A recent article claims that California ranks in the Top 10 worst states in which to get a divorce. As support for this claim, the author references the 360-day processing time, the required six-month “cooling-off” period and the $395 filing fee. How does California really rank in comparison to other states in getting a divorce? Here are a list of pros and cons of getting divorced in California.
1. Pro: Plenty of courts available. Con: One of the highest filing fees in the country. While California has thousands of courts in which you can plead your divorce case, the filing fees are extreme. At nearly $400, the filing fees in California are as high as some no-fault divorce attorney fees in other states. To combat this problem, California offers a number of options to help those who are unable to afford the filing fees but need to get a divorce.
2. Pro: Cooling-off period. Con: Cooling-off period. Whatever way you look at it, a cooling-off period is a mixed blessing. While it has saved some marriages by giving everyone a chance to come to their senses, it has also placed a barrier in the way of those who know that the marriage is not going to work or are dealing with a disagreeable or combative spouse.
3. Pro: No-fault divorce. Con: Loss of grounds for divorce. When California became the first state to allow no-fault divorce in 1970, proponents hailed this idea as one whose time had come. Instead of forcing those who wanted a divorce to “prove” that the marriage was not working, couples were allowed to simply agree that they wanted to part ways. Unfortunately, the no-fault divorce movement had two unforeseen consequences. First, the divorce rate skyrocketed; second, many injured spouses lost their ability to hold their partners accountable for bad behavior. In the past, when one spouse was clearly cheating, he or she could be “punished” for that behavior by being made to give up property or otherwise fail to benefit from this conduct. Now, a spouse who cheats may not only get a divorce with no questions asked but may actually come out of the process better off than when he or she started.
The attorneys at the Men’s Legal Center are here to help you with your California divorce questions. Contact us today.