When you get married, you hope your relationship will last forever. Then, life happens. You and your spouse grow and change, sometimes in different ways. Your priorities drift, or you learn you never had the same priorities to begin with. They make mistakes. So do you. You search for ways to mend the relationship but do not find them. Sometimes, you realize divorce is the answer.
Whether that realization comes after years of struggle or in a moment of startling clarity, beginning the divorce process can be intimidating and stressful. The best place to start is by consulting an experienced divorce lawyer.
Deciding whom to hire is no easy task. You need to know what to look for and that your attorney can provide the services you need. At the Law Offices of Ali Yousefi, P.C., we understand how much is at stake in a divorce. Our San Francisco divorce lawyer, Ali Yousefi, brings years of experience and compassion to every divorce we handle. We guide you through divorce to the other side, helping you build a new foundation for your future.
What Do You Want from Your Divorce Lawyer?
You can file for divorce yourself. However, navigating the law alone is a difficult and intimidating process. Hiring a divorce attorney can be daunting, especially if you have never needed the services of a lawyer before. You may ask friends and family for referrals or search for terms like “divorce attorney near me.” You do your due diligence. Divorce is stressful, especially when children are involved. You do not want to hire just any of the divorce lawyers out there.
But how do you know whom to hire? Look for an attorney who guides you but allows you to remain in the driver’s seat. Ensure your attorney has experience with different types of divorces and a deep knowledge of related laws and procedures. You want an attorney who is dedicated to your case and treats every client like the individual they are. You will be relying on your attorney through what is likely one of the most stressful events in your life, so you also need an attorney who is compassionate and understanding.
Ali Yousefi is all those things and more. He is passionate about helping you get what you need to rebuild your life after divorce.
What Services Do We Offer?
We handle all kinds of divorces, from simple splits where the parties agree on everything to contentious battles where the parties fight out every term to the last. Under California law, you can get a divorce if you and your spouse have “irreconcilable differences” or if you or your spouse permanently lack the legal capacity to make decisions.
Divorces are considered either contested or uncontested, depending on whether you and your spouse dispute any issues before a judge. Both types of divorce require determining how you and your spouse will care for shared children, how you will divide debts and assets, and whether one spouse will support the other financially post-divorce.
In an uncontested divorce, you and your spouse resolve your divorce without going to court. Uncontested divorces save time and money, and many couples can settle their divorces without stepping foot in a courtroom. With an experienced divorce attorney guiding you, even the most complicated divorces can be uncontested.
Throughout the uncontested divorce process, we advise you of your rights and responsibilities regarding debt and asset division, shared children, and financial or legal obligations post-divorce. We can help you determine what to ask for, then negotiate on your behalf to fight to get it. Depending on the circumstances, we may advise you to attend divorce mediation, where a neutral mediator helps you and your spouse work through any sticking points. If you attend mediation, we help you prepare and ensure you are treated fairly.
One thing we cannot do is represent both you and your spouse in the same divorce proceeding. Even if you and your spouse are on the same page about everything, your best interests can conflict. A lawyer cannot fight for the best deal for you if they are obligated to also fight for the best deal for your spouse.
If you and your spouse cannot agree through negotiation or mediation, you can pursue a contested divorce. In a contested divorce, you and your spouse present your points of contention to a family law judge, who decides how to resolve your contested divorce issues. If you and your spouse agree on some things, you can request the judge decide only the remaining issues.
Although uncontested divorces work for many couples, there are some circumstances where a contested divorce may be best. If your spouse has a history of abuse or is utterly unwilling to cooperate, a contested divorce provides the force of law negotiations do not. You may seek a contested divorce if you cannot locate your spouse. You may also turn to a contested divorce as a last resort when you and your spouse cannot agree despite your best efforts.
We are there for you every step of the way during contested divorces. We interview witnesses, prepare case strategies, negotiate settlements, prepare you for trial, and represent you at trial. Navigating a divorce is never easy, and navigating a contested divorce is even harder. With our assistance, you do not have to go it alone.
Sometimes, issues arise that are related to but legally distinct from divorce. For example, if there was a history of domestic violence, one spouse may seek a restraining order against the other during the separation process. Circumstances may change after a divorce, and you may need to modify orders on spousal support, child custody, visitation, or child support. Or your ex-spouse may fail to follow those orders, and you may need to request the court’s assistance to enforce them. Our firm handles all these other aspects of the divorce process and more. We want to help you protect what needs protecting in your life.
What is the Divorce Process in California?
The divorce process in California is a structured legal procedure that allows married couples to legally end their marriage. To initiate the process, one spouse must file a Petition for Divorce, also known as a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, in the county where they reside. California follows a no-fault divorce system, meaning that neither party is required to prove wrongdoing to obtain a divorce. Once the petition is filed, the other spouse is served with divorce papers and has a specific period to respond. The next steps typically involve the exchange of financial information, negotiations on property and asset division, child custody arrangements (if applicable), and the resolution of spousal support and child support issues. If the spouses can reach an agreement, their divorce can proceed as an uncontested divorce, which is generally faster and less expensive. If no agreement can be reached, the case may go to court, where a judge will make decisions on unresolved issues. Finally, the court will issue a Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage, officially ending the marriage. The entire process can take several months or longer, depending on various factors and complexities.
Why Choose the Law Offices of Ali Yousefi, P.C.?
There are many divorce lawyers in the bay area, but you do not want to hire just any lawyer. You need a compassionate lawyer who understands your struggles and is passionate about helping you through this difficult transition. You also need a lawyer who knows the law and has the experience to fight for your best outcome. Our award-winning San Francisco divorce lawyer, Ali Yousefi, may be just the compassionate, experienced attorney you need. Reach out today to discuss what we can do for you.