Friday, January 18, 2013

What's New in California Family Law?

2013 brings with it a host of new Family Laws. Even if you are self represented, the court expects you to know the law. Below is a list of several (but not all) new laws that may be essential in your Divorce, Domestic Partnership Dissolution, Child Custody or other Family Law Matter.

CHILD CUSTODY:

  • Your child's passport: Family Code section 2040(a)(1) is applicable upon filing of the Petition and restrains a parent from applying for a new or replacement passport for a minor child unless you obtain the consent of the other parent or a court order. 
  • Prescribed Controlled Substances: Family Code section 3011(d) now requires the court to not just consider a parent's habitual or continual abuse of alcohol or illegal controlled substances -- but to also consider the habitual or continual abuse of prescribed controlled substances by either parent in determining the best interest of the child in a custody determination. 
  • Immigration Status: Family Code section 3040(b) now states that the immigration status of a parent, legal guardian or relative shall not disqualify the parent, guardian or relative from receiving custody. 
  • Child Concealment: According to Family Code section 3134.5, a person's assets may be frozen if they have unlawfully detained or concealed a child. 
SPOUSAL SUPPORT:
  • Violent Sexual Felonies: Family Code section 4324.5 prohibits an award of spousal support to the spouse who has been convicted of a sexually violent felony against the other spouse. 
There are many other new and amended Family Laws. To review other laws that may be relevant to your matter, the California Family Code can be found here.

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