Month: October 2018

Summary Dissolution Vs. Divorce

Summary Dissolution Vs. Divorce

Getting a divorce is not as simple as it appears to be; the confusion usually springs when terms like “Divorce,” “Dissolution of Marriage,” and “Summary Dissolution” come into play. While they all mean the ending of a marriage, there are a few systematic differences between the terms that make all the difference.

Here are a few differences and similarities in meaning you may encounter in the state of California:

  • “Divorce” and “Dissolution of Marriage” are the same, with the terms usually used interchangeably. Further, in California, which is a “no-fault” state, blame cannot be assigned to either spouse
  • “Summary Dissolution” is a shorter, and easier way of ending a marriage than a ”Dissolution of Marriage”/ “Divorce”

Closer Look at Summary Dissolution

So, with “Summary Dissolution” being an easier option to end a relationship (i.e., marriage), why isn’t everyone doing it? Similarly to getting an annulment, there are a few requirements that need to be met for a “Summary Dissolution” to take place.

Requirements for Summary Dissolution:

  1. Both partners want to end the domestic partnership or marriage, usually due to irreconcilable differences
  2. The wife may not be with any children when you file for summary dissolution; you don’t have any biological or adopted children together under the age of 18
  3. You cannot have been married longer than five years
  4. Neither spouse owns land, buildings or any similar property. Having a lease to your name is okay as long as it does not contain an option to purchase
  5. Since the beginning of your marriage, neither of the spouses has incurred more than $6,000 in debt. Car payments can be excluded
  6. You and your spouse have accumulated no more than $38,000 in community property while being together in marriage or domestic partnership. You have to include any deferred compensation here but can exclude “property” like cars. “Deferred compensation” are things like retirement benefits, a 401k, and similar
  7. Neither spouse has accumulated more than $38,000 in separate property during the marriage or has owned more than this amount before entering a marriage. It includes any inheritance or gift you got during the marriage
  8. You are waiving your rights to spousal support
  9. Once the court begins the summary dissolution, you must waive your right to appeal
  10. You or your spouse must have been a resident of the County the divorce is being filed in for at least three months, and a California resident for at least six months
  11. Both spouses agree on the way belongings and debts will be divided; therefore, both sides are open to dividing their community property by signing a property settlement agreement. Your lawyer should get all the paperwork for you and your spouse to sign for the contract to be effective. It usually includes bills of sale, title certificates, and other transfers
  12. Both spouses agree to have read and understood Summary Dissolution Information; the California Courts provide this booklet

Once all these requirements are met, you and your spouse can file for a Summary Dissolution

Unlike Summary Dissolution, filing for divorce doesn’t include as many specifics. Read the most common nine steps to getting a divorce to gain a better insight into what getting a divorce entails. Also, if you are interested in knowing more about divorce, annulment, and legal separation, or how to choose the right divorce process, you can find all the information at Platinum Paralegal. Further, you can contact us for any additional information you are interested in.


5 Ways to Spot and Hire a Good Paralegal

No matter how dedicated you are to your business or how personally you take what you do, the truth is – you can’t do everything yourself, nor you should (hey, burnout, we’re looking at you!). So, if you’ve got plenty of things to do, and you often find yourself dozing off in the middle of a proposal you are working on, this is the perfect time to start looking for a good paralegal to hire.

Good help is complicated to find, and you don’t want to risk someone’s inexperience or their unethical behavior to ruin your business. So, go through these quick, easy tips that’ll make hiring a paralegal much easier:

Do They Have the Necessary Credentials?

The first step to considering your candidate’s application is confirming they have all the necessary credentials. You want to be on the outlook for a certificate in paralegal studies, or an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. The first step is to decide what you need in a paralegal, and then start the search.

Can They Follow Directions?

Start quizzing potential employees right away; while sitting down for an interview is potentially the best way to see if you’ve got a fitting candidate before you, why not start immediately with the job posting? Be very specific about what you are looking for and be clear about the instructions regarding the type of employee you are looking to get. Also, include specifics you’d like to get with the resume, such as cover letters, attachments, recommendations from the previous job(s) or salary expectations. When you receive submissions, eliminate applications that didn’t comply with your instructions. If your potential candidates don’t know how to follow instructions on a job application, you don’t want to hire them, at all.

Can They Write?

A job application along with a candidate’s resume says a lot about that candidate’s literacy. So, take a look at your candidate’s resume, cover letter, and motivation letter (if they sent one). Are they well written? Is the formatting fitting? Do the documents look presentable? Being a good paralegal requires attention to detail, computer literacy, and excellent writing skills: their submissions will tell you more than you can imagine.

Do They Have Good Practical Experience?

Practical experience plays a huge role in hiring paralegals, and it’s usually up to you to decide which way you want to go. Are you looking into hiring someone who’s been around the block? Or, you’d instead work with a newbie that you can mold? Choose someone compatible with your requirements for the position.

Are They a Team Player?

Being great at what you do is lovely; but, being able to fit into a team and work with them for the same goal is what makes a good paralegal. Look for clues on the resume that point at this candidate’s engagement in both solitary and team pursuits, and weigh in on which one prevails. You want someone who can fit in, and play along.

Hiring a new member of the team is never easy, but these five tips will hopefully help you narrow down the candidates to a great pool. If you need any more advice on the most efficient ways to hire a good paralegal, contact Platinum Paralegals – we’ll be happy to talk with you!