California where being represented by an attorney is not a necessity.  As a general rule, you may not needContinue reading “Representing Yourself in Court and Other Low Cost Options”

When Should You Get a Trust?

A trust is a document created to manage your assets – property, financial holdings, personal belongings, not only during your lifetime, but after you’re gone. There are generally three kinds of trusts to consider in your estate planning: Living trust—A document concerning the management of your assets which can be amended or revoked at anyContinue reading “When Should You Get a Trust?”

Who Gets the Family Pet After a Divorce?

Disputes over personal property are common in most divorce proceedings. Any family law attorney can likely tell you about clients who argued endlessly over who should get possession of a treadmill that’s been sitting in the basement for years (unused). Ironically, purchasing a new treadmill would often be less expensive than the legal fees incurredContinue reading “Who Gets the Family Pet After a Divorce?”

Time To Review Your Estate Plan

Here we go again… Another year has passed and with it came life events that may have affected your estate plan, if you in fact have one. The overwhelming truth is that far too many people don’t plan ahead and if they at one time did have the wherewithal to do so, they forget toContinue reading “Time To Review Your Estate Plan”

Warning: Getting Emotional Can Cost You Money

As a family law attorney, I often help people when they’re really not at their best. Especially in cases of divorce and child custody, clients are very upset, stressed about the future and unable to think clearly about their options. They frequently take actions based on their emotions that end up prolonging their case andContinue reading “Warning: Getting Emotional Can Cost You Money”