We do not require a retainer. Fortunately, when the Pandemic hit us in March 2020, we had already been a paperless office for many years with two cloud based case management systems. However, the Pandemic propelled us to make many improvements to our client service protocols, retainer requirements, direct calendaring, electronic exchanges and remote systems being some examples. This has allowed our firm to concentrate more on client service and less on wasteful antiquated management systems. If you entrust us with your family law matter, you'll be in excellent hands.

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Divorce Lawyer Alameda County CA

Divorce lawyerWhen you get in contact with a divorce lawyer Alameda County, California trusts from AttorneyBernie.Com, we understand that you may still be catching your bearings. Whether you are the one who is deciding to file for divorce or your spouse seemingly blind-sighted you, getting a divorce can turn ugly very quickly. This is why you want someone on your side who you can trust, who will be aggressive when necessary, and who knows the law inside and out. We know that this may be one of the hardest things you will need to go through, especially if you have children, but it can also be one of the most freeing. Want to learn more about the divorce process and how we can help you? Give us a call now.

What is the divorce process like? 

Understandably, one of the first things you will want to learn about is what the divorce process in California is like. There are typically many steps to this and your Alameda County, California divorce lawyer can walk you through it.

  • Starting the petition and serving the papers. The first step is that one of the spouses will begin the petition for the divorce. This is a crucial time because your spouse will likely be gathering evidence and wanting to protect household assets as much as you are. Protect any evidence you have, make copies, and take inventory of important or special items you have.
  • Discovery. When you go through the discovery process, your attorney will be getting evidence and possibly looking through things like tax returns, valuing assets, looking through your medical records, and examining bank statements.
  • Beginning negotiations. During this time, your attorney and your spouse’s attorney will go through a negotiation phase and potentially try to settle. This would mean that you do not have to go to court. If possible, settling now means you and your spouse have more opportunity to control how the divorce goes instead of placing that decision in the hands of a judge.
  • Going to Trial. If you and your spouse are unable to come to an agreement on everything and cannot fully settle, then you will need to take your divorce case to trial for a judge to make a ruling.

If you would like to speak with a member of our team about your divorce, please get in contact with our divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA today.

Benefits of Hiring a Divorce Lawyer

If you plan on getting a divorce, you might wonder if you should hire a divorce lawyer Alameda County, CA residents trust or not. You might already be struggling financially, and hiring a lawyer will just cost more money. However, it’s completely worth the cost. Here are some of the benefits of hiring a lawyer:

  • Assist with the Paperwork: There’s a lot of paperwork involved in filing for divorce. These documents may contain legal jargon that the average person doesn’t understand. If you make a mistake in the paperwork, it can slow down your entire case. That’s why it pays to have an experienced divorce lawyer on your side. He or she can help you fill out these documents accurately.
  • Improve Your Chances of a Fair Settlement: It’s difficult for divorcing couples to agree on a settlement amount. Your ex and his or her lawyer could try to take advantage of you and offer you a very low settlement. If you hire a divorce lawyer, he or she will stand up for your legal rights and improve your chances of obtaining a settlement you deserve.
  • Communicate with Your Spouse: It’s common for couples going through divorce to have anger and resentment towards each other. If you find it difficult to speak to your ex without arguing, you can have your lawyer communicate with him or her on your behalf.
  • Provide Objectivity: When you’re going through something as stressful as a divorce, it can be difficult to remain objective. Your emotions could take over and cause you to make irrational decisions. For instance, you could call your ex screaming in the middle of the night or try to take an unfavorable settlement to get the process over with. A divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA can remain objective and help you avoid making decisions that could hurt your case. 
  • Reduce Stress: Getting a divorce can be one of the most stressful times of your life. However, if you have a skilled lawyer on your side, your stress can diminish. He or she will take care of most of the legwork, so you can concentrate on rebuilding your life.
  • Assist with Child Custody Laws: If you have children, you will want to be well-versed in child custody laws. A divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA can inform you about your rights and help you fight for custody.

Child Custody in Your Divorce

Child custody is an important part of every divorce, but a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, California, can help you reach the best arrangement for the future of your children.

A divorce means a potentially bitter fight between you and your spouse. While some couples may find it easy to remain civil throughout divorce proceedings, there are hot-button topics that always tend to cause resentment and anger. Of these topics, child custody is most likely to turn a relatively amicable divorce into a long and drawn-out process.

