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Cathleen Elisabeth Norton
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Cathleen Norton’s Answers

653 total


  • How is child support determined in Calif?

    If I have to pay child support is it based solely on my income or both our incomes (spouse as well.)

    Cathleen’s Answer

    Both incomes are included in calculating guideline child support.

    Child Support is based on many factors but the 2 most important ones are: the relative income of each parent and the amount of time each spends with the child(ren). I am including links below which will explain child support in more depth.

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  • Is divorce easy after being separated for over 10 years?

    Got married in 94 and separated in 97 and child support was established got only two more years to pay. I bought a home in 2008. Is my property going to be included in the divorce case? I also have been living with someone for 11 years & have two ...

    Cathleen’s Answer

    Yikes! Your divorce should have been finalized a long time ago. Then it most definitely would have been simple. If you and your spouse agree to all of the issues, then you can hire a family law attorney to draft a Stipulated Judgment for you--and it will be easy.

    If you haven't been paying alimony, or spousal support, until now, then there is a good argument against ordering it now. If other party is cohabiting with someone of the opposite sex, then there is also a good argument against awarding spousal support.

    If you bought the home in 2008, I'd guess it's upside down in value. If I'm right, then there isn't any equity to fight over. If there is equity in the house, then yes, it is worth it to hire an experienced family law attorney to assist you. My prediction is that you will ultimately win on the issue, but you've unknowingly complicated things because you, like a lot of people, didn't deal with this issue before now. The longer you wait, the harder it is to unravel things. :) Good luck.

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  • Is it worth requesting child support?

    CP has full legal and physical custody, NCP was just awarded supervised visitations after a period of no contact with child. NCP was requested to pay for 1/2 medical expenses starting 02/12 and has failed to do so. Both CP and NCP claim to be u...

    Cathleen’s Answer

    May be a waste of time and money, unless you'd like to request a "seek work" order or believe there is undisclosed income, etc. You can always open a case with Child Support Services and they will help you for free. Good luck to you.

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  • I filed for divorce and included my fl160 I forgot to include household items such as furniture. How can I amend this ?

    My husband and I have been married for a year and half. We do not have a lot of debt and agree on the separation of property. I am agreeing to take more of the debt. Will this be rejected

    Cathleen’s Answer

    Since this is an uncontested divorce, you are best served by hiring an experienced family law attorney to draft a Stipulated Judgment for you. It should be relatively inexpensive, and will save you a lot of headaches trying to figure things out on your own. I am including links below which explain the divorce process and what needs to be done in order to finalize it. Good luck to you.

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  • Can my ex-wife go after assets obtained after the divorce?

    My ex is threatening, 3 years after the divorce, to file for alimony. I've had very little income this year and have been living off the sale of my mom's house. She passed away last year and we sold the house this year. The inheritance was 2 and a...

    Cathleen’s Answer

    The short answer to your question is "no" she cannot go after that money. There are more subtle issues raised by your question, and for a more comprehensive answer, I suggest you consult with an experienced family law attorney who will be able to advise you based on the specifics of your case. Good luck.

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  • For a long term marriage in California where there is alimony involved is the alimony usually for life (given no remarriage)?

    Short term marriages have alimony set at half the length of the marriage but for a 24year marriage for what length do the courts usually use for alimony to be paid?

    Cathleen’s Answer

    Absent an agreement between the parties, the court will typically "reserve jurisdiction" on the issue of spousal support in long term marriages. It is not usually in your best interest to enter into any agreement to terminate the court's jurisdiction over the issue of spousal support. I am including links below which will help you educate yourself on the issue of "permanent" spousal support. This is a very complicated area of family law, and you would be well-served to have competent counsel represent you so you don't make any unknowing mistakes. Good luck!

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  • Question about joint custody separate residences

    I have 2 children by the same father and we all live together. The father and I have discussed him moving out. Every time it is brought up he states he will get himself a studio apartment as he expects the kids to stay 100% of the time with me. ...

    Cathleen’s Answer

    Before you make any hasty decisions about custody, I strongly suggest that you speak with an experienced family law attorney to explain the interrelationship between custody and child support. I am including links below that will help you begin learning some of the basics. Good luck.

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  • Does anything else need to be done with the minute order to make it a judgment?

    Child visitation dispute, I have full physical and legal custody, the judge awarded supervised visits to the NCP and requested parenting classes. We both had lawyers representing us. I don't want to ask them this question if I do not have to (si...

    Cathleen’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Typically, the judge will ask the prevailing party to draft an Order After Hearing. A Minute Order is not sufficient as it often leaves out important information (Supervised visits with who? Professional or Non-Professional? How many parenting classes? Reporting requirement? As a prerequisite to unmonitored visits?)

    No one likes to pay their attorney, I get it. But in this case, you've come this far and your attorney is in the best position to draft the Order After Hearing for you. It really is necessary, and now is not the time to sub him/her out of the case. Good luck.

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  • What is the proper POS form to use when serving a RFO in Calif?

    I had a friend serve my spouses lawyer the FL320 RFO using the FL-330 as the proof of service. I s this the correct POS to use?

    Cathleen’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Yes, if the RFO was personally served, that form is fine--make sure you had it served 16 court days prior to the hearing. :) If you served the RFO by mail, you could have used the FL-335. Now, you just need to prepare to reply to her Responsive Declaration, if/when she serves it. If financials are at issue, make sure you file and serve a current Income and Expense Declaration. Good luck.

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  • If community property has Life insurance and married for 20+ Years. now going through divorce. Do I need keep spouse beneficiary

    If community property has Life insurance and married for 20+ Years. now going through divorce. Do I need keep spouse beneficiary even after divorce.

    Cathleen’s Answer

    You need to keep spouse as beneficiary until further order of court. Since you are at the beginning stages of your divorce, I am including links below which may be of some help. Good luck.

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