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How fast can I get a divorce in California??

Watsonville, CA |

My husband and I have been separated 4 years. We have 3 kids, and we both agreed that we will share custody. He already has a new girlfriend and we both want to get a divorce ASAP! How fast can we get it in California? I really want to get it done as soon as possible....

Attorney Answers 4


  1. If you and your husband cooperate with each other, and resolve all issues between you, the soonest you can get a divorce would be six (6) months after the date a divorce case is served on the Respondent. If you really want to expedite your divorce to get it as soon as possible, you would best retain an experienced Family Law Attorney to handle your divorce for you.

    Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on, as each situation is fact specific, and it is not possible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and court pleadings filed in the case. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.


  2. The soonest that you can be legally divorced in California is six months from the date that the summons is served upon the Respondent.

    If you already have an agreement in principle, the matter can be disposed of quickly and easily, such as by doing a default judgment with a settlement agreement. The office of the Family Law Facilitator can provide procedural guidance, if you do not have the resources to retain counsel.

    In any event, in California, you cannot be adjudged as "single" until the six month “cooling-off” period transpires.


  3. The soonest you can be divorced is 6 months after service of the divorce petition. However, you can resolve all your differences and come to a final agreement, which can be filed with the Court, well before 6 months have elapsed. The law, however, requires you wait at least 6 months before you can get remarried.


  4. As my colleagues note, six months from the date of serving the summons and petition for dissolution.

    The above is general legal and business analysis. It is not "legal advise" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyse this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. I am only licensed in California. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.

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