When individuals think of the word “divorce,” they may think of the long process that plenty of people endure.
While it is true that a lot of people go through the contentious divorce
process, not everyone understands that there are alternative options available.
One of these methods is called summary dissolution — or a simple
divorce. In California, spouses can file for summary dissolution if they
meet certain requirements and benefit from a quicker, less complicated
way to divorce.
Our San Bernardino divorce lawyers at James D. Madden & Aruna P. Rodrigo, Family Law Attorneys
are determined to make sure our potential clients understand what summary
dissolution is and the requirements you must meet.
Filing for Summary Dissolution
If you are considering a summary dissolution, it is best to meet with an
attorney who can explain the court’s Summary Dissolution Information.
This document will help you understand the process and provide other information
you may need to successfully complete the process. This includes worksheets
for property division and marking debt, community property, and separate
property. You can also receive a sample Property Settlement Agreement
to help you come up with your own plan.
You and your spouse will need to complete the paperwork, exchange them
with one another, and agree on how the property is settled. Once you file
the Joint Petition for Summary Dissolution and the related forms, the
time starts on the process. You will then need to wait six months for
summary dissolution and the court will enter the judgment regarding your
divorce. After this, your marriage is considered over and the Property
Settlement Agreement is considered in effect.
Qualifying for Summary Dissolution
In order to file for summary dissolution, you must be able to meet the
California state requirements. You must meet
all requirements at the time you file. The requirements include the following:
- One spouse has lived in the state for the last 6 months and in the county
for the last 3 months.
- Both parties want to end the marriage based on irreconcilable differences.
- You are not pregnant nor do you have any minor children.
- The marriage lasted five years or less.
- Neither party owns real property such as land or buildings.
- Neither party has incurred in excess of $6,000 (excluding car payments)
since the beginning of the marriage.
- You have less than $38,000 in community property.
- Neither party has over $38,000 in separate property.
- You can both sign completed Property Settlement Agreements.
- Both parties agree to give up rights to spousal support.
- Both parties agree to give up rights to appeal.
- Both parties have read and understand the Summary Dissolution Information booklet.
You should know that if either you or your spouse want to stop the summary
dissolution, you may be able to file a Notice of Revocation for Summary
Dissolution within the six months after finishing the Property Settlement
Agreements. This usually occurs for one of two reasons: one party wants
to go through the regular divorce process to seek support or the couple
has reconciled. There are options after the six month time limit expires.
It’s important to make sure you are properly represented throughout
all family matters so you know your rights are protected. At Matthew Sheasby,
Attorney at Law, we have a Board Certified Family Law Specialist who is
dedicated to helping clients reach the resolution they desire in their
Call us today for a free consultation and you can discuss your divorce case with our
skilled lawyers and have a better understanding of what to expect.