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Westminster Law Blog

The right type of parenting plan for a family after divorce

Deciding what will happen to the children is one of the most difficult aspects of a ending a marriage. It is not always easy for two California parents to work together to parent their children, but for many, co-parenting is a beneficial option. This type of parenting plan can provide stability and security for kids and allow them to maintain strong relationships with both parents after a divorce is final. To make this arrangement work, parents have to be willing to communicate and work together.

Co-parenting can be a struggle, but it's worthwhile for many families. The foundation of a good parenting arrangement is the willingness of both parties to ensure they keep the best interests of the kids as the main priority. This does not, however, require that both parents agree on everything all the time. Parents can disagree or not even like each other and still make co-parenting work. 

Divorce's impact on non-probate transfers

We have detailed on this blog in the past what might happen if you fail to update your will following your divorce. Your will determines the disposition of any assets that are subject to administration during the probate process. As many of those that we here at The Law Firm of Lan Quoc Nguyen & Associates have been surprised to learn, however, there are also often assets that you may own that are not subject to probate. How might these be handled, then, if they are not addressed after you get a divorce? 

Examples of assets and property not subject to probate may include: 

  • Trust property
  • Retirement account benefits
  • Life insurance or brokerage accounts benefits (where someone along with you is named as a beneficiary)
  • Property or assets held in joint tenancy 
  • Assets designated as payable or transferable to beneficiaries upon your death

Man killed, couple injured in collision near Angels Camp

One's first impulse after having been involved in a car accident in Westminster may not be to consider legal action. Rather, they typically are more concerned about dealing with any injuries they might have sustained than trying to assign blame. Yet ultimately, the impact of those injuries (coupled with the damages inflicted on their vehicle) may leave them with little choice but to seek compensation from the parties that caused their collisions. Some might think that such action is purely vindictive, as auto insurance distributions are meant to cover the costs of an accident. Yet in many cases, such payments are not enough to cover one's accident expenses. 

This is particularly true in cases involving high-speed collisions, as demonstrated in a recent accident that occurred near Angels Camp. A Camaro driven by a couple from the Bay Area collided with a Mustang being operated by another Bay Area resident. While authorities are not sure exactly how fast the Camaro was traveling when the accident occurred, the impact was severe enough to send the Mustang spinning off the highway. Initial reports say that the driver of the Mustang pulled out in front of the Camaro from a private driveway. The couple in the Camaro sustained injuries in the accident, while the driver of the Mustang was killed. 

Do you want to pass on values and traditions to your child?

If you come from a Vietnamese background, you likely have many traditions and ideals within your family that you hope to pass on to your children. You may talk to your parents about things they have taught you and the values that you hold, and you may picture yourself having similar conversations with your new child.

Having these ideas can be exciting as a new parent, and because you want to set your child on the right path, you likely also want to ensure that your child will have what he or she needs in the event of your passing. Though you may not want to think about your demise so soon after welcoming a child, creating an estate plan is vital for new California parents.

What are the different types of alimony in California?

As you prepare to enter into divorce proceedings in Westminster, you may find that there will be no shortage of people prepared to offer you what might be seen as legal advice. Yet unless these people have a proven knowledge of domestic relations law, you should take what they say with the proverbial grain of salt. For example, you might be told to expect to be awarded alimony if you were not the primary income earner in your marital home. Yet alimony is not awarded in every divorce case; rather it is only reserved for those scenarios where one might have difficulty sustaining the same standard of living they enjoyed while married in the immediate aftermath of their divorce. 