When people think of divorce and child custody, it seems simple: One parent gets to take care of the children, and the other gets visitation rights. But, it’s much more complicated than you might think. Read on to learn more about child custody and your divorce, and learn how a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA can help you today.

How is Child Custody Awarded?

Having custody of a child means taking much more responsibility for how they grow up. The parent who is awarded custody feeds the child (or children), clothes them, provides a home, takes them to school and doctor’s appointments – they spend more time with their child, and they have more parental responsibilities.

This usually means the other parent has visitation rights. The parent with visitation rights may only see their child a few times a week or month, and they may also need to pay child support: Payments that are intended to provide money for their child’s development. Child support payments are only to be used to directly benefit the wellbeing of a child, but the responsibility of using that money on the child falls on the parent with custody.

When child custody is on the line, a court will examine which parent has had the most responsibility for the raising of a child before the divorce. Generally, the parent who has been the most involved in the child’s life will be awarded custody, but sometimes joint custody can be awarded, too.

4 Ways To Respond When You’re Served Divorce Papers

You’ve been served with divorce papers; your spouse wants to end your marriage. You may or may not have known the papers were coming, but you have to react to them now. Read through everything carefully. The papers will include the division of assets and liabilities and the proposed legal and physical child custody, child support and alimony payments your spouse is requesting. You have a few options on how to respond — or not respond — to these papers.

1. Do Nothing

If you decide you don’t want to respond to the papers, or if you agree with everything your spouse is asking for, you can just ignore the papers entirely. Doing nothing means you are defaulting, and giving up your right to participate in the divorce. A divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, such as Attorney Bernie, can advise you whether the judge is likely to grant everything your spouse is asking for or not, giving you the information you need to decide whether to default or not.

2. Default in Agreement

In this type of default, you have already hashed out all the details of your divorce with your partner, and you’ve had a notary witness your signatures on a written statement of  your mutual decisions. You still may want to consult a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA to make sure you aren’t giving away too much in this agreement. 

3. File a Response in Agreement

In this case, you’re still getting that notarized written statement with the decisions you and your spouse have made concerning your assets and liabilities, alimony, legal and physical child custody and child support payments. But you’re filing a response in court stating your agreement. This is an uncontested divorce, meaning you and your spouse see eye to eye on everything.

4. File a Response in Disagreement

You’re definitely going to want a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, such as Attorney Bernie, on your side in this contested divorce. You disagree with what your spouse is asking for, and you file papers saying so. You might disagree with just some of the things your spouse is asking for, or you may disagree on everything. Either way, you could end up in court with the judge deciding for you. You should keep in mind that mediation might be helpful for the two of you to try to hash things out on your own.

In the Trenches: How To Navigate Divorce

Life can be complicated even when it’s going well. Sometimes things happen that you’d never have expected: the death of a family member, a job loss or having to move, and you have to navigate your way through them. Another unexpected turn that your life could take is a divorce; though you and your spouse didn’t enter the marriage expecting this outcome, it’s now a reality that you both have to face. If you’re about to end your marriage, there are a few things for you to consider as you take this huge step. 

Be Certain

Sometimes, in the heat of the moment, a couple may decide that they want to end their marriage and not even try and work things out. Since a divorce is such a huge undertaking, you want to make sure that this decision is something that you really want to go through with. If you have tried everything you can to make this work and are certain that you want to move forward with a divorce, then it would be wise to start looking for a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA. 

Get a Lawyer

Before you begin the divorce proceedings, the best option for you would be to hire a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, to help you through the legal details and heavy paperwork. You want to find a reputable and reliable lawyer such as Attorney Bernie, who specializes in divorce proceedings and who can make this process go as smoothly as it can from your end. 

Make Time for Yourself

Since a divorce can be very time-consuming and emotionally draining, you want to make sure that you are taking time to rest and keep yourself physically and mentally healthy as your divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, takes care of the legal details of your case. Self-care is essential, and you want to take care of your physical and mental wellbeing as you go through this process. If you are feeling overwhelmed, try and talk to someone close to you about your feelings, go on walks or take up a new hobby as you adjust to your new life. 

Though divorce is a weighty thing to go through, there are ways to alleviate some of the burdens. If you are certain of this decision, communicating with a knowledgeable lawyer such as Attorney Bernie may help you find some relief during this process.

How Are Assets Divided During Divorce?

