What Is a Final Divorce Decree in CA?

Receiving your final divorce decree in California symbolizes the end of the divorce proceedings. It signifies that your marriage is now technically over and you can move on to the next chapter of your life. However, final divorce decrees can contain provisions in them that have a dramatic impact on your life for years to come, so you want to ensure that the divorce decree is accurate. An experienced divorce lawyer from Boyd Law Attorneys at Law can represent you during the divorce process, from the initial filing of divorce paperwork to the final divorce decree.

Basics of Final Divorce Decrees in California

A divorce decree is the family court’s ruling and judgment. It signifies the end of the divorce case. The decree is the legal document that shows you are legally divorced. Either spouse is free to remarry. Additionally, the divorce decree provides crucial information about your divorce. When you speak to an attorney with Boyd Law Attorneys at Law, they can estimate how long it may take for you to receive your divorce decree. 

What Is Included in a Final Divorce Decree in California?

The final divorce decree will typically include all of the following relevant information: 

Division of Property and Debt

California is a community property state, so this means that all income and assets obtained during the marriage are subject to an equal split during a divorce. Debt is also subject to the same division. The spouses can reach their own agreement regarding the property or leave the responsibility up to the court. 

Spousal Support

Spousal support may be ordered in cases in which one spouse has a significantly higher earning power than the other spouse, who may need financial assistance to maintain their standard of living. The court considers several factors when determining alimony, including the duration of the marriage, the age and health of the spouses, and the earning capacities of the spouses. 

Child Custody and Visitation 

The divorce decree can also state who has legal and physical custody of the children. Provisions regarding parenting time allocation may also be included. The spouses can reach their own agreement regarding custody, or the court can decide. 

Child Support

If the court has ordered either spouse to pay child support, this information may also be included in the divorce decree. 

Modifying a Final Divorce Decree

Despite the term “final,” many aspects of a final divorce decree can still be modified. For example, issues relating to children, including child custody, visitation, and child support generally continue to be modifiable until the child reaches the age of majority. Some aspects of the divorce decree may be modifiable unless the divorce agreement specifically states otherwise, such as provisions concerning the payment of alimony. Provisions regarding the division of your property and debt are usually not modifiable. 

If you need to modify your final divorce decree, you can prepare a new agreement with your spouse and present it to the court. If your spouse does not agree to the requested changes, you can ask the court to make the change and explain your position during a hearing. 

Contact Our Knowledgeable Attorneys for Help

An experienced family lawyer with Boyd Law Attorneys at Law can provide qualified legal representation to you throughout the divorce. We can work hard to ensure the provisions in your divorce decree help achieve your objectives. Contact us to discuss your case during a confidential consultation.