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Jessica Byulnim Cha

Jessica Cha’s Answers

16 total


  • Bifurcation of a Divorce

    I was married for less than 4 years and filed for divorce about a year and a half ago. I am the petitioner. I am an above average wage earner. We have no children. My wife is receiving temporary support with no income imputed to her. She has made ...

    Jessica’s Answer

    I agree with the attorney's advice above. Additionally, I strongly suggest you hire a lawyer to get this wrapped up ASAP. The facts of your marriage are not complicated and a competent attorney can help you prevent any further delay.

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  • Who owns the assets?

    I opened up a p2p lending club account prior to marriage, transferred all of it to a join investment account with my wife on there. Do we both own it? If I removed her name, would I be the only one who owned it then?

    Jessica’s Answer

    Your question presents complicated financial issues. I do not know anything about P2P lending but there are some general California family law principles you should be aware of. Any money earned and any accounts open prior to marriage is considered separate property. Any money earned or any accounts open during the marriage is considered community property. If all the money in the P2P account was earned prior to marriage it would all be separate property. If there was money earned in the P2P account after marriage, that portion would be community property even though it's in the separate property account. If you opened an investment account with your wife during marriage, the account would be community property. Removing her name from the account does not change the inherent character of the account. The account is community property. That being said, you may be entitled to a reimbursement of the separate property money that was used to fund the investment and growth the growth of investment account resulting from the separate property contribution; however, there may be an issue whether or not you intended that P2P to be a gift to the community. Your fact pattern presents a complicated financial question and I recommend you consult with a family law attorney who may advise you to also consult with a forensic account that specializes in family law since here may be additional details not contained in your question that could result in varying advice.

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  • What are my rights as a mother with kids if I'm not married to their Father ? He is biological Father on the birth certificate

    Me and my partner splitting after 7years. We have two boys 2 years old. My concern is how to make sure he does not take them away from me, how do I get full legal custody, and if there is a way to file for child support ? He does not have any ba...

    Jessica’s Answer

    It does not matter that you are not married to the father of your children. As parents both of you have legal rights to the children. You will have to file a request with the court for orders for custody and visitation in order to have an order from the court clearly defining each of your rights. I don't know if he signed an acknowledgment of paternity at the hospital when the children were born, so I cannot tell you if you can do it as a regular request to the court or if you are going to have to do it under a parentage action. Read the information provided in the link and you should have the information you need to get you started.

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  • Filing for child custody while attending dependency court.

    Im currently going to dependency court because the mother of my child tested positive for drugs. In their usual fashion DCFS turned against me also although at the time it was debateable if the child was even mine and I had absolutely no access t...

    Jessica’s Answer

    You must cooperate and do everything that DCFS wants you to do even if you do not agree with their recommendations or findings. You really do not have a choice. If you want a fighting chance for custody/visitation/access to your child you have to conduct yourself as if cooperating with DCFS is the only way it will happen for you...because it is. You need to understand that the sole purpose of DCFS is to protect the child and do what is best for the child regardless of the feelings of the parents. I suggest reading through the link I provided to help you better understand what is going on. You do have a right to represent you in these proceedings, if you cannot afford to hire one privately you can ask the court to appoint an attorney for you. I highly do not recommend trying to do this on your own.

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  • Mandatory Settlement Conference, Declaration and Disclosure not received from spouse. What are my options? both pro per

    Just found by checking online that spouse had last month filed a Declaration Regarding Service of Declaration and Disclosure and requested a MSC for which the court had set a date, 5 weeks from today. I have not received any such docume...

    Jessica’s Answer

    It is hard to answer your question because there are many pieces of missing information. I do not know if you have made an appearance in the case or if you are letting it go by default but that is a question that must be answered first. If both parties have appeared in a case, both parties are legally required to exchange preliminary declarations of disclosure and file that declaration with the court. If the case is proceeding by default, the active party in the case much file the preliminary declaration of disclosure and file that declaration with the court. A MSC is a mandatory step in the case and cannot be dismissed. I would strongly urge you to review the self-help information in the Riverside Superior Court website and consult with an attorney if you do not understand how to move to the next step. http://www.riverside.courts.ca.gov/selfhelp/fl_divorce.shtml

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  • Can I move out of the country w/my daughter if I have full custody?Or do I need my ex’s permission?What’s considered abandonment

    I’m getting divorced & I have full custody (both physical & legal) of my daughter.My ex is only allowed supervised visitation with a professional due to his known drug use.He hasn't bothered to request any visits.He didn’t show up for mediation or...