Furthermore, according to Section 4320 of the California Family Code, an award of alimony is only meant to support you to the point at which you can become self-sustaining. To fulfill that purpose, the state allows for five different types of alimony. These include: 

  • Temporary alimony: Temporary alimony is just that: spousal support that is only meant to last for a predetermined period of time.
  • Rehabilitative alimony: This type of alimony obligation is meant to support you while you return to school or receive vocational training, with the end goal being to secure gainful employment on your own. 
  • Reimbursement alimony: This is compensation paid to you if you paid for your ex-spouse's schooling or professional training.
  • Lump-sum alimony: This type of alimony offers you a one-time payment to help you to financially transition into your post-divorce life.
  • Permanent alimony: This is a spousal support obligation whose term is left indefinite

Changing your will after a divorce

It is important to begin the estate planning process early on in your adult life (as you cannot anticipate if an accident or sudden illness cuts your life short). Yet one of the drawbacks of creating a will so early is that you are almost certain to go through life-changing events that may impact how you want your estate to be dispersed. For example, many come to us here at The Law Firm of Lan Quoc Nguyen & Associates in a panic due to loved ones having died without updating their wills following their divorces.

In this scenario, the fear is that if you leave your ex-spouse as part of your estate plans, they will inherit whatever you designated for them prior to your divorce. Yet you need not be concerned about this; the law anticipates the potential for such oversights and has enacted legislation to deal with them.

Relocating with the kids after a divorce

Many in Westminster may find it difficult to immediately move on with their lives following their divorces. For them, moving away may seem to offer the best chance at opening the next chapter of their lives. Indeed, according to information shared by Move.org, a change in marital status ranks among the most common reasons why people move. 

Yet what if the one wanting to move has children with their ex-spouse? A relocation (and the increased distance that it would put between the ex-spouse and the kids) would almost certainly put a strain on their relationship. This prompts the question of how one in such a situation can move away (with their children in tow)? 

San Luis Obispo crash kills 3 people

Car accidents are an all-too-common occurrence. Thus, it is not unreasonable to assume that many in Westminster will eventually have to deal with one. Unfortunately, people cannot control the severity of the accident they are involved. While a simple fender-bender might be easily resolved, high-speed collisions  can cause damage and devastation that leave people dealing with massive financial and emotional burdens. In such cases, compensation sought from those responsible is not meant to be a form or revenge, but rather a needed source of assistance in dealing with the struggles that accident victims and their families may face. 

Even in cases where the drivers responsible for accidents are killed in their collisions, victims might still need compensation from them. That might ultimately be the outcome of a recent accident that occurred in San Luis Obispo County. A truck traveling westbound on a local road was struck head-on after a vehicle coming from the opposite direction suddenly crossed into its lane. While the driver of ther struck survived the crash, his passenger did not. The occupants of the vehicle that caused the collision also lost their lives. While an investigation into the incident is still ongoing, law enforcement authorities believe that alcohol may have been involved. 

Who should divorced parents talk to as the school year starts?

Once their summer vacations come to a close, many California students have a hard time going back to school. Some struggle with no longer being able to sleep in an extra three hours, while others are overwhelmed by the amount of homework and extracurricular activities they have to come back to.

Children of recently divorced parents can have an even harder time adjusting to their school schedules. They may still be coping with the separation and can struggle with their academic performances and socializing with their classmates. As one of their parents, you know that unfortunately you can no longer spend as much time with them for the next nine months. You may be able to help your child overcome their negative emotions by speaking to following people they will interact with:

California 2-car crash kills human and canine occupants

It can be difficult to remember that car accidents do not necessarily only cause harm to human beings. Involvement in a car accident can cause injury to dogs and other pets as well. Last Wednesday, a two-car collision in Lancaster, California, resulted in the deaths of four human occupants, three from one vehicle and two from another. In addition, the crash also killed two dogs that were riding in one of the automobiles at the time of the crash. 

The accident happened approximately at midday when the driver of one of the two vehicles, who was transporting two dogs but no human passengers, reportedly ran a red light and crashed into the other vehicle. Despite the fact that the driver of the first auto was wearing a seatbelt, he later died at the hospital. The two dogs riding in the first vehicle were an Australian cattle dog and a Siberian husky puppy. Authorities determined that it was necessary to euthanize the Siberian husky puppy after taking it to an animal shelter. The Australian cattle dog died at the scene. 

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