If you are thinking about filing for divorce, you’ll want to proactively connect with an experienced divorce lawyer Alameda County, CA residents trust. You’ll want to make this connection as soon as possible. Why? Having a strong legal advocate – which is the only kind of advocate you’ll find at AttorneyBernie.Com – advising you about how you might benefit most from approaching your divorce will help to ensure that this process progresses as smoothly as it possibly can.

California is a community property state. You’ll need to keep this in mind as you begin discussing your asset division priorities with your attorney. The Community property approach holds that all assets acquired during a marriage, with very few exceptions, are considered community property. This means that both spouses hold an equal share of ownership in each asset. As a result, asset division agreements and orders must reflect an equal distribution of marital assets between spouses.

What if You and Your Spouse Already Have an Asset Division Plan?

If you and your spouse have figured out how you’d like to equally divide the value of your marital assets, a trusted Alameda County, CA divorce lawyer at AttorneyBernie.Com can help you to finalize that agreement, formalize your divorce process, and move on with your life. Our team will certainly review your proposed agreement to ensure that it meets legal standards and that you are receiving your fair share of marital assets. Once your agreement is good to go, we will help to expedite the process of finalizing your divorce to the best of our ability so that you can move forward into your future unencumbered by a pending legal matter.

What if You and Your Spouse Have Fundamental Differences About Asset Division?

If you and your spouse cannot agree on how your assets should be divided, a family law judge will be called upon to intervene in your case and to make a ruling accordingly. They will make a ruling based on whatever they believe will facilitate the principles of community property as explained above. Our firm will fight aggressively for your rights and interests if your divorce case needs to be decided in court.

What About Pet Custody Concerns?

Unlike some states, that treat pets as property, California law honors the special role that pets play in the lives of “their humans.” Under California law, judges are empowered to consider the best interests of the pet in question and the care of that pet when making pet custody decisions. Just as it is with asset division matters, if you and your spouse agree on the terms of pet custody, our firm can help you to finalize and formalize your agreement. If you have fundamental differences about pet custody, we can help build the strongest possible case in advocacy of your position.

Should You Consider Spousal Support?

If you are interested in making spousal support – also known as alimony – part of your asset division agreement, the experienced California legal team at AttorneyBernie.Com can advise you as to whether including that kind of arrangement in your divorce settlement will be to your benefit or not. There is no answer to the question of whether you should consider spousal support that fits every person’s circumstances. Our Alameda County, CA divorce lawyer will make a recommendation based on your unique needs, goals, and overall situation alone.

Factors That May Affect Spousal Support

Whether you are requesting spousal support or are being asked to be the payor, this issue will have a significant effect on both parties in a divorce. As you look toward the future, a contested divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, can help you to understand the details of how spousal support may be decided and the length and level of impact it may have on both spouses.

Temporary Support

As a couple moves through the process of obtaining a divorce, it may be the case that one spouse needs financial support until the final divorce decree is issued. An experienced lawyer like Attorney Bernie can help clients decide on reasonable accommodation. The court will calculate what it considers to be a fair amount and these payments will cease when the divorce is final and permanent support has been established.

Permanent Support

The court may take several factors into account when deciding whether to grant one party in a divorce spousal support. A contested divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, can help you determine which of these may apply to your situation:

  • How long the couple has been married
  • Current and potential income levels of each spouse
  • The age and health status of each spouse
  • Whether there are juvenile children involved
  • The presence of any disabilities in either spouse

If support is granted in a marriage that has lasted less than 10 years, frequently spousal support will last no more than half the length of the marriage. The judge may determine lengths of time greater or lesser than this standard at his or her discretion. For couples who have been married for longer periods of time, the court will consider many other factors in deciding the duration of spousal support. In these cases, the input of a divorce lawyer like Attorney Bernie can be invaluable.

The court may decide to issue support to a spouse without an income for the period of time that he or she might need to get the education or training to become self-sustaining. This type of rehabilitative support will come with expectations that the receiver is making good-faith efforts to better his or her situation.

For marriages that have lasted for many years, the court may order permanent spousal support if, due to age or health issues, it is unlikely one spouse will ever be able to support himself or herself. It is important to note that even permanent support can terminate if receiving spouses’ finances change drastically, they marry or choose to cohabitate with a romantic partner and of course upon their death.

What is Joint Custody?

