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Rhonda Diane Ellifritz

Rhonda Ellifritz’s Answers

891 total


  • "Father" awarded joint legal & physical custody via ex parte Emergency Protective Order.Not on birth cert, no paternity, custody

    Child is three years old. The mother allowed visitation w/ father since birth. Father gets child approx 25% of time. No set schedule, formal custody order, never paid child support, not on the birth certificate, never filed paternity Moth...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    The court has the authority to make emergency orders, and she has not lived long enough in the other state to establish jurisdiction there. If she wants to move, she needs to talk to an attorney to discuss how to get the permission of the court to leave.

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  • Do I have any rights to visits of my choosing with my children?

    My ex girlfriend moved from California to new mexico with our 2 year old and 4 year old daughters. The idea was I would stay here save up and move there to be with them as a family a few months later. She has ended our relationship and is now tell...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    You should make an appointment with an attorney to discuss your case in more detail. It would be important to know when they left and whether they have established residency in New Mexico. If they have, you need to talk to an attorney in New Mexico. You should be able to bring them to California for visits with you.

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  • I think my wife may have married me just to obtain a green card or immigration status change . who should I contact.

    I have already filed for a divorce and had an x parte hearing only to be delayed, this is costing me thousands of dollars on a property I am trying to purchase.

    Rhonda’s Answer

    You should retain an attorney to assist you and discuss whether buying the property right now is advisable. There are automatic restraining orders on the summons that apply until the divorce is final. In addition, I don't know what funds you are planning to use and whether it would give her an opportunity to make a community property claim.

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  • Joint legal/physical. Enrolled child into a different school against the wishes of other parent for no good reason.

    I want to bring an ex parte to ask that the child be enrolled in the same school as last year. The "irreparable harm" being that this will be a third change of school for the child by grade three. It says in my judgment that willful disobedience...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    I don't know if the parent has moved, or has the ability to remain in the same school as last year. If you live in a stable place, perhaps you need to take over primary care to provide some stability for the child. Contempt is not likely to end up in a way that helps you. Modification of the custody and visitation is usually a much better solution.

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  • Spousal support has no end date on judgment

    My judgment does not have an ending date for spousal support. We were married 20 years, 10 months. The judgment is blank where it says "specify end date". What does that mean in terms of his obligation? Is that an error or "normal" for it t...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    If the Judgment is silent as to an end date, the order will remain until he files something to terminate spousal support.

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  • Child Custody/ DV

    My ex's brother just informed me, that my ex had the cops called on her for domestic violence. She didn't get arrested, but she was barred from entering the house. What makes this worse, is this all happened in front of my son. I'm scarred! Wh...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    I would suggest filing a restraining order ex parte. The cops should have already called CPS, and there is a chance that if you call CPS, they will respond that if the cops felt no danger existed, it isn't an issue. You will have to get involved yourself to protect your child. Ex partes are difficult and rarely granted. Get an attorney to assist you to protect your child and ensure the best possible outcome.

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  • Only married a year and wanted to know about divorce options.

    no kids involved. She left ,by her own will, a career job in Nevada. Now living in California. But does not have a full time job to support herself. I won't leave her without shelter but wanted to know what she could get from me after one disappoi...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    In general she would be entitled to 1/2 of whatever was acquired during the marriage, unless it was an inheritance or income derived from a separate property interest. There are exceptions to the general rule, so an attorney retained by you would be able to answer you more thoroughly. In general, parties are entitled to spousal support for half the length of the marriage. The best way to ensure an outcome favorable to you, as you probably can already figure out, is to retain an attorney. Many, including myself offer free initial consultations so that you can find one you feel most comfortable with.

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  • FAMILY LAW QUESTION: A mistake on a child modification stipulation order

    An order for change of parenting plan was stipulated and signed by both parties and the judge. The stipulation was to be I have my kids on Wednesday pick up at 9 am and Thursday overnight with drop off to school Friday morning with alternating wee...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    They may have put 9 am in there to cover times when school is not in session, such as now. If I read what your saying correctly, perhaps it should have said "drop off at school or 9 am when school is not in session." That is how I usually prepare my orders, because just leaving it at "drop off at school" leaves parties nervous about what is to happen when school is not in session. If this is a handwritten order you are talking about, make sure the attorney who writes the formal order puts in language to cover that situation. In Orange County, the attorneys write handwritten stipulations, but sometimes attorneys are in a hurry, and want to get just the main agreement in writing, and put in the details later (I don't like to do that). The handwritten orders are then written into a formal order, which should be much more thorough. This may be the situation in your case. Ultimately, would the judge have a problem with you dropping off the child at school at 8:00 am instead of 9:00 am somewhere else? Probably not.

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  • Does filing a child custody evaluation reschedule a move away hearing date?

    Hi, I was served with a child custody hearing to be held in September. I want to file for a custody evaluation. Question - I've heard evaluations can take 3-4 months. Will the evaluation allow me to move the court date? If so, how far can I push ...

    Rhonda’s Answer

    I agree with the other attorneys - you are in over your head. The judge does not have to grant a request for an evaluation, and if the judge senses it is a delay tactic, it won't likely be granted. The judge, even if he grants your request for an evaluation, can issue temporary orders. I offer free initial consultations, as do other attorneys on this site, and you should make an appointment with a few, find one you like, and ensure the best possible outcome for your case.

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  • Do I need permission to move out of state and I have sole legal and sole physical custody?

    I have a sole legal and sole physical custody of my child with weekly visitation with father and I want to move out of state with him to try and provide a better life than where we are now? I want to know if I need the courts permission to move?

    Rhonda’s Answer

    Last year, I advised a client not to move away without permission. She didn't heed my advice, because she had sole legal and sole physical custody and believed she could do as she pleased. After she moved the child, dad filed to return the child and modify custody. Residency had not yet been established in the new state, and so she was forced to return to California to attend the hearings. The judge ordered the child not leave the state while the case was pending. She was forced to find someplace to stay for several months while waiting for the court's decision, lost her job, couldn't pay rent and lost the home she was living in, and then tried to hire me for the same price I had quoted for a hearing to get permission. She was very unhappy that the cost of the case was now at least triple! I would not advise leaving until you have permission of the court.

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