Divorce Attorney in San Diego
Since 1980, Attorney John A. Delisi has provided clients with legal representation in divorce cases in San Diego County as well as in Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties. Our law office welcomes clients from throughout Southern California. Divorce, which is also referred to as Dissolution, is the formal judicial process to terminate a marriage in California. The Superior Court of the State of California, in all counties throughout California, has subject matter jurisdiction to lawfully terminate marriages (as well as Domestic Partnerships). California is a ‘no-fault’ jurisdiction which means Petitioner is not required to allege grounds to terminate the marriage, such as adultery or abandonment. Petitioner simply needs to plead ‘irreconcilable differences’.
To be eligible as a Petitioner, the party who files the petition, one must be 18 years of age or older and free of legal restraints from executing legal documents. One younger than 18 years of age may be a Petitioner if emancipated by law or has a Guardian Ad Litem appointed by a court to pursue the case on his/her behalf. An example of a legal restraint which might be a legal impediment to one being eligible to file a divorce petition is a court order declaring a person to be legally insane or incompetent.
In California, Petitioner must also be a resident for the previous three months of the county in which the divorce action is to be filed and for the previous six months of the State of California. However, in divorce cases only, Petitioner may plead that the other party, referred to as the Respondent, has satisfied the residency requirements. The Superior Court does not have personal jurisdiction over the Respondent until he/she has been served copies of the divorce papers, in particular, the Summons and Petition. Once Service of Process has been accomplished, the Superior Court has the authority to terminate the marriage on or after six months following the date Respondent was served.
Divorce is similar to lawsuits in general. They involve litigation and if not settled or dismissed, will go to trial. Divorce cases in San Diego County, whether Downtown San Diego, South Bay, East County, or North County, settle approximately 80% of the time. The parties’ rights and liabilities in Divorce cases are primarily described in the California Family Code as well as in pertinent case law. Additionally, the California Business and Professions Code, Civil Code, Code of Civil Procedure, Corporations Code, Education Code, Evidence Code, Government Code, Penal Code, Probate Code, Vehicle Code, Welfare And Institutions Code, United States Code, Code of Federal Regulations, Convention On The Civil Aspects Of International Child Abduction (Hague Convention), California Rules of Court, and local Rules of Court are applicable to divorce cases in California. Summary Dissolution is the divorce process for consenting parties in short, childless marriages with limited assets and debts and no claims for spousal support. Collaborative Divorce is available in California as an alternative to the time-consuming and costly process divorce can be to many parties. All of the issues raised in the pleadings of each party, such as termination of the marriage, child custody and visitation, spousal support, attorney’s fees and costs, and division of community property assets and debts, are to be settled by the parties. If not settled, the judge of the Superior Court will decide such issues after trial. Jury trials are not available in Family Court.
Attorney Delisi has represented clients in marriages of as little as 1 week duration to as long as 47 years and will provide clients with aggressive and competent legal representation.