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How to Start a Divorce in Irvine

If you no longer wish to be married, it is essential to understand the legal process to divorce.  It can take time to formally end your marriage and if you do not follow the required steps, there could be a further delay.  It is important to move quickly through the process so you can save money and begin the process of moving on with your life. divorce

An experienced Irvine divorce and family law attorney can assist you with ending your marriage. Brown & Charbonneau, LLP can help you to start a divorce in Irvine and can guide you every step of the way until your marriage has ended.  Throughout the process, your attorney will advise you on your obligations and help you to protect your rights. Call today to learn more.

How to Start a Divorce in Irvine

The first step to start a divorce in Irvine is to make sure you file the court paperwork in the correct county. The California Courts website has a tool that you can use to make sure you know where to file for divorce.  You can input information about where you live and where your spouse lives to find out where court paperwork must be filed.

Once you know where your paperwork should be submitted, you will need to fill out the required forms to start the process of dissolving your marriage. The forms you will need are going to vary depending upon whether you are married only; have only a domestic partnership; or are married and have a domestic partnership. For most people, however, you will need to file Form FL-100 (Petition-Marriage) and you will also need to file form FL-110, which is a summons. If you and your spouse have shared children, then Form FL-105 must also be submitted to the court.

When the initial forms have been filed, the next step is for your spouse to be served. This means your spouse receives official notice of your intent to dissolve the marriage. A process server will generally be required to deliver the divorce paperwork to the non-filing spouse.  The person who did not file the paperwork then has a set period of time to respond to the summons.

The next steps involve disclosure of financial information, as marital property must be divided.  Within 60 days of filing the petition, the person who decided to start a divorce in Irvine will need to provide a Declaration of Disclosure; an Income and Expense Declaration; a Schedule of Assets and Debts; and a Property Declaration.  Joint tax returns filed by the parties in the prior two years before the divorce must also be provided.  Many petitioners who file for divorce will complete these forms at the same time as they initially file their divorce paperwork. However, these forms need to be delivered to the non-filing spouse when they are served with divorce papers. The financial disclosures shouldn’t be submitted to the court.

The next steps will depend upon whether the spouse who was served with papers answers the summons, as well as on whether the spouses are able to come to an agreement on the issues relevant to the divorce. The process can be complicated and it is a good idea to have a lawyer before you start a divorce in Irvine. Contact Brown & Charbonneau, LLP today to speak with an experienced attorney and learn more about your legal options for ending your marriage.