    Jessica’s Answer

    If you have a permanent order for sole legal and physical custody you have the presumptive right to move away with your daughter. You need to first make 100% sure that you in fact have a permanent order and not a temporary order. Custody can always be modified until the child reaches the age of majority so permanent does not equal forever. Since the father still has a right to bring an action in court to modify custody, you can't just take unilateral action to move with your daughter. If you think your ex will give you permission to move with the child, I suggest you have an agreement in writing with notarized signatures specifically spelling the terms of his consent. I recommend you hire an attorney to help you with this. If your ex is not willing to give you the type of consent needed to avoid future problems, you will need to file a Request for Move Away Orders to obtain an order from the court permitting you to move away with your daughter. IF you have a permanent order for legal and physical custody, it will be up to the father to make his case to the court why you should not move away with your daughter. My answer to this question may seem straight forward but move away cases are rarely that simple. I would highly recommend you consult with an attorney to discuss the specific details of your case regardless of the path you ultimately decide on. Under no circumstance should you just move with your daughter to another country without the court's approval. If you do, you may be dealing with much bigger issues that will be even more difficult to resolve (namely international parental kidnapping).

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  • An order directed to a party in open court on the record in the presence of that party, can it be enforced if not on min order?

    Judge gives party specific directive, twice, to check messages re child, in family court. Two different occasions. Party refuses to do it. Can the other party present to the judge content of court order? Especially when this was the cause of accus...

    Jessica’s Answer

    There are a couple pieces of information missing in your question, but I will try to answer as best as possible. Typically when attorneys appear in family court and orders are given by the judge, the lawyers will prepare a "findings and order after hearing". There are time constraints on preparing a findings and order after hearing but there is also some wiggle room if it's not done in a timely manner. There is also a requirement that your proposed findings and order after hearing is exchanged with the opposing side to give them time to review and agree/disagree. You can look at California Rule of Court 5.125 regarding the specific requirements. http://www.courts.ca.gov/cms/rules/index.cfm?title=five&linkid=rule5_125 The findings and order after hearing is a form document that formalizes all the judges orders and findings into a single document that the judge signs and has stamped/filed with the court. I don't know if the judge in your case gave specific orders or just told the party that he/she should do something. I am also not sure when this hearing took place. My suggestion would be to get a copy of the minute order and order a copy of the transcript. If you are able to get a free consultation with a lawyer or are able to get some assistance from legal aide, a knowledgeable attorney should be able to quickly assist you with putting together a findings and order after hearing. It is possible that the judge merely made a strong suggestion on the record, which cannot be made into an order of the court without filing a request for order. Here is the self-help link from the LA Superior Court website http://www.lacourt.org/selfhelp/divorceorseparation/SH_DS001.aspx . Here is a link to the findings and order form http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/fl340.pdf you may need additional attachments, which you can find on this site as well.

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  • Should I sign a post nuptial agreement after 5 years of marriage? I worry it will just make it easy to get rid of me.

    Married 5 years. Spouse is wealthy, I'm not. We signed/notarized a prenup (at his request) by ourselves before marriage. It gave me a lump sum (6% of his business sale) in exchange for no other interest in his business which sold 6 months after ma...

    Jessica’s Answer

    Do not sign anything without consulting with an attorney! The laws regarding prenuptial and post nuptial agreements are very strict and must be followed exactly. I can't answer your specific question about whether or not the terms are reasonable since these agreements hinge on exact and fully disclosed financial information. Please take my advice and consult with a family law attorney immediately.

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  • Can I ask for spousal support if we have bee separated for years?

    My ex and I have been married since 2007 and we have 2 kids. In 2010 I found out he was cheating on me and I left the state (we were in GA at the time, now he live in FL and I live in CA) with our kids (he consented). I have not seen him since and...

    Jessica’s Answer

    Determining spousal support in California is not a simple task. There are many many factors in which a judge has to consider in order to determine spousal support. You do not have a long term marriage (a marriage more than 10 years) so you would most likely receive limited support if you were awarded support (approximately half the length of your marriage). The fact that you have managed to live for the past 4 years without any support may be considered by the judge as a sign that you do not need spousal support, but there may be other factors that could convince a judge otherwise. You have both children full-time so you would definitely be entitled to some child support. I would do an internet search for Family Code 4320 or look at the information on this page http://www.courts.ca.gov/1038.htm to see what goes into spousal support considerations. You may not need an attorney for this matter but I would highly recommend meeting with one for consultation purposes so that you can obtain more specific information to your situation.

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  • Im U.S Citizen by birth.My child was born in MX,where I currently live.What steps do I take in order for us to live in the U.S.

    The Father of my child is not a US Citizen and not in the picture. I do not have contact with him. I currently live in MX, and have resided here for approx 5+ yrs. What steps do I need to take in order for my daughter and I to live in the U.S. &/o...

    Jessica’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    If you are a US Citizen and you delivered your child in Mexico, did you register the birth with the US Embassy so that your child might also be able to obtain US Citizenship? http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/abroad/events-and-records/birth.html this website has some basic information on submitting an application to register your child. If you are able to register your child, you may also be able to obtain a passport. Please check with the embassy or consulate. They should also be able to advise you about traveling back to the US with your child. It is possible that you may still travel with the child as long as you have a birth certificate showing that you are the biological mother of your child.

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