Joint custody is a special arrangement that allows both parents to take an equal share of the responsibility of raising their child. Child custody is only possible when the divorced parents are still able to cooperate with each other, and agree on what is best for the needs of their child. Joint custody is also only awarded if both parents live in close proximity to each other: In a joint custody arrangement, the child shares an equal amount of time with both parents, so both parents need to remain in the same area.

Whatever your child custody goal, you should always contact a skilled divorce lawyer to help you weigh your options. The right child custody arrangement can keep your child happy and healthy, and will ensure they have the best future possible despite the divorce of their parents. 

At AttorneyBernie.com, we’re committed to helping you through the complicated (and sometimes painful) processes that come with a divorce, and we know that you want what’s best for your children when you fight for child custody. Reach out to an accomplished divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, and see how AttorneyBernie.com can help.

If you have plans to divorce your spouse, it’s wise to have an experienced divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA on your side. A divorce can involve many complexities, so it’s beneficial to have someone knowledgeable and experienced on your side. A lawyer can guide you through the process and prevent you from making costly mistakes.

How to Remain Civil During a Divorce

When you’re going through a divorce, it’s normal to feel a wide range of emotions. You might feel angry and hurt about how your spouse treated you during your marriage and or scared about what the future will be like. However, you should try to remain as civil as you can to make the process easier. Here are a few ways to stay civil during your divorce:

  • Take care of your physical and mental health. If you feel good physically and mentally, you’re more likely to remain civil with your spouse during your divorce.  Eat a nutritious diet, exercise regularly and get plenty of sleep. If you’re struggling emotionally, consider speaking to a mental health therapist. He or she can teach you healthy ways to cope with your emotions.
  • Look towards the future. One mistake some people make during their divorce is dwelling on the past. This doesn’t do anyone any good. If you continue to think about all the bad things your spouse did, you won’t move on and will have trouble remaining civil towards your spouse. Instead, your divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA will advise you to focus on the future.
  • Plan your conversations in advance. If you tend to get flustered when communicating with your spouse, you should consider writing down the topics you want to discuss ahead of time. Doing so may help alleviate stress and prevent you from arguing with your spouse.
  • Hire a skilled divorce lawyer. A divorce isn’t something you want to go through on your own. If you work with a reputable divorce lawyer, you can have much smoother divorce proceedings. He or she will work hard to help you get the settlement you deserve. Your lawyer can also communicate with your spouse on your behalf if you’re unable to remain civil with each other. This can take a lot of stress off your back.

How to Remain Civil During a Divorce

What Are the Biggest Issues To Discuss During a Divorce?

If you are going through a divorce, you need to work with a divorce lawyer. Even if you think the divorce is going to proceed amicably, you still need to have a lawyer who can smooth things over. There are a lot of important issues that have to be discussed when a couple is getting a divorce. That is why you should work with a professional divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, such as Attorney Bernie, who can help you. What are some of the biggest issues to discuss during a divorce?

The Division of Assets and Debt

One of the first issues that must be discussed during a divorce is the division of assets and that. You may have brought some assets or debt into the marriage with you. You might be entitled to 100 percent of those assets. Then, there might be shared property that has to be divided evenly. You need an attorney who can help you figure out what you are entitled to and what needs to be split. 

Child Custody Issues

If you have children, the divorce can become more complicated. Most of the time, the children stay together. The judge will have to decide what is in the best interest of the children. One parent may be given primary custody while the other parent may be getting visitation rights. There might even be situations where one parent may be given sole custody. You need to hire a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA who can help you navigate this important topic.

Potential Alimony Payments

Finally, it is also important to discuss potential alimony payments. These are payments that are made from one spouse to the other until the other spouse can get back on his or her feet. Sometimes, the alimony payments continue in perpetuity. There may also be situations where these payments stop if the other spouse remarries. This is another significant topic that you will need a divorce attorney to help you navigate. 

Work With a Divorce Lawyer

These are some of the biggest issues that need to be discussed if you are going through a divorce. Even though you may think you can handle the divorce on your own, it is always better to work with a lawyer who can assist you. Make sure you hire a friendly divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA, such as Attorney Bernie, who can represent your rights and defend your interests. 

If you’re getting divorced, you should schedule a consultation with a divorce lawyer in Alameda County, CA today. Please reach out to AttorneyBernie.com now.

Sit Down With Attorney Bernie to Learn More About Meeting a Client Where They Are in the Divorce Process

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