Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Disclaimer: This site and any information contained herein as frequently asked questions are intended for informational purposes and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.

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Questions About Divorce

How long does it take get divorced?

The frank answer is, this is a process.  It depends on multiple factors like: children; the extent of property to divide and the complexity of division (i.e., community vs separate property (and the definitions)); did someone get a gift from their family to make a purchase for property—real or personal; was there mingling of accounts from prior to marriage; is there domestic violence; are there “control issues”; is there a prenuptial agreement; whether parties are able to negotiate in good faith; other attorney and how they or the firm handles negotiations; will the other person be reasonable (and the other attorney); does a motion need to be filed related to any issues; are there intervening factors (i.e., family invovlment, new girl/boy friend, etc.); the personalities involved in the case; debts; and on goes the list.  This is why it is do critical to start with a consultation.

How soon can I be divorced?

The soonest date is six months from the date someone has been served with the Petition for Dissolution.  However, if there are contested issues of custody/visitation, child support, spousal support, or division of property, then your case will likely require at least one or more court hearings (the timing of which depends on the court’s availability), and it will likely take longer than six months before the divorce can be finalized.


Do we have to go to Court?

No, not if an agreement can be reached. It really does depends on the attitude of each person and how willing each person is to negotiate instead of litigation.

Keep in mind that getting divorced can take many different paths from highly contention with lots of courts appearances (i.e., litigated divorce with court) to mediating a quick resolution with no court (i.e., mediated divorce) to even resolving on your own with an attorney providing legal review.  Other options include a collaborative divorce, attempting to settle amongst attorney and the parties, or using an independent person to help resolve issues as you can see from reviewing our services

Can’t I just transfer my assets to a friend or family member before I file so the trustee won’t “liquidate” those assets?

No.  You must disclose any such transfers to your trustee and the trustee can sue these people to recover the assets you gave away.  Failure to disclose this is a crime.  We highly suggest talking with a lawyer before you take any steps like this.


Can I have the other party pay my fees?

It can be requested, but is not guaranteed.


Can I take them off the health insurance?

No, there are automatic temporary restraining orders in place that prohibit you from doing so.

Can I meet with a female attorney?


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Getting Started With Us

Do I primarily communicate with attorney or paralegal?

Both are equally involved and function as a team.  We encourage clients to contact your assigned paralegal first as their hourly fee is much lower than attorney’s and in many cases can immediately address your questions.  If your assigned paralegal cannot take care of it, your communication is immediately passed on to attorney.

How long does the consultation last?

Usually 30 minutes, but it might vary depending on circumstances.

Are your attorneys available (on this date or time)?

We are happy to check our calendars and see what is available, so get in touch with us.  Obviously, we will have to learn more about what you need and by when, but we are happy to figure that out with you and see if our calendars can coordinate.

Do I have to make an appointment or can I talk to an attorney on the phone?

Our experience shows us that meeting in person is typically the most effective approach for all parties and best way to address things, unless you are out of town or cannot get into the office based on schedule.

How long have you been practicing?

To answer specifcally, the firm has been around since 1978.  The most effective answer is:  It depends on which attorney you are inquiring about as our attorneys range from younger talent of eight years to more seasoned veterans with over 20 years.  View attorneys and their bios.

Can I meet with a female attorney?


Do you have someone who speaks Spanish?


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Divorce Costs

What form of payments do you take?

Online, you can pay using Discover, Visa, MasterCard or American Express..  Or if you prefer we accept checks, cashier’s checks, and cash.

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How much is the consultation?

No charge for the first 30-minutes the based on the attorney’s rate for any time after that.  On average, an initial consultation lasts between 30-minute to 1-hour.

How much is the retainer?

The attorney will quote based on the individual case as each case is different in it’s complexity, state of relationship of divorcing parties, and many other variables.

Will my initial retainer cover everything?

Not usually, as it depends on how contentious your case is and the complexity of it.

What happens if my case ends and there is still retainer money left?

Any monies not used will be refunded during the process of closing your case.

How much do your attorneys charge per hour?

Each attorney’s hourly rate is dependent on their years of experience, special qualifications such as CLS-F, success rate and several other variables.  In general, attorney rates range from $350 per hour to $600 per hour, which are in alignment with the San Diego market.  That said, we typically suggest taking advantage of the no charge 30-minute consultation to see what is involved with your family law matter to help give you a more precise answer for your unique situation.

Our Location

Where are you located?

Our address is 2755 Jefferson Street, Suite 200, Carlsbad, CA 92008.  Map & Directions.  We have a free parking lot with ample parking.

Is there parking?

We have a free parking lot with ample parking at our 2755 Jefferson Street, Suite 200, Carlsbad, CA 92008 location.  View Map & Directions

Still need help? Send us a note!

For any other questions, please write us completing an inquiry form or call us on 858-720-8250.