Request a voluntary settlement conference. The settlement Judge may assist in accomplishing a fair settlement and avoid the need for trial.
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.
Our office has maintained a family law practice in Alameda County, Santa Clara County and Contra Costa County for the past 31 years. I have represented several thousand of individuals in family law matters.
Your first threshold question is all the property community property? If any property is separate property, then that individual gets to keep his/her separate property 100%. Community property and debts will be divided equally. Unless you have a significant amount of community property, the expense of the litigation could be very substantial when compared to the amount of assets being divided; be careful.
If you can afford an attorney, you may wish to retain an experienced family law lawyer. If not, contact your local County Bar Association and obtain a referral for a 30 minute consultation with experienced legal counsel, and move forward to file on your own. Remember, when you engage in the Court system, nothing happens automatically, you will have to push the case through until you receive a conclusion. If there is no settlement, this will mean a trial.
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